Moscow gives UN 90 days to normalize Russian agricultural exports

Russian Foreign Ministry responds to statements by the UN Secretary-General following Moscow’s suspension of its participation in the Black Sea grain deal

Yayınlanma: 19.07.2023 - 12:19
Moscow gives UN 90 days to normalize Russian agricultural exports
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Russia said late Tuesday that the UN Secretariat has 90 days to normalize Russian agricultural exports, reacting to statements by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Moscow’s suspension of its participation in the Black Sea Grain Initiative a day earlier.

“According to Paragraph 6 of the Memorandum, the agreement ‘will be in effect for 3 years,’ and if one of the parties (Russia and the UN) intends to terminate its implementation, it must notify three months in advance. Thus, the UN Secretariat still has a whole 90 days to continue its work on the normalization of Russian agricultural exports,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

The statement said the 90 days are those quoted by Guterres in his statement, during which the UN Secretary-General “planned to restore access to the SWIFT system for the ‘subsidiary’ or affiliated structure of the Russian Agricultural Bank (Rosselkhozbank)."

It further said that Russia sees “no alternatives to the direct reconnection of Rosselkhozbank to SWIFT, neither through a marginal channel with JPMorgan, nor within a theoretical platform with Citi and Afreximbank, nor with the options of branches and subsidiaries.”

“All these palliative measures are simply not implemented in practice and are only intended to create the appearance of work in a situation where, in the end, the influence of the UN on Washington and Brussels, which control payment systems, is no more than on the Kyiv regime, which undermined the (Togliatti-Odesa) ammonia pipeline,” it said.

The Kremlin announced Monday that it had suspended Russia’s participation in the Black Sea grain deal, saying the Russian part of the agreement was not implemented.

The agreement, initially signed in July of last year in Istanbul by Turkey, the UN, Russia and Ukraine, was aimed at resuming grain exports from Ukrainian ports which have been halted as a result of the Russia-Ukraine war which began in February 2022.

The statement also accused Guterres of “turning a blind eye to the terrorist attacks and sabotage of Kyiv.”

“Under the guise of a humanitarian corridor and shipping deployed as part of the Black Sea Initiative, the Zelenskyy regime constantly tried to attack Russian civilian and military targets, in fact, violating the ‘spirit and letter’ of the agreement, which was known to be ‘on the safe transportation of grain and food products from Ukrainian ports,’” the statement said in reference to the explosion at the Kerch Bridge on Monday.

“The UN Secretariat did not even find words of condolence in connection with this,” it added.

At least two people were killed and a child was severely injured in a blast early Monday at the Kerch Bridge, which connects Russia to the Crimean Peninsula, which was illegally annexed by Moscow in 2014.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has accused Ukraine of being behind the attack, while Ukrainian officials have neither confirmed nor denied responsibility.

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