NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has called on Russia to extend the Black Sea Grain Initiative that established a humanitarian maritime corridor to allow ships to export grain and other foodstuffs from Ukraine to ensure a constant supply of food.

The CFTS portal reported this, citing the European Pravda publication.

"Russia's war [against Ukraine] has turned parts of the Black Sea into a war zone. Missiles fired by Russian warships in the Black Sea have hit Ukrainian towns, and Russian forces blockaded Ukrainian ports for months, causing the worst global food crisis in years. We urge Russia to renew the UN grain deal brokered by Turkey and ensure the continued supply of food to those who need it most," Stoltenberg said.

According to him, the Black Sea is of vital strategic importance to NATO, and three NATO allies close NATO partners Ukraine and Georgia are littoral states. That is why NATO is reinforcing its presence in the region, he said. In particular, he noted that Romania hosts one of NATO’s new battle groups in the Black Sea region.