Launch of "Grain from Ukraine" Program
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky has announced the launch of the Grain from Ukraine program, under which food will be delivered from Ukraine to the poor countries of Asia and Africa. The Netherlands will allocate EUR 4 million for the World Food Programme.
He announced this in Kyiv, opening the International Summit on Food Security. It is attended online and offline by President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, UN Secretary-General António Guterres, the prime ministers of Poland, Lithuania, Romania, Belgium, as well as the president of Hungary.
Zelensky said that "as part of the initiative, by the beginning of next spring, it is planned to send at least 60 ships from the ports of Ukraine to countries that are under the threat of famine and drought, all of which are in dire need of help."
As of today, he said, "almost 50 ships have left our ports, this is 12 million tonnes of foodstuffs for 40 countries of the world." Zelensky noted that Russia is trying to "delay the movement of vessels – their queue in the Bosphorus is 80 ships. We advocate an increase in the number of ports and the indefinite continuation of this important initiative."
Read full news on the website of the President: https://www.president.gov.ua/en/news/volodimir-zelenskij-vidkriv-pershij-mizhnarodnij-samit-shodo-79457
Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal:
The government of Ukraine has allocated UAH 900 million for the purchase of corn for poor countries in Asia and Africa, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said on Saturday, speaking at the International Summit on Food Security in Kyiv.
"The government of Ukraine, despite our own difficulties, has already allocated UAH 900 million for the purchase of corn for Sudan, Yemen, Kenya and Nigeria. Ukraine knows what hunger is, and we do not want people to die again in the 21st century because of Russia and its inhuman methods," he said.
"Russia is interested in global instability in the same way that in 1933 they were interested in the death of Ukrainians. President Zelensky proposed to strengthen the humanitarian component of Ukrainian grain exports. I am sure that dozens of countries will join this initiative in the near future," the prime minister said.
Shmyhal also thanked Turkey and the UN for "guaranteeing the security of our Black Sea logistics route."
Prime Minister of the Netherlands Mark Rutte has announced the allocation of EUR 4 million for the World Food Programme.
Speaking online at the International Summit on Food Security, he said he was "delighted to announce the participation of the Netherlands in the Grain from Ukraine program launched today by President Zelensky."
"This war affects the whole world, threatens food security. We are providing EUR 4 million for the World Food Programme. We are happy to support those countries that feel the need for products. We will continue supporting the courageous people of Ukraine," Rutte said.
Ursula von der Leyen:
Statement by President von der Leyen at the "Grain from Ukraine" Summit:
“Today, Russia is again using food as a weapon. As part of its brutal aggression against Ukraine, Russia has destroyed your agricultural production, targeted your grain silos, and blockaded your ports.
Thus Russia is depriving of vital access to food the most vulnerable countries in Africa, the Middle East and Asia. And then it uses disinformation to blame others for its despicable actions. We must continue to fight back against this. Your initiative "Grain from Ukraine", which has my full support, is crucial to our efforts.”
Read the full text of the statement: