G20 Summit ends with a majority condemnation of Russia and reduced tensions

By Antonio Hermosín

Nusa Dua, Indonesia, Nov 16 (EFE).- The G20 Summit in Bali concluded on Wednesday amid an escalation of Moscow’s aggressions against Ukraine and tensions over Tuesday’s missile explosion in Poland, which was initially attributed to Russia but was later concluded to have been fired by Ukraine.

In a conclusive declaration of the forum, most of the countries rejected Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and urged the immediate retreat of the Russian troops from its territory, although it acknowledged that there were “other views” on the situation during the meeting.

After long deliberations, the Group of Twenty succeeded in agreeing on the joint conclusions, something that seemed difficult before the summit, which began amid rumors of a new Cold War.

Prior to the forum, China, India and Russia had refused to explicitly call the conflict a war and its mentioning of it in the joint document was the most debated paragraph according to Indonesian president Joko Widodo, who also currently holds the group’s presidency.

“We talked about it until midnight, and, finally, the Bali statement was able to reach a consensus and went through,” said Jokowi after the closing ceremony.

“First of all, I am sorry for what happened in Poland. I urge all parties to remain calm and avoid escalating tensions. I have always said that war only brings devastation, and we must stop it,” the Indonesian president added in reference to the missile that struck the Polish village.

The joint declaration comes as a diplomatic achievement for Jokowi, given that the G20 meetings since the invasion of Ukraine, under his presidency, have been marked by boycotts, walk-outs during interventions and the failure to sign any official releases.

The incident in Poland and the missile escalation against Ukraine highlighted the increased isolation of Moscow, whose representative at the summit, foreign minister Sergei Lavrov, left a day before the closing ceremony.

There was also an apparent decrease in tensions between the United States and China, whose presidents — Joe Biden and Xi Jinping — held their first in-person meeting which lasted three hours and in which both parties reported agreeing to improve their cooperation.

Despite not having achieved significant concrete actions, the consensus among the members and the return to dialogue between the two superpowers gave a more hopeful result than anticipated. EFE


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