Ukraine’s FM explains why Russia is excluded from Switzerland peace summit

Dmytro Kuleba
Dmytro Kuleba

Russia has not been invited to June Global Peace Summit in Switzerland due to doubts over its commitment to genuine peace efforts, said Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba in an interview with Foreign Affairs on May 1.

"Standard textbooks emphasize the necessity of two parties engaging in negotiation," Kuleba said.

"Our approach stems from practical experience gained between 2014 and 2022, grounded in reality."

Read also: Russia's defeat imperative for Ukraine's NATO entry — Zelenskyy

"From 2014 to 2022, Ukraine held almost 200 rounds of talks with Russia in various formats, including mediation and direct discussions, but no resolution was reached before Russia launched a full-scale invasion," he said.

"It doesn't make sense to have Russia at the table if we can't ensure they'll act in good faith."

Read also: Ukraine denies preparing for peace talks with Russia in June

"There are only two paths to prompt Russia to act in good faith," he explained, "either Ukraine's success on the battlefield or a coalition of like-minded countries united in principles and approaches."

"So this is why the summit does not intend to have Russia as a participant," Kuleba said.

"The summit aims to unite countries sharing principles and approaches for future actions," he stated, noting that only after this could Russia be considered for negotiations.

"One country that can exert some pressure on Russia is China," the interviewer said.

"China can do more to convince Russia to change its behavior," Kuleba said.

"This is why we invited China to take part in the peace formula summit."

Ukraine's presidential office head, Andriy Yermak, previously mentioned that he doesn't dismiss Russia's potential involvement in the Global Peace Summit convened by Ukraine, albeit not at the initial leaders' level meeting, but possibly in subsequent ones.

Global Peace Summit in Switzerland

Ukraine and Switzerland are set to commence preparations for a peace summit involving state leaders," said Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, in January. Swiss President, Viola Amherd, noted that her country was ready to organize such a meeting.

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Overall, 80 to 100 countries, including representatives of Global South, may participate in the summit scheduled for June 15-16, according to Bloomberg. Switzerland also expects China to take part, given its “influence” on the Kremlin regime.

"The event aims to establish a shared understanding of achieving a comprehensive, just, and lasting peace for Ukraine, aligned with international law and the UN Charter," the Swiss government announced.

U.S. President, Joe Biden, may reportedly participate in the summit.

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