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Russian forces repeatedly shell ammonia pipeline in Ukraine’s Kharkiv region -governor

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(Reuters) – Russian forces repeatedly fired at an ammonia pipeline in Ukraine’s Kharkiv region, a local governor said on Tuesday, a conduit potentially crucial for the extension of a deal allowing the safe export of grains and fertilizers from Black Sea ports.

The extension next month of the Black Sea Grain initiative, a pact struck in July 2022 to help tackle a global food crises, could hinge on the reopening of the pipeline.

The ammonia pipeline, the world’s longest, stretches about 2,470 kilometres (1,534 miles) from Russia’s Togliatti on the Volga River to three Black Sea ports. It has been shut down since Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

There was no recorded leakage from the late Tuesday shelling that hit the pipeline near the village of Masiutivka and an overnight shelling near the village of Zapadne, said Oleh Sinehubov, the governor of Ukraine’s Kharkiv region.

“There is no threat to people’s lives and health,” Sinehubov said on the Telegram messaging app.

Reuters could not independently verify the reports.

(Reporting by Lidia Kelly in Melbourne; Editing by Jamie Freed)

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