News ID: 114036
Publish Date : 16 April 2023 - 21:53
Russia, Ukraine Swap POWs

Brazil’s Lula Raises Russia War Mediation With China, UAE

ABU DHABI (AFP/AP) – Brazil’s president on Sunday said he had discussed joint mediation for Russia’s war in Ukraine with China and the United Arab Emirates, accusing the United States and Europe of prolonging the conflict.
President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, who was wrapping up an official visit to China and the UAE after returning for a third term in office, said the two countries and others should join a “political G20” to try to end the war.
The veteran leftist also remarked that the war was caused “by decisions made by two countries”.
“President Putin doesn’t take any initiatives to stop the war. (President Volodymyr) Zelensky from Ukraine doesn’t take any initiatives to stop the war,” Lula, speaking through an official translator, told reporters in Abu Dhabi.
“Europe and the U.S. continue to give their way of contribution to continue the war. So they have to sit around the table and say, ‘That’s enough’.”
While in China, Lula accused Washington of “encouraging” the war by supplying weapons to Ukraine.
He also lashed out at the dollar’s dominance in global trade, calling for a new currency for transactions between the BRICS countries -- Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
The 77-year-old said he spoke to UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and Chinese President Xi Jinping, about forming a group of countries to mediate, styled after the G20 group of advanced economies.
“The G20 was formed to bail out the (world) economy that was in crisis,” Lula said.
“Now it’s important to create another kind of G20 to end this war and establish peace. This is my intent and I think that we’ll manage to have great success.
“Yesterday (Saturday) I talked to the sheikh about the war. I talked to Xi Jinping about the war. And I think that we’re meeting a set of people that prefer to talk about peace than war. And so I think we’re going to have success.”
Lula said he had already discussed his initiative with U.S. President Joe Biden, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, French President Emmanuel Macron and the leaders of some South American countries.
Unlike Western powers, neither China nor Brazil has imposed sanctions against Moscow over Russia’s February 2022 attack on Ukraine. The UAE has maintained a neutral stance in the conflict.
As for the development on the ground in the Ukraine war, more than 100 Ukrainian prisoners of war have been released as part of a major Easter exchange with Russia, a top official said Sunday, as Orthodox Ukrainians marked the holiday for a second time since last February.
Celebrations were subdued due to security risks, with a curfew barring the faithful from customary all-night services.
Presidential adviser Andriy Yermak announced that 130 soldiers, sailors, border guards and others captured by Moscow were on their way back home following a “big Easter prisoner exchange.”
There was no immediate information on how many Russian prisoners were released, but the press service of the founder of the Wagner Group also released a video Sunday showing Ukrainian prisoners of war being readied for an exchange.