SAWT BEIRUT INTERNATIONAL

| 28 May 2022, Saturday |

G7 Foreign Ministers Vow to Continue Economic Pressure on Russia

Group of Seven foreign ministers vowed on Saturday to reinforce Russia’s economic and political isolation, continue supplying weapons to Ukraine and work to ease global food shortages stemming from the war.

After meeting at a 400-year-old castle estate in the Baltic Sea resort of Weissenhaus, senior diplomats from Britain, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Japan, the United States and the European Union also pledged to continue their military and defense assistance for “as long as necessary”.

They would also tackle what they called Russian misinformation aimed at blaming the West for food supply issues around the world due to economic sanctions on Moscow and urged China to not assist Moscow or justify Russia’s war, according to a joint statement.

Key to putting more pressure on Russia is to ban or phase out buying Russian oil with EU member states expected next week to reach an agreement on the issue even if it remains opposed by Hungary.

“We will expedite our efforts to reduce and end reliance on Russian energy supplies and as quickly as possible, building on G7 commitments to phase out or ban imports of Russian coal and oil,” the statement said.

On Friday, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba appealed to friendly countries to provide more military support to Kyiv and increase the pressure on Russia, including by seizing its assets abroad to pay for rebuilding Ukraine.

Kuleba said his country remains willing to talk to Russia about unblocking grain supplies stuck in Ukraine’s silos and also about reaching a political agreement to end the war itself, but had so far received “no positive feedback” from Moscow.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said in an interview published Saturday that he had not detected any change in Russian President Putin’s stance recently.

Scholz, who spoke at length by phone with the Russian leader Friday, told German news portal t-online that Putin had failed to achieve the military objectives he set out at the start of the war while losing more Russian soldiers than the Soviet Union did during its decade-long campaign in Afghanistan.

“Putin should slowly begin to understand that the only way out of this situation is through an agreement with Ukraine,” Scholz was quoted as saying.

    Source:
  • Asharq Al-Awsat