Syrian ship cleaned after grain theft allegations



A Syrian ship freed by Lebanon after it was hijacked in connection with allegations of carrying stolen flour and barley. pious Ukraine left the port on Thursday, officials said.

The Laodicea vessel, docked in the northern port of Tripoli, was cleared to leave after an investigation failed to confirm that it was carrying stolen goods, officials said.

According to Lebanese state media, he set sail at 8:00 am (05:00 GMT), and Damascus authorities later said he arrived at the Syrian port of Tartus to offload cargo.

The Kyiv embassy in Lebanon stated that the grain shipment was loaded from an area occupied by Russian troops and provided evidence to the Lebanese authorities that the goods had been stolen.

Ukraine said in a statement that it was “disappointed” by the decision to clear the ship, which it claims would encourage Russia to “continue thefts in temporarily occupied southern Ukraine with a sense of impunity.”

“We call on the Lebanese side … to take measures to prevent further attempts to use Lebanon to transport stolen Ukrainian grain,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Ukraine has repeatedly accused Moscow forces of looting its grain warehouses since Russia invaded the country in late February.

Lebanese prosecutor Ghassan Weidat ordered the confiscation of Laodicea on Saturday and directed the police to investigate. The prosecutor’s office determined that the grain on board the ship belonged to a Syrian trader.

“Ukraine has always made efforts to support the food security of Lebanon, taking first place among the exporters of agricultural products to this country in 2021,” the Kyiv Foreign Ministry said.

“Ukrainian food supplies did not stop even after the start of Russia’s full-scale armed aggression against Ukraine.”

Ukraine, one of the world’s largest grain exporters, has resumed grain exports following a UN-backed deal.

The Sierra Leone-registered Razoni vessel sailed from Odessa to Lebanon on Monday carrying 26,000 tons of corn under an agreement brokered by Turkey and the United Nations that aims to release millions of tons of Ukrainian caught produce to world markets.