According to an announcement made by the South African presidency on Tuesday, the African leaders who are attempting to help bring an end to the war reached an agreement on Monday to send a mediation mission to Russia and Ukraine in the middle of June. Cyril Ramaphosa, the President of South Africa, mentioned a month ago that his Russian and Ukrainian counterparts, Vladimir Putin and Volodymyr Zelensky, had agreed to host this peace mission that consists of six African leaders.
During their virtual meeting on Monday, they “agreed to propose elements” to Russia and Ukraine “for a ceasefire and lasting peace in the region,” according to a statement from the South African president’s office. The statement continued by saying, “The (African) heads of state confirmed their readiness to visit Ukraine and Russia in mid-June,” but it did not provide a specific date for the trip. According to the statement, the foreign ministers of the six countries in question will “finalise the elements of a roadmap to peace” next week.
Mr. Ramaphosa then claimed during a joint press conference with his Portuguese counterpart, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, that the meeting on Monday “confirmed that we are now at a stage where we are going to go to Kiev and Moscow.” Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa is Mr. Ramaphosa’s counterpart in Portugal. In addition, the president of South Africa stated that “our mission is a mission of peace, and we want to call it a path to peace.” He went on to say that the leaders of Africa would “seek a commitment from both sides that they too should seek to end this conflict by peaceful means” and that this would be their goal.
He also said that the leaders of Russia and Ukraine “must explain to us their point of view on the war as well as their minimum requirements to end the conflict.” “We will be able to give our own point of view as Africans on how we perceive the impact of this war on Africa in terms of food prices, grain prices, and fuel prices, as well as on Europe and the rest of the world, because it has become a rather globalised type of conflict,” Ramaphosa also stated.
After thanking Mr. Ramaphosa for his participation in the effort, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa emphasised the significance of “listening to both sides and telling them what the African vision is of a war that is not just a European war, it’s a globalised war.” The president of South Africa revealed a month ago the identities of the members of the mission, which include the heads of state for the countries of Congo-Brazzaville, Egypt, Senegal, Uganda, and Zambia.
In his capacity as the current Chairman of the African Union, Azali Assoumani, Head of State of the Comoros, was present at the meeting that took place on Monday. Rising grain prices and the economic fallout from the conflict between Russia and Ukraine have had a disproportionately negative impact on Africa.