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Ukraine Formally Closes Seaports As Fears Over Grain Supplies Grow

By RFE/RL May 02, 2022

Ukraine has announced the temporary closure of its four main seaports after losing control of them to Russian forces.

On May 2, the country's Agriculture Ministry said in a statement that the seaports of Berdyansk, Mariupol, Skadovsk, and Kherson will be closed "until Ukraine regains control over" them.

"This measure has been caused by an inability to service ships and passengers, cargo, transport, and other related economic activities so as to ensure an adequate level of shipping safety and compliance with international treaties," the ministry said.

"Ukraine will definitely resume work at these seaports after victory over Russian" troops, the statement added.

The announcement is mainly a formality since Russia has blockaded or captured the seaports since launching its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine on February 24.

President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said on May 2 that Ukraine could lose tens of millions of tons of grain because of Russia controlling Black Sea shipping lanes.

Organizations such as the United Nations have warned that Russia's war against Ukraine could trigger a major food crisis that will affect Europe, Asia, and Africa.

Source: https://www.rferl.org/a/ukraine-seaports-russian- control-grain/31830438.html

Copyright (c) 2022. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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