Accessibility links

Breaking News

UN Working to Extend Black Sea Grain Deal

FILE: FILE - A farmer harvests in the Dnipropetrovsk region, Ukraine, on July 4, 2022. Warning of a new threat to global food security, the U.N. said Thursday, June 1, 2023, that Russia is limiting the number of ships allowed at Black Sea ports ito get Kyiv to open a pipeline.

UNITD NATIONS HQ, NEW YORK — U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Monday he is working to extend an agreement that allows grain from war-torn Ukraine to reach the global market and prevent shortages.

"I am concerned, and we are working hard in order to make sure that it will be possible to maintain the Black Sea Initiative and at the same time that we are able to go on in our work to facilitate Russian exports," Guterres told a press conference.

That crucial accord granting safe passage for Ukrainian grain to be exported via Black Sea ports - despite Moscow's invasion - was signed in July 2022 by Russia, Ukraine, Turkey and the United Nations. It was renewed again in May but for only two months, until July 17.

Moscow is demanding guarantees on another agreement concerning its own exports, in particular of fertilizer components before moving forward on renewing the grain initiative.

Russia said last week that a Ukrainian sabotage group had blown up a section of a pipeline that Russia used to export ammonia - a key component in making fertilizer.

That stretch of the conduit is in Ukraine. The two countries have blamed each other for the attack.

The resumption of Russia's ammonia exports through the pipeline is one of Moscow's conditions to continue with the grain export deal.