December 8, 2022


Ministry of Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine announce Mogadishu-based Shabelle Media reported on Tuesday that it will recently return to the government of neighboring Ethiopia and Somalia $11.4 million worth of wheat.

Kyiv Independent, a pro-government Ukrainian outlet, mentioned that Ethiopia will receive 50,000 metric tons of free wheat on Saturday, translating The official statement from the Cabinet Ministry that the Chappelle Media report also appears to be based on.

The shipments appear to be part of a plan to export Ukrainian wheat, upon which much of Africa and the Middle East depends, and which is regulated by the World Food Program (WFP), the United Nations agency. Since Ukraine is in contact with the World Food Program, which charters cargo ships, the extent of cooperation between Ukraine and the recipient countries remains unclear.

Ukraine’s grain crops and shipments have been at risk for months thanks to the expansion of Russia’s eight-year invasion of the country that began in February. While Russia illegally colonized Ukraine’s Crimea region and began supporting pro-Russian separatists in the eastern Donbass region in 2014, Russian leader Vladimir Putin announced a dramatic escalation of Russia’s military involvement in the country in February, claiming Ukraine “has no tradition” of being a country with Sovereignty and “created entirely by Russia”.

While the Western media has invested heavily in covering the Ukrainian war, it has done relatively little to cover Ethiopia’s brutal civil war, which observers say has been mired in ethnic cleansing and potential genocide, including blockades and starvation of the population. Tigray region of the country, about 6 million people.

The complete shutdown of infrastructure, imports and communications to and from Tigray, at the instigation of Eritrea, has created what United Nations experts have denounced as a real possibility of famine.

The leader of the Ethiopian offensive and potential Tigray genocide, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, has won the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize. His award has not been rescinded in light of his call for war against the Tigrayan people – more specifically, the former ruling Marxist political party, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) – Or in light of the widespread reports of the atrocities committed by the Ethiopian forces.

In addition to the civil war, both Ethiopia and Somalia are experiencing food shortages as a result of severe drought, which has made this year’s harvest insufficient. The United Nations has estimated That up to 22 people in the Horn of Africa, where the countries are located, are at risk of starvation.

Ukrainian authorities confirmed The departure of a ship carrying 30,000 tons of wheat to Ethiopia this weekend.

“The bulk carrier IKARIA ANGEL, chartered by the United Nations World Food Program, sailing under the flag of Panama, carrying 30 thousand tons of wheat, left this morning from the port of Chornomorsk to the port of Djibouti, where humanitarian shipments reach the African regions. It is reported. The state newspaper Ukrinform on Saturday.

Ukraine’s Minister of Infrastructure, Oleksandr Kobrakov, told government outlets that Ukraine is sending grain to that country to avoid a “food catastrophe”.

Shabelle Media reported on Tuesday that Ukraine would not receive $11.4 million worth of wheat from Ethiopia, most likely the Abiy government, or Somalia, and promised to repay the money. The repayment is noteworthy given Abiy’s ties to the Russian government. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov recently visited the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa Juneand received a warm welcome, despite the lack of explicit support for the war in Ukraine.

Russia invested heavily in diplomacy with African countries, particularly those that maintained friendly relations with the Soviet Union. Ukrainian officials have had little success finding support in the region. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky reportedly spent months trying to get the African Union to address its leaders, and when he finally got a video chat in June, only four presidents tuned in to the live broadcast, causing their followers to listen, instead, according to For a French newspaper Le Monde.

Le Monde In chatting with anonymous diplomats familiar with Ukraine’s efforts, he found that African leaders seemed to be interested in only one basis of engagement with the country.

“I don’t know exactly what he expects from us, but our priority remains the supply of grain and fertilizer,” said an anonymous diplomat. The French newspaper noted that the remark was almost identical to that made by Senegalese President Macky Sall regarding the Russian invasion: “We are not actually in the debate about who is right and who is wrong. We only want access to grain and fertilizer.”

The first ship to leave Ukraine bound for Ethiopia docked in Djibouti, a small country on the border with Ethiopia, in late August.

According to the World Food Program, 7.4 million people in Ethiopia are Confrontation “Extreme hunger” due to the ongoing drought, and another 13 million face food shortages thanks to the civil war. Neither the Ukrainian government data nor the African report on free grain has indicated whether the WFP will be responsible for distributing the food once it reaches Ethiopia or whether the Abiy government will take control of it, but previous shipments have had a negative impact. receipt In WFP warehouses in Ethiopia, outside the Tigray region.

reaching Tigray, where the worst food crisis is believed to occur; United Nations officials have regularly complained of not being able to access the area. WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus – an ethnic Tigrayan and member of the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front – told reporters that Ethiopia would not even allow him to send food or money to his family.

“I’ll tell you my own story. I have a lot of relatives there. I want to send them money. I can’t send them money. I know they’re starving. I can’t help them,” Tedros said in August. Talking to them It’s been a long time since I talked to them. I can’t talk to them. I don’t even know who’s dead or who’s alive.”

Tedros has repeatedly argued that the disproportionate attention that Ukraine’s struggles receive compared to the Tigray struggle is racist.

Follow Frances Martel on Facebook And the Twitter.





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