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Some countries back out of plans to attend Swiss-hosted Ukraine conference — report

One EU diplomat said the number of withdrawals could rise

MOSCOW, June 12. /TASS/. Some countries backed out of plans to attend the "peace conference" on Ukraine in Switzerland, prompting the number of participating nations to drop from 93 to 78, according to the Ukrainian service of Radio Liberty (designated in Russia as a foreign media agent and included in the register of undesirable organizations).

The report, which cites unidentified EU diplomats, didn’t name the countries that pulled out of the conference. One diplomat said the number of withdrawals could rise.

Sergey Nikiforov, a spokesman for Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky, declined to give the number of participating countries.

"We would not like to state the final number," he said on Rada television on Tuesday.

Switzerland plans to hold a conference on Ukraine on June 15-16 in Burgenstock. 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. According to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, the event is a "path to nowhere," and Russia does not see the West's desire for fair play. Moscow has repeatedly said it has never refused to seek a peaceful settlement with Kiev.