Russian forces Reportedly Steal 5 Grain Cargo Ships in Zaporizhia

A Ukrainian official reported “tens of thousands of tons of grain” loaded on five ships were allegedly stolen from the port city of Berdyansk in southeastern Ukraine.

Oleksandr Starukh, governor of Zaporizhzhia Oblast and head of the Zaporizhzhia Regional Military Administration, revealed this during his UA telethon today (March 21).

According to Starukh, who was quoted by Ukrainian news agency Ukrinform, locals watched these ships being towed away by Russian tugboats.

“Some of them were fully loaded – we see this in the customs documents, some are partially loaded. A few days ago, these ships disappeared from the port of Berdyansk,” Starukh added.

According to the governor of Zaporizhzhia Oblast, the specific location of these ships would be revealed soon.

The city of Berdyansk was reportedly occupied by Russian forces earlier this month.

Last week, UN chief Antonio Guterres warned about the impact of the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine that could result in a “hurricane of hunger and a meltdown of the global food system”.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) also echoed a similar warning for global food security.

Ukraine alone provides more than half of the World Food Program’s wheat supply and is considered “the breadbasket of Europe”.

The country is also considered the second-largest grain shipper in the world that provides wheat to 45 least developed countries.

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