Russian President Putin Won’t Attend G20 Summit in Bali


    Russia president Vladimir Putin will skip a gathering of world leaders of G20 nations (Group of 20) nations on the Indonesian resort island of Bali next week, opting to stay home.

    Indonesian as well as Russian officials announced this week that Putin will dispatch Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in his place.

    It is believed that the Russian chief's absence from the summit means that he won’t share the same room with U.S. President Joe Biden for the first time since the attack on Ukraine on February.

    Biden previously called Putin a “war criminal” and ruled out meeting with him in Bali unless the discussion involved an exchange of Americans being held in Russia.

    Reuters reports Indonesia has resisted the pressure of Western nations and Ukraine to pull the invitation of Putin at the summit and to remove Russia from the summit over the conflict in Ukraine.

    It claimed that there was no authority to issue the invitation without consensus among the members as the reason behind granting the invitation in the first in the first.

    In an interview with the Financial Times, Indonesia's president, Joko Widodo, said Russia was welcomed at the summit but the summit is likely to be dominated by a “very worrying” rise in tensions in the world.

    “The G20 is not meant to be a political forum. It’s meant to be about economics and development,”  he was quoted by the media as declaring.

    Moscow's diplomatic embassy in Indonesia informed the AFP news agency that Putin's agenda is “still being worked out” and that the Russian leader is expected to participate in the two-day summit which begins on September 15 virtually.

    Widodo last week disclosed that he had a “strong impression” that Putin would not attend the event, according to Breitbart News.

    The G20 summit, which brings together the leaders of 19 nations and the European Union, is expected to be heavily influenced by the aftermath of the Ukraine conflict that has led to world-wide shortages of food and fuel.

    During the United Nations General Assembly last month, 16 G20 members approved a resolution against the annexation attempt by Moscow of four regions in the eastern part of Ukraine. G20 participants China, India, and South Africa didn’t vote, and there was no representation from the European Union in the UN body.

    Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky, who was also invited to attend the summit, earlier said that he wouldn't be able to attend the summit if Putin was to attend.

    Chinese President Xi Jinping and United States President Joe Biden are two of the world leaders scheduled to attend the conference.


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