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After the inspection in Istanbul, the “Razoni” is already heading to Lebanon with 26,000 tons of corn

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The bulk carrier Razoni passed through the Bosphorus in Istanbul on Wednesday.TOLGA BOZOGLU (EFE)

That reason It is already sailing to the Lebanese port of Tripoli. The first bulk carrier to set sail from Ukrainian Black Sea ports since the start of the Russian invasion last February was inspected in Turkey on Wednesday morning and, after receiving clearance from the Istanbul Joint Coordination Center, which oversees the naval corridor, was steered south the Bosphorus Strait. This first shipment serves as a “test,” a Ukrainian diplomatic source explained, so that grain exports from one of the world’s granaries can resume.

The ship, operated by a Turkish shipping company and flying the Sierra Leone flag, is transporting 26,527 tons of corn. After two days of careful and slow navigation – particularly in Ukrainian waters riddled with sea mines laid to prevent a Russian amphibious attack – it anchored Tuesday night near the northern entrance to the Bosphorus, which splits the metropolis in two. Istanbul Turkish. On Wednesday morning, two Turkish Coast Guard vessels transported the reason twenty members of the coordination center, in which Ukraine, Russia, Turkey and the United Nations are represented. According to images released by Turkey’s Defense Ministry, inspectors checked the grain cargo, the ship’s documentation and route plans, and the fuel tanks to ensure the reason It does not transport weapons or products that are not allowed under the agreement signed in Istanbul on July 22 (grains, fertilizers, food). These inspections of ships that will call at and call at Ukrainian ports in the future have been one of Moscow’s key demands to enable the establishment of the Grain Corridor, even if they slow down traffic.

After receiving the inspectors’ approval, the vessel began transiting the Bosphorus shortly after 2:00 p.m. (local time, 1:00 p.m. in mainland Spain) and reached the Sea of ​​Marmara at 3:45 p.m. It will cross the Dardanelles overnight or as early as Thursday morning, traffic permitting, as the Straits of Turkey are among the busiest sea routes in the world. It is expected that the reason Dock in Lebanon in four or five days, Ukrainian Ambassador to Beirut Ihor Ostash said in statements collected by Reuters.

Due to its dependence on food imports, especially grain from Ukraine and Russia, Lebanon is among the countries pinning the highest hopes on the smooth functioning of the Black Sea Corridor. The economic crisis, the collapse of the Lebanese pound and the explosion at the port of Beirut two years ago (which destroyed grain elevators) have pushed up prices and the most vulnerable population is grappling with shortages of basic necessities.

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In a video message Tuesday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said the corridor would result in Russia “missing one of the opportunities to terrorize the world.” [la amenaza de crisis alimentarias y hambrunas]“. But how much of the more than 20 million tons of grain locked in Ukraine’s silos because of the war can be transported through the corridor remains to be seen. Ukraine’s Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov assures that another 17 ships carrying 600,000 tons of grain are in the ports of Odessa and Chornomorsk and ready to set sail as soon as the Istanbul Coordination Center gives the green light. Given the conditions of the corridor, ship departures will be limited to three days, so the maximum transport capacity will be around three million tons per month. The agreement also has a maximum term of 120 days, which could then be extended month by month, but only with the consent of all parties.

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Source elpais.com

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