Russian missile strikes on the southern Ukrainian port of Odesa on Saturday were "deeply concerning," John Kirby, US National Security Council coordinator for strategic communications, said on MSNBC on Sunday.
The strikes came just a day after Ukraine and Russia signed an agreement to allow grain exports from Ukrainian Black Sea ports, leading to anger and concern over the future of a deal aimed at easing the global food crisis sparked by war.
"Unfortunately, I mean, what we saw yesterday is indicative of Russian behavior in the past, where they commit to things and then of course don't follow through," Kirby said.
Kirby’s comments track with a warning he offered last week, when he said implementing the grain agreement would require all sides' adhering to their commitments.
"The Ukrainians today said that they still consider this arrangement in effect, that's positive," Kirby said, adding that Washington will be "watching this closely," to see if Moscow meets its commitments.
"But the strikes at the port of Odesa actually came very close to some grain terminals. It's not clear exactly what the damage was. But it was clearly at the port of Odesa. And that's deeply concerning," Kirby added.
CNN previously reported that on Sunday, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova said the Kremlin struck the port with "high precision" Kalibr missiles, destroying Ukrainian "military infrastructure."
Kirby warned of continued food insecurity issues should the grain deal fall through.