Turkey announced the launch of the grain coordinating center

Minister of Defense Hulusi Akar called the main goal of the center's work the safe export of more than 25 million tons of Ukrainian grain from the ports. He said that the launch of the first vessels with agricultural products

The coordinating center for the transportation of grain from Ukrainian ports began work in Istanbul, Anadolu reports

Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar noted at the opening ceremony that Ukraine now has more than 25 million tons of grain, Reuters writes. The minister called the purpose of the center's work its safe removal from the country. According to him, at this stage there is no need to clear the ports. Now preparations are underway for the dispatch of the first ships with Ukrainian agricultural products.

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The day before, the start of the work of the Joint Coordination Center (JCC) was reported in the Russian Ministry of Defense. Moscow, Ankara, Kyiv and the UN participate in the work of the organization. Russian specialists in the SKC will be engaged in “prompt resolution of all necessary issues”; to implement the agreements on the export of grain, the ministry said.

After the start of the Russian military operation, Ukraine and Western countries accused Russia of blocking the export of agricultural products from Ukrainian ports and thus provoking a food crisis in the world. Moscow, in turn, stated that it did not interfere with the export of grain, and the Ukrainian side, which mined the ports, was to blame for the current situation.

In June, Turkey decided to mediate in resolving the issue. On July 22, Russia, Ukraine, Turkey and the UN signed an agreement on the export of grain, which provided for the creation of a corridor for its export.

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Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that the agreement includes two documents. According to the first of them, the UN will join in lifting restrictions on the export of Russian fertilizers and agricultural products. The second document defines the algorithm for the export of Ukrainian grain through the sea humanitarian corridor from Odessa, Chornomorsk and Yuzhny— they have already begun to prepare for the export of grain.

The parties also agreed to establish a coordination center. Its representatives will be engaged in the inspection of ships in order to prevent the transport of weapons on them— Moscow insisted on this.

Deputy Minister of Infrastructure of Ukraine Yuriy Vaskov said on July 23 that the first ship with grain could leave in four days, and all three ports would be able to operate within three weeks.

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