Kyiv made no commitments for Russia's return to grain deal: FM spox

Kyiv made no commitments for Russia's return to grain deal: FM spox
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Following Moscow's decision to resume exports of Ukrainian grain, the Ukrainian FM spokesperson said they offered nothing new to Russia.

A day after the Russian Ministry of Defense announced that Russia has resumed Ukrainian grain exports that had been halted after an alleged Ukrainian drone attack on Russian ships, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry said that Kyiv made no commitments to Russia that go beyond the terms of the Black Sea Grains Initiative agreed in July.

In a statement on Facebook on Thursday, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry spokesman Oleg Nikolenko said that the Ukrainian administration offered nothing new to Russia to ensure its return to the deal.

“Our state has not undertaken any new commitments that go beyond those already existing in the grain agreement,” Nikolenko said.

“Recall that within this agreement (in July) the parties committed to guarantee a safe and reliable functioning environment for the grain corridor. Ukraine has never put a grain route in danger.”

He added:

“Moscow has returned to the grain deal thanks to the active diplomacy of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. In coordination with Ukraine, they found words that (Russian President Vladimir) Putin understood. It was a position of strength, not a deed.”

Truth, the victim of war

Nikolenko's remarks reiterated Ukraine's denial of responsibility for the 29 October drone attack. An adviser to Ukraine's Interior Ministry had also claimed after the attack that the incident was caused by Russia's "careless handling of explosives."

Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba accused Moscow on Sunday of having planned a move to halt the grain deal, and of using "explosions 220 kilometers away from the grain corridor" as an excuse.

He said:

"By suspending its participation in the grain deal on a false pretext of explosions 220 kilometers away from the grain corridor, Russia blocks 2 million tons of grain on 176 vessels already at sea — enough to feed over 7 million people. Russia has planned this well in advance."

As the allegations voiced by Russian and Ukrainian officials contribute to two different versions of the incident on 29 October, both versions have been bought in varying degrees by the global media, some basing their reports on Ukrainian claims, and some on Moscow's, which are supported by some credible video footage.

The Guardian and the Insider posted videos allegedly showing some ships of the Russian Black Sea Fleet being targeted by drones, while most of the western news outlets continue to reflect the 29 October incident through the perspective of Kyiv.