Top NewsUkraine Peace Summit: Leaders Meet in Switzerland, No Russia

Ukraine Peace Summit: Leaders Meet in Switzerland, No Russia


OBBÜRGEN, Switzerland (AP) — Dozens of world leaders gathered in a Swiss resort on Saturday to discuss how to bring peace to war-torn Ukraine, even as Russia’s absence dampened any hopes of real progress.

More than two years of war, militants will be distant As they always have, Kyiv is sticking to its demands that Russia withdraw all Ukrainian territory it has seized, and Moscow is stepping up its aggressive offensive.

Despite Russia’s absence from the conference at the Bürgenstock resort Overlooking Lake Lucerne, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky suggested that one measure of the event’s success would be “bringing back to the world the idea that joint efforts can end war and establish a just peace.”

Participants face a tricky balancing act, with many chastising Russia for violations of international law while hedging their positions to open the door for Moscow to join future peace talks that could one day end the conflict.

“Here, there are representatives from Latin America, Africa, Europe, the Middle East and Asia, the Pacific, North America and religious leaders,” Zelensky said. “Now, there is no Russia here. Why? Because if Russia cared about peace, there would be no war.

“We must decide together what a just peace is for the world and how it can be achieved in a truly lasting way,” he said. “In the first peace summit, we must decide how to achieve a just peace, so that in the second, we can already resolve a real end to the war.”

About half of the 100 delegates were led by heads of state and government. Analysts said the poll will be a key indicator of how much Ukraine and its staunch Western backers are pulling with the wider international community.

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Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday sought to cast a shadow over the Swiss-Ukrainian initiative for the conference. Some countries, such as India, Turkey and Saudi Arabia, have maintained sometimes lucrative relations with Moscow – unlike Western powers, which have allowed Russia to go to war.

Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister, Prince Faisal bin Farhan, told the conference that credible peace talks would require Russia’s participation and would require “difficult compromise”.

Turkey’s foreign minister, Hakan Fidan, acknowledged the mistrust between Russia and Ukraine, saying that “each side views the other’s actions (in the floating proposals) as an extension of a broader war effort.”

“I must also note that if your Excellency, Russia – the other party to the conflict – had been in the room, this summit would have been more results-oriented,” he added.

US Vice President Kamala HarrisPresident Joe Biden represented America when he attended a fundraiser in California. Full support of USA to Ukraine and announced $1.5 billion in new US aid For many projects like energy infrastructure and citizen security.

china, Support Russia, joining many other countries participating in the event. Beijing has said any peace process would require the participation of Russia and Ukraine, and has floated Its own ideas for peace.

In a separate initiative last month, China and Brazil agreed to six “general understandings” toward a political solution to the Ukraine crisis, calling on Russia and other countries to play a role in promoting “timely” peace talks with both countries. Ukraine is involved.

The stance on Ukraine is mired in security for Europe — the continent’s worst conflict since World War II — and great power geopolitics.

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U.S. intelligence officials say China has increased sales to Russia of machine tools, microelectronics and other technology that Moscow uses to make missiles, tanks, planes and other weapons to fuel its war effort.

“It’s clear that China is not here, and I assume they’re not here because Putin asked them not to come, and they forced Putin to,” said Jake Sullivan, a top foreign policy adviser to Biden. “I think it says a lot about where China is in terms of Russia’s war in Ukraine. I think countries should take notice.

Both Harris and Sullivan acknowledged that not all participants were on the same page about the eventual peace settlement.

Russian troops control nearly a quarter of Ukraine have made territorial gains In recent months. Ukrainian forces recently retook large swathes of territory near the southern city of Kherson and the northern city of Kharkiv as talks began on a Swiss-hosted peace summit last summer.

The conference focused on three agenda items — considered the least controversial bits of Zelenskyy’s 10-point peace “formula”: nuclear security, including the Russian-occupied Zaporizhia power plant; possible prisoner of war exchanges; and global food security. The war has disrupted the export of food and fertilizer through the Black Sea.

Zelenskyy’s plan called for the withdrawal of Russian troops from occupied Ukrainian territory, a ceasefire and the restoration of Ukraine’s original borders with Russia, including Russia’s withdrawal from occupied Crimea. As Ukrainians are often on the defensive these days, those seem increasingly distant hopes.

Putin wants any peace deal to be built around a draft agreement negotiated in the early stages of the war that would include Ukraine’s neutral status and limits on its armed forces. Ukraine’s push to join NATO has rankled Moscow for years.

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He wants Ukraine to abandon its bid to join NATO and withdraw its forces from areas illegally annexed by Russia by 2022.

“The situation on the battlefield has changed dramatically,” said Alexander Gabov, director of the Carnegie Russia Eurasia Center, adding that while Russia “cannot quickly achieve its maximum objectives by military means,” it is gaining momentum on the battlefield.

As world leaders discussed a path to peace in Switzerland, a battleground in Ukraine, shelling killed at least three civilians and wounded 15 others Friday and overnight into Saturday, regional officials said.

Meanwhile, Vyacheslav Kladkov, the governor of Russia’s southern Belgorod region, blamed Ukraine in a social media post for Friday’s shelling of a five-story apartment building in the city of Shebekino, killing five people. There was no immediate comment from Kiev.


Ken Moritsugu in Beijing and Joanna Kozlowska in London contributed to this report.

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