“Is it possible to overcome famine? Yes. Is it possible to guarantee food security? Yes. Is it possible to stabilize food prices on the world market? Yes, it is. But to do so, we need to punish the aggressors and to help countries on the edge of famine. This is exactly what Ukraine is doing. This is exactly what our partners are doing,” President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky addressed Berlin Agriculture Ministers' Conference participants.
He called on the Conference participants to join the Ukraine-initiated Grain from Ukraine humanitarian initiative. Within its framework, the support from developed countries is attracted to buy grain and charter ships to supply food to the countries which suffer from the threat of famine most of all.
“And I express my gratitude to everyone who is implementing the initiative Grain from Ukraine with us! Ladies and gentlemen, I call on all of you to take this approach to global food security, based on morality and the need to protect the right of every human for food and water!” Zelensky added.
The President said that Ukraine had exported 6.5 million tonnes of food every month before the beginning of the war unleashed by Russia which destroys Ukraine’s potential, including agricultural one.
“Due to Russian aggression and actions to block our food exports, the shipments have been cut in half. If we count all that not in tonnes, but in human lives, this will be at least two hundred million people in different countries on three continents – Africa, Asia, and Europe – who now have decreased access to food,” the President of Ukraine stressed.
He noted that more than 100 ships transporting food are lined up near the Bosphorus right now. “Because they need to be inspected, and Russian representatives are blocking this inspection. The ships are detained for weeks. It means higher prices for Europe. For Asia, it means a growing threat of social instability. In Africa, for such countries as Ethiopia or Sudan, it means empty tables for thousands and thousands of families...” Zelensky said.
According to him, the world needs more determination and more cooperation to stop the aggression that ruins the food market. To stop any state that blocks the sea and destroys food-supply chains. To bring to justice any tyrant who tries to make famine an instrument of political influence.
As reported, the Grain from Ukraine program was initiated by the President of Ukraine. It provides for the purchase of Ukrainian grain by partner countries and its transfer to states experiencing a humanitarian crisis. The program is implemented in partnership with the World Food Program under the auspices of the United Nations.
More than 30 countries and the European Union announced their financial participation in the program. The total amount of announced contributions is almost $190 million.