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20 May 2022, 14:46

Belarus' ambassador to UN, UN secretary-general discuss food security, sanctions

An archive photo
An archive photo

MINSK, 20 May (BelTA) – Belarus' Permanent Representative to the UN Valentin Rybakov met with UN Secretary-General António Guterres at the UN headquarters, BelTA learned from the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The Belarusian diplomat conveyed to António Guterres a personal message from Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko. The parties discussed international food security in the context of geopolitical tensions and sanctions, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

A reminder, on 19 May Valentin Rybakov took part in the Security Council debate on conflict and food security. He noted that Western countries use the events in Ukraine as a pretext for imposing new unilateral sanctions.

According to him, Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko repeatedly warned the global community about the dangers of imposing sanctions against the Belarusian potash industry and food products. These warnings were conveyed by the Belarusian head of state to the UN General Assembly and the Security Council.

“Yet, the authors of such sanctions were not ready to listen and are not listening now to international institutions, or experts, or representatives of countries where hunger and malnutrition are looming. As a result, according to the World Bank, the agricultural price index increased by 43% by May 2022 compared to last year, and each additional percentage point of food price growth will drive an additional 10 million people into extreme poverty. Today, the UN secretary- general pointed to the price increases of up to 30% for staple foods, threatening people in countries across Africa and the Middle East,” Valentin Rybakov said.

At a session of the UN Security Council on 5 May UN Secretary-General António Guterres urged to return food and fertilizers of Russian, Belarusian, and Ukrainian make onto world markets.

“Any meaningful solution to global food insecurity requires reintegrating Ukraine's agricultural production and the food and fertilizer production of Russia and Belarus into world markets,” António Guterres said.

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