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First shipment of Ukrainian grain sets sail for Africa

By RFI
Europe AFP - OLEKSANDR GIMANOV
AUG 17, 2022 LISTEN
AFP - OLEKSANDR GIMANOV

A UN-chartered shipment of grain has set off from Ukraine for Africa following a deal to relieve a global food crisis.

The MV Brave Commander left the Black Sea port of Pivdennyi on Tuesday and will sail to Djibouti "for delivery to Ethiopia", Ukraine's Infrastructure Ministry said Tuesday.

The ship is carrying 23,000 tonnes of wheat.
It is the first ship chartered by the UN World Food Programme to leave Ukraine since the start of the Russian invasion in February. The Kyiv government has said it hopes two or three similar shipments will follow soon.

Black sea blockade lifted

As two of the world's biggest grain exporters, Ukraine and Russia last month agreed a deal brokered by the UN and Turkey to unblock Black Sea grain deliveries after Russia's invasion.

The agreement lifted a Russian blockade of Ukraine's ports and established safe corridors through the naval mines laid by Kyiv.

The Ukrainian port authority said that five boats with an overall cargo volume of 110,000 tonnes had left Ukraine on Tuesday.

The first commercial ship carrying grain left on 1 August. Since then, 21 ships have reportedly left Ukrainian ports.

The WFP says a record 345 million people in 82 countries face acute food insecurity and up to 50 million people in 45 countries are on the brink of famine and risk being tipped over the edge without humanitarian support.

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