Lavrov: West Prevents Russian Ships From Docking at Ports to Exacerbate Food Crisis

© Sputnik / Maxim Blinov / Go to the photo bankRussian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov  - Sputnik International, 1920, 31.05.2022
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The Western countries have accused Russia of trying to trigger a global food crisis by allegedly impeding shipments of grain and crops from Ukraine – one of the world's biggest suppliers, alongside Russia. At the same time, the same countries earlier banned port entrance for practically all Russian ships.
Russia has done everything in its power to resolve the nascent global food crisis, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has stated.
However, the West itself creates obstacles in the way of solving the issue, as these countries are preventing the Russian ships from entering their ports, Lavrov stressed. He added that due to Western sanctions, the logistics of food supplies and the financial operations related to them had been disrupted.
"[Western countries] should, of course, seriously consider what is more important for them: Using the problem of food security for their own PR, or solving the issue with concrete steps. It's up to them now," Lavrov said.
Lavrov's statement comes in the wake of allegations that Russia is blocking Ukrainian ports, preventing their use in exporting grain in order to artificially create a global food crisis. Ukraine and Russia are among the world's top suppliers of grain and other agricultural products.
The foreign minister pointed out that Russia is ready to release Ukrainian ships and escort them out of Ukrainian waters. However, that would require Kiev to clear the coastal waters of the naval mines it has deployed, which prevent the save passage of the commercial vessels.
Grain - Sputnik International, 1920, 26.05.2022
Kremlin: West Should Abolish Illegal Decisions That Prevent Grain Export From Ukraine
However, while such steps may release Ukrainian grain exports, certain countries would still be massively deprived of agricultural exports from Russia. The sale of grain and crops to certain countries has been practically paralysed due to the US and most European countries banning Russian ships from entering their ports.
Western sanctions against the Russian banking sector also disrupted international payments to and from the country, further exacerbating the issue. Moscow has stated on several occasions that the lifting of anti-Russian sanctions, which the Kremlin considers illegal, is a prerequisite for releasing agricultural exports and resolving the nascent global food crisis.
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