BERLIN – Germany on Saturday accused Russia of waging a “grain war”, endangering global food security.
Addressing a press conference after the meeting of G7 foreign ministers in the Baltic resort of Weissenhaus, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said Moscow was consciously trying to expand the war against the Ukraine in the world, especially in Africa.
Accusing Russia of trying to prevent the export of grain by blockading Ukrainian ports, she said this was not part of the collateral damage of the war.
“We must not be naive,” the minister warned, saying Russia is deliberately trying to weaken international unity.
Baerbock said millions of tons of grain are stuck in Ukraine because its seaports are blocked by the Russian military.
The group of major industrialized countries (G7) is considering alternatives to ship grain from Ukraine to break the Russian blockade in the region, she added.
Following the problems of rail transport via Romania due to the different track widths of the railways, exports via the Baltic ports are under consideration, she said, noting that the preconditions should be first be clarified as to how to reach the ports there.
The minister pointed out that normally 5-6 million tons of grain could be shipped from Ukraine by sea per month.
“With rail delivery you get a lot less grain,” she said.
But, according to Baerbock, each ton delivered can help a little to bring the hunger crisis under control.
So far, a fraction has been exported by rail, mostly via Romania, she said, adding that a bottleneck resulted from Ukraine and Romania having different track widths. different.
Baerbock warned that there would be no perfect solution as long as Russian bombardment of Ukraine continued, with 25 million tonnes of grain sitting in Ukrainian ports.
“It’s the grain the world so badly needs,” she continued.
“It’s not just about preventing a famine in a few months. The effects of the blockade are already being felt. Even without the war in Ukraine, there are incredible problems in providing food for everyone and the people are already starving.
“That’s why it’s so important that we act together,” she said. (Anadolu)