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Switzerland would support Russian involvement in peaceful settlement in Ukraine — minister

Ignazio Cassis stressed that Switzerland wanted Russia to be represented at the Burgenstock conference from the very start

BUDAPEST, May 23. /TASS/. The peaceful settlement process in Ukraine should be multilateral and Russia should participate even though its delegation won’t come to the conference in the Swiss city of Burgenstock in June, Swiss Foreign Minister Ignazio Cassis said.

"Russia must participate in the peace process, and Switzerland has always been unequivocal about this," the minister said at a news conference in Budapest following talks with his Hungarian counterpart Peter Szijjarto. "The peace process cannot be one-sided, one must take reality into account."

Cassis said Switzerland wanted Russia to be represented at the Burgenstock conference from the very start.

"Russia stated three times that it did not want to be invited because, in its opinion, the conference would only discuss the Ukrainian peace plan," the minister said.

He said he believes this approach is misguided, as invitations to the conference say that discussion should be given to Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky's peace plan and other peace plans.

"But we are looking for a way to engage Russia," Cassis saidю

He also said he supports a peaceful settlement of the Ukrainian conflict.

Hungary's Szijjarto previously said that the country welcomes the conference because of its peaceful nature, but doubts it will be effective as Russia will not be represented. Budapest has not yet announced whether it will participate in the conference and, if so, at what level.

The Swiss Foreign Ministry earlier said Bern had invited more than 160 delegations to the Burgenstock conference, including delegations from G7, G20 and BRICS countries. According to Swiss officials, Russia wasn’t invited. President Vladimir Putin said that Russia will not insist on taking part if the country is not wanted at the conference.