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What was agreed upon at the meeting in Saudi Arabia

What was agreed upon at the meeting in Saudi Arabia

On August 5-6, negotiations were held in Jeddah (Saudi Arabia) to discuss the Ukrainian peace formula, as well as key issues of global security. The meetings were attended by security advisers and authorized diplomatic representatives from 42 countries, including BRICS member countries (Brazil, India, China, South Africa). russia was not invited to participate in the summit. The event ended without a final declaration (since the main content of the meeting was not to develop a unified position, but to exchange opinions), but with “cautious positive signals”.

What was the meeting like?

The main outcome of the meeting in Jeddah was reaching a consensus that the war unleashed by russia is not a local European conflict, but a threat to global security, the solution of which will require the participation of the whole world. All participants of the meeting supported the position that at the center of any peace agreement should be respect for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, as well as the supremacy of the UN Charter, and the key issue is the withdrawal of russian troops.

The meeting in Jeddah was another step towards the practical implementation of peace initiatives proposed by Ukraine. In fact, an expansion of the circle of international partners of Ukraine was achieved, which would support – at least partially – our position regarding the terms of ending the current war with russia. The Ukrainian delegation held bilateral talks with the heads of the delegations of the USA, Saudi Arabia, Finland, Japan, Qatar, France, Germany, Spain, Norway, Turkey, Poland and Slovakia, as well as with national security and foreign policy advisors of the leaders of Sweden, South Africa, Bahrain, Canada, Italy, Denmark, Korea, head of the Office of the President of the European Commission. They talked with a number of Western countries about further military assistance, and with those who joined the Group of Seven declaration on “security guarantees” for Ukraine – about future bilateral agreements on this matter. So the diplomats agreed to form working groups on the following key topics of the 10 points of V. Zelenskyy’s Peace Formula: restoration of territorial integrity, withdrawal of russian troops, release of all prisoners, a tribunal for those guilty of aggression, and security guarantees for Ukraine. In addition, the negotiators discussed the timing of the meeting of the heads of state, which may take place by the end of the current year. An agreement was reached to continue discussing peace terms with foreign ambassadors in Kyiv.

It was very important to participate in the meeting of China, Saudi Arabia and russia’s BRICS allies, whose position, as confirmed by the representative of the russian foreign ministry, will be taken into account by the kremlin in the future strategy for Ukraine. It is worth noting that such candidates for the role of mediator in the peace negotiations between russia and Ukraine as China, Saudi Arabia, India, Turkey, Brazil and African countries, with their participation in the negotiation processes, mainly pursue their own interests and try to maintain constructive relations with both sides of the war, as well as with the countries of the West. Therefore, the new peace plan proposed by Saudi Arabia and a number of other countries, on the one hand, provides for a ceasefire on all fronts, the start of negotiations between moscow and Kyiv through the mediation of the UN, and the provision of guarantees for the preservation of the territorial integrity of Ukraine. On the other hand, the plan does not mention the withdrawal of russian troops from the territory of Ukraine as a condition for the start of negotiations.

Beijing, which supports close economic and diplomatic relations with russia and rejects calls to condemn moscow, previously put forward a peace initiative similar in content to the Saudi version. However, the very fact of Beijing’s presence in the negotiations is a breakthrough, because it means that it agrees to take the Ukrainian peace plan as a basis, which can then be expanded and supplemented. The country’s leadership is the most important external ally of russia and has the appropriate leverage on its top. In addition, Beijing is not at all satisfied with russia’s withdrawal from the grain agreement, since the country was the largest importer of Ukrainian grain.

India is very restrained in commenting on the Ukrainian peace plan and refuses to condemn the russian federation for the war, because it led to an increase in the import of russian oil to Asia at a low price.

Therefore, it can be predicted with high probability that players loyal to the kremlin will continue to maintain their neutrality regarding the war between russia and Ukraine. On the other hand, it leaves a lot of room for political and negotiating maneuver in the future.

❗️The talks in Saudi Arabia became the development of Ukraine’s political dialogue with the countries of the world and the initial impulse in the formation of a new architecture of global security. The basis of the discussion by the international community is the Ukrainian peace plan, but Ukraine accepts consideration and coordination of various peace initiatives, as long as they do not threaten the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country. The next round of this negotiation process should be expected on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in September of this year.

  • 7 August, 2023

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