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South Africa’s president, Cyril Ramaphosa, has blamed the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, (NATO) for fueling the crisis that eventually led to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
“The war could have been avoided if NATO had heeded the warnings from amongst its own leaders and officials over the years that its eastward expansion will lead to greater, not less instability in the region,” Ramaphosa stated during a session in the South African parliament on Friday.
Speaking further on the conflict, he explained that NATO ignored the accord it had reached that had kept the balance between the blocs involved.
‘This was also based on agreements that had been arrived at in the past by various parties.’
He, however, condemned the measures taken by Putin in invading Ukraine on February 24th saying “while it is important to articulate the various causes of the conflict and advocate for peacebuilding measures, we cannot, however, condone the use of force or violations of international laws.”
Putin had launched a surprise attack on Ukraine stating that its goal was the protection of the people who during eight years suffered from abuse and genocide from the Kyiv’s regime,
Putin called on Ukrainian soldiers to lay down their arms and justified the operation by claiming the government was overseeing a “genocide” in the east of the country.
The Kremlin had earlier said rebel leaders in eastern Ukraine had asked Moscow for military help against Kyiv.
Ramaphosa expressed deep concerns over the effects of the war on the African economy and South Africa at large.
Like other countries, South Africa is concerned about the direct impacts on our own economy through financial markets and inflationary pressures that would come about through food prices increases and fuel price increases as well
He also drew attention to the need for a dynamic solution to global peace indicating a crack in the structure of the United Nations.
‘The conflict in Ukraine demonstrates the need for a multi-lateral approach to issues of peace and security.” he said.
“It also demonstrates the weaknesses in the structure and practices and architecture of the United Nations, the composition of the UN council, in particular, does not reflect the realities of the prevailing global landscape.”
Ramaphosa also revealed that Putin had assured him of a smooth negotiation process although, he had not yet talked with Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelenskyy, but that he wanted to.