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Russia says no ‘new statements’ made over grain deal with Turkey

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The Kremlin spokesperson says no “new statements” have been made over the grain deal with Turkey, contrary to earlier claims made by President Erdoğan.

Russia has not made any “new statements” regarding the grain deal, said Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, effectively refuting claims of an agreement by Turkey’s President, Recep Tayip Erdoğan.

On Thursday, Erdoğan said that there is a “mutual understanding” between him and Russian President Vladimir Putin about the prolongation of the grain deal.

The deal, signed five months after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, is set to expire on Monday, and Putin has repeatedly threatened not to renew it because of obstacles to Russia’s own exports.

Just a day earlier, Putin himself said that the deal will be prolonged only when – and if – all Russian demands are satisfied.

It has raised serious international concerns. The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, has warned that “Russia has a responsibility to prolong it (the deal), otherwise global food insecurity will be the consequence. So now the ball is in President Putin’s court and the world is watching”.

Moscow says part of the deal to unblock Russian grain and fertiliser exports is not being fully implemented.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that Putin and Erdoğan “had long been discussing plans to ensure that wheat supplies to developing countries continued, independent of any other parties”. 

It is not clear what this means, but probably that Russia is looking for ways to increase the export of its own grain as well as the grain from occupied territories of Ukraine.

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