| 29 February 2024, Thursday |

G20 host Indonesia urges Zelenskiy, Putin to ‘forge peace’

President Joko Widodo of Indonesia said on Friday that he had turned down a request for guns from Ukraine’s president and asked him and his Russian counterpart to put an end to the conflict in the country.

Despite pressure from some Western countries, Indonesia is currently chairing the Group of 20 (G20) major economies and has invited both Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and Russian President Vladimir Putin to the November leaders conference.


“I expressed my hope that the war can soon be ended, and peaceful solutions can be forged through negotiations,” Jokowi, as the Indonesian president is commonly known, said in an online statement, adding he had spoken with both leaders by phone this week.

Jokowi also said he declined Zelenskiy’s request for weapons due to the Southeast Asian country’s foreign policy, which tries to steer a path of strategic neutrality. He said Indonesia was ready to send humanitarian aid.

Some members of the G20 like the United States, Britain, and Canada have urged Indonesia not to invite Putin because of the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine. Russia calls its actions a “special operation”.

But Jokowi said, “Indonesia wants to unite the G20, don’t let there be fractures”.

Ukraine is not a member of the G20, but chairs of the grouping have previously invited guest countries.

Zelenskiy’s attendance at the summit on the Indonesian island of Bali would “depend mainly on the situation in the battlefield”, Vysotskyi Taras, a senior Ukrainian government official, said on Thursday.

While Jokowi said Putin intended to join the event, a Kremlin spokesperson on Friday said the Russian leader had not yet decided whether to attend virtually or in person.

  • Reuters