France urges G20 to urge Russia to de-escalate Ukraine
France on Friday considered that the Group of Twenty should invite Russia to adopt a “logic of de-escalation” in Ukraine during their upcoming summit, which will be held in Indonesia on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Russian President Vladimir Putin will not attend the summit, but Russia’s offensive in Ukraine since February 24 and its multiple geopolitical, economic and financial implications for the world will be at the forefront of concerns in Bali.
The French Presidency pointed out that “there is a very clear space in the G-20 to convey a message of peace and to call on Russia to join the logic of de-escalation”.
A number of G-20 countries, such as China and India, have so far been very cautious, refusing to condemn Russia’s war against Ukraine, or indirectly expressing fears of a prolonged conflict.
An aide to French President Emmanuel Macron noted that “Vladimir Putin’s lack of participation shows that an alliance is forming within the G20 and that Russia’s isolation is real.”
He added that “a very broad majority within the club (the Group of Twenty) considers this war serious and intolerable for the rest of the world”.
The French President, who arrives in Bali on Monday evening, will have the opportunity to speak directly with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday, as well as with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Indonesian President Joko Widodo.
According to Elysee, it is not yet clear whether there will be a bilateral meeting with US President Joe Biden. Macron is scheduled to pay a state visit to Washington in early December.
Emmanuel Macron will also not meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who will represent Russia in Bali. “We’ll see if further contacts are possible,” said the Elysee without going into detail.
The French presidency stressed the need for the G20 to have a “clear discourse on the unacceptability of using energy as a weapon”, citing Russia’s reduction in gas supplies to Europe in response to sanctions imposed since the start of the war.
Emmanuel Macron is then scheduled to travel to Bangkok to attend the Asia-Pacific Cooperation (APEC) summit on Thursday and Friday.
France will be the first European country to be invited to the forum, according to the Elysee, which saw the invitation as “recognition by the countries of the region of its strategy in the Indo-Pacific”.
Macron has made this part of the world, at the heart of the world economy and witnessing growing competition between China and the United States, a strategic priority for Paris with the presence of several French provinces in the region.
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