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G20 summit begins in Bali with plea for unity as Ukraine war tops agenda

G20 summit begins in Bali with plea for unity as Ukraine war tops agenda

G20 summit begins in Bali with plea for unity as Ukraine war tops agenda

G20 summit begins in Bali, Indonesia

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  • The G20 summit is being held on the Indonesian island of Bali.
  • G20 members disagreed on how to describe the Ukraine war, preventing a joint communique.
  • China’s foreign minister will ask G20 to address economic uncertainty and rising costs after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
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On Tuesday, leaders of the Group of 20 (G20) nations convened on the Indonesian island of Bali, with host Indonesia appealing for unity and tangible action to repair the global economy despite profound divisions over the conflict in Ukraine.

“We have no other option, collaboration is needed to save the world,” Indonesian President Joko Widodo said in his opening remarks as the leaders of the world’s wealthiest nations began private conversations.

“The G20 must serve as a catalyst for a comprehensive economic recovery. We shouldn’t separate the universe into sections. We must prevent another cold war from breaking out in the world.”

G20 countries account for 80% of the world’s GDP, 75% of international trade, and 60% of its population.

On the eve of the summit, a three-hour bilateral discussion between U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping was an encouraging sign.

Monday’s encounter was the first since Biden became president, and the talks looked to suggest an improvement in relations between the superpowers.

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The Ukraine conflict and a global inflation increase are overshadowing the summit, which is being convened for the first time since Russia invaded its neighbor in February.

Some Western politicians called for a boycott of the meeting and the removal of Vladimir Putin’s invitation in response to the invasion.

Indonesia refused, refusing to revoke Putin’s invitation and also resisting, according to Indonesian sources, G7 pressure to condemn Russia at this week’s summit.

Putin was reportedly too busy to attend the summit, and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov attended in his stead. Lavrov denied a Monday news agency claim that he was hospitalized in Bali for a heart issue and was present for the meeting.

According to a tweet by the EU’s ambassador in Indonesia, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy addressed the conference via video link.

Indonesia prefers a leaders’ proclamation to a joint G20 communique, diplomatic sources indicate.

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On Monday evening, however, European Council President Charles Michel reported that officials had reached a “good” agreement on a text communique.

According to a draft obtained by Reuters, the leaders of the G20 will condemn the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons.

However, the leaders would need to confirm such a communiqué.

Russia and other G20 members disagreed on language, including how to describe the Ukraine war, preventing joint communique.

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Rishi Sunak said Putin’s leadership will hear global resistance to its activities. Sunak would ask the G20 to address economic uncertainty and rising costs after Russia’s invasion, his administration stated.

According to U.S. authorities, Vice President Joe Biden will defend Ukraine without remorse.

“I won’t get ahead of the final negotiations but the G20 will make clear that Russia’s war is wreaking havoc for people everywhere and for the global economy as a whole,” said a U.S. official who spoke on the condition of anonymity about the conference.

In recent years, Xi and Putin have grown closer and renewed their partnership days before the Ukraine invasion. China has avoided direct material help that may trigger Western sanctions.

Xi reminded Macron during a bilateral meeting on Tuesday that China supports a ceasefire and peace talks in Ukraine.

During their conversation, Biden and Xi “underscored their opposition to the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons in Ukraine,” according to a White House statement. A statement from the Chinese foreign minister stated Xi told Biden nuclear weapons cannot be utilized. Zelenskiy applauded “weighty declarations” ahead of the G20, notably on nuclear dangers.

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Since its invasion of Ukraine in February, the West has accused Russia of making irresponsible statements on the possible use of nuclear weapons. The West has been accused by Russia of “provocative” nuclear rhetoric.

Many leaders will hold bilateral talks during the summit, including Xi, who is making only his second abroad travel since the outbreak.

After meeting with Macron, Xi will meet with Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol, and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida to calm tensions with the US and its allies.

Shi Yinhong, a professor of international relations at Beijing’s Renmin University, stated, “It is not decisive but an important step towards trying to reduce disagreements.”

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