Host India doesn’t want G20 to discuss further Russia sanctions

Despite disagreement over how to even categorize the conflict, six top Indian officials said on Wednesday that India does not want the G20 to consider additional sanctions against Russia for its invasion of Ukraine during New Delhi’s one-year presidency of the group.

The Group of Seven (G7) countries’ financial leaders will meet on February 23, the night before the invasion’s first anniversary, to discuss sanctions against Russia, according to a statement from Japan’s finance minister on Tuesday. This meeting will take place in conjunction with a G20 summit in India.

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The economic effect of the conflict would be addressed, according to the officials who are directly involved in this week’s G20 meeting of finance ministers and central bankers, but India did not want to consider taking additional measures against Russia.

“India is not keen to discuss or back any additional sanctions on Russia during the G20,” said one of the officials. “The existing sanctions on Russia have had a negative impact on the world.”

Another official said sanctions were not a G20 issue. “G20 is an economic forum for discussing growth issues.”

Requests for comment were not quickly answered by the foreign or finance ministries of India or their spokespeople.

Officials found it difficult to come up with a suitable phrase to describe the Russia-Ukraine conflict on Wednesday, the first day of meetings to draft the G20 communique, according to delegates of at least seven nations present in the meetings.

According to the officials, India attempted to reach a consensus on the terminology by using the terms “crisis” or “challenge” in place of “war,” but the talks came to an end without a conclusion.

The talks will now take place on Thursday, when U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will attend.

S. Jaishankar, the foreign minister of India, has previously claimed that the conflict has disproportionately hurt poorer nations by increasing the cost of food and fuel.

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