The president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, has been invited to the G20 meeting in November, which will also include Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to the leader of the host country, Indonesia, who announced the invitation on Friday.
Due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the G20 presidency is being held by Indonesia this year. The country has been under intense pressure from the Western world, headed by the United States, to ban Russia from the summit, but Jakarta has claimed that it must maintain its “impartiality.”
As President Joko Widodo said, “I have asked President Zelensky to attend the G20 meeting,” he seemed to be implying the conclusion of a compromise in the wake of pressure from US President Joe Biden and others to enable Ukraine’s attendance in order to achieve a delicate balance.
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin confirmed in a phone conversation with Indonesian President Joko Widodo that he would attend the summit, which will be held on the island of Bali, the Indonesian leader announced in a live-streamed speech.
Russia is a member of the G20, although Ukraine is not.
On Wednesday, after a phone conversation with Widodo, Zelensky stated through Twitter that he had been invited to the summit by the Indonesian government.
On Thursday, Widodo met with Russian President Vladimir Putin, who, according to Widodo, “thanked Indonesia for the invitation to the G20 conference and said that he will attend.”
According to Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov, during the discussion, Putin expressed his wishes for Indonesia’s G20 leadership to be “a success.”
However, he said that “for the time being, it is premature to convey the modalities of Russian involvement,” leaving the structure of Moscow’s participation up in the air for the time being.
Since the commencement of Russia’s military incursion in February, the West has sought to diplomatically isolate the Russian government.
The G20 finance ministers’ conference in April in Washington demonstrated the significant divides that exist within the group of the world’s leading economies, with the United States and its allies boycotting the meeting in protest of Russian participation.
However, Indonesia, like the majority of large developing markets, has attempted to maintain a neutral stance.
As a reaction to a request from Zelensky, Widodo said on Friday that Indonesia would not send weaponry to Ukraine, but would instead provide humanitarian assistance.
When Widodo talked with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida on Friday, the conflict in Ukraine was once again a prominent topic of conversation.
The Indonesian president called for an immediate cessation of hostilities and emphasised the need of finding a “peaceful solution” to the conflict.
Kishida agreed that the violence had to stop, but he used more ominous words to characterise what was happening.