Russian invasion is worsening food insecurity: Blinken

STORY: Speaking at the Global Food Security Summit, Blinken painted a picture of an already grim food security landscape when Russia launched its war in Ukraine.

"According to the World Food Program, President Putin's brutal war of aggression in Ukraine may add 70 million people on top of that. An already staggering number becoming even more staggering," he said.

He added that an agreement brokered by the United Nations and Turkey to open up the Black Sea to grain exports from Ukraine helped the situation. Still, he said, " "That agreement [referring to a UN/Turkey-brokered agreement to resume grain export from Ukraine through the Black Sea] should never have been necessary in the first place. The only reason it was is because Russia, having invaded Ukraine, was then blockading its ports and preventing food that had been feeding the world from getting out."

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said that Russian President Vladimir Putin "is trying to blackmail the international community with a large part of the world's food needs."