Munich conference opens against backdrop of war in Ukraine

The war in Ukraine, nearly a year after the Russian invasion, and the heightened tensions between Beijing and Washington are the main issues at the Munich security conference which begins on Friday. More than 150 government representatives will meet for this high mass devoted to international security issues, which is held each year in the Bavarian capital.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and French President Emmanuel Macron will be among the headliners on Friday. The head of Chinese diplomacy Wang Yi, the American vice-president Kamala Harris, the head of diplomacy Antony Blinken as well as the head of NATO Jens Stoltenberg, who will leave his functions in the fall, will also be present. No Russian official has been invited this year.

Western leaders should renew their commitment to support Kyiv for as long as it takes to repel Russian aggression, which began on February 24, 2022, both financially and militarily. Because the conflict which is currently bogged down in the east and in particular in Bakhmout shows no signs of easing. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kouleba is also expected in Munich

New sanctions package

“We have to be prepared for the long term, it can take many, many years,” Jens Stoltenberg warned in an interview with AFP on Thursday. Western countries support kyiv in particular via arms deliveries to kyiv and economic sanctions against Russia. In this regard, Washington and its allies are preparing the adoption of “a new large package of sanctions” “around February 24”, said Victoria Nuland, Assistant Secretary of State for Political Affairs, on Thursday.

Tensions between the United States and China, exacerbated by the overflight of American soil by a Chinese balloon, are also likely to feature prominently on the menu of discussions at the conference. Beijing insisted it was a balloon for civilian use and retaliated by accusing the United States of flying balloons over its territory. Antony Blinken had postponed his visit to China in stride.

These dissensions fall badly at a time when the Europeans, in particular Germany and France, still hope to convince China, which remains a close ally of Moscow, to put pressure on Vladimir Putin so that he puts an end to the war. In November, Olaf Scholz traveled to Beijing where he met President Xi Jinping. And the Elysée Palace confirmed Thursday that a visit by Emmanuel Macron to China “in the first half” was indeed “in preparation”. The French president personally received Wang Yi on Wednesday.

Recent Articles

Related News

Leave A Reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here