MOSCOW, July 27. /TASS/. Turkey does not link Russia’s strike on the Odessa port’s military infrastructure with the fulfillment of a deal inked in Istanbul to export grain from Black Sea ports, Russia’s Ambassador to Turkey Alexey Yerkhov told the Rossiya-24 TV Channel on Wednesday.
"I have not seen any statement by Turkish officials that would link our strike with the fate of this initiative for safe grain transportation," the Russian diplomat pointed out.
As the envoy said, "the Turkish side’s reaction is quite calm and weighed." "Our explanations and statements on this score have been noticed here and taken note of," the ambassador added.
A package of documents was signed in Istanbul on July 22 to facilitate the export of food and mineral fertilizer to world markets. The Russia-UN memorandum stipulates that the United Nations will join the efforts to lift anti-Russian restrictions for the exportation of agricultural output and mineral fertilizer to global markets.
The other document prescribes a mechanism for exporting grain from Kiev-controlled Black Sea ports. The agreement between Russia, Turkey, Ukraine and the UN stipulates creating a four-party coordination center whose representatives will inspect grain-exporting vessels to prevent weapons smuggling and rule out provocations.
Russian Defense Ministry Spokesman Lieutenant-General Igor Konashenkov reported on July 24 that Russian forces had delivered a strike by precision weapons against the premises of the ship repair plant in Odessa, destroying a warship in the dock and a depot of US-supplied Harpoon missiles. The strike incapacitated the enterprise’s production capacities for the repair and upgrade of the Ukrainian Navy’s ships, the general added.
Meanwhile, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that the strike against the Odessa port’s military sites could not and would not affect the commencement of grain shipments in accordance with the Istanbul deals.