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Expert: Grain transports may need to be protected by military ships

Russia suspended its participation in the so-called grain agreement Saturday after that Drones attacked Russian naval base in Sevastopol in occupied Crimea, Ukraine. This means that Russia can block merchant ships from Ukrainian ports. Ukraine is one of the world’s largest grain exporters.

Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar has now called on the parties to avoid any “provocation” that might affect the future of the agreement, according to a statement issued on Sunday.

Caravans with protection

Niclas Granholm, head of research and naval expert at the Comprehensive Defense Research Institute (FOI), estimates that military ships may be necessary to protect merchant ships carrying grain from Ukraine.

– A convoy operation across the Black Sea must now be seriously considered to counter famine and instability, he told SVT Nyheter.

Described in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea

The operation could then take place in the form of “Operation Freedom of Navigation” in the Black Sea through the territorial waters of Ukraine, Romania, Bulgaria and Turkey. It is known that the United States applies FREE SHIPPING (FON) To assert the right to so-called “innocent passage” in the territorial waters of other states.

The principle is described in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (law of the sea)which means that ships sailing under the flag of any sovereign country will not be subject to interference from other countries, except for the exceptions provided for in international law.

Nine million tons of grain

In July, representatives of Ukraine and Russia signed an agreement under the auspices of the United Nations and Turkey to secure exports from the Black Sea. The agreement, which was to be in effect for 120 days, means Ukraine was able to export nine million tons of grain, according to previous data.

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Even before Saturday’s announcement of Russia’s breach of the grain agreement, there were signals from the Russian side that they did not want to extend the agreement unless sanctions on Russian fertilizer exports were lifted.

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This is how it looked when the UN Secretary-General praised the agreement: “Today, hope has lit up in the Black Sea region.” picture: SVT