Dar es Salaam. It has been eight months since war in Ukraine erupted in February, and there is still no end in sight to a conflict that has polarized global opinion.
But even with mounting losses on both sides, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said his country would win in the end, dismissing claims it was not selling grain to Africa, calling this Russian disinformation.
“Since the opening of the grain corridor on August 1, we have shipped 7.7 million tonnes of grain and other agricultural products such as sunflower oil, two-thirds of which to Africa and the Middle East. “said Mr. Kuleba.
He added: Last week we shipped grain to Kenya, China and Turkey and we also provided 550 tonnes of humanitarian aid to Ethiopia and Somalia.
According to Mr. Kuleba, even if any war ends with a diplomatic act, Ukraine will not negotiate its territorial integrity.
“It’s hard to talk to Russia now, when that time comes we’ll put our cards on the table. Right now Russia prefers to talk to us on the battlefield,” he said.
Giving the example of Idi Amin’s invasion in 1978, he called on Tanzania to support their cause because as a country they understand what it means to be invaded by another country.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with The Citizen in a virtual interview shortly after halting his African tour, Mr Kuleba said that although they are receiving weapons and other forms of support from Western countries, it does not alone is not enough to shift the balance of power in their favor.
“It is true that we have received and continue to receive weapons from many countries, but we still outnumber the Russians on the battlefield. Military aid does not even cover half of our needs on the battlefronts,” he said.
According to him, neutrality is an unfair assessment of the conflict which has caused food prices to soar, bringing the whole world to the brink of hunger. “When I think about the whole question of neutrality, I wonder, neutrality on what? Is it about destruction of infrastructure or death?” he asked.
He said, however, that it is important that each country is treated individually with regard to the positions it has taken in the conflict.
“We believe that each country should be treated individually because Africa is vast and diverse. Tanzania canceled my visit for technical details as I hope to come in the near future or invite the foreign minister to Kyiv for a chat,” he said.
He added: This conflict has affected the whole world, the effects of this invasion are felt all over the world.
In his latest snap, he called on world powers to stand with Ukraine because they are the victims of aggression.
“We call on the world to have a fair assessment of this conflict and to provide the necessary weapons because it is the only way to stop Russia for now.”