Ukraine updates: NATO to boost Black Sea surveillance
NATO has condemned Russia's exit from a deal that allowed the passage of grain ships in the Black Sea
NATO announced Wednesday that it would expand surveillance of the Black Sea region.
The move followed Moscow's decision to back out of a deal that allowed the safe passage of ships carrying Ukrainian grain exports.
"Allies and Ukraine strongly condemned Russia's decision to withdraw from the Black Sea grain deal and its deliberate attempts to stop Ukraine's agricultural exports on which hundreds of millions of people worldwide depend," NATO said in a statement following a meeting of the Ukraine-NATO Council in Brussels.
The council was set up earlier this month to coordinate cooperation between the Western military alliance and Kyiv.
"NATO and Allies are stepping up surveillance and reconnaissance in the Black Sea region, including with maritime patrol aircraft and drones," the statement went on to say.
The agreement ensuring the safe export of grain through the Black Sea expired on July 17 after Russia decided not to extend its participation.
Moscow has said it would consider rejoining the deal if demands to improve exports of its own grain and fertilizer were met.