The first grain ship to depart Ukraine under a wartime deal was poised to cross through the Bosporus Strait and sail to Lebanon after its cargo was checked and approved Wednesday, Turkish and Ukrainian authorities said.
An inspection team spent about 90 minutes conducting checks aboard the Sierra Leone-flagged Razoni, which was carrying Ukrainian corn and anchored off Istanbul, Turkey’s defense ministry said.
The team included officials from Ukraine, Russia, Turkey and the United Nations. The Razoni’s horn rang out as the inspectors left the ship.
Pictures tweeted by the Turkish Ministry of Defense showed an inspector reaching into an open container on the Razoni and touching the grain.
The Razoni, which the United Nations says is carrying 26,527 tons of corn, set sail Monday from Odesa on Ukraine’s Black Sea coast. It is bound for Lebanon, its final destination.
Ukraine’s Ministry of Infrastructure confirmed the ship had passed the inspection and said 17 other vessels “are loaded and are awaiting permission to leave.”