Shipment courier

The arrival of the first shipment of Ukrainian cereals in Lebanon “postponed”

The first shipment of Ukrainian grain since the Russian invasion will no longer arrive in the northern Lebanese port city of Tripoli on Sunday, as planned, the Ukrainian embassy in Beirut announced.

“Tomorrow’s arrival (of) the Razoni ship is postponed,” the embassy told AFP in a message on Saturday.

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Updates regarding an arrival ceremony “will be sent later when we have information on (the) exact day and time of the ship’s arrival,” he added.

Asked why the arrival was postponed, an embassy spokesperson said: “I have no further information at this time.”

An official who followed the shipment said the ship might not even dock in Lebanon if the owner of the cargo manages to sell it elsewhere.

“The ship will only go to Lebanon (…) if a trader buys the cargo,” the official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

The Razoni, flying the flag of Sierra Leone, left the Ukrainian port of Odessa last Monday with 26,000 tonnes of maize and called in Turkey the next day.

He was cleared through the Bosphorus Strait by a team including Russian and Ukrainian inspectors on Wednesday, and a Ukrainian embassy spokesman later said he was due to dock in the Lebanese port of Tripoli at 10:00 a.m. (07:00 GMT) Sunday.

The delivery is the first under a UN-backed deal, brokered with Turkish help last month, which aims to ease a global food crisis.

Lebanon, in the grip of one of the worst financial crises in the world, faces a particularly acute shortage of bread.

Kyiv said three more ships loaded with grain left Ukraine on Friday, bound for Turkey and markets in Ireland and Britain. Thirteen others are waiting to leave.

Read more: Three more grain ships leave Ukraine: Turkey