The Jeddah summit organized by Saudi Arabia on finding a peaceful end to Russia’s war against Ukraine finished up on Sunday, with the participants agreeing to continue discussions toward peace, according to the closing statement released by host Saudi Arabia.
Senior officials from 42 countries including the US, China, South Africa, and Brazil participated in the two-day Jeddah peace summit, but none were from Russia.
Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s head of staff, Andriy Yermak, on Sunday called talks held in Jeddah “very productive,” while Moscow called the meeting a doomed attempt to sway the Global South behind Kyiv.
The head of Brazil’s delegation, foreign policy adviser Celso Amorim, stressed, however, that “any real negotiation must include all parties,” including Russia, according to a copy of his statement shared with AFP.
“Although Ukraine is the biggest victim, if we really want peace, we have to involve Moscow in this process in some form,” he said.
U.S. national security adviser Jake Sullivan led Washington’s delegation at Jeddah, a senior White House official said.
Western officials and analysts said Saudi diplomacy had been important in securing China’s presence at the talks.
Under the leadership of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, known as MBS, the kingdom has kept ties with both sides presenting itself as a mediator and seeking a bigger role on the world stage.
In his nightly video address from Jeddah, Zelenskyy said, “The greater the consolidation of the world for the sake of restoring a just peace is, the sooner an end will be put to the bombs and missiles with which Moscow wants to replace the norms of international law.”
Russia was not involved in this weekend’s talks and said it wouldn’t be part of the summit planned for the fall.
Beyond its Western backers, Ukraine hoped to garner diplomatic support from more Global South countries, including Brazil, India, South Africa and Turkey emphasizing how food prices have risen after Russia quit the U.N.-brokered Black Sea grain deal last month and began attacking Ukrainian port facilities.
Sources: VOA, The Associated Press, Agence France-Presse and Reuters.