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Putin to attend G20 summit: Kremlin

Moscow, June 28:-- Russian President Vladimir Putin has accepted an invitation to attend the Group of 20 (G20) summit which will be held in Indonesia November 15-16, according to the Kremlin.

 

Kremlin aide Yuri Ushakov Monday told the media that the format of Putin's participation is still being specified.

 

"I do not know. For now, they have invited to participate personally, but there is much time left. I hope that the pandemic situation will permit to hold this important forum face to face. I'd like to avoid guessing," he said.

 

Indonesia holds the rotating presidency of the G20 this year and has been pressured by Western countries, led by the United States, to exclude Russia from the meeting.

 

Indonesian President and G20 Chairman Joko Widodo, however, did not rescind the invitation to Russia. While earlier in April, he announced he had called Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and invited him to join world leaders at G20 summit as a guest.

 

Widodo also planned to visit Russia and Ukraine and meet with the countries' leaders to urge peace talks this week.

 

 The Indonesian president has refused to send weapons to Ukraine in response to a request from Zelenskyy, instead offering humanitarian aid.

 

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on Monday that he would take a decision nearer to the time whether to attend the G20 if Putin also attends.

 

While European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen Monday said Putin's presence at the summit shouldn't be a reason for Western leaders to block the meeting.

 

"We have to consider very carefully whether we paralyze the entire G20; I don't advocate that. In my opinion, G20 is too important, also for the developing countries, the emerging countries, that we should let this body be broken by Putin," said von der Leyen.

 

"I think it's better – if he does come – to tell him to his face what we think. And then he should also take a stand," she added.

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