NewsX Big Debate: In hopes to establish peace in Ukraine, Saudi Arabia set to host Peace Summit next week

30 July, 2023 | Anupam Shrivastava

Russia Ukraine Saudi Arabia National

As per reports about 30 countries are invited including developing countries like Indonesia, Egypt, Mexico, Chile, and Zambia. The aim of the summit is to garner international support and find a re...

According to several reports, Saudi Arabia is all set to host a crucial peace summit on the Ukraine conflict on August 5 and 6. The kingdom has extended invitations to several major countries, including India, the United States, Britain, and others, in an effort to find a way to initiate negotiations and put an end to Russia’s war on Ukraine.

The Wall Street Journal confirms that up to 30 countries will be invited to the summit, which will be held in the Red Sea port city of Jeddah. Among the invitees are developing countries like Indonesia, Egypt, Mexico, Chile, and Zambia. The aim of the summit is to garner international support and find a resolution to the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.

The peace summit, being hosted by Saudi Arabia, is expected to bolster international backing for peace terms that favor Ukraine. However, it remains uncertain whether all invitees will attend the talks. The meeting, notably excluding Russia, the primary antagonist in the conflict, is being planned with oversight from Kyiv. Russia has not been invited, as cited by an official familiar with the developments.

This move comes after US national security adviser Jake Sullivan visited Saudi Arabia, indicating the kingdom’s growing role in international affairs and diplomatic initiatives.

Professor Madhav Nalapat, an expert in international relations, weighed in on the significance of the summit and its potential implications. He highlighted that while countries like China have openly taken Russia’s side, India and Brazil have remained neutral in the conflict. The summit is seen as an attempt by Ukraine and its allies in the West to persuade the Global South, including India and Brazil, to support Ukrainian terms for ending the conflict, particularly in reclaiming territories under Russian control since 2014.

Ambassador Bhaswati Mukherjee shared her perspective with NewsX on India’s potential attendance at the summit. While stressing the importance of the Vasudhaiv Kutumbakam (the earth is one family) principle, she raised concerns about India attending peace talks where one major protagonist (Russia) is not represented. With the G20 Summit approaching in September, India’s participation in the peace talks requires careful consideration to ensure a consensus text with the West.

The complexity of the conflict in Ukraine cannot be understated. Lives have been lost, and both sides have borne the cost of maximalist positions. However, finding a path to peace is essential, and the international community is eager to see a resolution to the ongoing crisis. The summit hosted by Saudi Arabia could serve as a critical step in that direction.

Saudi Arabia’s hosting of the peace talks is not without its own implications. The kingdom’s efforts to raise its profile on the global stage and engage in diplomatic initiatives could be seen as an opportunity for Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to showcase his leadership and diplomatic acumen. It also aligns with his efforts to reach a d├ętente with Iran and seek peace in Yemen.

However, Saudi Arabia’s close relationship with Russia as part of the OPEC group and Moscow’s war on Ukraine have raised concerns among some international actors. The organization’s oil production cuts, even amid the conflict, have been a source of tension between Saudi Arabia and the United States. The kingdom’s efforts to host the peace summit may have ramifications for its relations with Western nations.

As preparations for the summit continue, the international community will be watching closely. The participation of key nations, including India, in the peace talks, will be a significant factor in charting the course for a peaceful resolution to the conflict in Ukraine. As the date of the summit draws near, all eyes will be on Jeddah, hoping for constructive dialogue and progress towards lasting peace in the region.