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Ukraine Crisis

First Ukraine WFP grain ship reaches Djibouti

Photo: WFP The vessel Brave Commander arrived in Djibouti on August 30 (Photo WFP)[60].jpg
The first World Food Programme (WFP) consignment of grain from Ukraine docked yesterday at the Port of Djibouti with a cargo for Ethiopia, according to news reports.

The WFP said the UN-chartered vessel Brave Commander set sail from the Black Sea port of Pivdennyi in Yuzhny, Odesa province, on August 16. The voyage took 14 days.

Conflict spurred by Ethiopia's civil war has flared up again in the province of Tigray, and WFP officials cannot be sure that the grain will reach the areas of the country where it is needed most.

The WFP also said yesterday a second vessel left the same port bound for Yemen.

“The MV Karteria, carrying 37,000 metric tons of wheat grain, will stop first in Turkey, where the grain will be milled into flour. It will then be shipped to Yemen, where over 17 million people are struggling with acute hunger—a figure that is expected to rise in the coming months,” it said.

The two consignments, totalling 60,000 mt of wheat grain, will provide sorely needed assistance at a time of scarcity and spiralling prices for basic foodstuffs all over the world.

“The war in Ukraine has been the last straw in Yemen against a backdrop of prolonged conflict, the resulting economic crisis, and dwindling funds for humanitarian response,” said WFP representative and Yemen country director, Richard Ragan.

“It is paramount to get commodities flowing back into the country, and especially grain—for humanitarian and commercial purposes. This is vital to keep prices at bay.”