Erdogan says grain deal with Ukraine extended

ANKARA: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced on Saturday the extension of a deal that allowed Ukrainian grain exports to resume after the Russian invasion.
“Following discussions with both parties, we secured the extension of the agreement which was due to expire on March 19,” Erdogan said in comments broadcast on Turkish TV, just hours before the expiry of the agreement. deal at midnight.
Erdogan did not specify the duration of the agreement. Ankara previously said it wanted a 120-day extension, while Russia favored a 60-day extension.
“This agreement is of vital importance for the global food supply. I thank Russia and Ukraine, who spared no effort for a new extension, as well as the Secretary General of the United Nations.
The large-scale invasion of Russia in February 2022 saw Ukrainian Black Sea ports blocked by warships.
But a deal brokered by Turkey and the United Nations in July 2022 – and signed by Kyiv and Moscow – allowed the safe passage of essential grain exports. The initial agreement was extended in November until March 18.
Ukraine was one of the world’s leading producers, and the so-called Black Sea Grain Initiative helped ease the global food crisis triggered by the conflict.


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