Ukraine summit calls for dialogue to end war

Saudi Arabia, India, South Africa opt out of Ukraine declaration

Agencies June 17, 2024


Dozens of countries said Sunday that Ukraine’s “territorial integrity” should be respected in any peace deal to end the war, as they said “dialogue between all parties” would be necessary for a lasting settlement.

In a final communique issued at the end of a major two-day diplomatic summit in Switzerland, the vast majority of countries also backed a call for the full exchange of captured soldiers and return of deported Ukrainian children.

But not all attendees backed the document, with India, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates among those not included in a list of supporting states displayed on screens at the summit.

“We believe that reaching peace requires the involvement of and dialogue between all parties,” the document stated.

It added: “We reaffirm our commitment to ... the principles of sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of all states, including Ukraine, within their internationally recognised borders.”

More than 90 countries had gathered in the Swiss resort of Burgenstock for the summit, dedicated to discussing Kyiv’s proposals for a route out of the conflict.

Moscow was not invited and has rejected the summit as “absurd” and pointless.

Kyiv had worked hard to secure attendance from countries that maintain warm relations with Russia.

The final document also called for all prisoners of war to be released in a “complete exchange” and for all Ukrainian children who had been “deported and unlawfully displaced” to be returned to Ukraine.

Kyiv accuses Russia of abducting almost 20,000 children from parts of the east and south of the country that its forces took control of.

Working groups at the summit also addressed the issues of global food security and nuclear safety.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia, India, South Africa, Thailand, Indonesia, Mexico and the United Arab Emirates were among countries participating at a summit on peace for Ukraine that did not sign a final communique, the Swiss government said on Sunday.

Switzerland, which hosted the summit, said over 90 countries took part in the talks, and the vast majority of them signed up to the communique, according to a list which the Swiss organizers posted at the close of proceedings.

Brazil, which was listed as an “observer” on the list of attendees, also did not feature as a signatory. 


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