In the shelling of Odessa: London accuses Russia of attacking civilian freighter

During the shelling of Odessa
London accuses Russia of attacking civilian freighters

Following the termination of the grain agreement, Russia is threatening to target any ship from Ukraine or bound for Ukraine in the Black Sea. Nevertheless, several of them set off – and arrive at their destinations. Now London claims that Moscow attacked a freighter.

Britain accuses Russia of attempting to attack a civilian freighter in the Black Sea. The Liberian-flagged ship was one of the intended targets when Russia attacked the port of Odessa with cruise missiles on August 24, the British government said, citing intelligence information. The Ukrainian air defense intercepted the projectiles.

The US government had previously warned of Russian attacks on civilian ships in the Black Sea. On August 16, the container ship “Joseph Schulte” was the first freighter to leave Odessa since the end of the grain agreement. A day later, the ship, which had been in the port of the Black Sea city since the beginning of the war, reached Istanbul.

On August 27, a second freighter, the Liberian-flagged Primus, arrived in Romanian waters “after successfully sailing through our temporary Black Sea corridor,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky announced on online networks. It is not clear whether the “Primus” is the ship that Moscow had targeted according to the current allegations from Great Britain.

“Russia is harming the rest of the world”

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak told the British Parliament that the August 24 attack showed how desperate Russian President Vladimir Putin is. “Day after day, his actions cause terrible suffering in Ukraine, violate the UN Charter, threaten the security of Europe and disrupt global energy and food supplies,” Sunak said.

The attacks destroyed ports and grain silos, Sunak said. “In just one month, Russia destroyed more than 270,000 tons of grain – enough to feed a million people for a year.” The government stressed that the amount destroyed was larger than the entire donation promised by Russia to African countries. “By targeting cargo ships and Ukrainian infrastructure, Russia is harming the rest of the world,” said Secretary of State James Cleverly.

Moscow canceled the agreement to export Ukrainian grain across the Black Sea in July. Since then, according to British information, Russia has destroyed a total of 26 port infrastructure facilities in Odessa, Chornomorsk and Reni. Before the start of the war of aggression, Ukraine served around 400 million people worldwide and was responsible for 8 to 10 percent of wheat exports and 10 to 12 percent of corn and barley exports.

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