Ankara Announces New Date to Discuss "Grain Deal"

Tuesday, 9 May 2023

Ankara has set a new date for talks on the Black Sea Grain Initiative involving Ukraine, Russia, and Türkiye, which did not take place last week.

According to Anadolu agency, Turkish Defence Minister Hulusi Akar said that talks between representatives of Ukraine, Russia, Turkey, and the UN are planned for May 10-11 in Istanbul. Multilateral and bilateral meetings are planned.

The extension of the Black Sea Grain Initiative, as well as the development of a detailed and safe evacuation plan for the return of merchant ships and their crews stranded in Ukrainian ports due to conflict conditions, will be discussed during the talks, the ministry said in a statement.

Initially, Wednesday, May 3, was a possible date, and later the Turkish side announced May 5, but as far as is known, the negotiations did not take place (Ukr).

At the last moment before the end of the next term of the grain agreement on 18 March, it was extended after all. However, Moscow soon announced that it had agreed to an extension of only 60 days – half of the standard 120-day period, and threatened to terminate the agreement if its requirements are not met.

Recently, Sergey Lavrov, Russian Foreign Minister, once again stated that the situation around the Black Sea Grain Initiative reached a dead end, but he blamed the West for this. 

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