At least six explosions were heard in Odessa, according to Ukrainian parliament member Oleksiy Goncharenko.
It comes a day after ministers from Ukraine and Russia signed an agreement – brokered by the United Nations and Turkey in Istanbul – to allow grain exports from Ukraine’s Black Sea ports with the aim of easing the global food crisis triggered by the war.
“This is all you need to know about deals with Russia,” Estonia’s Prime Minister Kaja Kallas added on Twitter. EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell said the bloc “strongly condemns” the attack.
On Saturday, Borrell wrote on Twitter: “Achieving a crucial grain export target a day after the signing of the Istanbul Accords is particularly reprehensible and shows once again Russia’s complete disregard for international law and obligations.”
“Russia agreed to some kind of deal on the export of grain, but then immediately attacked it – showing that it wants to continue to threaten global food security,” Ukrainian parliament member Oleksiy Goncharenko said on Saturday in an interview with CNN.
There will be new campaigns where [Putin] They will certainly attack Odessa and the world’s only answer to that is to give arms to Ukraine – and finally to give Ukraine long-range missiles and fighters. This is the only response to this aggression on the part of Putin and to restore the international order.”
Serhiy Prachuk, a spokesman for the Odessa Regional Military Administration, said the strikes hit a pumping station at the port.
“Today, 4 missiles fell on Odessa. Thank God our units of the air defense forces destroyed 2 missiles on approach. 2 more missiles went to the port, to the infrastructure facility,” Brachuk said in an interview with Ukrainian media. “This is a pumping station located on the territory of the Odessa port.”
Brachuk said there were no casualties and the grain stored there was undamaged. He also said the strikes were launched from a warship.
Until now, Russia blocks sea access to those ports, which means that millions of tons of Ukrainian grain have not been exported to the many countries that depend on it.
“Today, there is a beacon on the Black Sea. A beacon of hope – a beacon of possibility – a beacon of relief – in a world that needs it more than ever,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Friday. The signing ceremony, which was attended by the Ministers of Ukraine and Russia.
But Saturday’s attack led to anger and concern about the future of that deal.
“That’s all you need to know about ‘agreements’ with the Russians. Explosions in the port of #Odesa. A day after the agreement was signed with #Turkey and #UN, #Ukraine’s #grain was re-exported under which #Russia was re-exported,” Verkhovna Rada Member Solomiya Bobrovska tweeted.
Prachuk advised residents to stay in shelters as the weather alerts continue.
“This was a ray of hope,” Samantha Power, Administrator of the US Agency for International Development, said Saturday regarding the grain deal.
“Now, we only received news that Russian forces bombed the infrastructure of the port of Odessa, the port infrastructure needed to transport this grain to the Black Sea,” Bauer said.
“This is hideous and is the latest indication of Vladimir Putin’s cold indifference regarding the cost of war in Ukraine – a man-made war he created for no reason; the cost in Ukraine to human life there; and cascading effects around the world.”
Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said on Saturday that Russia had claimed it had “nothing to do” with the strikes.
“The Russians told us in certain terms that they had nothing to do with this attack. They are monitoring the situation closely and in detail,” Akar said in a video statement.
“We were really concerned that such an event happened after we signed the grain shipments deal. We are also upset. But we continue to fulfill our responsibilities on this agreement and in our meetings we have expressed our support for both parties. We have also expressed our support for both parties,” said Akar, who represented Turkey at the signing of the grain deal in Istanbul on Friday. “To continue their cooperation here calmly and patiently.”
Akar also said that Turkey received information about the strikes from Ukraine, “and then we spoke on the phone with Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov and Ukrainian Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kobrakov, with whom we were already in contact.”
They stated that one of the missile attacks hit one of the silos there, and the other fell in an area close to the silos, but the important thing here is that there is no problem with the loading capacity and the capacity of the berths, and that activities there can continue.”