Top diplomats from the Group of 20 industrialized and developing nations ended their contentious meeting in New Delhi on Thursday with no consensus on the Ukraine war, India’s foreign minister said, as discussions of the war and China’s widening global influence dominated much of the talks.
Subrahmanyam Jaishankar said there were “divergences” on the issue of the war in Ukraine “which we could not reconcile as various parties held differing views.”
“If we had a perfect meeting of minds on all issues, it would have been a collective statement,” Jaishankar said. He added that members agreed on most issues involving the concerns of less-developed nations, “like strengthening multilateralism, promoting food and energy security, climate change, gender issues and counterterrorism.”
China and Russia objected to two paragraphs taken from the previous G-20 declaration in Bali last year, according to a summary of Thursday’s meeting released by India. The paragraphs stated that the war in Ukraine was causing immense human suffering while exacerbating fragilities in the global economy, the need to uphold international law, and that “the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons is inadmissible.”
Host India had appealed for all members of the fractured Group of 20 to reach consensus on issues of particular concern to poorer countries even if the broader East-West split over Ukraine could not be resolved. And while others, including U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, chose to highlight their roles in addressing world crises, the divide was palpable.
Last week, India was forced to issue a chair’s summary at the conclusion of a G-20 finance ministers’ meeting after Russia and China objected to a joint communique that retained language on the war in Ukraine drawn directly from last year’s G-20 leaders summit declaration in Indonesia.
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