Ukraine's president said Friday the first ship is being loaded with grain since Russia launched its war on Feb. 24.
According to a statement by the Presidency, Volodymyr Zelenskyy observed the loading of Ukrainian grain onto a ship at the Ukrainian port of Chornomorsk.
Saying that Ukraine remains the guarantor of global food security, he underlined that unblocking the export of Ukrainian grain will make it possible to prevent food shortages, as well as hunger and political chaos in countries that need food products.
"The first vessel, the first ship is being loaded since the beginning of the war. This is a Turkish vessel. This shows that the port has started working," said Zelenskyy.
He went on to say that the export of grain will begin with the departure of several ships that were loaded but could not set sail due to the start of the war.
"Our side is fully prepared. We sent all the signals to our partners -- the UN and Turkey, and our military guarantees the security situation. The Minister of Infrastructure is in direct contact with the Turkish side and the UN, we are waiting for a signal from them that we can start," he added.
The ambassadors of US, UK, Italy, Canada, Germany, Türkiye as well as EU and UN representatives were among those who accompanied Zelenskyy.
'Ships will bring hope to resolution of food crisis, not just grain'
Sharing a photo from the port, the Turkish Embassy in Kyiv said the success of the historical agreement reached in Istanbul to ensure grain export from Ukrainian ports will be important for the whole world.
"Today, as Türkiye, with the key role we played in reaching the deal, we visited the ports of Chornomorsk and Odessa together with the Ukrainian Infrastructure Minister [Oleksandr] Kubrakov, the UN and diplomatic representatives. We were received by President Zelenskyy," it said.
Noting that the first vessel that is being loaded with grain is Türkiye-flagged, the embassy said these ships will bring hope to the resolution of the food crisis, not just grain.
In accordance with the spirit of the Istanbul agreement, Türkiye continues to work for successful implementation of the deal, it added
Türkiye, the UN, Russia and Ukraine signed a deal last week to reopen three Ukrainian ports -- Odesa, Chernomorsk and Yuzhny -- for grain that has been stuck for months because of the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, which is now in its sixth month.
To oversee Ukrainian grain exports, a joint coordination center in Istanbul was officially opened Wednesday, comprising representatives of Türkiye, the UN, Russia and Ukraine to enable the safe transportation, by merchant ships, of commercial foodstuffs and fertilizers from three key Ukrainian ports in the Black Sea.Güncelleme Tarihi: 30 Temmuz 2022, 18:40