‘A beacon of hope’: Ukraine, Russia sign grain export deal

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ISTANBUL (AP) — Russian and Ukrainian officials have signed deals to safely export wheat and other food staples across the Black Sea.

Ukraine is one of the world’s key breadbaskets but a Russian blockade of its ports during the war has threatened food security around the world.

The two countries signed separate agreements Friday in Istanbul with Turkey and the United Nations to export agricultural products stuck in Ukraine’s ports.

The U.N. chief called the deal “a beacon of hope” on the Black Sea that will help millions of hungry people.

He described it as an unprecedented agreement between parties in a bloody conflict.

The agreements include provisions for the safe passage of ships through heavily mined waters.

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