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6:28 PM
Although a stopgap funding bill to prevent a U.S. government shutdown was passed on Sept. 30 without any provisions for aid for Ukraine, President's Office Head Andriy Yermak said on Oct 1 that it should not be construed as a change in U.S. support for Ukraine.
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4:12 PM
Ukrainian drones successfully struck a helicopter base in Sochi and an aircraft factory in Smolensk on Oct. 1, according to reports by Russian Telegram channels and Ukrainska Pravda.
7:27 AM
Russian forces launched another drone attack targeting Ukraine's southern oblasts overnight on Oct. 1. Ukraine's air defense downed at least 15 drones over Odesa and Mykolaiv regions, Natalia Humeniuk, spokesperson of Ukraine's Southern Operational Command, said on air.
6:50 AM
U.S. President Joe Biden signed a law averting a government shutdown that was set for midnight, according to the White House. Biden said that although the bill does not include financial assistance for Ukraine, he expects Speaker Kevin McCarthy "will keep his commitment to the people of Ukraine and secure passage of the support needed to help Ukraine at this critical moment."
5:49 AM
Following a passage of a bill to avoid a government shutdown, top U.S. Senate leaders issued a rare bipartisan statement affirming their commitment to Ukraine. They expect the Senate will work "to ensure the U.S. government continues to provide critical and sustained security and economic support for Ukraine."
4:36 AM
At least four explosions were heard in Kharkiv, city Mayor Ihor Terekhov said via his official Telegram channel in the early hours of Oct. 1. Two explosions were also reported in the city of Snihurivka in Mykolaiv Oblast, according to regional authorities.
5:50 PM
"Odesa is a beautiful historic city. It should be in the headlines for its vibrant culture (and) spirit," Borrell wrote on Twitter. "Instead, it marks the news as a frequent target of Putin's war."
5:15 PM
According to President Volodymyr Zelensky, he and Slovak Defense Minister Martin Sklenar discussed cooperation with Slovakia regarding the Ukrainian military's needs, the situation at the front line, and de-mining.

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Lithuanian president: Ukraine could export 10 million tons of grain annually through Baltic Sea ports

by Dinara Khalilova and The Kyiv Independent news desk September 7, 2023 2:15 PM 2 min read
A pile of maize grains is seen on the pier at the Izmail Sea Port, Odesa region, on July 22, 2023. (STRINGER / AFP via Getty Images)
This audio is created with AI assistance

If special corridors are developed, Ukraine could transport 10 million tons of grain annually through the Baltic Sea ports, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda said, as cited by Delfi media outlet.

According to Nauseda, although the ports can't serve to transfer as much grain as Ukraine does using main transit routes, the Baltic Sea corridors could significantly support Ukrainian exports hindered by Russia's withdrawal from the Black Sea grain deal.

The agreement, brokered in July 2022 by Turkey and the United Nations, previously allowed Ukraine to export its agricultural products through its Black Sea ports amid Russia's full-scale invasion.

Speaking at a Sept. 6 press conference, the Lithuanian leader urged European Union member states "to do everything possible" to ensure Ukrainian grain can flow freely to international markets.

Since early May, Ukrainian wheat, maize, rapeseed, and sunflower seeds have been banned from entering markets of Poland, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, and Slovakia. The countries have asked the European Commission to extend the ban until the end of 2023, with Poland warning they would impose unilateral restrictions otherwise.

However, most EU countries are against prolonging the import ban beyond the current expiry date of Sept. 15, Politico reported, citing four European diplomats.

At a Sept. 6 meeting with the European Commission, ambassadors of 22 out of 27 EU member countries either opposed or remained deeply skeptical of the idea, a senior EU diplomat told Politico, adding that France and Germany were especially critical of the ban extension.

According to the media outlet, two diplomats said that while many EU members recognized the challenges faced by the five Eastern European countries, they asked the Commission to offer alternative measures.

Cheap Ukrainian grain has been flooding the EU market since the beginning of the Russian invasion, helped by the bloc waiving customs duties and import quotas to keep Ukraine's agricultural sector running.

Low-price grain prices prove too tempting for local buyers and traders, undercutting local producers.

Ukraine’s grain overload sours country’s relationship with key allies
Negotiations over a European import ban on Ukrainian grain between the European Commission and its eastern flank members were stalled as of April 23. Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, and Bulgaria asked to extend protection measures after the EU’s one-year decision to abolish customs duties, whil…
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