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Antonio Tajani: The free grain from Russia to Africa will not help to overcome the crisis

30 Jul, 2023
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Antonio Tajani: The free grain from Russia to Africa will not help to overcome the crisis

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Russia's permission to provide grain to Africa for free is not the right way to address the crisis caused by Russia's withdrawal from the Black Sea Grain Initiative, according to Italy's Foreign Minister, Antonio Tajani. "We insist on continuing the dialogue on the grain corridor. We support Turkey's diplomatic actions," stated Tajani.

He emphasized that mainly African nations are paying the price for the suspension of the agreement. "The path proposed by Putin, that is, 'we will send you grain for free,' is not correct. If we do not return to the agreement, grain prices will rise," the minister underscored.

During the Russia-Africa Summit in St. Petersburg, Putin promised to supply free grain to six African countries. He announced that in the coming months, "Russia will provide 25-50 thousand tons of grain to African countries for free and ensure free delivery."

The grain is expected to be received by Burkina Faso, Zimbabwe, Mali, Somalia, the Central African Republic, and Eritrea.

On July 17, Russia announced the suspension of the "grain deal" and threatened "risks" to those who decide to continue the initiative without Russia's involvement. Additionally, Moscow initiated massive attacks on the port infrastructure of Odessa and Danube ports.

The U.S. State Department warned that Russia might be preparing an operation under a foreign flag in the Black Sea amid a series of attacks on port infrastructure in southern Ukraine. British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly also issued a similar warning.

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