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  • Writer's pictureВІКТОРІЯ ВОЙКО

A war of attrition? The global food crisis

Almost 3 months after the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov on his Facebook page announced the likely preparation of the aggressor country for a long positional war. Meahwhile foreign news services are actively calculating how likely Ukraine's counteroffensive on Russian territory is.

Against the backdrop of a long war, the question of an imminent food crisis is being brought up. UN Secretary-General António Guterres said that the Russian invasion of Ukraine will soon result in a worldwide humanitarian crisis that could last for years. Before the military intervention, Ukraine was a major supplier of sunflower oil, corn and wheat and other grains. Now Ukrainian ports are closed for export due to the war. Thus, prices for an alternative to imported products from Ukraine in Europe have skyrocketed.

It is reported that food prices in Europe are now 30% higher than at the same time last year. In addition, with the course of the war in Ukraine, the UN Secretary General said, the problem of hunger in Africa is aggravating. The Secretary General emphasized the impossibility of stabilizing the situation without resuming supplies from Ukraine. Source: https://foreignpolicy.com/2022/05/11/ukraine-russia-war-agriculture-food-hunger-crisis-east-africa/

Despite these difficult times, Ukrainian Mennonite churches continue to exist and actively help their brethren and serve Ukrainians, although they are dispersed. Conditionally, since the war’s start, the church has been roughly divided into four “directions” A quarter of the AMBCU churches were evacuated to Western Ukraine, another quarter remains in the territories occupied by Russia, one more quarter ended up close to the front line, and the rest of the church (women and children) left for Europe.

During the war, eight AMBCU ministry centers were organized in different parts of Ukraine. Overall, the team consists of over 250 ministers and volunteers. They regularly collect and get food packages, medicines and clothing from Western Ukraine to the population of frontline towns and settlements, often risking their own lives and beind under fire.

For example, a ministry is being actively carried out in the village of Kanevskoye. This is a front-line village in the Zaporozhye region that is regularly shelled by Russian troops. The basic infrastructure does not work in the village: shops are closed, there is no electricity, there are difficulties with medicines. Ministers and volunteers bring here food, Christian literature, they pray with the locals and offer them to leave. At the moment, the village is mostly inhabited by elderly people who do not want to leave their homes and households. And those who still agree to be evacuated are taken to the relatively safe city of Zaporozhye, where they are provided with the necessary and basic amenities.

In such a difficult time, AMBCU supports those in dire need thanks to all our friends who have responded to the need of churches in Ukraine. According to AMBCU estimates, more than 160 tons of vital products were distributed to people in the regions affected by the war.

The Association thanks all our friends who do not remain indifferent to the needs of Ukrainians and Mennonite churches in Ukraine.

We are now praying that we continue to find food for people in need as this becomes more difficult as the humanitarian crisis deepens. We also do not stop praying for the safety of our ministers and that the war will end soon.

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