Russia and Ukraine are battling over underwater mines as the global food crisis worsens

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“The mines are a real barrier to grain exports from Ukraine ... and they’re a big problem,” Sidharth Kaushal, a naval power expert with the Royal United Services Institute think tank, told CNBC Thursday, noting that Russia had been strategic about the mines. “It is certainly an excuse for the Russians that they’re there because they can selectively de-mine ports they control, try to reroute trade, and maintain a de facto blockade over Odesa whilst claiming that this is all on the Ukrainians.”