UN hail progress in Ukraine grain talks

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UN hail progress in Ukraine grain talksUkraine and Russia have made progress at the talks on grain exports in Istanbul that also involved representatives of the UN and Turkey.

On Wednesday, delegations from Ukraine, Russia, and Turkey met with United Nations representatives in the Turkish city of Istanbul to seek ways to export Ukrainian grain from Ukraine's Black Sea ports to the world market.

It was later reported that substantive progress was made.

In the last few months, global food prices have soared sparking concerns about food shortages due to the conflict in Ukraine.

Speaking in New York, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres hailed what he called ‘substantive progress’ in Istanbul describing it as a critical step forward in ensuring the safe and secure export of Ukrainian food products through the Black Sea.

Guterres said the news was a ray of hope to ease human suffering and alleviate hunger around the world and bring a measure of much-needed stability to the global food system.

He thanked the Turkish government for its efforts to organize the talks and its vital role going forward.

"The United Nations pledges to do our full part to support the follow-up," he said. "Today is an important and substantive step, a step on the way to a comprehensive agreement. We must also do more for struggling people and developing countries getting pummeled by a food, energy, and financial crisis not of their making. We must do more to help all those living on the margins around the world -- countries on the brink of bankruptcy, families on the edge of famine."

Meanwhile, the Ukrainian President said his country was making significant efforts to restore the supplies of food to the global market.

Nathan Morley
Source: vaticannews.va