October 3, 2022

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Indonesia: Lavrov leaves G20 summit early

Status: 08.07.2022 10:05 am

For the Russian foreign minister, the meeting with his G20 counterparts in Bali ended too soon. After his speech, Lavrov immediately left the hall. His ministry has said it wants to hold bilateral talks and then leave.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov pulled out of the G20 meeting of leading and emerging economies in Bali ahead of schedule. “Lavrov is still holding bilateral talks, and then he turns to reporters and leaves,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told DPA news agency upon request. Hence he did not participate in the official meal and afternoon session.

Lavrov complained that the West spoke more about Russia than about global economic problems at the meeting.

Lavrov’s review: Russia focus – not economy

According to Lavrov, Russia is ready to negotiate grain with Ukraine and Turkey. However, it was unclear when such talks would take place, Lavrov said. Millions of tons of grain in Ukraine cannot be exported.

He accused the West of blocking the transition to a peaceful solution to the conflict in Ukraine. “We have nothing to discuss with the West” if the EU and the US want to win the war in Ukraine, Lavrov said.

He also accused the West of pressuring Ukraine to use its weapons in the conflict. Lavrov criticized the fact that representatives of Western countries condemned Russia as an “aggressor” and “aggressor” without looking at the causes of the situation in Ukraine. Russia considers it part of its right to freedom of expression to use military force to secure its interests in Ukraine and criticizes Western sanctions as illegitimate. He came to Bali to get an impression of “how the West breathes,” Lavrov says.

After the speech from the hall

Lavrov left the meeting room immediately after his speech, according to sources in the delegation. He also reportedly avoided a response from Foreign Minister Annalena Berbach. Baerbock, who is acting chairman of the G7 group of leading democratic economic powers, was scheduled to be the next speaker after Lavrov.

“I will find very clear words that we will not accept this violation of international law,” Beierbach said in response to Lavrov shortly after arriving in Bali on Thursday evening.

The Russian sat in the hall between representatives of Saudi Arabia and Mexico. Lavrov’s presence at the G20 meeting was also seen as a test of Kremlin leader Vladimir Putin’s participation in the November 15-16 G20 summit in Bali. Several states questioned their participation if Putin attended the summit in person.

“Build Bridges, Not Walls”

At the start of the meeting, host Retno Marsudi called urgently for an end to Russia’s war of aggression in Ukraine. “It is our responsibility to end the war as quickly as possible. And to build bridges, not walls,” the Indonesian foreign minister said. The world’s largest island nation currently heads the confederation of states. All other participating countries joined Marsudi’s call. US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said a “strong chorus from around the world” urged Moscow to stop the attacks.

Not long ago, Marsudi Lavrov received a polite but wary welcome when he arrived at the luxury hotel Mulia in the seaside resort of Nusa Dua.

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The journalist is redundant after the question

During the greeting, two German journalists peppered Lavrov with questions. ZDF reporter Andreas Kinast: “When will you stop the war?” (“When are you going to end the war?”). Kinast said he was escorted out of the reception hall by Indonesian security officials. In the beginning he had no inhibitions. A second German journalist shouted at Lavrov: “Why don’t you stop the war?” (“Why don’t you end the war?”).