Russia says it will renew its participation in the agreement to allow Ukraine to export grain via the Black Sea
Russia announced on Wednesday it would renew its participation in a deal allowing Ukraine to export grain through the Black Sea, just four days after suspending its role in the deal.
Moscow pulled out over the weekend, saying it could not guarantee the safety of civilian ships crossing the Black Sea due to a drone attack on its fleet there.
“The Russian Federation considers that the guarantees received so far seem sufficient and is resuming the implementation of the agreement,” the defense ministry said in a statement.
The reversal followed a phone call between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday, and repeated conversations between their defense ministers.
The ministry said that thanks to the involvement of the United Nations and Turkey, it had been possible to obtain written guarantees from Ukraine that it would not use the humanitarian corridor and Ukrainian ports for carrying out operations. military against Russia.
The statement represented a reversal from Moscow, which had previously said it would be risky and unacceptable for ships to continue to navigate the humanitarian corridor set up under a deal brokered by Turkey and the UN in July.
Despite the Russian decision, ships continued to export Ukrainian grain and a record volume was transported on Monday.
Russian political analyst Tatiana Stanovaya said Wednesday’s announcement represented an acknowledgment by Putin that he could not block shipments.
“The Kremlin itself simply fell into a trap it couldn’t get out of,” she said.
“We had to retreat and put on a good show (not very successfully) in the face of a bad game. In other words, Putin, no matter how concerned he is about Ukraine, his historic mission and his belief that he is right, remains a moderately rational politician who knows how to retreat if necessary.