When everyone was attacking Russia, we kept ties with Putin: Erdogan
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan hails "Ankara's unique role in global affairs."
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan emphasized on Sunday Ankara's unique role in global affairs, stressing that Turkey was the only country capable of resolving the vital issue of the Black Sea grain corridor.
"Our work isn’t done. When everyone was attacking Russia, we did not. On the contrary, we maintained our ties with Mr. (Russian President Vladimir) Putin. In fact, he made a nice offer, saying, 'Let me send grain for free’," said Erdogan.
In response, Turkey offered to create flour from Russian grain and distribute it to impoverished African countries, Erdogan divulged.
"Our goal now is to produce flour from the wheat and then send it to poor African countries. Because 44% went to Europe so far while 14% was sent to Africa. Now we will balance this and send it to African countries," he added.
On July 22, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar, and Ukrainian Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov signed a grain deal mediated by the United Nations and Turkey in Istanbul.
The deal stipulated that the Ukrainian side will have control over the ports of Odessa, Chernomorsk, and Yuzhny, from which grain exports will be organized. Aside from that, no ships other than those exporting grain and related food products and fertilizers will be permitted to dock at these ports.
However, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) revealed on October 7 that only a quarter of the grain exported under the UN-brokered deal with Ukraine and Russia via the Black Sea is going to low-income countries.
Most of the grain leaving Ukraine's ports after the grain shipments deadlock that exacerbated the international food crisis is heading to the European Union instead of developing countries, Russian President Vladimir Putin said back in September as the world's poorest nations bear the brunt of the food crisis the most.
Both Ukraine and Russia are responsible for 30% of global grain exports. According to the UN, nearly 50 million people began to face “acute hunger” around the world due to the shortage of gains caused by the war.
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