EU President Charles Michel accuses Russia of causing global food crisis with invasion of Ukraine
Russia’s Permanent Representative to the UN Vasily Nebenzia has left a meeting of the World Security Council for Ukraine over a statement by European Council President Charles Michel, who accused Russia of causing a global food crisis with its invasion of the neighboring country, Reuters reported.
Russian soldiers are committing war crimes and crimes against humanity, Michel said, citing specific reports of sexual assault – the main topic of the meeting. “This is a tactic of torture, terror and repression,” he said.
Earlier, Nebenzya flatly denied all allegations of sexual violence against the Russian military.
When the President of the European Council began speaking, the Russian Permanent Representative to the UN left the meeting, visibly irritated.
“I can’t stay (because of) the lies that Charles Michel came here to spread,” Nebenzia told Reuters.
Addressing the Russian diplomat directly, the President of the European Council said at the meeting: “You can leave the hall, maybe it is easier not to listen to the truth.”
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24 sparked a global food crisis, with prices for grain, oil, fertilizers and fuels rising sharply. The two countries account for a third of global wheat exports, with Russia exporting fertilizers and Ukraine corn and sunflower oil, Reuters reported.
“Mr. Ambassador of the Russian Federation, let’s be honest, the Kremlin is using food supplies as an invisible missile against developing countries,” said Charles Michel. He stressed that “only Russia is responsible for this food crisis.”
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is trying to mediate a “package deal” to resume food exports from Ukraine and exports of food and fertilizers from Russia. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will visit Turkey tomorrow to discuss unblocking Ukraine’s wheat exports, Reuters reported.