JAKARTA (Reuters) – Russian President Vladimir Putin may miss next week’s G20 leaders summit, his Indonesian counterpart Joko Widodo and host of the bloc of major economies told media on Monday.
Joko said a conversation with Putin last week left him with a “strong impression” the Russian leader would not attend the meeting in Bali, which is expected to be dominated by tensions over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The Indonesian foreign ministry and presidential palace did not immediately respond to Reuters’ requests for comment.
As G20 host, Indonesia has resisted pressure from Western countries and Ukraine to disinvite Russia from the leaders summit and expel it from the group, saying it does not have the authority to do so without a consensus among all members.
Widodo emphasized in an interview with the Financial Times that Russia remains welcome at the summit, which he feared was being overshadowed by a “very worrying” rise in international tensions.
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“The G20 is not meant to be a political forum. It’s meant to be about economics and development,” he said.
Indonesia has also invited Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, who has said he will not take part if Putin does. Russia calls the invasion of Ukraine a “special operation”.
Several other world leaders, including US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping, are expected to attend.
(Additional reporting by Ananda Teresia; Writing by Kanupriya Kapoor; Editing by Gerry Doyle)
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