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1st Ship Loaded With Grain Leaves Ukraine for Lebanon
Sierra Leone-flagged dry cargo ship Razoni departs from port of Odesa in Odessa, Ukraine on August 1, 2022 as part of a recent grain export deal signed between Turkey, the United Nations, Russia and Ukraine and expected to reach Istanbul the following day. (Turkish National Defense Ministry/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

1st Ship Loaded With Grain Leaves Ukraine for Lebanon

Turkey’s National Defense Ministry announced that the first ship loaded with grain left from the port of Odesa for Lebanon. The shipment comes after a United Nations- and Turkish-brokered agreement with Kyiv and Moscow. They signed a deal on July 22 to reopen three Ukrainian ports — Odesa, Chernomorsk, and Yuzhny. The ship will arrive in Istanbul on Tuesday before moving on to Tripoli.

The grain has been stuck in Ukraine since the Russian invasion six months ago.

A joint coordination center in Istanbul was officially opened on Wednesday, made up of representatives from Turkey, the UN, Russia and Ukraine to oversee Ukrainian grain exports by merchant ships from the three Ukrainian Black Sea ports.

“The ship is bound for the port of Tripoli, Lebanon, carrying a cargo of 26,527 tonnes of corn, and is the first vessel to depart under the Black Sea Grain Initiative signed in Istanbul, on 22 July. Ensuring that existing grain and foodstuffs can move to global markets is a humanitarian imperative,” Stephane Dujarric, spokesman for UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, said in a statement.

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