Russia’s UN Envoy Clashes With EU Over Food
By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News
NEW YORK/MOSCOW (Worthy News) – Russia’s United Nations ambassador angrily left a U.N. Security Council meeting as a European Union president blamed Russia’s invasion of Ukraine for worldwide food shortages.
The Russian envoy Vassily Nebenzia accused European Council President Charles Michel of “spreading lies” and stormed out of the high-level gathering.
Michel said Moscow used food supplies as a “stealth missile” against the developing world, forcing people into poverty. The war has left food stuck at Ukrainian ports due to a Russian naval blockade and other logistical issues.
Ukraine is a significant exporter of cooking oil and cereals such as maize and wheat. Russia also exports vast amounts of grains as well as fertilizer. The lack of these exports has caused the price of alternatives to soar.
“Mr. Ambassador of the Russian Federation, let’s be honest, the Kremlin is using food supplies as a stealth missile against developing countries,” Michel said during the Security Council meeting in New York.
“The dramatic consequences of Russia’s war are spilling over across the globe, and this is driving up food prices, pushing people into poverty, and destabilizing entire regions. Russia is solely responsible for this food crisis.”
He added that he had seen the millions of tons of grain stuck in the Ukrainian port of Odesa because of a naval blockade enforced by Russia.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said earlier that the West was using Russia as a scapegoat for rising food and energy prices. “When our operation in Ukraine began, the Europeans and the Americans…aggravated the situation, both in the food and fertilizers sector,” he stressed.
However, the United States hit back with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken saying there were credible reports that Russia was “pilfering” Ukraine’s grain exports to sell for its own profit.
Blinken said the alleged theft was part of broader Russian actions to export Ukraine’s wheat crop and worsen a global food security crisis. “Now, Russia is hoarding its food exports as well,” he claimed. Zelensky said there could be as many as 75 million tonnes of grain stuck in Ukraine by the autumn.
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