Russia will be represented by Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov at the G20 in Indonesia
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz reportedly wished Russian President Vladimir Putin could attend the G20 summit to personally address “all questions and reviews” Western powers over the conflict in Ukraine, he told reporters on Sunday.
“It would have been nice if he had gone to Bali,” Scholz said during a stopover in Vietnam on his way to the G20 leaders’ summit in Indonesia, appearing disappointed that Germany and its allies did not have the opportunity to face the Russian leader face to face for express their grievances.
Putin’s absence will not prevent other countries from denouncing the Russian military operation in Ukraine and demanding the withdrawal of troops, Scholz insisted, explaining that if “from our point of view, a military escalation is unacceptable, so there must also be a movement… from the Russian government, from the Russian president, towards proposals that allow the consolidation of peace.”
Brussels and London reportedly intend to coordinate their efforts and make “everything is possible” make the Russian delegation feel unwelcome in Bali. A spokesman for the EU’s foreign service told the Telegraph that the bloc, together with the UK, will not only avoid and organize walkouts during speeches by the Moscow delegation, but will also try to convince other nations to do the same.
The German leader said he was “even cautiously confident” that international pressure would succeed in ending the conflict.
Russia will be represented by Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov at the G20. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov revealed last week that Putin would not visit Indonesia, having made the decision to stay in Russia personally. Nor would he address the leaders gathered by video link, Peskov confirmed.
While Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky had threatened to boycott the summit if his Russian counterpart was present, he responded to the news by announcing that he too would stay at home. However, he plans to appear virtually. Ukraine is not a member of the G20, but Zelensky said Indonesian President Joko Widodo had invited him to the meeting in April.
The two-day summit will officially begin on Tuesday, and according to Politico, Widodo and other officials in his government are seeking to prevent the gathering of world leaders from becoming a Russia-bashing fest, urging Western politicians to temper their criticism so that all members, including Moscow and Beijing, can be brought on board with a joint statement at the end of the event.