Russian President Vladimir Putin on Saturday advised the leaders of France and Germany Moscow is able to search for methods to ship grain caught in Ukrainian ports however demanded the West elevate sanctions.
The Kremlin chief additionally warned French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz towards ramping up arms provides to Ukraine, saying they may additional destabilise the scenario within the pro-Western nation.
The talks lasted 80 minutes, the German chancellor’s workplace stated.
Putin stated the difficulties in supplying grain to world markets have been the results of “inaccurate financial and monetary insurance policies of Western nations”.
“Russia is able to assist discover choices for the unhindered export of grain, together with the export of Ukrainian grain from the Black Sea ports,” Putin advised Macron and Scholz, the Kremlin stated.
“A rise within the provide of Russian fertilisers and agricultural merchandise can even assist scale back tensions on the worldwide meals market, which, in fact, would require the elimination of the related sanctions.”
Russia’s offensive in Ukraine and Western sanctions have disrupted provides of fertiliser, wheat and different commodities from the 2 nations, fuelling considerations concerning the threat of shortages and starvation around the globe.
Russia and Ukraine produce 30 p.c of the worldwide wheat provide.
Macron and Scholz for his or her half urged Russia to elevate the blockade of the Ukrainian port of Odessa to permit the export of grain, the French presidency stated.
Each leaders “have taken be aware of the promise of the Russian president to grant ships entry to the port for the export of grain with out it being exploited militarily by Russia whether it is first cleared of mines,” the French presidency added.
The West has accused Putin of utilizing starvation as a weapon in Moscow’s offensive towards Ukraine.
As Ukraine’s Western backers have been contemplating whether or not to ship extra arms provides to Kyiv, Putin additionally advised Macron and Scholz the persevering with arms provides have been “harmful”, warning “of the dangers of additional destabilisation of the scenario and aggravation of the humanitarian disaster,” the Kremlin stated.
The French and German readouts of the telephone talks made no point out of the sanctions towards Russia or the Western arms provides to Ukraine.
Scholz and Macron additionally requested Putin to carry “direct critical negotiations” along with his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky, the German chancellor’s workplace stated.
The 2 EU leaders “insisted on an instantaneous ceasefire and a withdrawal of Russian troops,” the chancellor’s workplace stated.
Putin stated Moscow was open to renew dialogue with Kyiv, the Kremlin stated with out mentioning the potential for direct talks between Putin and Zelensky.
Talks between Russian and Ukrainian delegations have been held each in particular person and by way of video-link for the reason that Russian navy offensive however have just lately floor to a halt.
The French presidency added that Macron and Scholz additionally requested Putin to launch 2,500 Ukrainian fighters who have been holed up contained in the Azovstal metal plant in Mariupol and who later surrendered to the Russian military.
“The president of the Republic and the German chancellor requested for the discharge of some 2,500 defenders of Azovstal made prisoners of struggle by the Russian forces,” the French presidency stated.
(Aside from the headline, this story has not been edited by IHNS employees and is revealed from a syndicated feed.)