A general view shows a sea port in Odesa before the restarting of grain export in Odesa, Ukraine, on Sunday. Reuters
The first shipment of Ukrainian grain will leave the port of Odesa at 0530 GMT on Monday, the Turkish defence ministry said.
"The departure of the cargo ship Razoni flying the flag of Sierra Leone and loaded with maize will leave the port of Odesa bound for Lebanon at 08:30 (0530 GMT)," the ministry said in a statement.
Russia and Ukraine signed separate agreements with Türkiye and the UN clearing the way for Ukraine — one of the world’s key breadbaskets — to export 22 million tons of grain and other agricultural goods that have been stuck in Black Sea ports because of Russia’s invasion.
As the Razoni moved toward the open water of the Black Sea, it changed its destination from Istanbul to Tripoli, Lebanon.
The deals also allow Russia to exports grain and fertilizers.
A view shows silos of grain from Odesa Black Sea port in Odesa, Ukraine. Reuters
Other convoys would follow, respecting the maritime corridor and the agreed formalities in line with the agreement reached with Russia on July 22, the ministry said.
According to the Marine Traffic website, the Razoni was still docked in Odesa at 0500 GMT.
Built in 1996 and measuring 186 metres (610 feet) in length and 25 metres in width, the vessel has capacity of 30,000 tonnes.
On July 22, Ukraine and Russia signed a landmark deal with Türkiye and the United Nations aimed at relieving a global food crisis caused by blocked Black Sea grain deliveries.
Türkiye formally opened a special joint coordination centre to oversee the exports in Istanbul last Wednesday, which is being staffed by civilian and military officials from the two warring parties and delegates from Türkiye and the UN.
German ambassador Anka Feldhusen stands next to Ukrainian minister Oleksandr Kubrakov in Odesa. Reuters
Their primary assignment involves monitoring the safe passage of Ukrainian grain ships along established routes and overseeing their inspection for banned weapons on the way into and out of the Black Sea.
The blockage of deliveries from two of the world's biggest grain exporters has contributed to a spike in prices that has made food imports prohibitively expensive for some of the world's poorest countries.
UN estimates say nearly 50 million people began to face "acute hunger" around the world as a direct consequence of the war.
Wheat prices fell sharply hours after the grain deal was signed.
Russia, whose forces invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24, announced the reversal on Wednesday after Türkiye and the United Nations helped keep Ukrainian grain flowing for several days without a Russian role in inspections.
The first major accord between the countries since the February invasion of Ukraine aims to ease the "acute hunger" that the United Nations says faces an additional 47 million people because of the war.
Ukraine's Sea Ports Authority said three Ukrainian seaports had begun loading food onto seven ships, which would deliver 66,500 tonnes of wheat, corn and sunflower oil to consumers.
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