White House Refuses to Lift Russian Sanctions despite Looming Food Crisis
'This is Russia’s doing'
The White House has refused to budge on Russian calls to lift sanctions over the war in Ukraine as a looming global food crisis becomes more apparent.
Russian President Vladimir Putin pressed world leaders on Thursday to lift the sanctions, claiming the West’s penalties are blocking the export of millions of tons of grain and other agricultural products.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the U.S. will not budge.
“This is Russia’s doing,” she said.
“Sanctions from the United States and its allies and partners are not preventing the export of Ukrainian or Russian agriculture including food and fertilizer, nor are they preventing the ordinary transactions that are necessary for these transactions," she added.
Ukraine and Russia are among the world’s top producers of wheat, corn, and sunflower oil.
Russia has mined many of Ukraine’s ports, blocking the export of critical food supplies.
“This is Russia who is actively blocking exports from Ukrainian ports and who is increasing world hunger,” she said.
Analysts fear the blockade has put the world on the brink of a food security crisis.
The Kremlin also has argued that U.S. sanctions have hampered its own ability to export agricultural products.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken has dismissed the Kremlin’s talking points, noting that food, fertilizer, and seeds are not subject to U.S. sanctions.
Ms. Jean-Pierre said the solution to the crisis is in Russia’s hands.
“This is on them,” she said.
“Russia should immediately cease its war on Ukraine which is devastating food security and allow the free flow of Ukrainian food.”
Last month, Putin warned the West that Europe faces a massive influx of migrants caused by a global food crisis.
As Neon Nettle reported:
Countries like the United Kingdom and America also face skyrocketing energy bills and unprecedented food inflation.
Putin blamed the problem on western politicians who are willing to sacrifice their citizens to “enjoy the good graces of their overseas master and overlord.”
Describing such an approach as “the opposite of populism,” Putin said.
“People are urged to eat less, put on more clothes, use less heating, give up on travel – presumably for the benefit of the people who are demanding this kind of voluntary deprivation as a sign of some abstract North Atlantic solidarity.”
Billionaire-owned Bloomberg News told Americans last month to eat lentils instead of meat and allow their pets to die in order to save money.
Meanwhile, a government minister also told Germans they should cope with soaring energy costs by merely turning off the heating.
Putin blamed the West for decisions that are “pushing the global economy towards crisis,” warning of a massive drop in living standards for westerners in addition to poverty and starvation in the third world.