Kremlin confirms extension of Black Sea grain deal after ‘relative results’ in talks

The Kremlin on Thursday confirmed extension of the Black Sea grain deal for another two months after achieving some results in talks with Trkiye, Ukraine, and the UN. During a press briefing in Moscow, spokesman Dmitry Peskov said "relative results" had been achieved in negotiations over easing restrictions on Russian agricultural exports. Regarding guarantees for the Russian Agricultural Bank, Peskov said "various options are being worked out that will be equivalent to unblocking SWIFT." "It is very important to understand that the fate of the deal is still in the hands of those with whom the UN should agree on the Russian part of the deal," Peskov said, adding that Moscow wanted to see more progress in the next two months. Talks on the supply of ammonia and fertilizers are ongoing, he added. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had on Wednesday announced the extension of the deal, officially known as the Black Sea Grain Initiative. Trkiye, the UN, Russia, and Ukraine initially signed the agreement in Istanbul last July to resume grain exports from three Ukrainian Black Sea ports, which were halted after the Ukraine war last year in February. Meanwhile, Peskov said the US is likely to continue exerting more pressure on Russia and other countries seeking cooperation, but they will continue working toward 'building relations based on mutual benefit and respect." Peskov also informed reporters about the visit of a peace mission of African countries to Russia, saying the meeting will take place before the Russia-Africa summit in July.

Source: Anadolu Agency