G20 declaration reflects differences among members over Russia-Ukraine conflict

G20 declaration reflects differences among members over Russia-Ukraine conflict

Updated: 19 days, 4 hours, 7 minutes, 2 seconds ago

Indonesia on November 15 will host the 17th G20 leaders' summit, gathering the globe's most powerful figures together on the resort island of Bali instead of the traffic-clogged capital Jakarta. Seventeen world leaders -- bar Russian President Vladimir Putin, and the leaders of Mexico and Brazil -- will seek solutions to myriad global crises on the Muslim-majority country's mostly Hindu "Island of Gods". Leaders from across the major economies have started arriving in Bali for the summit. (Image: AP)

The G20’s Bali Declaration Wednesday acknowledged differences among members on the Russia-Ukraine war but said it was essential to adhere to international law, including protection of civilians caught in conflicts.

Reflecting the divisions among its members, the declaration wrapping up the two-day summit said the nations 'reiterated our national positions' as expressed at the UN Security Council.

”Most members” strongly condemned the war in Ukraine, it said but noted that there were ”other views” and assessments of the situation. ”Today's era must not be of war,” the declaration said, echoing the remark made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his bilateral meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the margins of the SCO summit in September.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo, who hosted the summit attended by Prime Minister Modi, US President Joe Biden, Chinese President Xi Jinping and British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak among others, said that there was contentious discussion on the Russia-Ukraine conflict during their deliberations.

Russian President Putin skipped the summit and sent his Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to represent the country. Russia launched a special military operation in Ukraine on February 24. The Russian action has been widely condemned by the US-led West.

Most of the member states said that the Ukraine conflict was causing immense human suffering, exacerbating existing fragilities in the global economy, according to the declaration.

The G20 members reaffirmed their national positions expressed in forums like the United Nations Security Council, which deplored Russian aggression, the declaration said. Most members agreed that the Ukraine war constrains growth, increasing inflation, heightening energy and food insecurity, the declaration said.

It is essential to uphold international law and the multilateral system that safeguards peace and stability, it added.The declaration called for adherence to the international humanitarian law including protection of civilians in armed conflicts.

The G20 comprises 19 countries: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the UK, the USA and the European Union (EU).Together, they account for over 80 per cent of the global GDP, 75 per cent of international trade and two-thirds of the world population.

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