Ukraine: Indonesian president calls for dialogue

The Indonesian President, Joko Widodo, has called for dialogue between Ukraine and Russia, urging that there should be a ceasefire to end the ongoing hostilities.

Widodo said that economic sanctions between the West and Moscow could not resolve the ongoing crisis, adding that dialogue remained the way forward.

He said that it was important for all countries to push for a reduction in the tension and avoid escalation.

In his words, “It is important for all countries to push for the tension reduction, de-escalation and intensify negotiation.

“This is very important. Negotiation, cease-fire, then stop the war. I believe any difficult problem can be solved if we are willing to talk to each other listen to each other,’’ Widodo said.

Widodo, who talked during an interview on Wednesday with a Japanese news agency, Nikkei Asia, noted that the Western economic sanctions against Russia were not the best solution to resolve the problem as “people and civilians will be the victims.’’

The President commented on Indonesia’s reluctance to criticise Russia’s actions in Ukraine by saying that his country had its policy of non-alignment and that both “Ukraine and Russia are friends of Indonesia.’’

Russia had, on February 24, begun a special operation to demilitarise and “denazify’’ Ukraine. This was in response to calls for help from the Donetsk and Luhansk people’s republics in countering the aggression of Ukrainian troops.

The Russian Defence Ministry said the special operation was targeting Ukrainian military infrastructure only and that the civilian population is not in danger.

NAN

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