Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Wednesday the onus was on Ukraine to solve the problem of resuming grain shipments by de-mining its ports.
Lavrov said no action was required on the Russian side because it had already made the necessary commitments.
“We state daily that we’re ready to guarantee the safety of vessels leaving Ukrainian ports and heading for the (Bosphorus) gulf, we’re ready to do that in cooperation with our Turkish colleagues,” he said after talks with his Turkish counterpart.
“To solve the problem, the only thing needed is for the Ukrainians to let vessels out of their ports, either by demining them or by marking out safe corridors, nothing more is required.”
Lavrov said the main problem was that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy had “categorically refused” to resolve the problem of the mined ports.
“If they’ve now changed their position, then on our side there are no complications, let’s see how the preliminary agreements we discussed yesterday and today can be put into practice.”
Speaking alongside his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu in Ankara, Lavrov said he appreciated Turkey’s efforts in looking for ways to resolve the situation.
It’s been plainly obvious that Ukraine has mined the waters and is refusing to clear safe passage for these ships and their cargo.