EU plans to use food to get poorer countries onside in standoff with Russia over Ukraine invasion
Published Apr 13, 2022
Food insecurity due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine and sanctions is said to be causing "resentment" in vulnerable countries.
The EU aims to address rising wheat and fertiliser prices and expected shortages in the Balkans, North Africa and the Middle East with "food diplomacy" to counter Russia's narrative on the impact of its Ukraine invasion, EU diplomats and officials say. Food insecurity was causing "resentment" in vulnerable countries in these regions, while Moscow was portraying the crisis as a consequence of Western sanctions on Russia, one European Union diplomat said. This posed a potential threat to EU influence, the diplomat said, which it plans to tackle with "food diplomacy and a battle of narratives". Russian President Vladimir Putin said last week that the West's sanctions had fomented a global food crisis and spiralling energy prices. EU neighbours, particularly Egypt and Lebanon, are highly dependent on wheat and fertilisers from Ukraine and Russia. They face a price spike after a drop in supplies since Moscow began what it calls a "special military operation" in Ukraine. "We cannot take ...