Ukrainian cereals: A first UN ship ready to leave

The first humanitarian ship chartered by the United Nations to transport Ukrainian cereals was loaded Sunday with wheat and is ready to leave for Africa, announced the Ukrainian Minister of Infrastructure, Oleksandre Kubrakov.

“The ship will head for Africa, with Ethiopia being the last country where the cargo of 23,000 tonnes of wheat will be delivered,” said Kubrakov, who was watching the loading of the MV Brave Commander at the port of Pivdenny in the city. of Youjne.

“I hope that other ships chartered for the World Food Program (WFP) will come to our ports. I hope there will be 2-3 more ships soon,” he continued.

The MV Brave Commander docked Friday at the port of Pivdenny, near Odessa. According to the Ukrainian Ministry of Infrastructure, it will leave for Djibouti, from where the grain will be transferred to Ethiopia.

This is the first shipment of food aid to leave Ukraine since the signing in July by Kyiv and Moscow, mediated by Turkey and under the auspices of the UN, of agreements on the export Ukrainian cereals, blocked because of the war between the two countries.

“We obviously expect more ships to leave Ukrainian ports to help people around the world. This is just the first of many humanitarian ships that will leave ports,” Marianne Ward, WFP’s deputy director of operations in Ukraine, told reporters. The Brave Commander had “left Istanbul on August 10 after passing the inspection of the Joint Coordination Center (CMC)”, said in a note to the press, Tomson Phiri, spokesman for the WFP in Geneva.

The WFP has purchased a first tranche of 30,000 tons of Ukrainian wheat, Mr. Phiri said.

The first commercial ship left on August 1, and a total of 16 boats have left Ukraine since the agreement came into force, according to the Ukrainian authorities’ tally, but no UN humanitarian cargo has yet took to the sea.

According to the WFP, a record 345 million people in 82 countries now face acute food insecurity, while up to 50 million people in 45 countries are at risk of starvation without humanitarian assistance.

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