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UKRAINE: 2nd caravan of grain ships arrive in Istanbul

A vessel in the second caravan of ships transporting grain from Ukraine arrives at the Bosphorus Strait in Istanbul, Türkiye, Aug. 6, 2022. (Xinhua/Shadati)

Istanbul, Turkey | Xinhua | The second caravan of ships transporting grain from Ukraine arrived at the shores of Istanbul, according to the Turkish Defense Ministry on Saturday.

Panama-flagged Navistar, which sailed from the Ukrainian port of Odesa to Ireland with 33,000 tons of corn, arrived in Istanbul at around 2:00 p.m. local time (1100 GMT).

The Malta-flagged vessel Rojen, and Turkish-flagged Polarnet, both sailed from Chornomorsk port and bound for Britain and Türkiye respectively, arrived later.

According to the ministry, the inspection on Navistar was completed by a joint committee of specialists while the other two ships are due for inspection later.

The ships are checked for the integrity of their cargo before they can move on.

Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar had discussions on Saturday with his Ukrainian counterpart Oleksii Reznikov and Ukrainian Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov over the phone about the latest situation of grain shipments.

A statement by the Turkish Defense Ministry emphasized the satisfaction with the accelerating process of grain shipments and the levels of cooperation and coordination achieved by the Joint Coordination Center.

The first grain-laden ship Razoni passed through Istanbul’s Bosphorus Strait on Aug. 3, marking the first large export of the newly harvested Ukrainian grain to international markets after Türkiye, Russia, and Ukraine signed a landmark U.N.-backed deal on July 22.

Ukraine still has some 20 million tons of grain in silos waiting for shipment, according to the Turkish state-run Anadolu agency. ■

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