The US ambassador to the United Nations has accused Russia of making food instability in Yemen and elsewhere worse by launching a military operation in Ukraine, with Moscow dismissing the allegation as demagoguery.
Linda Thomas-Greenfield told a UN Security Council meeting on war-torn Yemen that the World Food Program (WFP) had identified the Arab world’s poorest nation as one of the countries most affected by wheat price hikes and lack of imports from Ukraine.
Thomas-Greenfield called the issue “just another grim example of the ripple effect Russia’s unprovoked, unjust, unconscionable war is having on the world’s most vulnerable.”
Russia’s deputy UN ambassador Dmitry Polyansky rejected the accusation as a case of Washington’s demagoguery and said the main problem was the US-imposed sanctions that had “cut off any supplies from Russia and the supply chain.”
“The main factor for instability and the source of the problem today is not the Russian special military operation in Ukraine, but sanctions measures imposed on our country seeking to cut off any supplies from Russia and the supply chain, apart from those supplies that those countries in the West need, in other words, energy,” Polyansky said.
“If you really want to help the world avoid a food crisis you should lift the sanctions that you yourselves imposed, your sanctions of choice indeed, and poor countries will immediately feel the difference,” he said. “And if you’re not prepared to do that, then don’t get involved in demagoguery, and don’t mislead everybody,” he added.
Imagine being as much of a sociopath as the US ambassador to the UN, who is accusing Russia of food instability in Yemen... while the US has since 2015 helped Saudi Arabia bomb Yemeni food production sites and intentionally create famine as a weapon— Benjamin Norton (@BenjaminNorton) April 15, 2022
The hypocrisy is mind-blowing https://t.co/2H1f28ryr2
The spat took place a day after a UN task force warned in a report that the war in Ukraine threatens to devastate the economies of many developing countries that are now facing even higher food and energy costs and increasingly difficult financial conditions.
Thirty-six countries rely on Russia and Ukraine for more than half their wheat imports, including some of the world’s poorest countries, the report said, and wheat and corn prices have risen 30% just since the start of the year.
Saudi Arabia launched the devastating war against Yemen in March 2015 in collaboration with its allies and with arms and logistics support from the US and other Western states.
The objective was to reinstall the Riyadh-friendly Hadi regime and crush the Ansarullah resistance movement, which has been running state affairs in the absence of a functional government in Yemen.
The coalition failed to meet its objectives, despite killing hundreds of thousands of Yemenis and spawning what the UN describes as the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.