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Ukraine grain export coordination centre opens in Istanbul

Reference: Reuters

ISTANBUL, July 27 (Reuters) - Turkish Defence Minister Hulusi Akar on Wednesday unveiled a centre in Istanbul to oversee the export of Ukrainian grains after a landmark U.N. deal last week, with the first shipment expected to depart from Black Sea ports within days.

Russia and Ukraine signed the deal, brokered by Ankara and the United Nations, on Friday to reopen grain and fertiliser exports that have been blocked by war to ease an international food crisis. read more

The joint coordination centre (JCC) in Istanbul will oversee departures from three Ukrainian ports in which ships must circumvent mines, and will conduct inspections of incoming ships for weapons.

All vessels pass through Turkish waters and all parties appointed representatives to the JCC to monitor implementation of the plan. A total of 20 personnel from Ukraine, Russia, Turkey and the United Nations will work side-by-side there. read more

Speaking at the National Defence University in central Istanbul's Levent district, where the JCC is located, Akar said more than 25 million tonnes of grain was waiting to be exported.

"Currently, the preparation and planning is continuing for the first ships laden with grain that will leave Ukrainian ports," Akar told reporters at the monitoring centre.

"We believe the work done thanks to the JCC will contribute to overcoming the food crisis affecting the whole world, especially by lowering prices," he said... Read More