The Group of Seven (G7) foreign ministers announced on Saturday that they would not accept any territorial gains from Russia in Ukraine.
“We will never recognize the borders that Russia has tried to change through military aggression,” G7 foreign ministers said in a statement after a meeting at Gut Weissenhaus, a luxury resort in Schleswig. -Holstein, in northern Germany.
The countries will maintain their “commitment to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, including Crimea, and all states”, they added.
The statement – indicating that the West would not accept a peace deal forcing Ukraine to cede territory – comes amid fears among Ukrainians that Western countries are willing to agree to a deal at Ukraine’s expense. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in an interview Thursday that French President Emmanuel Macron had asked Ukraine to make concessions on its sovereignty to help Russian President Vladimir Putin save face.
“We will not help Putin save face by paying with our territory. It would be unfair,” Zelenskyy said. The Elysée rejected Zelenskyy’s allegations.
At a press conference on Saturday concluding the meeting of G7 foreign ministers, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said the G7 has “a central role to play…to prevent the global effects of this war plunge the world into an uncontrollable crisis: hunger, instability, energy insecurity, the creeping erosion of democratic values, but also of human rights through misinformation.
She stressed that the G7 countries – “the strongest industrialized nations among democracies” – have a special responsibility to act. “Therefore, dodging, passing, dithering and hesitating, and ultimately not saying anything at all, is not an option for us, for me personally,” she added.
Baerbock accused Russia of waging a “grain war” – not only against Ukraine but against “many countries in the world, especially Africa”.
The Russian invasion is blocking Ukraine’s access to Black Sea ports which normally take around 90% of food exports. The European Commission on Thursday unveiled its strategy to unblock borders with Ukraine and increase the capacity of roads and railways to export Ukrainian cereals, in a bid to prevent a food crisis in regions like the Middle East. and Africa.
G7 agriculture ministers, who concluded a separate meeting – joined by Ukraine’s agriculture minister Mykola Solskyi – on Saturday in Stuttgart, pledged additional support for Ukraine by pledging to provide food to the Ukrainian population, providing aid to Ukrainian farmers and supporting Ukraine in exporting agricultural products.
Germany will double its contribution to the Agricultural Market Information System – set up by the G20 and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and intended to strengthen cooperation on agricultural policy responses. food security – with 80 million euros, said Cem Özdemir, Germany’s agriculture minister, who chaired the talks.
Hans von der Burchard contributed reporting.