”Skhemy” published evidence that Russia exports Ukrainian grain through Crimea to Turkey

Anna Kholodnova

"Skhemy" journalists published evidence that the Russian occupiers are exporting Ukrainian grain from Crimea to Turkish ports.

This is stated in the "Skhemy" investigation.

Satellite images published by investigators prove that Russia systematically exports Ukrainian grain to Turkey through Crimea. This is demonstrated by the example of Russian and Syrian bulk carriers, which regularly entered the port of occupied Sevastopol, where they were loaded with grain through the "Avlita" terminal, and then went to Turkish ports and unloaded there.

These processes cannot be tracked through the monitoring systems of Marine Traffic or Equasis ships, because the Russians turned off the radars when they entered the Crimean port. However, there are pictures from a space satellite that show the stay and loading of ships at the Avlita terminal in Sevastopol.

In particular, "Skhemy" journalists found evidence of three flights of the ship "Mykhail Nenashev" from the port of Crimea to the ports of Turkey. On April 15, the Planet Labs satellite recorded this ship in the port of Sevastopol, near Avlita. Before the Russians turned off the radars, the Marine Traffic service managed to record that before entering the Crimean port it was "in ballast" — that is, empty. And after a visit to the terminal — already loaded. "Mykhailo Nenashev" entered the Turkish port of Derince on April 22. Four days later, Marine Traffic indicated that the vessel had unloaded.

The Planet Labs satellite again showed the bulker near Avlita on May 25. The next day, "Nenashev" already at sea turned on the radars, and Marine Traffic recorded the cargo on board. On May 30, "Nenashev" arrived at the port of Iskenderun in Turkey.

This ship left the Turkish port empty. He entered the waters of the Black Sea and allegedly headed for the "Kavkaz" anchorage in the Kerch Strait, turning off the radars. The satellite "caught" him again near "Avlita" on June 14 with empty holds. In the following days, the bulker was loaded with grain.

On June 25, journalist Osman Pashaev recorded the "Mikhail Nenashev" at the moorings of the private port of MMK Metalurji near Iskenderun.

Another, the Syrian vessel Finikia, was shown by the satellite in "Avlita" on April 20. The next day it went out to sea loaded and appeared on radars. On April 29, Finikia unloaded grain in Nemrut, Turkey. The ship turned off the radars again on May 10, and on May 13 it was detected by a satellite in the Crimean terminal. The bulker was loaded with grain and arrived in Turkish Iskenderun on May 24.

"Skhemy" also cites a document that shows that both vessels were loaded with grain at the Sevastopol terminal "Avlita". These papers state that the grain comes from "Crimea, Russia". But Turkey recognized the Russian annexation of Crimea as illegal.

Earlier, the Turkish authorities announced that they were investigating claims that Ukrainian grain was illegally exported by Russia, in particular, to Turkish ports. "Skhemy" sent a request with the results of the investigation to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkey and is waiting for a response.