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UN Secretary-General António Guterres has applauded the inauguration of the Istanbul focal point for grain exports from Ukraine and called on the parties to work to “effectively implement” the agreement with the aim of “reducing food insecurity globally.”
“The secretary-general warmly applauds the official opening of the Joint Coordination Center (JCC) in Istanbul,” said Guterres’ deputy spokesman Farhan Haq, who stressed that this body “is composed of representatives of Ukraine, Russia, Turkey and the UN.”
Thus, he has underlined that “the work of the JCC will enable the safe transport, by merchant ships, of grain, related foodstuffs and fertilizers from three key Ukrainian ports on the Black Sea to the rest of the world.” “This will help to respond effectively and prevent the rise of global food insecurity,” he has argued.
“Together with the implementation of the memorandum of understanding between Russia and the UN General Secretariat to promote access of Russian food products and fertilizers to global markets, it will help to restore confidence in the global food market and reduce food prices from their current levels,” he has explained.
Finally, Haq has said that Guterres “is grateful to Turkey for giving the parties and the United Nations a platform to help operationalize the Black Sea Grain Initiative,” while “thanking Russia and Ukraine for nominating and promptly sending their representatives to Istanbul.”
Turkey, together with Russia Ukraine and the UN signed late last week an agreement to reopen three Ukrainian ports that had been blocked for months due to the war launched by Russia last February 24.
The agreement went ahead after the parties agreed to a UN-sponsored plan to form a coordination center in the city of Istanbul to carry out joint inspections at the ports’ entrances and exits and ensure the safety of the routes.
In this regard, the ships are scheduled to cross the Black Sea to the Bosphorus Strait in Turkey, where the joint coordination center is located. This center will be responsible for examining ships entering Ukraine to ensure that they are not carrying weapons or combat material.