The Russian Foreign Ministry has threatened not to extend the grain deal for an additional period if the ban on the export of Russian agricultural products is not lifted.

Russia Today quoted the ministry as calling in a statement today for "the need to search for alternatives to the grain deal unless the ban imposed by Western countries on Russian agricultural exports is lifted and the Russia-related part of the deal is implemented."

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Vershinin announced on the thirteenth of last March Russia's agreement to extend the Istanbul agreement to export Ukrainian grain through the humanitarian corridor opened by the Russian fleet in the Black Sea, stressing that his country's position will depend later on the nature of the obstacles placed by the West.

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