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WORLD | 11-12-2023 11:48

Argentina to host Ukraine summit as Zelenskyy woos Global South

Argentina agreed to host a summit with Latin American leaders early next year, says Ukrainian Foreign Ministry official.

Argentina agreed to host a summit with Latin American leaders early next year as President Volodymyr Zelenskyy seeks to win support from the so-called Global South in the war with Russia, Ukraine said. 

Zelenskyy discussed the summit with Argentina’s new president, Javier Milei, on Sunday in Buenos Aires, Ihor Zhovkva, the Ukrainian leader’s deputy chief-of-staff for foreign affairs, said in a phone interview. Milei’s press office declined to comment. 

“We had a substantial conversation,” Zhovkva said. “We discussed lots of things from Ukraine’s peace formula to bilateral cooperation.” 

Ukraine’s president has sought to build international support for a framework for potential peace talks and a lasting deal, though prospects have dimmed as Kyiv’s counteroffensive grinds to a standstill and signals emerge that once-enthusiastic support from allies is waning. 

Zelenskyy left Argentina for the United States, where he plans to rally support as US President Joe Biden’s request for military assistance is stalled in Congress. 

Zelenskyy made the nearly 13,000-kilometre (8,000-mile) trip to Buenos Aires to attend Milei’s inauguration and met with counterparts from Ecuador, Uruguay and Paraguay. He also had a brief exchange with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban to try to persuade him to drop his objections to moving forward Ukraine’s accession talks with the European Union. 

“Our half-day travel to Argentina was very productive,” Zhovkva said as the Ukrainian delegation’s plane was about to depart for Washington. 

Zelenskiy’s peace formula is a 10-point plan that demands the full withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukraine, a non-starter for Moscow. A meeting of national security advisers in January will follow similar gatherings in Denmark in June, Saudi Arabia in August and Malta in October. 

by Daryna Krasnolutska, Bloomberg

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