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Zelenskyy discusses expansion of grain initiative with Guterres

The talks focused on security issues, in particular the peace formula.

Zelenskyy discusses expansion of grain initiative with Guterres
Photo: ЕРА/UPG

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres met in Kyiv to discuss the expansion of the Grain Initiative and ways to restore peace. They agreed that extending the export initiative beyond 18 March is critical for the world.

Ukraine is at the forefront of the war for the principles on which international life is based, so it is here that the fight for the future of the entire United Nations is being waged, Zelenskyy stressed during a joint press conference with Guterres.

He added that Guterres expressed his support for the next Ukrainian resolution condemning the war and for the Global Peace Formula Summit.

The talks focused on security issues, in particular the peace formula, and the security of food, nuclear facilities, and the safety of Ukrainian civilians, including deported adults and abducted children.

"We must return all our citizens home and our soldiers who are being held in Russian captivity," he emphasised.

The President and the Secretary General also discussed restoring security at all Ukrainian NPPs, including Zaporizhzhya. Zaporizhzhya NPP must fully return under Ukrainian control.

"The UN's position is crystal clear - Russia's invasion of Ukraine is a violation of the UN Charter and international law. Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity must be respected in accordance with internationally recognised borders," Guterres said.

He added that the Black Sea Grain Initiative helped to reduce global food prices and support developing countries. The food price index has decreased by 20% thanks to exports from Ukraine.

He added that the UN is working to continue humanitarian assistance to Ukrainians.

This is Antonio Guterres' third visit to Ukraine since the full-scale invasion. The purpose of the trip was to discuss the Grain Initiative, under which countries receive Ukrainian grain, which helps to avoid famine in countries in need. In the summer of 2022, Guterres mediated a grain deal that unblocked the export of Ukrainian grain from the ports of Odesa Region. The parties to the agreement were Ukraine-Turkey-UN and Turkey-Russia-UN.

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