UN humanitarian chief expresses optimism for extension of Ukraine grain deal

The UN humanitarian chief expressed optimism Wednesday about the renewal of a deal brokered by Türkiye and the world body to export Ukrainian grain and fertilizer.

"We are keen to see that renewed promptly now. It's important for the market. It's important just for continuity. And I'm still relatively optimistic that we are going to get there," Martin Griffiths told reporters at the UN headquarters.

Griffiths' remarks came after his recent visit to Moscow along with UN trade agency chief Rebeca Grynspan to discuss the extension and expansion of the deal, including exports of Russian grain and fertilizer.

The deal was initially signed for 120 days that expires in November But the UN is seeking to extend and expand it for one year.

Russian authorities have complained that Western sanctions ''indirectly'' hinder the country’s grain and fertilizer exports despite the deal.

Türkiye, the UN, Russia and Ukraine signed the landmark deal July 22 to reopen three Ukrainian ports -- Odesa, Chornomorsk and Yuzhny -- for grain that had been stuck for months because of the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, to address a global food crisis.

Source: Anadolu Agency