Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova confirmed the extension of the grain deal for 60 days. This is reported by the newspaper “Kommersant”.
“Zakharova confirmed that the grain deal has been extended for two months. She also said that the “distortions” in the execution of the transaction should be corrected as quickly as possible, ”the message says.
Russian Permanent Representative to the UN Vasily Nebenzya, in turn, said that Moscow agreed to extend the grain deal, because “it does not lose hope that the problems in its implementation will be resolved.”
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said earlier that the grain deal was extended by 60 days.
“I would like to tell the good news to the whole world. It was decided to extend the agreement on the Black Sea Grain Corridor for another 2 months. I want this decision to be beneficial for all parties. We will continue our efforts in the future, fulfilling all the conditions of the agreement,” the Turkish head said.
According to Erdogan, “their Russian friends declared” that they would not interfere with the exit of Turkish ships from the Ukrainian ports of Odessa and Nikolaev.
He also thanked Russian President Vladimir Putin, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and UN Secretary General António Guterres for their efforts to extend the grain deal.
“I convey my gratitude to the President of Russia, my dear friend Putin, for the sincere support he has given us in this process,” Erdogan said.
Earlier, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Vershinin recalled that the grain deal includes permission to export ammonia from Russia through Ukraine. “Let me remind you that they [the Istanbul agreements, the grain deal] consist of two interconnected parts – the Black Sea Initiative on the export of Ukrainian food and raw materials for fertilizers, including ammonia, and the Russia-UN Memorandum on the normalization of domestic agricultural exports,” Vershinin said.
According to him, the further position of the Russian Federation will depend on “real progress in the supply of Russian products”, including the resolution of issues with payments, logistics, insurance, unfreezing of the financial activities of the Russian Federation and the supply of ammonia through the Togliatti-Odessa pipeline. Due to the inability to sell raw materials, private companies and the state budget are losing billions of dollars.
The launch of the ammonia pipeline remains a stumbling block in the issue of the grain deal. As reported by Bloknot, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky said that he would approve the supply of ammonia from the Russian Federation to the port of Odessa during the exchange of prisoners according to the “all for all” formula.
The Ukrainian leader announced this on September 16th. “I am against the supply of ammonia from the Russian Federation through our territory. I will do this only in exchange for our prisoners,” Zelensky said.
The Kremlin said that the idea is inappropriate. “Are people and ammonia the same thing?!” Dmitry Peskov said. 5 days later, on September 23, RTVI reported that on the day of the announcement of partial mobilization in Russia, one of the largest exchanges of prisoners of war with Ukraine took place – 55 Russian soldiers returned to their homeland in exchange for 215 Ukrainian soldiers, including fighters of the Azov regiment (the organization is prohibited in Russia), taken prisoner during the siege of Azovstal in Mariupol. Moscow also received the Ukrainian politician Viktor Medvedchuk.