Title: White House Warns of Potential Russian Attacks on Civilian Shipping in Black Sea
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FILE PHOTO: The cargo ship Despina V, which carries Ukrainian grain, is seen in the Black Sea near Istanbul, Turkey (REUTERS/Umit Bektas)
The White House has issued a stern warning, suggesting that Russia could expand its attacks on Ukrainian grain facilities to include civilian shipping in the Black Sea. Adam Hodge, a spokesperson for the White House National Security Council, stated that US officials have received information indicating that Russia has placed additional sea mines near Ukrainian ports, raising concerns about potential attacks on civilian ships.
Hodge believes that these acts are part of a coordinated effort by Russia to justify any future attacks on civilian ships in the Black Sea, ultimately blaming Ukraine for the incidents. Further evidence of this coordination was highlighted by Hodge, who mentioned that Russia has already targeted Ukrainian grain export ports in Odessa, resulting in significant damage to agricultural infrastructure and the destruction of around 60,000 tons of grain. The attacks reportedly occurred on July 18 and 19.
Ukraine swiftly responded to Russia’s actions, accusing the nation of perpetrating “hellish” overnight attacks on two of its Black Sea ports, specifically targeting grain export infrastructure. Despite the damage caused, Ukraine remains determined not to be intimidated and will continue its efforts to ensure the smooth flow of grain exports through these ports.
The situation is developing rapidly and continues to be monitored closely. The United States, along with international entities, is deeply concerned about the escalation of tensions in the region and the potential impact it may have on trade and maritime operations.
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(With information from Reuters)