Friday , February 3 2023

G20 summit deplores war in Ukraine ‘in strongest terms’

17-11-2022

NUSA DUA: Leaders of the Group of 20 (G20) nations deplored Russia’s aggression in Ukraine “in the strongest terms” on Wednesday and demanded its unconditional withdrawal in a declaration adopted at the end of a two-day summit.

“Most members strongly condemned the war in Ukraine,” the declaration said, signaling that Russia, which is a member of G20, opposed the wording. The positions taken by China and India, which abstained from a similar UN resolution in March, were not immediately clear.

However, at least three diplomats said the statement, which recognized that “there were other views and different assessments of the situation and sanctions”, was unanimously adopted.

“The use or threat of use of nuclear weapons is inadmissible,” the declaration also said.

“It is essential to uphold international law and the multilateral system that safeguards peace and stability. This includes defending all the purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations and adhering to international humanitarian law.”

Earlier, the day’s schedule at the summit on the Indonesian island of Bali was disrupted by an emergency meeting to discuss reports of a missile landing in Polish territory near Ukraine on Tuesday, killing two people.

US President Joe Biden said after the meeting that the United States and its NATO allies were investigating the blast but early information suggested it may not have been caused by a missile fired from Russia.

NATO member Poland had said a rocket killed two people in eastern Poland near Ukraine, and it summoned Russia’s ambassador for an explanation after Russia denied it was responsible.

Leaders from the Group of Seven nations, Spain, the Netherlands and the EU, who were all in Bali for the G20 summit, attended the meeting.

The G7 nations include the United States, Germany, France, Canada, Italy, Britain and Japan.

After the meeting, the G20 leaders, dressed in white shirts and some with baseball caps with the G20 logo, took part in a ceremony to plant mangrove saplings to signal the battle against climate change.

On the sidelines of the summit, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen held a two-hour meeting with Chinese central bank Governor Yi Gang, her first in-person talks with a senior Chinese economic official.

She had said before the meeting she hoped to get new insight into China’s policy plans and work toward more economic engagement between the two countries.

WTO Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala told Reuters on the summit sidelines that several major economies faced a real risk of sliding into recession as the war in Ukraine, rising food and fuel costs, and soaring inflation cloud the global outlook.

Biden held a bilateral meeting with British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, their first face-to-face talks since Sunak took the job. Biden described Britain as America’s “closest ally and closest friend” while Sunak said the partnership between their countries was unique and their values and interest were aligned.

The Western-led push to condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine dominated the summit.

Many participants said President Vladimir Putin’s Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine had pummeled the global economy and revived Cold War-era geopolitical divisions just as the world was emerging from the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Int’l Monitoring Desk)

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