In a recent statement, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov highlighted the lack of consideration by Western countries for proposals put forward by China, Brazil, and South Africa regarding the resolution of the Ukraine conflict. These suggestions, according to Lavrov, were sidelined during discussions focusing on Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s proposed peace plan.
Discussions at the World Economic Forum
The World Economic Forum in Davos, which took place two weeks ago, was a convergence point for 83 countries, including BRICS members India, Brazil, South Africa, and Saudi Arabia. Notably, China, which had engaged in earlier discussions about the Ukrainian proposal, chose not to participate in the recent meetings.
Lavrov’s Remarks at the BRICS Meeting
At the BRICS sherpa and sous-sherpa meeting in Moscow, Lavrov revealed his recent interactions with representatives from several friendly nations. He stated,
I had conversations with colleagues from a number of friendly states, including about the role that the Global South has been playing during those meetings.
Alternative Peace Proposals
Lavrov recalled several alternative peace plans. These included a Chinese initiative emphasizing the eradication of the root causes of the current European crisis, a proposal from South Africa and other African nations discussed at the Russia-Africa Summit in St. Petersburg, and a plan by Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.
Response to the BRICS Initiatives in Davos
Regarding the Davos meeting, Lavrov expressed his inquisition about the attention given to these BRICS initiatives. He stated,
I asked those who participated in this meeting in Davos how much attention had been paid to those initiatives by the ‘world majority,’ and they told me: ‘No attention at all was paid to them. These initiatives aren’t needed’.
Criticism of the Western Approach
Lavrov criticized the stance of the US and its allies, describing it as a display of “complete disrespect and total disregard of any opinion, except their own.” He emphasized that the objective of meetings like Davos is to promote Zelensky’s ‘peace formula’ as the only solution.
Zelensky’s Peace Plan
Zelensky’s proposal for ending the conflict, advocated since 2022, demands Russia’s withdrawal from territories claimed by Kiev, reparations from Moscow, and the establishment of a war-crimes tribunal. However, Russian authorities have dismissed this plan as “unrealistic,” interpreting it as Ukraine’s reluctance to engage in diplomatic negotiations. Moscow maintains its readiness for talks but insists on continuing its military campaign in the absence of what it deems reasonable offers from Ukraine and its international supporters.