On Tuesday, April 18, Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva denounced Russia’s breach of Ukraine’s territorial integrity and once more asked for mediation to stop the war. The Ukrainian government reacted negatively to this peace initiative.
Speaking with President Klaus Iohannis of Romania, Lula argued that neutral countries must band together to assist in mediating a settlement between Russia and Ukraine.
His remarks followed his weekend statement that Western friends were extending the battle by arming Ukraine, which caused a stir among them.
A spokeswoman for the White House charged Lula with “parroting Russian and Chinese propaganda without looking at the facts.” Furthermore, the White House claimed on Tuesday that Lula’s “tone was not one of neutrality.”
An individual with knowledge of the situation in Washington claimed that US officials informally expressed the Biden administration’s anger to their Brazilian colleagues regarding Lula’s criticism of the arming of Ukraine. In response to a query from Reuters regarding the alleged contacts, the White House did not respond right away.
Celso Amorim, Lula’s foreign policy advisor, joined the verbal spat by labeling the US critique as “absurd” and insisting that Brazil did not share Russia’s viewpoint.
Amorim stated to Globo TV that “Brazil defends the territorial integrity of Ukraine.” But he continued: “The ideal peace for the Ukrainians and the Russians will not materialize as long as there are no discussions. Concessions are necessary.
On Monday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov paid a visit to Lula in Brasilia and complimented him for his efforts to promote peace, noting that Brazil and Russia had similar perspectives on the ongoing war in Ukraine.
To put an end to the conflict, which started when Russia invaded the neighboring nation in February 2022, Lula has positioned himself as a peacemaker. His suggestion asks for a coalition of countries not participating in the conflict to engage both Russia and Ukraine in negotiations. It is based on Brazil’s history of non-intervention and neutrality.
Ukraine asked Lula to visit the war-torn nation on Tuesday to witness the effects of the Russian invasion firsthand after criticizing his suggestion for treating “the victim and the aggressor” equally.
According to Oleg Nikolenko, a spokesman for the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry, Ukraine is interested in Lula’s attempts to end the violence. However, he disagreed with Lula’s assertion from the weekend that arming Kyiv was extending the war.
The idea put forth by Lula that the conflict was started by both Russia and Ukraine was likewise rejected by the European Union. All funding, according to EU foreign affairs spokesperson Peter Stano, is intended for Ukraine’s “legitimate defense.”
The Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, flatly rejected Lula’s idea that Ukraine might sacrifice Crimea, which Russian soldiers captured in 2014 when he said that Russia should return to the region it invaded last year.
Zelenskyy has encouraged world leaders to enact his 10-point peace plan, which calls for the return of Ukraine’s original borders with Russia in addition to the departure of Russian forces and an end to hostilities.
Photo: Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva (L) and Romanian President Klaus Iohannis (R), EPA-EFE/ANDRE BORGES