On 30 July, Pope Francis called on Russia to reverse its decision to abandon the United Nations-brokered deal allowing Ukraine to export grain blocked in the Black Sea ports by occupation troops, according to Vatican News.
“I appeal to my brothers, the authorities of the Russian Federation, that the Black Sea Initiative may be restored and grain may be transported safely,” he said at the conclusion of the Sunday Angelus.
On 17 July, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov announced Russia’s suspension of the Black Sea grain agreement, signed in the summer of 2022 to unblock the export of Ukrainian grain.
Two days after the announcement, Russia launched the most massive-yet attack on Odesa using Kh-22 and Oniks cruise missiles which targeted a grain and oil terminal.
Earlier, the 55-nation African Union urged Russia to reinstate the grain deal at a summit with African leaders in St. Petersburg.