NEW DELHI – China joined Russia on Thursday in rejecting Moscow’s demand for an end to hostilities in Ukraine, according to a statement from the G20 foreign ministers’ meeting in New Delhi.
The two countries were the only G20 members to disagree with a statement calling for Russia’s “complete and unconditional withdrawal” from Ukrainian territory.
Lavrov told the participating foreign ministers that Western representatives had sabotaged the meeting by trying to find a scapegoat for Russia’s failures and disrespecting the efforts of the Indian hosts to reach an agreement on other issues.
“I would like to apologize to my colleagues in the Indian presidency and the countries of the global South for the obscene behavior of some Western delegations that has turned the G20 agenda into a farce,” Lavrov said, according to Russian news agency TASS.
Russia and China have criticized the West for “blackmail and threats” against other countries, Moscow said after a meeting of the two foreign ministers.
The Russian Foreign Ministry said: “Unanimously oppose attempts to interfere in the internal affairs of other countries, impose unilateralism through blackmail and threats, and oppose democratization of international relations.”
Moscow made the statement after Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov met his Chinese counterpart Qin Gang on the sidelines of the G20 summit.
Moscow said the two ministers also discussed Russia’s military operations in Ukraine, including Beijing’s proposal to end the conflict.
Lavrov said the G20 would not issue a joint statement with host India, but a summary.
“The statement was blocked and the outcome of the discussions will be described in a summary issued by the Indian presidency,” Lavrov told reporters through a translator after the talks.
The U.S. and Russia also met briefly to express their highest one-on-one engagement on the sidelines of the G20 meeting since the invasion of Ukraine last year, which was divided mainly over conflict issues.
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U.S. Secretary of State and Anthony Blinken met with Lavrov to reaffirm Washington’s commitment to protecting Ukraine after growing support for the peace initiative from European allies.
A U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Blinken wanted to “discourage the Russians from believing that our support for Ukraine might be faltering.”
The last time Blinken and Lavrov were in the same room, in a The G20 meeting in Bali last JulyThe latter rushed out, according to Western officials.
Thursday’s G20 meeting appeared set to end without a joint statement – the second such meeting in weeks without a deal after delegates failed to reach a consensus position on Ukraine.
Indian Foreign Minister Jaishankar told reporters: “This issue is very frankly about the conflict in Ukraine, there are differences, there are differences, we cannot reconcile.”
Discussions on joint statement falter on several issues, including Russia’s insistence on investigation sabotage the nord stream pipeline Last year, Lavrov told reporters through a translator.
Western countries and Russia blamed each other for the September bombings.
The Russia-Ukraine war is crowding out other G20 agenda items, frustrating India, which says it hopes to use this year as host Focus on issues such as poverty alleviation and climate finance.
“The experience of the past few years – financial crisis, climate change, pandemics, terrorism and war – clearly shows that global governance has failed,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a recorded speech at the conference’s opening session.
“We all have positions and views on how to resolve these tensions. However, as the world’s leading economy, we also have responsibilities to those who are not in this room,” he added.
While India did not condemn the Ukrainian invasion, Modi told Russian President Vladimir Putin last year that it was “not a time for war”.