President Zelensky has accused “some” Arab leaders of ignoring the horrors of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, urging them to “take an honest look” at the reality of the war.
Speaking during a surprise trip to the Arab League summit in Saudi Arabia on Friday, he said: “Unfortunately, there are some in the world and here, among you, who turn a blind eye to those cages and illegal annexations.”
He also highlighted how the war in Ukraine has affected Muslims in the Crimean Peninsula, which was annexed by Russia in 2014.
“Crimea was the first to suffer under the Russian occupation and until now most of those who are subjected to repression in occupied Crimea are Muslims,” he said.
💬 Speech by President #Zelensky at the Arab League Summit. pic.twitter.com/QmbeWANBwX— KyivPost (@KyivPost) May 19, 2023
Zelensky’s surprise trip to the summit in the Red Sea coastal city of Jeddah was his first to the Middle East since Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022.
He made a point of thanking the host nation, thanking Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman personally.
“The President thanked the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia for supporting the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine,” Zelensky's office said, adding that he had invited Mohammed bin Salman to visit Ukraine.
“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia plays a significant role and we are ready to take our cooperation to a new level,” he tweeted after his arrival.
Beginning my first-ever visit to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to enhance bilateral relations and Ukraine’s ties with the Arab world. Political prisoners in Crimea and temporarily occupied territories, the return of our people, Peace Formula, energy cooperation. KSA plays a…— Володимир Зеленський (@ZelenskyyUa) May 19, 2023
Zelensky said that he also has various bilateral negotiations planned. During these talks, the president plans to gain as much support as possible for his Peace Formula among the Arab states.
Also on the agenda is the protection of the Muslim community of Ukraine and the release of all political prisoners in Crimea.
Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammed bin Salman previously acted as a mediator in the Russian-Ukrainian conflict. Last year, Prince Muhammad scored a diplomatic triumph by securing the release of 10 foreigners captured by Russia in Ukraine.
Zelensky also thanked Iraq's Prime Minister Mohamed Shia al-Sudani for his country's "solidarity" with Ukraine as well as its "firm position in supporting the sovereignty and territorial integrity of our state."
The Ukrainian president also held talks with Oman's Asaad bin Tarik Al Said and heads of the delegations from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Kuwait, with whom he discussed Ukraine's peace formula – the full withdrawal of Russian troops and the restoration of Ukraine's state borders.
Among other attendees at the summit is Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who is supported by the Kremlin.
Al-Assad had been absent from the Arab League’s annual meeting for over a decade since crushing a popular revolution and plunging Syria into a brutal and years-long civil war.
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Comments ( 1)
Zelenski is a antimoslem, thier soldjurse fire qoran, the word god, they are idol in hand west, they kill people and childrens and women for weapon company,