First Ship With Ukrainian Grain Arrives At Its Final Destination In Turkey
The first ship carrying Ukrainian grain and agricultural products has arrived at its final destination – in Turkey.
A photograph obtained from the Ukrainian Ministry of Infrastructure reportedly shows the POLARNET vessel in the port in Turkey after it successfully passed inspection in Istanbul.
The footage, obtained from the Ukrainian Minister for Infrastructure, Alexander Kubrakov, 39, on Friday, August 5, shows the ship getting ready to leave port in Ukraine at the beginning of its trip.
The Ukrainian Ministry of Infrastructure said on Monday, August 8 (in English): “‘Grain Initiative’: the first ship with Ukrainian agricultural products arrived at its final destination.
“The POLARNET vessel, which was one of the first to take part in the implementation of the Initiative on safe transportation of grain and food products from Ukrainian ports, successfully passed the inspection by the inspection team in Istanbul and arrived at its final destination in Turkey.”
And Dmytro Kuleba, 41, the Ukrainian Minister of Foreign Affairs, is quoted in the statement as saying: “The arrival of the first ship with Ukrainian grain to the Turkish port is a signal of hope for every family in the Middle East, Africa and Asia: Ukraine will not leave you.
“We have always been, are, and will be a reliable supplier of agricultural products. Unlike Russia, we do not play the ‘Hunger Games’.
“Full responsibility for the further functioning of the “grain corridor” rests with Russia. If it complies with its obligations, Ukrainian food exports will continue to guarantee stability for our Middle Eastern, African and Asian friends.”
And Kubrakov added: “This first successful experience of the implementation of the ‘grain initiative’ allows us to look with optimism at the future prospects of transportation.
“I am grateful to our partners from the UN and Turkey for effectively guaranteeing the safety of the ship’s movement and maximum cooperation at all stages of the implementation of the agreements.
“I am especially grateful to the crew of the POLARNET vessel for being one of the first to use the “grain corridor”, thereby opening the way for all other vessels.”
This comes after the first ship carrying Ukrainian grain set out on Monday from the port of Odesa. The Sierra-Leone flagged vessel Razoni is headed to Lebanon with over 26,000 tons of cargo.
Zenger News contacted the Ukrainian Minister for Infrastructure for further comment, as well as the Russian Ministry of Defense, but had not received a reply at the time of writing.
Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24 in what the Kremlin is still calling a “special military operation”. Tuesday marks the 167th day of the war.
The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported that between February 24 and August 9, Russia had lost about 42,640 personnel, 1,817 tanks, 4,076 armored combat vehicles, 964 artillery units, 261 multiple launch rocket systems, 133 air defense systems, 223 warplanes, 193 helicopters, 757 drones, 185 cruise missiles, 15 warships, 2,998 motor vehicles and fuel tankers, and 87 units of special equipment.
Russia has claimed that its casualties have been much lower, but provides infrequent updates on its latest figures.
The Pentagon said on Monday that Russia had suffered between 70,000 and 80,000 casualties since the beginning of its invasion. Colin Kahl, the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, said: “There’s a lot of fog in war but I think it’s safe to suggest that the Russians have probably taken 70 or 80,000 casualties in the less than six months. Now, that is a combination of killed in action and wounded in action and that number might be a little lower, a little higher, but I think that’s kind of in the ballpark.”
Russia has suspended a deal that allowed U.S. and Russian inspectors to visit each other’s nuclear arsenals under the New START treaty, signed in 2010. The inspections had been on pause due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but the Russian Foreign Ministry claimed on Monday that it was also withdrawing from it because its inspectors are unable to travel to the U.S. due to sanctions imposed over the war in Ukraine.
The U.S. Agency for International Development has said that the United States will provide an additional $4.5 billion to Ukraine’s government.
The Ministry of Defense of the United Kingdom has said that it is highly likely that Russia is “deploying anti-personnel mines to protect and deter freedom of movement along its defensive lines in the Donbas.” The mines, described as PFM-1 and PFM-1s ‘butterfly mines’ “have the potential to inflict widespread casualties amongst both the military and the local civilian population.”
Ukrainian and British military authorities have said that Russia is fortifying its positions and the number of its troops on the southern front in Ukraine, either in preparation of an expected Ukrainian counteroffensive or preparing themselves to attack.
The Ministry of Defense of the United Kingdom said: “Russian troops are almost certainly amassing in the south, either waiting for a Ukrainian counteroffensive or preparing to attack. Long convoys of Russian military trucks, tanks, artillery and other things continue to move from the Donbas to the southwest.”
Petro Kotin, the head of Ukraine’s state nuclear power company Energoatom, has requested that the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant – Europe’s largest – be made a military-free zone and has warned of the risk of a nuclear disaster like that seen at Chernobyl after repeated shelling at the site caused a reactor shutdown on Saturday.
Ukraine’s President, Volodymyr Zelensky, has called for new international sanctions on Russia, accusing it of nuclear terror.
Both Russia and Ukraine have accused each other over the shelling. The United Nations has also called for international inspectors to be given access to the nuclear power plant.
The UN’s nuclear watchdog has called for all military actions near the nuclear power plant to cease after it was hit by shelling on Saturday night. The shelling reportedly caused a reactor to shut down, creating a “very real risk of a nuclear disaster”.