‘Not G19’: Why Indonesia won’t bar Russia from the G20

Indonesia is “in consultation” with other members of the G20 amid growing calls for Russia to be barred from the economic forum’s November summit in Bali.

Some members of the intergovernmental group of 19 countries and the European Union have been threatening to boycott the event if Russian President Vladimir Putin and delegates from Moscow are allowed to attend, leaving Indonesian President Joko Widodo, who is better known as Jokowi and holds the annual presidency this year, in a potentially fraught position.

According to Angelo Abil Wijaya, the head of project management and research at Y20 Indonesia, the official youth engagement group to the G20 Leaders Summit, the stakes could not be higher.

“Indonesia has invested a lot in its presidency at the G20, and has prepared for this presidency for years,” he told Al Jazeera.

“Indonesia wants its presidency to be successful. In order to be successful, the G20 should be attended by 20 of its members. Of course we want to see the success of the G20 Indonesia, not G19, or other combinations of Gs that include less than 20 members.”

The G20 not only includes the developed economies such as the United States, the United Kingdom and Japan, which have moved to impose tough sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, but also countries such as China that have taken a more ambivalent approach.


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