The world's most powerful countries remained divided on ways to address the Ukraine war as India began hosting the G20 Summit this week. A draft declaration circulated on Friday night left the segment blank, prompting India to circulate a new paragraph among delegates on Saturday. While Western nations push for strong condemnation of Russia, others have sought a focus on broader economic issues.
Reports quoting sources indicate that many G20 nations are unwilling to have any leaders' declaration without reference to the Ukraine conflict. A lack of consensus on the matter could lead to the Summit ending without a joint declaration – a first for the grouping.
“The Indian side circulated the draft paragraph on the Ukraine issue among the other G20 members this morning. It is now being considered by the other states. Some countries have no problem with the wording," Hindustan Times quoted an individual from a G7 state to add.
As per a Reuters report, the G20 Sherpas have reached a compromise on the language to be used in the communique for delegates. While details remain elusive, it could be similar to language in the declaration issued in Indonesia at the 2022 summit. The missive released last year had noted that most nations condemned Russia for the invasion while there were also divergent views.
Meanwhile the African Union joined the Group of 20 leading economies during the first day of the Summit on Saturday.
"With everyone's approval, I request the African Union head to take his seat as a permanent G20 member," Modi said in his opening address, banging a ceremonial gavel.
The African Union at full strength has 55 members but six junta-ruled nations are currently suspended. Collectively, it has a GDP of $3 trillion with some 1.4 billion people.
(With inputs from agencies)
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