The G7 will “never recognize” the borders that Russia wants to enforce with its war in Ukraine, the foreign ministers of the group of seven great powers said on Saturday.
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“We will never recognize the borders that Russia has tried to push with its military intervention,” the diplomatic chiefs said in a statement released after a three-day meeting in Wangels, northern Germany
“We will maintain our commitment to support the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, including Crimea (…)”, they specify.
The head of German diplomacy Annalena Baerbock, whose country holds the presidency of the G7 this year, stressed that it was up to Ukraine “to decide for itself” “because it is its sovereign territory”.
“We will support the measures (…) that Ukraine will take to guarantee freedom and peace in the country,” she said during a press conference closing the meeting.
These remarks come as particularly violent fighting in the Donbass region (east), which has been partially controlled by pro-Russian separatists since 2014, and on which Moscow has focused for weeks without making any significant progress.
Ministers reiterated their call for Russia to “end the war it started without provocation (from Ukraine) and the tragic suffering and loss of life it continues to cause.”
They again called on Belarus to “stop facilitating Russian intervention and honor its international commitments.”
The seven countries (Germany, Canada, United States, France, Italy, Japan and United Kingdom) also condemned “Russian President Vladimir Putin’s irresponsible threats to use chemical, biological or nuclear weapons”.
They vowed on Saturday to extend “economic sanctions” aimed at Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine to “sectors on which Russia is particularly dependent” and urged China not to “undermine” those measures.
“We call on China not to help Russia in its war of aggression against Ukraine, not to undermine the sanctions imposed on Russia for its attack on Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, not to justify Russia’s actions in Ukraine and to refrain from manipulation.” information, disinformation and other means to legitimize Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine,” the final statement demands.