Russia denies attacks on Ukrainian port after grain deal: Turkish minister

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Russian officials had told Ankara that Russia had “nothing to do” with the attacks on Ukraine’s key Black Sea port of Odessa, Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said on Saturday.

“In our contact with Russia, the Russians told us that they had absolutely nothing to do with these attacks and that they were examining the issue very closely and in detail,” Akar said.

“The fact that such an incident happened right after the agreement we made yesterday regarding the grain shipment worried us,” he said.

Akar said he also had phone conversations with Ukrainian ministers and received information regarding the incident.

The Ukrainian military said that Russian missiles hit infrastructure in Odesa on Saturday. A missile hit one of the silos in Odesa and another fell in an area close to the silo.

The attack had not compromised the port’s ability to load cargo and that grain exports could go on, according to Akar.

Türkiye has sent the two countries a message, in which it said it would like to see both sides continue their cooperation “calmly and patiently” under the agreement signed on Friday, the minister said.

Türkiye would continue to fulfil its responsibilities in the agreement, he stressed.

 

SOURCE: NEWS AGENCIES

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