Ship sail

A commercial ship is expected to leave Ukraine on Friday

The Joint Coordination Center responsible for overseeing the implementation of the UN-brokered deal with Turkey to ship commercial vessels carrying Ukrainian grain to world markets said Thursday that three more vessels are expected to sail on Friday.

The first ship, the Razonileft Odessa on Monday and is on its way to Lebanon with a cargo of maize.

The Navistar will be the second ship from Odessa, carrying 33,000 tonnes of maize to Ireland.

The CCM, made up of representatives from Ukraine, Russia, Turkey and the UN, also authorized the departure of two ships from the port of Chornomorsk on Friday. The Polarnet will transport 12,000 tonnes of maize to Karasu, in northwestern Turkey, and the Rojenwhich is carrying more than 13,000 tonnes of maize, is heading for Great Britain.

The total 58,000 metric tons of grain is a small fraction of the more than 20 million metric tons in Ukrainian silos and on commercial ships waiting to leave the country. According to the UN, about 28 ships are waiting to leave Ukrainian ports.

The JCC also authorized the movement, pending inspection, of the Fulmar S, to enter the port of Chornomorsk. The ship is anchored in the central inspection area near Istanbul.

The ships are due to depart early Friday, but the JCC says departures could be affected “by readiness, weather or other unforeseen circumstances”. Ships’ crew and cargo will be subject to checks upon arrival in the inspection area of ​​Turkish territorial waters.

The JCC says that based on its experience with the first ship that sailed on Monday, the Razoni, it is currently testing moving multiple ships through the security corridor, both outbound and inbound.

The Ukrainians mined their part of the Black Sea to protect their territory from Russian attacks. The UN said its experts had decided early on in planning the grain movement not to attempt to clear the area as it could take between three and five months, too long as food prices soar to worldwide. Instead, safe lanes have been determined and commercial vessels must strictly adhere to them.

The JCC says the Security Corridor has been revised “to allow more efficient passage of vessels while maintaining security”.

There is a backlog of ships stranded in southern Ukrainian ports following more than five months of war. The JCC says ships need to move to free up space for other ships to enter ports so they can collect and transport food for export to global markets, as envisaged. the Black Sea Grain Initiative of 22 July.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy slammed Amnesty International in his daily address for an Amnesty report released Thursday that said “Ukrainian forces put civilians at risk by establishing bases and operating weapons systems in populated residential areas, including schools and hospitals, as they repelled the Russian invasion that began in February.

Zelenskyy said the report “unfortunately attempts to amnesty the terrorist state and shift the blame from the perpetrator to the victim.” He said: “There can be, even hypothetically, no condition under which a Russian attack on Ukraine becomes justified. The aggression against our state is unprovoked, pervasive and openly terrorist.

Amnesty International Secretary General Agnès Callamard said in a statement that Amnesty had “documented a pattern of Ukrainian forces endangering civilians and violating the laws of war when operating in populated areas”. . She said: “Being in a defensive position does not exempt the Ukrainian army from respecting international humanitarian law.

The head of Amnesty’s Ukraine office also disputed the report and, in Facebook posts, said the Ukraine office “was not involved in preparing or writing” the report. Okswana Pokalchuk said that “representatives of the Ukrainian office did everything they could to prevent the publication of this material” and that the report “was created on the basis of data collected by foreign researchers and researchers from the department of the crisis response of the global office of our organization”.

A Ukrainian woman walks among the rubble of a residential building after a nighttime shelling in Mykolaiv, Ukraine, August 2, 2022.

Amnesty said its researchers investigated Russian strikes in Ukraine between April and July in the Kharkiv, Donbass and Mykolaiv regions. Amnesty said its “researchers found evidence that Ukrainian forces were launching strikes from populated residential areas and based in civilian buildings in 19 towns and villages in the regions”.

“Most of the residential areas where the soldiers were located were miles from the front lines,” Amnesty said. “Viable alternatives were available that would not endanger civilians – such as military bases or densely forested areas nearby, or other structures further away from residential areas.”

Amnesty said that in the cases it documented, it was “unaware that the Ukrainian military which had moved into civilian structures in residential areas had requested or assisted civilians to evacuate nearby buildings – a failure to take every possible precaution to protect civilians”.

Zelensky said in his speech: “Anyone who amnesties Russia and artificially creates such an informational context that some terrorist attacks are supposedly justified or supposedly understandable, can only realize that it helps the terrorists. And if you provide manipulative reports, you share responsibility with them for people’s deaths.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on Thursday that the Western military alliance had the joint task of supporting Ukraine in its fight against a Russian invasion and preventing the conflict from turning into a war between the Russia and NATO.

Addressing a summer camp in his native Norway, Stoltenberg said NATO has a moral responsibility to support Ukraine and the Ukrainian people who have been subjected to a war of aggression.

“We are witnessing acts of war, attacks on civilians and destruction unprecedented since World War II,” Stoltenberg said, according to a NATO statement of his prepared remarks. “We cannot be indifferent to this.”

Stotenberg said the world would become a more dangerous place if Russian President Vladimir Putin got his way using military force.

“If Russia wins this war, he will have confirmation that violence works. Then other neighboring countries could be next,” he said.

The Ukrainian military said on Thursday that Russian forces were shelling several areas in Ukraine, including those around Kharkiv, Sloviansk and Chernihiv.

Meanwhile, the UK Ministry of Defense said Ukrainian forces were using missile and artillery attacks against Russian “military strongholds, personnel groups, logistics support bases and ammunition depots”. A ministry statement said such attacks were likely to have a significant impact on Russia’s efforts to resupply and sustain its forces.