Indonesia is chairing the Group of 20 major economies and has faced pressure from Western countries to withdraw its invitation to Putin over his country’s invasion on Ukraine, which his government calls a “special military operation”. The Indonesian President Widodo has sought to position himself as a mediator between the warring countries and has travelled to meet both Ukraine and Russia’s Presidents.
He travelled to Kyiv and Moscow in late June to meet his Ukrainian and Russian counterparts, Volodymyr Zelensky and Vladimir Putin, in a diplomatic effort to help ease the ongoing war’s impact on the international community.
This week, Mr Widodo said both countries have accepted Indonesia as a “bridge of peace”.
He told Bloomberg: “Xi Jinping will come. President Putin has also told me he will come.”
The Chinese foreign ministry did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment. Neither did Indonesia presidential palace officials immediately respond to requests for comment.
Leaders of major countries, including US President Joe Biden and Boris Johnson’s successor, are set to meet in Indonesia’s resort island of Bali in November.
Indonesia has also invited Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelensky.
Meanwhile, Indonesia is standing at the “peak” of global leadership, President Joko Widodo said in his annual state address on Tuesday, as he hailed the country’s growing stature amid efforts to bridge peace between Russia and Ukraine, and the nation heading several world multilateral bodies.
He was the first Asian leader to meet both Zelensky and Putin since the beginning of the invasion in late February.
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He said: “In 2022, we hold the presidency of the G20, an international forum made up of the world’s largest economies. Next year, we will assume the chairmanship of ASEAN.
“This indicates that we are at the peak of global leadership.”
The President added that the international community’s trust in Indonesia has “increased sharply,” which in turn gave the country a big opportunity to build global partnerships.
With its population of 280 million, Indonesia is one of the world’s biggest economies, posting consistent annual growth of around 6 percent.