The presidents of Ukraine and Russia agree to meet separately with a group of African leaders in search of peace
South Africa- President of Russia And ukraine South Africa’s president said Tuesday he has agreed to meet separately with a delegation of heads of state from six African countries to discuss a possible plan to end the war in Ukraine.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said he spoke on the phone with his Russian counterpart over the weekend, Vladimir Putinand Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelenskyand that the two agreed to receive “a peace mission of African leaders” in Moscow and Kiev respectively.
“Foremost in our discussions are efforts to find a peaceful solution to the devastating war in Ukraine,” Ramaphosa declared.
Ramaphosa said in a statement that he and his colleagues from Zambia, Senegal, Congo, Uganda and Egypt would join the delegation. The South African president said that Putin and Zelensky gave him the go-ahead to “start preparations”.
Last year, four of those six African countries — South Africa, Congo, Senegal and Uganda — abstained from a UN vote to condemn the Russian invasion. Zambia and Egypt voted in favor of the resolution.
Ramaphosa did not specify a time frame or any criteria for possible peace talks. Zelensky has said he will not consider a peace deal ending the 15-month war until Russian forces are completely withdrawn from Ukrainian territory.
Ramaphosa said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was also briefed on the African delegation’s plans and “welcomed the initiative”.
The announcement of the African government-led peace effort came as Russia launched a massive airstrike on Kiev.
There was no immediate reaction Tuesday from the Kremlin or Kiev.
According to a transcript of a phone conversation between Putin and Ramaphosa on Friday, the Russian president supported Cyril Ramaphosa’s idea for a group of African leaders to “participate in discussions on the possibilities of resolving the Ukrainian conflict”. “