Maria Zakharova, the official representative of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, announced on August 29 that Sergei Lavrov will head the Russian delegation at the G20 summit in India.
The official statement follows the announcement on August 28 from the office of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi that, during a phone conversation with the Indian leader, Russian President Vladimir Putin informed him that he could not attend the G20 summit in New Delhi.
Two days later, Reuters cited a source saying that Xi Jinping, chairman of the People’s Republic of China, will likely not attend the G20 summit in India. Instead, as anticipated, China will be represented by the Premier of the State Council, Li Keqiang.
India assumed the G20 presidency on December 1 of last year. During its presidency, New Delhi will host more than 200 group meetings. The conclusion will be the final G20 leaders’ summit, scheduled for September 9-10 in the Indian capital, after which Brazil will assume the presidency.
The decision made by Putin and Xi coincides with the intention of Prime Minister Modi to demonstrate his involvement in sensitive world problems through the G-20. Supporters of Prime Minister Narendra Modi are hailing it as evidence of India’s increasing global influence.
Russia’s war in Ukraine has dominated G20 discussions, with hosts India unable to manage the situation. External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar has stated on record that India attempted, but the gap between the two nations was too great.
In addition, Saudi Arabia, another Asian power, has demonstrated that it has not yet hyphenated India and Pakistan. Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman will travel to Pakistan before attending the meeting in India. Mohammad Bin Salman will visit for four to six hours on September 10, after which he will depart for India to attend the G-20 summit. The Saudi crown prince is expected to meet with Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar and Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Asim Munir during his visit. Pakistan had opposed hosting G-20 meetings in Kashmir, a source of contention since 1947’s partition. China, Saudi Arabia, Turkiye, Egypt, Indonesia and Oman had refused to attend the meeting in Kashmir on May 22 to 24 at Pakistan’s request.