| 22 July 2024, Monday |

NATO condemns Russia’s withdrawal from grain deal, welcomes Türkiye’s efforts to reestablish deal

On July 17, Russia suspended its participation in the pact, brokered by Türkiye and the UN to resume grain exports from three Ukrainian Black Sea ports that were paused after Moscow’s “special military operation” began in February 2022.

Moscow has repeatedly complained that the West has not met its obligations under the deal and that there are restrictions on payments, logistics, and insurance on shipments of its own food and fertilizer exports.

After a Monday meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan spoke optimistically on reviving the deal, saying he believes a “good result” will be reached soon.​​​​​​​

The US and other international actors have also praised Türkiye’s efforts to both reach the grain deal and also work for its continuation.

Support for Ukraine

Jens Stoltenberg also stressed the importance of support for Ukraine, where Russia has been waging a war since February 2022.

“There is no other option for us than to ensure peace for NATO allies, for EU members (than) by investing in defense, supporting Ukraine,” he said.

A victory by Russian President Vladimir Putin in Ukraine would be a tragedy for the Ukrainians, and a dangerous development for NATO, he warned.

“It sends a message that when they use military force, they get what they want, the authoritarian leaders. So it’s in our security interest to support Ukraine, and therefore I’m extremely grateful for all the support that EU members, the European Union and NATO allies, are providing to Ukraine,” Stoltenberg added.

In this context, he said NATO is monitoring the situation in Romania after its defense minister said Wednesday that pieces apparently of a drone from Russian attacks on Ukraine’s port on the Danube River have been found in Romanian territory.

“We don’t have any information indicating any intentional attack by Russia and we are awaiting the outcome of the ongoing investigation,” Stoltenberg said.

Romania is a member of NATO, and under the alliance’s collective defense document, any attack on it could draw all the other members into a possible war.

  • Anadolu Agency