The agreement signed in Istanbul regarding the export of Ukrainian grain means the UN and Turkey recognize Russia’s right to control Ukraine’s maritime ports, according to propaganda narratives disseminated by the Russian media. In fact, the agreements signed in Istanbul do not include any such provisions, and Moscow has violated the agreements by bombing the port of Odessa.
NEWS: “The international community has recognized Russia’s right to control Ukraine’s maritime ports – this is the political interpretation of the Istanbul agreements, which are designed to ensure the continuous export of Ukrainian agricultural products.
Ukrainian media expert Anatoly Shariy called the Istanbul agreements “terrifying for Kyiv.” “It’s a clear victory for Russia… The whole world has bowed its head, including the UN”, Shariy wrote on his blog.
Turkish authorities and UN leaders have directly recognized Russia’s role to decide the fate of the upcoming maritime exports sent out from Ukraine. For the first time at global level, despite the “political correctness” imposed by Western elites, the international community has recognized Russia’s right to act exactly how it has been acting starting February this year.
All we can do now is hope that people who are willing to stop supporting national populists in Kyiv will take power in Western states and start working with Russia and China to solve any outstanding issues.”
NARRATIVE: The UN and Turkey recognize Russia’s right to control Ukraine’s maritime ports.
WHY THE NARRATIVE IS FALSE: The agreements signed in Istanbul make no mention of Russia taking control of Ukraine’s maritime ports and communications. The agreements were signed on July 22 by representatives of Russia and Ukraine. The deal was brokered by Turkey’s president and the UN Secretary General.
We are talking about two separate agreements: one refers to unblocking Russian agricultural exports while the other provides for reopening grain exports from Ukraine.
Ukraine has been complaining in international fora that Russia has imposed a blockade of its ports, forcing it to shut them down due to constant shelling. Prior to the invasion, 80-90% of Ukraine’s grain was exported via maritime ports. Less than 24 hours after the document was signed in Istanbul, which is estimated to allow Ukraine to export up to 20 million tons of grain, Moscow launched cruise missiles on grain silos in the port of Odessa.
President Volodymyr Zelensky has accused Russia of failing to honor its pledged agreements, stating that the export of grain depends solely on Moscow and its decision to stop shelling Ukrainian ports. The representative of the Office of the Ukrainian President, Andriy Sybiha, has accused Russia of violating the agreements, which forbid the shelling of ports.
On the other hand, the Russian media has quoted expert Anatoly Shariy, who fled Ukraine prior to the invasion on February 24, and who stands accused by the SBU (the Security Service of Ukraine) of disseminating Russia propaganda and cooperating with the Kremlin. In recent years, Shariy’s blog has become increasingly popular in Ukraine, while his party is now represented in various local councils. Anatoly Shariy is accused of high treason. The Russian media continues to describe him as an independent Ukrainian expert. He called the Istanbul agreements “terrifying for Kyiv”, underlining that the UN and Turkey recognize Russia’s right to control the Black Sea, although he didn’t specify which clause in the agreement stipulates that.
In fact, no international organization, not even the UN, can decide or recognize a state’s unilateral control over the ports and communications of another sovereign state. Ukraine has a sovereign right to control its territorial waters and maritime ports. Russia’s occupation of Ukrainian territories does not give the former the right to control maritime ports too, considering that military aggression is not considered a legitimate right to exert territorial control.
Veridica has disproved a series of false narratives fostered by Russia which are meant to persuade public opinion that countries and international organizations recognize its right to occupy various territories of Ukraine. In June, the Russia media wrote that the NATO Secretary General suggested Kyiv should concede certain territories to Russia in the name of peace. Additionally, in April the Russian state media wrote that Vladimir Putin convinced the UN Secretary General, António Guterres, that Ukrainian Nazis must be brought before the International Criminal Court. The Russian media also attempted to persuade public opinion that the UN supports the genocide targeting Russian speakers in Ukraine.