Turkey-Russia-Ukraine establish ‘hotline’ for food corridor

A hotline has been established between the defense ministries of Turkey, Ukraine and Russia for making the grain export through the Black Sea possible, the Turkish Defense Ministry has said, expressing hope for accomplishing all technical and military details in the coming days.

Turkey's Defense Minister Hulusi Akar had phone conversations with both his Russian and Ukrainian counterparts, Sergey Shoigu and Oleksi Reznikov, respectively, in recent days in order to contribute to the efforts to find a way to export wheat from Ukraine to the world markets.

Ukraine and Russia are the two biggest wheat producers, and many countries, particularly the poorest African nations, rely on the continued supply of grains from these countries. The Russian invasion of Ukraine since Feb. 24 has blocked the export routes, causing fears of famine in the African continent.

Following Akar's conversations with his counterparts, Russia and Ukraine agreed to appoint one general from their defense ministries in order to better coordinate the efforts. These three generals will use a hotline for efficient communication in this period.

In a statement, Akar informed that technical works continue to make the export possible again. These works include making necessary arrangements for Ukraine to demine its ports for Russia to escort the vessels carrying wheat through the Black Sea and for Turkey to provide the necessary security of these vessels, Akar said.

"We want to accomplish these works as soon as possible. We are in intense dialogue with both Russia and Ukraine. Both sides have reservations, and we are working to overcome them. We are hopeful," Akar stressed.

In the meantime, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, speaking to the reporters at...

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