This is how Putin’s war creates famine and new conflicts

Putin’s has turned the world’s eyes on Ukraine, but it has also had consequences for other parts of the world. As a result of ’s blockade of Ukrainian ports in in the , the price of grain and other food is rising sharply.

Why is it like that? Russia and Ukraine are among the largest grain producers in the world and when their grain does not reach the market, large parts of the world risk starvation. Other causes of the food that we are seeing right now are drought and increased prices for fuel and other production costs. Economist Fredrik Wilhelmsson at Lund University says that grain prices were already rising before the war in Ukraine and that there are also other factors that cause the price of food to rise now.

All this leads to what David Beasley, the head of the UN Food Program, called “a perfect storm”. In an interview with Konflikt, David Beasley warns that in comparison with the current situation, the Syrian war may appear as a “picnic” and he tells how he tried to put pressure on Russian President to lift the blockade of the ports of Odessa in Ukraine.

For now, many believe that the food crisis can also lead to other conflicts in the world. Hunger and hunger are important factors when it comes to war and unrest. Caroline Delgado at SIPRI tells more about it.

In the program, we hear voices from Jakobsberg outside Stockholm where the high have led to conflicts in families where the money is not enough for food. We hear voices from Somalia where the famine has already come and we hear about Mali where the situation right now is critical.

In Egypt, one of the world’s largest importers of cereals, the regime is working to curb rising food prices leading to new unrest. High bread prices have historically led to violent protests in Egypt and anger at high food prices was also a slogan in the revolts across much of the Arab world during the Arab Spring of 2011. Uprising that later also led to bloody wars in such as , and Syria. Our correspondent Cecilia Uddén reports from Egypt.

Niklas Granholm at FOI talks about how the world’s trade in food today is put together as in a bloodstream and where the war in Ukraine has now caused a blockage in the system, which makes prices skyrocket. He also describes plans to launch a military operation to stop Putin’s blockade of the ports of Odessa, Ukraine, and escort grain carriers across the Black Sea.

So what can we do to curb development and create more stability or is it already too late and is it a world of mass flight now waiting for us?

Host: Robin Olin

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Producer and reporter.

Simon Moser and Anja Sahlberg

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