Erdogan snubs Putin as Turkey detains Russian ship carrying Ukrainian grain

Turkey, Sweden and Finland sign off Nordic countries' NATO bids

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Ambassador Vasyl Bodnar revealed a Russian ship is located at the entrance to the port during an appearance on Ukrainian national television. He went on to claim the ship’s fate will be decided during a meeting of investigators.

Kyiv hopes customs authorities will seize the grain from the Russian vessel.

Mr Bodnar said: “We have full cooperation.

“The ship is currently standing at the entrance to the port, it has been detained by the customs authorities of Turkey.”

Ukraine and Russia have locked horns over grain issues.

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Kyiv even accused Moscow of stealing grain from areas which Vladimir Putin’s troops have seized since the Kremlin launched its invasion in late February.

However, Russia previously rejected claims it had stolen grain from Ukraine.

An official in Kyiv’s foreign ministry had claimed on Friday the Russian-flagged cargo ship, named Zhibek Zholy, had loaded up to 4,500 tonnes of Ukrainian grain from Berdyansk.

Ukraine also asked Turkey to detain the ship.

The Ukrainian prosecutor general’s office asked Turkey to “conduct an inspection of this sea vessel, seize samples of grain for forensic examination, demand information on the location of such grain”.

The news comes after the Ministry of Defence claimed Russian invasion efforts continued to hamper Ukrainian harvests.

In an intelligence update, the MoD said: “With harvest underway, Russia’s invasion continues to have a devastating impact on Ukraine’s agricultural sector.

“The war has caused major disruption to the supply chains of seed and fertiliser which Ukrainian farmers rely on.

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“Russia’s blockade of Odesa continues to severely constrain Ukraine’s grain exports.

“Because of this, Ukraine’s agricultural exports in 2022 are unlikely to be more than 35 percent of the 2021 total.

“Following its retreat from the Black Sea outpost of Snake Island, Russia misleadingly claimed that ‘the ball is now in Ukraine’s court’ in relation to improving grain exports.”

They added: “In reality, it is Russia’s disruption of Ukraine’s agricultural sector which continues to exacerbate the global food crisis.”

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