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19 Dec, 2023 11:52

No Russia at Davos – ambassador

It’s a loss for the World Economic Forum, not for Moscow, Moscow's envoy in Switzerland says
No Russia at Davos – ambassador

Russia will again be absent from the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos early next year, Russian Ambassador to Switzerland Sergey Garmonin has confirmed.

The high-profile gathering of international business and political figures is scheduled to take place at the Swiss Alpine resort between January 15 and 19.

“Russia will not be represented at the World Economic Forum in Davos, since the organizers didn’t send invitations to the Russians last year and this year,” Garmonin told TASS news agency on Tuesday.

Russia skipped Davos 2023 after the organizers said its participation at the event would be “unwelcome” due to Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine. According to the WEF, its relations with Russian firms sanctioned due to conflict were frozen.

The ambassador said he didn’t think Russia would lose anything by missing out on the WEF again in 2024. “In my opinion, only the forum itself loses from such a decision,” he said. According to Garmonin, Moscow “will continue to solve… problems in other formats and on other platforms.”

The diplomat also criticized plans by the Swiss organizers to hold a meeting dedicated to discussions about Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky’s ten-point peace plan to settle the conflict with Russia. Meetings like this “are divorced from reality and lack any added value. They will not bring peace any closer,” he argued.

Zelensky’s “peace formula” calls for Russia’s withdrawal from all territories claimed by Kiev, reparations from Moscow, and a war crimes tribunal.

Ukraine “is in no position to put forward any ultimatums to Russia, and everyone understands this perfectly well,” Garmonin insisted. “The Kiev regime, which has no hopes of achieving even the slightest success on the battlefield, is denying the obvious and feeding the West with unfeasible projects in its attempts to solicit yet another military assistance package.”

Russia’s Deputy UN Ambassador Dmitry Polyanskiy said last week that Kiev had squandered its chances of a “favorable” agreement with Moscow. “Any possible deal now will be reflecting its capitulation,” he wrote on X (formerly Twitter.)

During his Q&A session on Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin insisted that “there will be peace [in Ukraine] when we achieve our goals.” The aims of the Russian military operation “are not changing,” and include the “denazification and demilitarization of Ukraine, its neutral status,” Putin reiterated.