Senior officials from Britain, the United States and Canada spoke out on behalf of Russia at a meeting of 20 people on Wednesday, and many members discussed condemning Moscow’s war in Ukraine and exposing a deep divide in the countryside.
Sri Mulyani Indrawati, Indonesia’s finance minister, who chaired a meeting of the G20’s finance representatives in Washington, acknowledged that the organization faces unprecedented challenges but called for cooperation to overcome the global economic slowdown.
“This is an unusual situation,” Indrawati told reporters after a day-long meeting.
“This is not a business as usual, very powerful and demanding.
The G20 includes Western nations that have accused Moscow of war crimes in Ukraine, as well as China, India, Indonesia and South Africa, which have not taken part in Western-led sanctions against Russia over the conflict.
Indrawati said many countries had spoken out against the war at the meeting, although she did not identify them.
“In order for us to recover together … we need more and even stronger cooperation,” Indrawati said at a presentation. . ”
Janet Yellen, the US Treasury Secretary, told the audience that she was completely unhappy with the presence of a senior Russian official at the meeting before she left, according to two sources in Reuters.
She was joined by Jerome Powell, Governor of the Central Bank of England, Andrew Bailey, Governor of the Bank of England, Chrystia Freeland, Minister of Finance of Canada, and Christine Lagarde, President of the European Central Bank.
Ukrainian officials in Washington, who requested billions of dollars in additional funding, also walked out of the meeting, a source familiar with the matter said. Timur Maksimov, Russia’s deputy finance minister, represented Moscow in person, but Anton Siluanov, Russia’s finance minister, and Russia’s central bank governor almost joined, another source said.
More than five million Ukrainians have fled abroad since Russia’s invasion on February 24, the largest attack on a European country since 1945.
The United States accuses Russia of committing war crimes in what Moscow calls a “special military operation”. Russia denies the allegations.
NO “BUSINESS ASUSUAL”
One source added that Yellen had told participants that “no business as usual” could be for Russia in the global economy, a view echoed by Indrawati, whose government heads the G20 this year.
British Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak tweeted: “We are united in our condemnation of Russia’s war against Ukraine and will work for stronger international co-ordination to punish Russia.
Russia’s Ministry of Finance did not mention the disappearance in a statement issued after the meeting.
It quoted Siluanov as urging the G20 not to hold political talks between members and stressing that the group had always focused on economic issues.
He also complained about the harmful effects of Western sanctions, the statement said. “Another side of the current crisis is undermining confidence in the current international monetary and financial system,” she said. “The security of foreign exchange reserves and the possibility of free trade and financial transactions are no longer guaranteed.
Lagarde urged Maksimov to send a clear message to Moscow to end the war in Ukraine, said one source.
G20 finance ministers and central bank governors met on the sidelines of a half-yearly conference hosted by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank in Washington, D.C.
In view of the divisions, the group did not issue a statement. Instead, Indrawati read a statement summarizing the meeting and emphasizing the importance of the body.
Freeland, who is of Ukrainian descent and has offered passionate prayers on behalf of the country, said he had walked out of the G20 summit to protest Russia’s participation.
“This week’s meetings in Washington are about supporting the world economy and Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine is a serious threat to the world economy,” she said on Twitter, adding that Russia should not participate.
ROOT OF BROKEN
Kristalina Georgieva, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, acknowledged on Wednesday that this was a “difficult moment” for the G20, a platform that has played a key role in coordinating the fight against COVID-19 and responding to the 2008-2009 financial crisis. But she said co-operation through the forum would continue.
“There are clearly very, very disturbing facts that we have to deal with,” said Georgieva, a Bulgarian native. “But we also realize how dependent we are on each other … And it is so obvious that cooperation will and will continue.
Georgieva and Yellen have warned of the fragmentation of the world economy into geopolitical blocs, with the United States and market-driven democracies on the one hand and China, Russia and other state-run economies on the other.
G20 members condemn Russia’s war in Ukraine after Yellen and others step down – SABC News
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