As peace talks between Russia and Ukraine are progressing, Deputy President David Mabuza says the South African government calls for parties to intensify their diplomatic efforts in order to find a lasting solution to the conflict.
The Deputy President said this when he responded to oral questions before the delegates of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) on Wednesday afternoon, as the Ukraine conflict entered its third week.
“South Africa emphasises respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of states. As a nation born through negotiations ourselves, we are always appreciative and confident of the potential that dialogue has in resolving conflict,” he said.
The Deputy President’s comments come as Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is reported to have said that peace talks between negotiators from both countries are starting to sound realistic.
Addressing the permanent and non-permanent delegates of the NCOP, the Deputy President said: “Therefore, South Africa calls upon parties to devote increased efforts in diplomacy and to finding a solution that will help to avert the escalation of positions.”
President Cyril Ramaphosa recently had a call with the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin to express SA’s support to the ongoing negotiation efforts between Russia and Ukraine.
South Africa believes that diplomacy is always the most sensible pathway in averting the outbreak of conflict and war.
“It should be pursued even when we are already in a situation of war so that we end it and engage in post-conflict reconstruction measures,” said Mabuza.
South Africa continues to call for the de-escalation of conflict, cessation of hostilities and for the parties “to work together towards building trust and confidence by intensifying existing peace mechanisms and dialogues to achieve long-lasting solutions to the conflict”.
“We can rest assured that South Africa will continue to support peaceful diplomatic negotiations as an essential tool to achieve peace. We remain hopeful that the doors of diplomacy shall never be closed even when conflict has escalated to this level,” he said.
He said South Africa was proud and happy that Russia and Ukraine were locked in a meeting to try and find one another and resolve their challenges.
Source: South African Government News Agency