Ukraine-Russia war LIVE: Evil Putin’s Ukraine blockade ‘weaponising hunger’ as global food crisis ‘will kill millions’

VLADIMIR Putin is “weaponising hunger” and using food security as a “callous tool of war” with its blockade of Ukrainian grain.

Ukraine has been described as the “bread basket of Europe” and was one of the world’s largest exporters of wheat, corn and sunflower oil before Russia launched the devastating war in February.

But the Russian invasion and Moscow’s mining of the access to the southern ports, including Odesa, has halted much of that flow and endangered world food supplies.

UK foreign secretary Liz Truss warned the crisis created by Vladimir Putin is “urgent” and must be solved in the next month to avoid “devastating consequences”.

Ms Truss said the UK’s long-standing alliance with Turkey is “more important than ever” at a time when “security, sovereignty and self-determination are under threat”.

She said the countries are working “closely together”, in particular to get the “grain out of Ukraine”.

Meanwhile, the global food crisis sparked by the war in Ukraine will kill millions by leaving the hungriest more vulnerable to infectious diseases, potentially triggering the world’s next health catastrophe, the head of a major aid organisation has warned.

The knock-on effects of the food shortages mean many will die not only of starvation but from having weaker defences against infectious diseases due to bad nutrition.

Peter Sands, executive director of the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria, said: “I think we’ve probably already begun our next health crisis. It’s not a new pathogen but it means people who are poorly nourished will be more vulnerable to the existing diseases.

“I think the combined impact of infectious diseases and the food shortages and the energy crisis… we can be talking about millions of extra deaths because of this,” he said.

Read our Ukraine war live blog below for the latest news & updates…

  • Ukraine to begin first trial of Russian soldier accused of rape

    Ukraine is expected on Thursday to hold a preliminary hearing in its first trial of a Russian soldier charged with raping a Ukrainian woman during Russia’s invasion, the first of what could be dozens of such cases.

    The suspect, Mikhail Romanov, 32, who is not in Ukrainian custody and will be tried in absentia, is accused of murdering a civilian in the Kyiv capital region on March 9 and then repeatedly raping the man’s wife, according to court files.

    Russia’s Defence Ministry did not immediately respond to a written request for comment, and Reuters was unable to reach the soldier. Moscow has denied allegations of war crimes.

    Romanov is accused of raping a 33-year-old woman after he and another Russian soldier shot her husband Oleksiy at point blank in the village of Bohdanivka to the northeast of Kyiv.

    The two soldiers then left and later returned twice more to rape her, the court files said. The identity of the second soldier had not been established.

    It was not immediately clear what kind of legal representation Romanov would have at the trial, which will be held behind closed doors.

    A prosecutor working on sexual violence cases told Reuters that up to 50 such crimes were being investigated, but that the number of instances of sexual violence by Russian soldiers since Feb. 24 was likely to be substantially higher.

  • Explosions heard in Ukraine’s southern city of Mykolaiv – mayor

    Explosions were heard in Ukraine’s southern city of Mykolaiv on Thursday, Mayor Oleksandr Senkevych said, urging residents to take shelter.

    He did not provide further details in his post on messaging app Telegram.

    A Russian missile strike killed at least one person and damaged buildings including a school in Mykolaiv on Wednesday, according to local authorities. Russia denies targeting civilians.

  • Liz Truss accuses Putin of ‘weaponising hunger’ with Ukraine blockade (2/2)

    The Foreign Secretary accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of “weaponising hunger” with the blockade.

    “He is using food security as a callous tool of war. He has blocked Ukrainian ports, and is stopping 20 million tonnes of grain being exported across the globe, holding the world to ransom,” she said.

    “I’m here in Turkey to discuss the plan to get the grain out, supported by the United Nations.

    “We’re clear that commercial vessels need to have safe passage to be able to leave Ukrainian ports, and that Ukrainian ports should be protected from Russian attacks.

    “We support the UN talks, but Russia cannot be allowed to delay and prevaricate. It’s urgent that action is taken within the next month ahead of the new harvest. And we’re determined to work with our allies to deliver this.”

  • Liz Truss accuses Putin of ‘weaponising hunger’ with Ukraine blockade (1/2)

    Foreign Secretary Liz Truss has accused Russia of “weaponising hunger” and using food security as a “callous tool of war” with its blockade of Ukrainian grain.

    Speaking at a press conference alongside Turkish foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in Ankara, Ms Truss warned the crisis is “urgent” and must be solved in the next month to avoid “devastating consequences”.

    Ukraine has been described as the “bread basket of Europe” and was one of the world’s largest exporters of wheat, corn and sunflower oil.

    But the Russian invasion and Moscow’s mining of the access to the southern ports, including Odesa, has halted much of that flow and endangered world food supplies.

    Ms Truss said the UK’s long-standing alliance with Turkey is “more important than ever” at a time when “security, sovereignty and self-determination are under threat”.

    She said the countries are working “closely together”, in particular to get the “grain out of Ukraine”.

  • Putin vows to deploy Satan 2 nukes by end of year as tensions with NATO rise

    In his latest threat to the west, the tyrant said the world-ending Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile would be delivered in the next six months, amid heightened tensions with NATO countries.

    The despot boasted: “The missile can break through all modern anti-missile defences.

    “There is nothing like this anywhere in the world, and won’t be for a long time.”

  • Russian forces capture two settlements near Ukraine’s Lysychansk

    Russian forces have captured the settlements of Loskutivka and Rai-Oleksandrivka south of Ukraine’s cities of Lysychansk and Sievierodonetsk, which are the focus of the Russian offensive in the region, Luhansk governor Serhiy Gaidai said on Thursday.

    Ukrainian forces continue the defence of Sievierodonetsk and the nearby settlements of Zolote and Vovchoyrovka, he said.

  • Inside Putin’s DIRTY billions

    The despotic dictator of Russia has a wealth that is believed to be more than Bill Gates, and equal to that of Elon Musk, but where is all this wealth tied up.

    In new leaked emails, just some of the Russian rulers assets have been exposed.

    Here are just a few:

  • Russia boosts pressure in advance on Ukraine’s Lysychansk

    Russian forces advancing towards the Ukrainian city of Lysychansk are putting increasing pressure on the surrounding region, including the twin city of Sievierodonetsk, Britain’s defence ministry said on Thursday.

    “Since 19 June, Russian forces have highly likely advanced over 5 km (3 miles) towards the southern approaches of the Donbas city of Lysychansk,” the ministry said in a daily update on Twitter.

    The fight for the twin cities is “entering a sort of fearsome climax”, Oleksiy Arestovych, an adviser to President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, has said.

    Russia seeks to capture both Luhansk and Donetsk, which make up Ukraine’s industrial heartland of Donbas. (R

  • Moscow accuses Berlin of ‘Russophobic hysteria’ on anniversary of Nazi invasion

    Russia’s foreign ministry on Wednesday accused Germany of anti-Russian sentiment in a statement on the anniversary of the invasion of the Soviet Union by Nazi troops in 1941 as tensions rage over Ukraine.

    “Russophobic hysteria is systematically fuelled by almost daily public attacks against our country by members of the German government,” the ministry said, adding that authorities in Berlin undermine the process of “historical reconciliation” between Russians and Germans after World War II.

  • Ukraine won’t get a ‘free pass’ into the EU, French officials claim

    Despite the country being desperate to join the European Union, French officials have claimed the trading block will not come to Ukraine’s aid.

    “There is no expedited procedure, there is no King’s Pass,” French Minister Delegate for Europe Clément Beaune said in an interview with French radio Europe 1. 

    “They need to finish the war first, to rebuild the country, to meet all the democratic and economic requirements. This will take time. But we are giving this signal of openness,” He added.

  • Putin’s forces destroy college near Kharkiv being used to store humanitarian aid

    Two cruise missiles slammed into the Liubotyn Vocational College of Railway Transport in Eastern Ukraine.

    A woman was in the building , but somehow she survived.

    This comes as the Ukrainian military announced that over 300 children have been killed by Russian forces since the war began.

  • Turkish ship leaves Ukraine’s Mariupol after grain talks with Moscow

    A Turkish cargo ship on Wednesday left Ukraine’s Russian-occupied port of Mariupol after a round of “constructive” grain talks with Moscow, the Turkish defence ministry said, without specifying if it was carrying wheat.

    “The meeting in Moscow gave its first concrete result,” the Turkish ministry said in a statement.

    “Just a few hours after the end of the long meeting, the Turkish dry cargo ship, which had been waiting for days, left the Ukrainian port.”

  • Russia refuses to rule out death penalty for US nationals

    The Kremlin’s spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov, has said he “can’t rule out” capitol punishment for US citizens who choose to fight for Ukraine.

    Peskov claimed the decision would be made by a Russian court.

    In the same speech, he claimed that Ukraine has made no effort to restart peace talks.

  • Russia using ‘Kamikaze’ drones on Ukrainian towns

    Reports have emerged that Russia is using so called Kamikaze drones to attack the Sumy region of Ukraine, according to a military official.

    Dmytro Zhyvytskyy noted that these drones had already killed four people.

    “In general the situation is quite tense. Yesterday the communities and territories along the border were shelled with different kinds of armament with self-propelled artillery units, mortars, MLRS,” Zhyvytskyy said.

  • Putin vows to deploy Satan 2 nukes by end of year as tensions with NATO rise

    In his latest threat to the west, the tyrant said the world-ending Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile would be delivered in the next six months, amid heightened tensions with NATO countries.

    The despot boasted: “The missile can break through all modern anti-missile defences.

    “There is nothing like this anywhere in the world, and won’t be for a long time.”

  • Inside Putin’s DIRTY billions

    The despotic dictator of Russia has a wealth that is believed to be more than Bill Gates, and equal to that of Elon Musk, but where is all this wealth tied up.

    In new leaked emails, just some of the Russian rulers assets have been exposed.

    Here are just a few:

  • Russia’s losses as of June 22

    Russia continues to lose troops, equipment and weapons as the war in Ukraine rages on.

    As of today, according to Ukraine’s military, the invading force has lost over 34,000 troops, 216 plans and 1,496 tanks.

    This comes as reports emerge that that the over 320 Ukrainian children have been killed by Russian forces since the conflict began.

  • UK Intelligence provides update on Russia Ukraine conflict

    According to UK Intelligence, Russia is preparing to deploy a large number of reserve units to the Donbas.

    The outlook noted that the conflict is becoming increasingly centred on being able to generate and deploy reserve units to the front, for both sides.

  • Moscow accuses Berlin of ‘Russophobic hysteria’ on anniversary of Nazi invasion

    Russia’s foreign ministry on Wednesday accused Germany of anti-Russian sentiment in a statement on the anniversary of the invasion of the Soviet Union by Nazi troops in 1941 as tensions rage over Ukraine.

    “Russophobic hysteria is systematically fuelled by almost daily public attacks against our country by members of the German government,” the ministry said, adding that authorities in Berlin undermine the process of “historical reconciliation” between Russians and Germans after World War II.

  • Ukraine won’t get a ‘free pass’ into the EU, French officials claim

    Despite the country being desperate to join the European Union, French officials have claimed the trading block will not come to Ukraine’s aid.

    “There is no expedited procedure, there is no King’s Pass,” French Minister Delegate for Europe Clément Beaune said in an interview with French radio Europe 1. 

    “They need to finish the war first, to rebuild the country, to meet all the democratic and economic requirements. This will take time. But we are giving this signal of openness,” He added.

  • Putin’s forces destroy college near Kharkiv being used to store humanitarian aid

    Two cruise missiles slammed into the Liubotyn Vocational College of Railway Transport in Eastern Ukraine.

    A woman was in the building , but somehow she survived.

    This comes as the Ukrainian military announced that over 300 children have been killed by Russian forces since the war began.

  • Turkish ship leaves Ukraine’s Mariupol after grain talks with Moscow

    A Turkish cargo ship on Wednesday left Ukraine’s Russian-occupied port of Mariupol after a round of “constructive” grain talks with Moscow, the Turkish defence ministry said, without specifying if it was carrying wheat.

    “The meeting in Moscow gave its first concrete result,” the Turkish ministry said in a statement.

    “Just a few hours after the end of the long meeting, the Turkish dry cargo ship, which had been waiting for days, left the Ukrainian port.”

  • Russia refuses to rule out death penalty for US nationals

    The Kremlin’s spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov, has said he “can’t rule out” capitol punishment for US citizens who choose to fight for Ukraine.

    Peskov claimed the decision would be made by a Russian court.

    In the same speech, he claimed that Ukraine has made no effort to restart peace talks.

  • Russia using ‘Kamikaze’ drones on Ukrainian towns

    Reports have emerged that Russia is using so called Kamikaze drones to attack the Sumy region of Ukraine, according to a military official.

    Dmytro Zhyvytskyy noted that these drones had already killed four people.

    “In general the situation is quite tense. Yesterday the communities and territories along the border were shelled with different kinds of armament with self-propelled artillery units, mortars, MLRS,” Zhyvytskyy said.

  • Putin vows to deploy Satan 2 nukes by end of year as tensions with NATO rise

    In his latest threat to the west, the tyrant said the world-ending Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile would be delivered in the next six months, amid heightened tensions with NATO countries.

    The despot boasted: “The missile can break through all modern anti-missile defences.

    “There is nothing like this anywhere in the world, and won’t be for a long time.”

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