Russian President Vladimir Putin The Russian Embassy in Indonesia told CNN on Thursday that it will not personally attend a summit of G20 leaders in Bali next week.
Yulia Tomskaya, head of protocol at the embassy, said Putin would be represented by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.
Tomskaya added that Putin is still deciding whether to join one of the meetings virtually.
Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Pandjitan, also said that Putin would not attend. Panjitan, who is helping to coordinate the summit, said the Russian president would be represented by “high-ranking officials.”
Putin’s decision not to attend the G-20 summit in person saves him from the embarrassment he faces – or avoids – by other world leaders over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The meeting will take place just days after the Kremlin’s announcement Russian forces will retreat From a vast area of Kherson – one of four Ukrainian regions that Putin previously said Russia plans to annex in violation of international law.
In the run-up to the event, Western countries and Ukraine pressured Indonesia, the G-20 host, to escalate its condemnation of Moscow and withdraw its invitation to Putin to attend the summit. Since the invasion of Ukraine in late February, Western democracies have treated Russia and Putin as pariahs on the world stage.
US President Joe Biden attending the summit, said in March Russia should be taken out of the G-20, a multilateral organization made up of 19 of the world’s major economies and the European Union. Senior members of the Biden administration have Withdrawn from G20 events Where are the Russian delegates.
When asked if he would meet Putin face-to-face in Bali during an exclusive interview last month, Biden said he didn’t see a good reason to do so but would “depend specifically on what he wants to talk about.” Biden said that if Putin wanted to discuss imprisoned NBA star Britney Greiner, he would be open to talking.
Jakarta resisted pressure to exclude Russia and sought to remain in a neutral position. She invited Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to attend the summit as a guest.
Zelensky said Ukraine would not participate in the G20 summit if Putin attended. The Ukrainian president is expected to join the meetings virtually.
Chinese President Xi Jinping, who met Putin in Uzbekistan in September, is also expected to attend the summit and meet Biden for the first time since the US president took office nearly two years ago.
Beijing has not officially confirmed whether Xi will attend the summit or meet Biden. But on Wednesday, Biden at a press conference At the White House after the midterm elections, where he will hold talks with Xi in Bali.
Biden said he does not plan to make any “fundamental concessions” and that they will discuss the economy and trade. But he refused to reveal his message about US military support for Taiwan if China moved on the self-governing island.
“I’m going to have this conversation with him,” Biden added, noting that they would put “what each of our red lines are.”
Their long-awaited meeting comes as relations between the United States and China are at their lowest point in decades in a downward spiral that began under the previous presidency of Donald Trump, as the two countries ramped up their rivalry in trade, technology, geopolitics and ideology.
In recent months, tensions have reached new highs after US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan and the Biden administration. Banning the sale of chips and advanced chip manufacturing equipment to China.
Meanwhile, under Xi, China has moved closer to Russia, united by the deterioration of its relations with the United States and other Western countries. Weeks before the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Xi and Putin announced that their two countries shared a “borderless” friendship. Since then Beijing has refused to condemn the war in Ukraine, or describe it as an “invasion”.
After the G20, Xi will attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Bangkok, which kicks off next Friday, according to the Thai Foreign Ministry. Biden is not expected to attend the event, while Putin has yet to confirm his attendance.
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