Turkey’s Erdogan says grain deal with Ukraine extended – Times of India

ANKARA: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday announced the extension of a deal that will allow exports of Ukrainian grain to resume after the Russian invasion.
“After talks with the two sides, we secured the renewal of the deal, which was due to expire on March 19,” Erdogan said in comments to Turkish television hours before the deal was due to expire at midnight.
Erdogan did not say how long the deal was extended for. Ankara had previously said it wanted a 120-day extension, while Russia favored a 60-day extension.
“This deal is vital for the global food supply. I thank Russia and Ukraine, who have not spared their efforts for another extension, as well as the Secretary-General of the United Nations.”
In the full-scale invasion of Russia in February 2022, Ukraine’s Black Sea ports were blockaded by warships.
But a deal brokered in July 2022 by Turkey and the United Nations and signed by Kiev and Moscow has enabled the export of critical grain supplies. The original agreement was extended to March 18 in November.
Ukraine was one of the world’s top producers, and the so-called Black Sea Grain Initiative has helped mitigate the global food crisis caused by the conflict.

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