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Washington, March 2 – Just hours before Secretary of State Antony Blinken reached New Delhi for a meeting of G20 foreign ministers, the US sought to draw a sharp contrast between its own goals for this group of the world’s most industrialised nations and Russia because of its invasion of Ukraine.
The US will engage with G20 members and other international partners to address the humanitarian crisis emanating from the “full-scale” Russian invasion of Ukraine and will call upon the G20 countries to hold Russia accountable for resisting UN efforts to reopen sea-routes to allow movement of grain shipments.
“In contrast to Russia’s ongoing aggression against Ukraine, which continues to exacerbate global food, energy and economic insecurity, the US, together with our partners, is taking concrete actions to build more stable, prosperous and climate-resilient economies worldwide,” the State Department said in a fact-sheet laying out and reiterating American priorities for the group and the upcoming meeting.
Blinken reached New Delhi later on Wednesday. He is scheduled to hold a bilateral meeting with India’s External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar on the sidelines of the group meeting, and other counterparts, the State Department added.
“The US will continue to engage with G-20 and other international partners to address the immense humanitarian challenges stemming from Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, especially the damaging effect the Kremlin’s war of aggression has had on global food and energy security,” the US said.
“The G20 must hold Russia accountable now for its failure to respond to UN efforts to reopen the sea lanes for grain delivery.”
Sensitive to host India’s desire to keep the focus of the meeting on economic issues, including the fallout of the Ukraine war and not let the war take precedence as it did for much of Indonesia’s presidency of the group in 2022, the State Department, said, “The US strongly supports India’s G20 priorities to provide action-oriented solutions to global challenges, including strengthening food, health, energy and women’s security, countering terrorism and counternarcotics, and deepening cooperation on renewable energy and sustainable development.”
Reinforcing its commitment to pursuing these same goals through multilateralism, the US said it has been “at the forefront” of dealing with the present global shortages.
“We have dedicated $13.5 billion in US humanitarian and food security assistance since February 2022,” it said, adding, “The US is increasing agricultural capacity and resilience with programmes that work with families to protect food security and livelihoods and ensuring basic prerequisites for improved agricultural production such as good soil and crop varieties adapted to climate change are in place.”