Kremlin says Switzerland conference on Ukraine is futile

kremlin says switzerland conference on ukraine is futile

FILE PHOTO: Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov attends Russian President Vladimir Putin's annual end-of-year press conference and the Direct Line question and answer session, at Gostiny Dvor Exhibition Centre in Moscow, Russia December 14, 2023. Sputnik/Gavriil Grigorov/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

MOSCOW (Reuters) - The Kremlin said a planned summit that Switzerland hopes will pave the way for a peace process in Ukraine will be futile without the participation of Russia.

"Without Russia, discussing security issues that concern us is absolutely futile," Kremlin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the Russian newspaper Izvestia.

"Most likely, it will be just empty scholasticism with no prospect of getting at least some tangible result," Peskov said.

Russia has previously said it saw no point in a conference being planned by Switzerland to discuss how to end the Ukraine conflict and to which Moscow is not currently invited.

Switzerland said on Wednesday that more than 50 countries have signed up for the summit due to be held June 15-16 near the Swiss city of Lucerne.

It is still trying to persuade more countries from the so-called Global South as well as China to sign up.

“A balanced approach by the Chinese may dignify any conference, from our point of view, but this will not add to the effectiveness of this particular event,” Peskov said.

Countries in South America, Africa and the Middle East were among those that confirmed they would come, according to Swiss President Viola Amherd, who in January agreed to host the summit at the behest of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.

(Reporting by Moscow,; Writing by Lidia Kelly in Melbourne and Noele Illien in Zurich; editing by Guy Faulconbridge and Lincoln Feast.)

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