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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said that Russian forces launched dozens of missiles and rockets at the southern city of Mykolaiv over the weekend, killing agriculture tycoon Oleksiy Vadaturskyi.
Vadaturskyi owns Nibulon, which exported more than 5.6 million tons of wheat, barley, corn and other agriculture products to 38 countries last year.
His wife, Raisa, also died in the shelling, Zelenskyy said.
“It is exactly such people, such companies, our Ukrainian south that have guaranteed the world’s food security. It has always been so. And it will be so again,” Zelenskyy said on Sunday.
“The Russian terrorists should not even hope that they will be able to destroy the social and industrial potential of Ukraine and walk through the ruins.”
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Nibulon confirmed Vadaturskyi’s death on Saturday, saying that the businessman stayed in his native Mykolaiv to help the city after Russia invaded earlier this year.
“The entire 7,000-strong team of the NIBULON company and all of Ukraine suffered an irreparable loss,” the company said in a statement.
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Both Russia and Ukraine supply the world with grain, raising the possibility of food insecurity caused by the war.
The countries came to an agreement last week to allow the safe passage of ships carrying grain out of southern Ukrainian ports. Zelenskyy said Friday that Ukraine is ready to release its first shipment of grain from the Odesa region.