Moscow Denies The Attack’s Impact, But Wheat Prices Spike After The Odesa Strike

49

  • Wheat prices rose sharply on July 25 after Russian missiles struck the Ukrainian port of Odesa over the weekend.
  • In Moscow, the head of Russia’s Investigative Committee said Russia has charged 92 members of the Ukrainian armed forces with crimes against humanity.
  • Bastrykin’s claims could not be independently verified and Ukraine has not commented.

Despite assertions by the Kremlin that the strike only targeted military infrastructure and wouldn’t have an impact on grain shipments, wheat prices spiked on July 25 after Russian missiles hit the Ukrainian port of Odesa over the weekend.

Export of grain 

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on July 25 that the two Kalibr missiles that landed near a pumping station at the Odesa port “exclusively” targeted military infrastructure and were “not connected with the agreement on the export of grain” reached on July 22 in Istanbul by Russia, Ukraine, the United Nations, and Turkey.

“This cannot and should not affect the start of shipment,” Peskov told reporters.

However, wheat futures on the Chicago Board of Trade rose nearly 4% to $7.86 a bushel on July 25, regaining much of the ground lost after the signing of the agreement.

Ukraine is one of the world’s largest exporters of wheat, corn, and sunflower oil, but Russia’s invasion of the country and its naval blockade of Ukrainian ports have halted shipments.

That has caused global food prices to spike, leaving millions of people in impoverished countries at risk of hunger and sparking fears of social unrest.

Shelling locations 

The deal to reopen three Ukrainian Black Sea ports for grain exports is valid for 120 days and targets monthly exports of 5 million tons.

A UN spokesman said all parties to the deal have reconfirmed their commitment, and the first ships carrying grain might move within a few days under the deal.

A Joint Coordination Center will liaise with the shipping industry and publish detailed procedures for ships in the near future, said UN spokesman Farhan Haq.

In Ukraine, fighting continued unabated as Moscow’s invasion entered its sixth month, with Russian troops shelling multiple locations in the north, south, and east amid indications that the Russian military, in addition to its personnel shortage, was also facing difficulties replacing or repairing hundreds of pieces of equipment damaged in combat.

Active fighting 

Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov said on July 25 that Ukrainian forces have destroyed 50 Russian ammunition depots using U.S-supplied high-mobility artillery rocket systems (HIMARS).

“This cuts their (Russian) logistical chains and takes away their ability to conduct active fighting and cover our armed forces with heavy shelling,” Reznikov said in televised comments.

Reznikov’s remarks could not be independently verified.

Russia’s Defense Ministry in turn said on July 25 that its forces had destroyed an ammunition depot for HIMARS in Bohdanovtsy, in Ukraine’s Khmelnytskyi region.

Neither the Ukrainian nor the Russian claims could be independently confirmed.

Conducting investigations 

The bulletin said scarce personnel resources make it difficult for Russian commanders to decide whether to beef up the offensive in the east or to bolster the defence in the west.

It added that on July 18, British intelligence identified a Russian military vehicle refit and refurbishment facility near Barvinok, in Russia’s Belgorod region, which is 10 kilometres from the Ukrainian border.

In Moscow, the head of Russia’s Investigative Committee said Russia has charged 92 members of the Ukrainian armed forces with crimes against humanity.

Bastrykin’s claims could not be independently verified and Ukraine has not commented.

Kyiv is also conducting its own investigations.

 

Did you subscribe to our daily Newsletter?

It’s Free! Click here to Subscribe

Source: RFERL

LEAVE A REPLY

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.