Arab League confers with Ukraine's FM, seeks diplomatic resolution to war: Egyptian FM

Mai Ghandour, Tuesday 5 Apr 2022

Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry along with members of the Arab League’s Ukraine crisis liaison group held a consultation session with Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba in the Polish capital Warsaw Tuesday with the aim of reaching a diplomatic solution to the Russia-Ukraine war.

Egyptian Minister of Foreign Affairs along with the Secretary-General of the Arab League and the Ukr
Egyptian Minister of Foreign Affairs along with the Secretary-General of the Arab League and the Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba in the polish capital of Warsaw on Tuesday

During the meeting, the group stressed the need for a ceasefire and an end to the crisis on the basis of international law and the UN Charter, according to a statement issued by the group.

The Arab delegation also discussed with the Ukrainian FM the efforts exerted to reach a ceasefire and an agreement to resolve the crisis and restore peace and security.

Expressing its concerns over the prolonged crisis and its humanitarian, political, security and economic repercussions, the delegation affirmed its support for direct negotiations between the Russian and Ukrainian sides and the cessation of military operations.

From his side, the Ukrainian FM reviewed the outcomes of the ongoing talks to reach a Ukrainian-Russian agreement.

The Arab ministers stressed the importance of continuing coordination to preserve the safety of the Arab communities currently in Ukraine, and to facilitate the transit of those who wish to leave to neighbouring countries.

“Today, I met with the Arab Contact Group. Grateful to Secretary-General of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul-Gheit and my Arab counterparts for their diplomatic efforts. Russia must unlock Ukrainian seaports to allow agricultural exports to global markets, especially to Arab countries,” Kuleba said on his Twitter account.

According to Ukraine’s embassy in Cairo on Monday, Russia is blocking an Egypt-bound ship dubbed “EMMAKRIS III,” which was loaded with Ukrainian wheat that was purchased by Egypt.

Russia’s embassy in Cairo, however, later denied the allegations, saying that the statement “has no basis” and that Russia has no intention “in preventing the free movement of commercial ships in the Black Sea.”

Egypt, the world top’s wheat importer, imported nearly 80 percent of its wheat from both Ukraine and Russia prior to the invasion.

Before travelling to Warsaw, Shoukry visited Moscow on Monday to hold discussions with Russian and Ukrainian foreign ministers.

In Moscow, the top Egyptian diplomat met with Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov to push for a diplomatic solution to end the war.

The Arab League’s liaison group, which was formed during the 157th session of the Council of the league in March, aims to tackle the impacts of the Ukraine crisis on the Arab region.

The group comprises representatives from Egypt, Jordan, Algeria, Iraq, Sudan and the UAE – a current member of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).

In a press conference by the group on Monday, Shoukry affirmed the Arab states’ keenness to mediate between Russia and Ukraine, stressing the need for continued coordination to preserve the security and safety of the region, especially that of the Arab communities residing in the conflict areas.

Egypt has maintained a neutral political stance since the Russian invasion of Ukraine on 24 February, repeatedly calling for mediation before the global crisis hit Arab countries on a political, security and economic levels.

Short link: