‘I’m not disappointed, I’m shocked’: Lula’s anger at Zelenski’s absence from the meeting they had arranged in Japan

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Brazil’s President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva showed his disappointment on Monday after a scheduled meeting in Japan with Volodimir Zelenski, who defended him, was suspended. “I’m not disappointed, I’m angry“, admitted Lula without hesitation, after the “disappearance” of the leader of Ukraine.

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“We waited, we received information that was late, and in the meantime I assisted the leader of Vietnam. He left, we waited and Ukraine has not appeared. Here’s what happened,” Lula angrily explained to the São Paulo newspaper. Folha.

Lula, who attended a G7 meeting in Hiroshima, told Brazilian media he perceived a certain “disinterest” on the part of his Ukrainian counterpart “in negotiating peace”.

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Lula held a press conference after the G7 meeting in Japan.  Photo: AP

Lula held a press conference after the G7 meeting in Japan. Photo: AP

“If you had another more serious problem, another important meeting, I do not know. The concrete fact is that here, in this room, a meeting with Zelenskyj was scheduled for 3.15 pm. never appeared“, ruled Lula annoyed.

He also said he was not “disappointed” by the absence of the meeting -as the leader of Eastern Europe had suggested to the press the day before-, but “annoyed”: “I’d like to meet him and discuss the issue. But look, Zelenski is of age, he knows his stuff“, he continued.

Subsequently, the Brazilian president tried to dampen his disappointment, adding that “although the meeting has not taken place now, there will be other opportunities in the future”.

“I am trying, with India, China, Indonesia and other countries, to build a bloc to attempt a policy of peace in the world,” Lula said. And she added without euphemisms: “We are a group of southern countries who want to find the peace that the north cannot achieve

In this sense, the Brazilian leader received criticism last month when he accused the United States of “encouraging” the war.

Criticism that was renewed this Monday when he reiterated that US President Joe Biden is sending the message that “Putin must surrender and pay for everything he has destroyed.” “That message doesn’t help,” Lula said.

The “disappearance” of Zelensky

Zelensky, who emerged from the G-7 summit in Hiroshima with renewed diplomatic support and promises of more military aid, had sought a face-to-face meeting with Lula, who has been accused of being “soft” on Russia over its invasion.

The Ukrainian president was part of the G7 in Japan, but arrived late for the meeting set up with Lula.  Photo: Reuters

The Ukrainian president was part of the G7 in Japan, but arrived late for the meeting set up with Lula. Photo: Reuters

Both leaders said that “there were scheduling issues that prevented them from meeting”. However, after the meeting failed, the Ukrainian president was sarcastic “maybe the scheduling problem disappointed Lula,” he said.

Lula said his team had scheduled a meeting with Zelenski for Sunday afternoon. However, the Ukrainian leader was late and said his schedule was filled later.

Zelensky won considerable support from G7 leaders at the summit, including long-awaited US backing for access to F-16 fighter jets.

It has also attracted non-G7 host countries, such as Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has vowed to do “everything possible” to resolve the conflict.

By contrast, no similar signs of support have emerged from Brazil.

Lula said he did not understand the point of meeting with Zelensky right now because neither the Ukrainian president nor Russian president Vladimir Putin is showing any sign of wanting peace.

“For now, both are convinced they will win the war,” he concluded.

Source: Clarin

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