President of Ukraine

Volodymyr Zelenskyy at the second international summit Grain from Ukraine: Never again should hunger become a weapon against the freedom of people

25 November 2023 - 16:23

Volodymyr Zelenskyy at the second international summit Grain from Ukraine: Never again should hunger become a weapon against the freedom of people

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy participated in the second international summit of the initiative "Grain from Ukraine," held on November 25th in Kyiv.

The aim of the event is to strengthen Ukraine's role as a guarantor of food security, consolidate efforts to ensure global food security, and develop alternative logistics options for the export of agricultural products from our country.

Opening the summit, the Head of State said that on the eve of the Holodomor Remembrance Day, Russia launched over 70 Shahed combat drones on Ukrainian territory overnight.

"Today, on this day of remembrance, such a terrorist attack means that Putin is proud to follow the greatest killers of the 20th century. If he could arrange another Holodomor for Ukraine, he would do it," said the President.

According to Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Russia will keep trying to use food shortages and weaponize hunger. He reminded that on the first day of the full-scale war, the Russian fleet blocked Ukrainian seaports and the food export from Ukraine, which is crucial for the world.

"The stability of the food market is crucial for dozens of countries and hundreds of millions of people across the vast expanse from West Africa to East Asia," the Head of State said.

At the same time, he emphasized that today's summit is another proof that Ukraine will not lose its strength and freedom and will be able to defend the global understanding that terror must be defeated.

"I am proud of all Ukrainians who managed to restore security in the Black Sea so that Ukrainian ports could operate again for the sake of global food security and our exports. I am grateful to all leaders and countries present here who are helping us resist Russian terror and protect lives worldwide," said the President.

According to him, the Ukrainian humanitarian initiative "Grain from Ukraine," which has already united nearly 40 countries and international organizations, is assisting those nations that suffer the most from food shortages.

"We are providing assistance despite constant Russian terror and ongoing Russian attempts to disrupt our food exports. Ethiopia, Somalia, Yemen, Kenya... They have already received over 170,000 tonnes of food thanks to our joint humanitarian initiative. This is a lifeline for millions of lives," the Head of State said.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy also announced that another vessel is being prepared to transport grain cargo to a port of Nigeria, which will help nearly 400,000 people.

"I am confident that this summit, our second "Grain from Ukraine" summit, will make our humanitarian work even more sustainable and substantive," he said.

The President highlighted that the Ukrainian people, once experienced a terrible artificially induced famine orchestrated by the enemy, particularly perceive the threat of hunger for any other nation.

"Never again should hunger become a weapon against the freedom of people. And anyone who tries to use hunger in such a way, anyone whose terror creates chaos in the food market, must be held accountable before the entire world. Russia must be held accountable. I am confident that it will be," Volodymyr Zelenskyy concluded.

President of Latvia Edgars Rinkēvičs, President of Switzerland Alain Berset, and Prime Minister of Lithuania Ingrida Šimonytė personally took part in the second "Grain from Ukraine" summit.

President of the Republic of Poland Andrzej Duda, President of the Republic of Guatemala Alejandro Giammattei, President of Estonia Alar Karis addressed the participants of the event via video links. Video addresses were also delivered by President of the Council of Ministers of the Italian Republic Giorgia Meloni, Prime Minister of the Netherlands Mark Rutte, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Belgium Alexander De Croo, and others.

The summit participants discussed collaboration on grain storage and the transportation of agricultural products to recipient countries. Intensifying the involvement of international partners in the initiative "Grain from Ukraine" and expanding the list of recipient countries was also discussed.

Furthermore, the issue of coordination to enhance pressure on Russia to end its food blockade was raised.

As a result of the second international summit "Grain from Ukraine," a Joint Statement supported by 23 countries was adopted.