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A Grim Turn: Russia Bombing Ukraine’s Grain



The ongoing Ukraine-Russia conflict has taken a grim turn with Russia resorting to bombing food supplies and agricultural goods in Ukraine. The attacks on Ukraine's grain export facilities have raised serious concerns about potential hunger and starvation in poor countries that heavily rely on these food supplies.


The UN Charter's ban against using force against other states, other than for self-defence or with the UN Security Council's consent, is one of its main tenets. Russia is not only attacking Ukraine's territorial integrity but also flagrantly breaching the UN Charter by repeatedly targeting agricultural products and food export facilities.


Ukraine, in particular as a significant grain exporter, plays a significant role in the global food chain. Russia is purposefully destabilising the global food market by attacking Ukraine's grain facilities and obstructing its export operations. As seen in the benchmark Chicago wheat futures, the attacks on grain export facilities have disrupted supplies and driven up wheat futures prices, posing a serious danger to world food security.


Millions of people in developing countries are now more at risk of being hungry and starving to death, according to a warning from the UN, as a result of rising food costs. Grain exports from Ukraine are disrupted, which has a negative impact on food prices globally and disastrous effects on vulnerable communities.


Martin Griffiths, the head of the UN's relief efforts, emphasised the seriousness of the situation by warning that these damaging actions could cause suffering, starvation, and death.


International humanitarian law, which forbids attacking civilians and civilian targets during armed conflict, is flagrantly broken by such indiscriminate attacks on civilians and civilian targets. Concerns regarding the use of food as a weapon of war are raised by the intentional targeting of agricultural products and food supply in Ukraine.


Russia seeks to put pressure on Ukraine and sway its decision-making through economic coercion by destroying vital food export infrastructure. Such conduct is morally repugnant and goes against the values of humanity and respect for human rights that are entrenched in international law.


The ongoing bombardment of food supplies and agricultural products by Russia during the conflict in Ukraine is a serious breach of international humanitarian law and the UN Charter. Millions of people whose lives depend on access to inexpensive food are put in danger as a result of Ukraine's grain exports being deliberately disrupted, which also poses a threat to global food security.


The international community must strongly denounce these activities and act swiftly to prevent the use of food as a weapon in hostilities. Upholding the values of peace, security, and human rights inherent in the UN Charter requires a coordinated effort to punish individuals accountable for these heinous crimes.


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