Amid Russia’s blockade of Black Sea ports, US President Joe Biden said his administration was “working with European partners to bring to market 20 million tonnes of grain locked in Ukraine to help bring down the price foodstuffs”.
“We are going to build silos, temporary silos, on the borders of Ukraine, including in Poland, so that we can transfer it from these cars to these silos to cars in Europe and bring it to the ocean and the to cross the world,” said the American president.
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Biden said “thousands of tons of grain” has been “locked up” in Black Sea ports, adding that it cannot be transported because “it is being pushed out of the water.”
President Vladimir Putin’s forces have blocked the Black Sea region since the invasion began on February 24 with the deployment of Russian warships in the sea.
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Amid the food crisis, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has called for the delivery of weapons to be expedited as Russian forces continue to make inroads into eastern Ukraine.
Russian forces targeted Severodonetsk and Lysychansk with heavy shelling with reports that Ukrainian forces suffered casualties due to shortage of ammunition.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg acknowledged that Ukraine needed “more heavy weapons”, saying the European military alliance had already stepped up arms deliveries.
The United States, United Kingdom and other European countries sent large quantities of arms and ammunition to Ukraine, but the country came under renewed Russian fire in eastern Ukraine.
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki urged nations to deliver weapons and artillery to Ukraine while lamenting that “not enough” was being done to defend Ukraine.
The Polish prime minister said it would be a “complete failure and a disaster” for the European Union and a “loss of our values and of NATO” if Ukraine lost the war against Russia.
(With agency contributions)
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