Day 265 of the Invasion of Ukraine: Zelensky called on the G20 to support a Ukrainian Peace ProposalUkraine | November 15, 2022, Tuesday // 10:50| views
Here are the highlights of events related to the war in Ukraine over the past 24 hours:
Russia has destroyed a key power plant in Kherson
Russia destroyed a key power plant in Kherson before withdrawing its military from the area. The information was confirmed by the Ukrainian energy operator.
Kyiv has already sent a list of the most necessary parts to restore the facility, which supplies electricity to the entire West Bank of the Dnieper River in Kherson Oblast and a significant part of Mykolaiv Oblast.
France and Poland have expressed their willingness to join the recovery.
In his midnight address, President Volodymyr Zelensky said critical infrastructure in Kherson, the city that Kyiv recaptured from Moscow eight months after the war began, had been destroyed and strategic sites mined.
He welcomed the statements made by the US and China at the G20 forum that the use of nuclear weapons was unacceptable.
"Together with our partners at the UN, we took two very important decisions. The first received support today. Steps were taken to issue an international compensation mechanism that will allow all the damage caused during the war to be compensated, at the expense of Russian assets. The reparations that Russia will have to pay are already part of the international legal reality. We are still agreeing with our partners on the second resolution to establish a special tribunal for war crimes committed by Russia in Ukraine," said Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
THE G-20 MEETING: The main focus is the war in Ukraine
In the Indonesian resort of Bali, the actual part of the G-20 summit began. The leaders of the 19 countries with the largest economies in the world, plus the European Union, are discussing today and tomorrow the world's hottest topics. The war in Ukraine and its economic consequences take center stage.
All countries are represented by the heads of state and government, with the exception of Russia. Instead of Vladimir Putin, the country's foreign minister Sergey Lavrov took part in the summit.
On the eve of the forum, a number of bilateral talks were held, with a positive sign given by the three-hour meeting between Joe Biden and Xi Jinping.
In a video address, President Volodymyr Zelensky said now is the time to stop Russia's war. Indonesia's head of state, which is hosting the forum, also called for an end to the conflict.
"Our cooperation is absolutely necessary to save the world. We all have a responsibility not only to our own people but also to the people of the world. Being responsible here also means we must end the war. If the war does not end, it will be difficult for the world to move forward. We must not divide the world into parts, we must not allow the world to fall into another world war," said Indonesian President Joko Widodo.
Zelensky called on the G20 to support a Ukrainian peace proposal
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky today told world leaders gathered at the G20 summit in Indonesia that now is the time for Russia's war in his country to be stopped under a peace plan he is proposing, Reuters reported.
Zelensky spoke via video link at the forum, which is being held on the Indonesian island of Bali.
"I am convinced that now is the time when Russia's destructive war must and can be stopped," the Ukrainian leader said.
"I ask you to choose your path to leadership and together we will certainly implement the formula for peace," Zelensky added.
Reiterating that Russia must withdraw all its troops from the territory of Ukraine and that there cannot be any territorial concessions from Kyiv, Zelensky also called for the release of all Ukrainian prisoners. The President of Ukraine also called for the restoration of "radiation security", given the Zaporizhzhia NPP where fighting is taking place, demanded the introduction of price restrictions on Russian energy resources and the expansion of the grain export initiative.
“If Russia opposes our peace formula, you will see that it only wants war”, Zelensky said.
The United States expects the G20 to condemn Russia's war in Ukraine and its impact on the global economy at the end of the meeting in Bali, a US official said earlier.
Russia is being represented at the forum by Russia's top diplomat, Sergey Lavrov, after Moscow announced that President Vladimir Putin was too busy to attend.
Moscow calls its actions in the neighboring country a "special military operation" to disarm Ukraine and ensure its protection from fascists. Ukraine and the West say the claims of fascism are baseless and the war is unprovoked and aggressive.
What exactly did the Ukrainian president say?
Zelensky said he wants the war to end with a just peace and that now is the time when it should and can be stopped, Reuters reported. The agency said it had obtained a copy of the speech.
"I want this Russian war to end justly and based on the UN Charter and international law. Ukraine must not be pushed to compromise its conscience, sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence. There will be no Minsk-3 agreements. We will not allow time for Russia to strengthen its forces. No one has the right to blackmail the world with a radiation disaster. Russia has turned our Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant into a radiation bomb that can explode at any moment. Russia must immediately withdraw all its troops from the site of the plant," said Zelensky and added: "I propose to extend the scope of the grain deal to the ports of the Mykolaiv region. Price restrictions should be imposed on the energy resources exported by Russia. We should unite around the only realistic model of the exchange of prisoners - all against all .Russia should recognize the territorial integrity of Ukraine and withdraw all its troops from the country. Control of Ukraine on all sectors of our border with Russia must be restored. The world should support the creation of a special tribunal for Russia's war against Ukraine. Russia must compensate Ukraine for the damage done at the expense of its own assets. We need effective security guarantees and a draft treaty called the Kyiv Security Agreement. We need to hold an international conference to affirm the key elements of the post-war security architecture in the Euro-Atlantic space to prevent a repeat of Russian aggression."
"When all anti-war measures are implemented, a document ending the war must be signed by the parties," Zelensky summarized.
Von der Leyen, G20: Russian invasion of Ukraine harms the global economy
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said on Tuesday at the G20 summit in Indonesia that the EU intends to deal with the food and energy crisis triggered by Russia's military invasion of Ukraine.
Von der Leyen said the united bloc plans to create so-called solidarity lines that will help transport agri-food products outside of Ukraine in addition to increasing global aid for food security.
"We must end this war," she said, calling the conflict "not only unjustified, unprovoked and illegal," but also the cause of "suffering in Ukraine" and "damage to the global economy," Reuters reports.
The EC president reiterated his support for a price cap on Russian export gas to stop further price increases, noting that Russia "instead of selling gas - prefers to burn gas".\
The UN passed a resolution requiring Russia to pay reparations for the war in Ukraine
The UN General Assembly passed a resolution supporting a mechanism for Russia to pay reparations for casualties and property destroyed in its invasion of Ukraine.
The non-binding resolution calls for a framework for Russian reparations for the war, which began on February 24 and in which the US estimates more than 200,000 people have been killed or wounded on both sides.
Referring to the invasion of Ukraine, the resolution said that Russia "must bear the legal consequences of all its internationally wrongful actions, including reparation for damages, all damages caused by these actions."
It also called for the creation of an official register of the damage suffered by Ukraine and Ukrainians during the war and caused by Russia.
The Assembly voted 94 to adopt the resolution, with 63 countries abstaining.
That was far fewer than the 143 countries that voted in favor of the Oct. 12 resolution condemning Russia for its "illegal annexation" of Ukrainian territory.
In this vote, five countries were against the document and 35 abstained.
The resolution approved was supported by Ukraine, Canada, the Netherlands and Guatemala.
Among the countries that objected were Russia, China, Cuba, Mali and Ethiopia.
Many countries in Africa, as well as Brazil, India and Israel, abstained.
Ukraine's envoy to the General Assembly, Sergiy Kyslytsya, said there was a precedent for reparations: the $52.4 billion Iraq had to pay for damages from the failed takeover of Kuwait in 1990.
This was monitored by a UN body specially created for the case - the UN Compensation Commission.
The adoption of the resolution is only a partial step towards creating a reparations mechanism for Ukraine.
Ultimately, however, it could lead to Kyiv making claims to hundreds of billions of dollars worth of Russian assets frozen by the US and its European allies since the start of the war.
"People around the world watch helplessly as innocent civilians die as a result of deliberate attacks, as infrastructure, hospitals, schools, homes are destroyed every day. The destruction is insurmountable," the European Union delegation to the UN said in a supporting statement.
"The question is not whether Russia should pay, but rather when it will pay and how much," they added.
Moscow's UN envoy Vassily Nebenzya accused Ukraine and its Western backers of seeking justification to seize the frozen assets in order to use them "to prolong and further exacerbate the conflict".
The EU is moving towards a new official policy towards Russia: isolation
The European Union is seeking to formalize a new strategy for Russia: isolation.
According to an internal draft document seen by Politico, EU officials are discussing new principles to replace the outdated document guiding the bloc's policy toward Moscow.
The most notable updated principle? "Internationally isolating Russia, imposing and enforcing restrictive measures against Russia and preventing their circumvention."
Since Moscow launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February, the EU has focused on adopting and then implementing wide-ranging sanctions targeting much of the country's economy, imports and exports.
But with the war still raging, not everyone agrees that now is the right time to resolve questions about the approach to the EU's long-term relationship with Moscow.
This means that there is likely to be a debate for weeks or months ahead. Those talks officially began Monday, when EU foreign ministers reviewed the draft, seen by Politico, during a meeting in Brussels.
The draft text includes six points intended to replace the previous five guiding principles the bloc adopted in 2016.
Apart from isolation, the document's core principles include "guaranteeing accountability" for any Russian war crimes and "supporting the EU's neighbours" - largely a reference to the Balkan countries, some of which aspire to EU membership. It also mentioned "working closely with NATO allies", "supporting civil society" in Russia and "strengthening the resilience of the EU", a sign of the bloc's energy dependence on Moscow, the rise of cyber attacks and the spread of digital disinformation.
The new draft bears little resemblance to the one the EU has technically been working on since 2016. This document includes a number of principles that are no longer applicable: an end to the conflict between Russian-backed separatists and Ukraine in the east of the country, Russia's selective engagement in issues such as counter-terrorism and supporting people-to-people contacts.
Strengthening civil society and building closer ties with the EU's neighbors were also on the initial list.
Generally speaking, the updated draft should not cause major problems, diplomats said.
One point of contention is the wording, which states that "there can be no return to normal relations" while Moscow attacks Ukraine and violates international law. Diplomats said the Baltic countries, traditionally tougher on Russia, wanted that line to be stronger. But they also added that Germany is satisfied with the current text.
EURACTIV has also seen the document, which was presented by the EU's high representative for foreign policy, Josep Borrell.
The draft text, which was drawn up by the EU's diplomatic service, contains "lines to be accepted" rather than concrete proposals.
After eight packages of sanctions against Moscow, the bloc is currently struggling to identify and close existing loopholes to circumvent the restrictions. The ninth package of sanctions currently appears unlikely to be completed soon, the publication notes.
The new proposals emphasize "support for the EU's neighbors, in particular through the enlargement policy".
Russia's invasion of Ukraine and the change in the current geopolitical landscape have already sparked a revival of the EU's enlargement process after almost a decade of stagnation.
It also led to the realization that the EU's strategic interest in providing a stable and secure environment to its immediate neighbors must go beyond the discussion of who will be the next member.
According to the draft principles, this will also include "facing the global consequences of war".
"Russia, using food as a weapon in its war against Ukraine, is solely responsible for the global food security crisis it has caused," the draft text says.
According to it, "notions of "spheres of influence" have no place in the 21st century and “cannot be part of a future European security order.”
In addition to direct support for Ukraine and the isolation of Russia, the new set of principles calls for "strengthening EU resilience, including energy security and critical infrastructure, by countering cyber and hybrid threats, information manipulation and Russian interference."
"Russia's war against Ukraine makes adaptation of the EU's security and defense more urgent," the document added.
Finally, with an emphasis on the domestic situation in Russia, it lists the need to "support civil society, human rights defenders and independent media inside and outside Russia, while addressing growing threats to security and public order in the EU".
ISW: Russia will enter Donetsk region again
Russia is likely to re-enter Donetsk region after partially withdrawing from Kherson region, the US-based Institute for the Study of War (ISW) reports in its latest analysis of the war and warns that military operations in the western part of the region will, therefore - around Bakhmut and Donetsk, become more intense.
"Russian forces are likely to make gains in these areas in the coming days and weeks, but they are unlikely to be operationally significant," ISW wrote.
"The Russian Ministry of Defense is likely making more specific territorial claims in order to create informational conditions for shaping Russian successes in the Donetsk region and to divert attention from the discontent related to the losses in the Kherson region," predicts the American institute.
Now the fiercest battles are taking place in Donbas, reported the spokesman of the eastern group of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Serhiy Cherevatiy.
ISW cited Russian military bloggers who complained that after arriving in Kherson, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky "was able to move relatively unconcernedly amid Russian strikes in his vicinity." One of them even interpreted this as Russia's reluctance to win the war. He criticized the Russian forces for allowing Zelensky to "set foot on Russian territory."
More key developments in the last 24 hours according to ISW:
- "Putin's chef" and founder of the private military group "Wagner" Yevgeny Prigozhin continues to establish himself as a fiercely independent, Stalinist warlord in Russia, becoming an even more significant figure in the nationalist pro-war community;
- Ukrainian forces continue counteroffensive operations along the "Svatovo-Kremina" route and clash with Russian troops near Bilokhorovka;
- Russian forces are unsuccessfully trying to regain their positions in the northeastern part of the Kharkiv region;
- Russian forces stepped up offensive operations in the Donetsk region and claimed to have captured territory around Bakhmut and southwest of Donetsk city;
- President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin signed additional decrees to refine mobilization protocols and expand military recruitment regulations, possibly as part of ongoing efforts to strengthen Russia's military effort;
- the Russian occupation authorities continued to stimulate the "evacuation" and forced relocation of residents in the occupied territories and undertook efforts to move the occupation elements further from the Dnieper River.
Infantino has called for an end to the war in Ukraine during the 2022 World Cup
The president of the International Football Federation (FIFA), Gianni Infantino, called on Russia and Ukraine to cease fire during the World Cup in Qatar. He delivered the message to the leaders of the Group of 20 (G20) countries and added that the tournament could serve as a platform for achieving peace as it would be watched by nearly 5 billion people.
"My request is for a ceasefire during the World Cup. I propose the organization of humanitarian corridors or anything else that can serve as a starting point for dialogue for peace," Infantino said in his address to G20 leaders.
"You are the leaders of the major countries in the world. You have the means to influence international events," the Swiss also said.
The World Cup kicks off on Sunday, and Russia's war in Ukraine is not the only concern for tournament participants and fans. There are daily protests against the systematic violation of human rights in Qatar and especially of the migrants working in the country.
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