Grain deal ‘victory for diplomacy,’ UN chief tells journalists in Ukraine |

Speaking at the press conference along with Presidents Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of Türkiye, he expressed gratitude for the opportunity to visit “again in such difficult times”.

Even so, the Black Sea Grains Initiative has Signed A few weeks ago, the head of the United Nations reiterated that “there is no solution to the global food crisis without ensuring global access to the full range of Ukrainian food products as well as food and fertilizers.” Russian fertilizers”.

Support en route

Guterres said that in less than a month, 21 ships had departed from Ukrainian ports and 15 had left Istanbul for Ukraine to load grain and other food supplies.

“As we are saying, more than 560,000 tons of grain and other foods produced by Ukrainian farmers are being sent to markets around the world,” he said, including the ship operated by the Union. First hire United Nations to deliver Ukrainian wheat to people suffering in the Horn of Africa from the worst drought in decades.

Meanwhile, signs have emerged that global food markets are starting to stabilize as wheat prices fall by as much as 8% following the signing of agreements and FAO The food price index rose 9% in July – the biggest drop since 2008.

Although most staples are now trading at prices below pre-war levels, they are still very high.

“Don’t be delusional – there’s a long way to go before this translates into the daily lives of people in their local bakeries and in their markets,” the top UN official reminded. “Supply chains are still disrupted” [and] energy and transportation costs remain unacceptably high.”

Just the beginning

Recognizing the rarity and inherent fragility of agreements, Mr. Guterres insists that they must be “nourished continuously”.

As the Joint Coordination Center (JCC) continues to work professionally and in good faith to keep food flowing, he urges those involved “to overcome all obstacles in a spirit of compromise and long-term resolution.” endure all difficulties”.

“Getting food and fertilizer out of Ukraine and Russia in larger quantities is important to continue to calm commodity markets and lower prices,” and is essential to providing relief to the most vulnerable.

The UN chief stressed the urgency of reversing the turmoil in the global fertilizer market, which now threatens next season’s crops – including the worldwide staple, rice. .

Meanwhile, the UN will continue to stand in solidarity with the Ukrainian people and national partners to help provide humanitarian assistance to those in need “wherever is required”, he said.

“We will do our best to scale up our operations to face difficulties in the coming winter.”

Secretary General António Guterres (left) meets with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Lviv, Ukraine.

UN photo / Mark Garten

Secretary General António Guterres (left) meets with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Lviv, Ukraine.

War problem

“At the heart of the issue that brought us here is still war,” the secretary-general reminded, reiterating that the Russian invasion was a “violation of Ukraine’s territorial integrity” and uncharted.

War has caused countless deaths, massive destruction, displacement and serious violations of human rights, he said, adding that in accordance with the Charter and international law, “everyone needs peace”.

Nuclear threat

The top UN official expressed serious concern about the ongoing situation in and around Europe’s largest nuclear power plant in Zaporizhzhia.

“Common sense must prevail to avoid any action that could jeopardize the physical integrity, safety or security of the nuclear plant,” he said, adding that the agency The facility is “not to be used as part of any military operation”.

Mr. Guterres highlighted the urgent need for an agreement to “re-establish Zaporizhhia as a purely civil infrastructure” and ensure the safety of the region.

After an assessment, with the agreement of both Russia and Ukraine, the UN Secretariat has determined that it can support the Organization’s nuclear monitoring, IAEAon a mission to the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant from Kyiv.

The head of the United Nations outlined that military equipment and personnel should be withdrawn from the factory, no forces or other equipment deployed there and the area must be demilitarized.

“Any potential damage to Zaporizhzhia is suicidal,” he insisted.


The Secretary-General also called attention to the investigation into an “unacceptable” incident at a detention facility in Olenivka on July 29 when a mysterious explosion tore through a lined prison. hundred Ukrainian prisoners.

“All prisoners of war are protected under International Humanitarian Law,” he reminded, adding that the International Red Cross “must have access to them wherever they are held.” .

The quest to find out the truth

Against this background, the head of the United Nations decided to form a fact-finding mission – the terms of reference shared with Ukraine and Russia along with the formation of the team, including the intention to appoint General Carlos dos Santos Cruz of Brazil. to lead this mission.

Obtaining the necessary guarantees to ensure secure access to Olenivka and any other relevant locations is currently underway.

“Simply put, a quest for truth must be free to seek the truth. The team must be able to collect and analyze the necessary information,” he said.

“Above all, that means safe, secure, and unchecked access to people, places and evidence without any interference from anyone.”

Concluding, the Secretary-General assured President Zelenskyy of the United Nations’ support in promoting “human rights, international law and for peace”.

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