Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba is focusing on the global spillover effects on the energy and food crises of the Ukraine war during his meetings with counterparts on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly, according to UN diplomats familiar with the matter.
Kuleba is doing this with a specific goal in mind: To try and maintain solidarity among the nations who support Ukraine by recognizing the impacts that the war is having on their country, the diplomats said.
While the devastation in Ukraine is immense, Ukrainian government officials believe that highlighting how the war’s impact outside the borders of Ukraine is most likely to drive continued support for Ukraine in the face of Russian aggression.
The food crisis is a central spillover effect that is being felt globally, and the Ukrainians are pushing for the current grain deal to be maintained and extended, diplomats said.
Kuleba also plans to privately shame the leaders of countries who are getting cheap oil from Russia, by saying that they are benefiting from Ukraine being victimized, one diplomat said.
Meanwhile, US and European officials feel confident that this week will fuel continued support for Ukraine, US and European officials said.
There are a few factors contributing to that expectation. First, Ukraine’s gains on the battlefield have put the wind at their back because it wouldn’t be a good look for countries to back away from supporting Ukraine while they are having success. Second, the comments by Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian President Narendra Modi last week give further momentum to holding the line in terms of support for Ukraine, officials explained.
Some background: Last week, Modi told Putin that “today’s era is not of war” – a significant rebuke from a leader who has stayed largely silent on the conflict throughout its more than six months duration.
On Thursday, during a meeting with the Chinese leader, Putin acknowledged Xi’s “questions and concerns” about the war.