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At G20 Foreign Ministers’ meet, China bats for its peace plan for Ukraine

The Chinese foreign minister also urged G20 member states to avoid attempts to ‘decouple or sever supply chains’.

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New Delhi: Asking countries to avoid “bloc confrontation”, China batted for its own peace plan between Russia and Ukraine at the G20 Foreign Ministers’ meet, which includes making the two countries reach midway and urging others to “not add fuel to the fire”.

Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang said his country was working constructively towards a “political settlement” of the conflict which has been going on for over a year.

“China has put forward the Global Security Initiative, and issued the position paper on the political settlement of the Ukraine crisis,” he said, underlining that the country will always stand “on the side of peace, actively promote peace talks, and play a constructive role.

Qin assumed the post of Chinese foreign minister last December, after serving as Beijing’s ambassador to the US.

His remarks come two months after China released a 12-point document proposing a framework to resolve the Ukraine conflict. The document called for a ceasefire and cessation of war, while also urging countries to abandon the “Cold War mentality”.

“All parties should remain rational and restrained, do not add fuel to the fire, do not intensify contradictions…support Russia and Ukraine to meet each other halfway, [and] resume direct dialogue as soon as possible,” read the document.

Foreign ministers from across the globe have flown into the Indian capital to attend the two-day G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting from 1-2 March. Discussions focussed on multilateralism reforms, food and energy security, counter-terrorism and other critical issues.

‘Practice true multilateralism’

In his remarks, the Chinese foreign minister urged G20 member states to practice “true multilateralism” especially in the face of a “volatile” global environment.

Without naming countries, he said nations should avoid “bloc confrontation” and divisive actions.

“We need to practice true multilateralism, [and] uphold the UN-centered international system,” said the former diplomat.

“Global affairs should be handled by all through discussion. No one should engage in power politics or even bloc confrontation,” he added.

Speaking on global supply chains — which were disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic and then the Ukraine war — the Chinese minister urged G20 member states to avoid attempts to “decouple or sever supply chains”.

‘Outcomes of Bali Summit must be delivered’

In his statement, the Chinese foreign minister said outcomes of the G20 Summit in Indonesia’s Bali last year must be delivered, such as enhanced macro economic policy coordination and safeguards for food and energy security.

The remark comes a week after India noted that Russia and China did not agree to certain aspects of its chair summary, following the recent G20 Finance Ministers Meeting in Bengaluru.

Last week, after the Finance Ministers’ track, India published a chair summary as member states were unable to agree on a joint communique.

In its chair summary, India noted that paragraphs 3 and 4 of the document – which condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine – were agreed to by all member countries “except Russia and China”. The paragraphs were taken from the G20 Bali Declaration last year.

Also read: G20 finance ministers’ meeting is marred by Russia-Ukraine conflict, says Antony Blinken


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