G20 finance ministers attending a meeting in Bengaluru, India, strongly condemned Russia’s aggression against Ukraine. Agreeing on a joint communiqué after the talks was stopped by Russia and China. Reuters reported that the differences concerned two points: the condemnation of the Russian attack on Ukraine and the issue of debt forgiveness for poor countries.
Disagreement among G20 members made it Indiathe host of the summit, decided to issue a “chairman’s summary”, in which they merely described the two days of talks and noted the differences of opinion.
“Most members strongly condemned war in Ukraine and underlined that it causes immense human suffering and exacerbates existing inefficiencies in the global economy,” it said, citing disruptions in supply chains, threats to financial stability, and persistent energy and food insecurity.
Two participants in the meeting told Reuters that Russia and China do not want the G20 platform to be used to discuss political matters. Similar events took place during the previous one the G20 summit in Bali, in November 2022.
Secretary of the Treasury present in Bengaluru USA Janet Yellen said condemning Russia was “absolutely necessary” in any statement. German Finance Minister Christian Lindner, in turn, commented that he would not join China to the joint declaration is “regrettable”.
Typically, after the G20 meeting, the joint assessments and objectives are recorded in a final statement. However, since the beginning of the armed invasion of independent Ukraine, talks have stalled, as Russia is also a member of the Group.
China and India were among the abstentions during the vote on a non-binding UN General Assembly resolution that calls on Russia to unconditionally withdraw its troops from the internationally recognized territory of Ukraine and calls for a cessation of hostilities.
Main photo source: EPA/JAGADEESH NV