NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has scheduled a meeting of the newly formed Ukraine-NATO Council on July 26, confirmed NATO spokeswoman Oana Lungescu to German news agency dpa on July 23.
The meeting comes after a specific request from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
“The parties will converge to consult on the latest developments and discuss the transportation of Ukrainian grains across the Black Sea,” she said.
It will be an ambassador-level meeting, said Lungescu.
The urgent call for the Ukraine-NATO Council meeting came in response to the situation in the Black Sea and the disruption of the crucial grain corridor, as President Zelenskyy emphasized in his July 22 video address.
Zelenskyy then held a telephone conversation with Stoltenberg.
The establishment of the Ukraine-NATO Council occurred during the NATO summit in Vilnius on July 11-12, marking a significant milestone in Ukraine-NATO relations.
Grain Agreement Suspension and Attack on Odesa: Key Details
The Kremlin announced the suspension of the “grain agreement” on July 17, previously brokered by the UN and Turkey last July. This agreement facilitated the unblocking of three Ukrainian ports for food exports.
Russia then withdrew its shipping safety guarantees under the framework of the Black Sea Grain Initiative.
Ukraine asked Turkey and the UN to continue the “grain corridor” operations without the involvement of Russia. In retaliation, the Kremlin issued threats, hinting at the possibility of resuming the agreement’s operation without Ukraine.
In the wake of these developments, Russia launched massive strikes on the port and grain infrastructure of Ukraine, targeting the port cities of Odesa and Mykolaiv. These attacks resulted in the destruction of civil infrastructure and the loss of civilian lives.
Notably, on the night of July 23, Russian troops inflicted a devastating blow on the historic center of Odesa, resulting in at least one fatality, 22 injuries and significant damage to the city.
Russian dictator Vladimir Putin has expressed conditional willingness to consider a return to the “grain agreement,” subject to meeting all its provisions.
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