Source: Ukraine’s Zelensky to visit Saudi Arabia ahead of peace talks

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky speaks during a press conference with Prime Minister of Belgium Alexander De Croo (Not Pictured) after their meeting. Zelensky is visiting Belgium to sign a bilateral security agreement in Brussels. Dirk Waem/Belga/dpa
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky speaks during a press conference with Prime Minister of Belgium Alexander De Croo (Not Pictured) after their meeting. Zelensky is visiting Belgium to sign a bilateral security agreement in Brussels. Dirk Waem/Belga/dpa
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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky will visit Saudi Arabia on Saturday to drum up support for a planned peace summit in Switzerland next month, a diplomatic source at the Ukrainian embassy in Riyadh said.

Zelensky will arrive in the Saudi port city of Jeddah for a short visit during which he will meet Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the monarchy’s de facto ruler, and other senior officials, the source added on Thursday.

The visit is part of Zelensky’s efforts to secure wide participation in the Swiss conference.

Switzerland has invited around 160 countries to a summit on June 15-16 to discuss possible ways to achieve lasting peace in Ukraine.

Russia, which invaded Ukraine more than two years ago, has not received an invitation.

Saudi Arabia has tried to maintain a neutral stance in the Ukraine war.

The oil-rich kingdom, a traditional ally of the United States, also maintains good ties with Moscow, and has repeatedly offered to mediate between Russia and Ukraine.

Last August, Saudi Arabia hosted international security talks on Ukraine.

In May last year, Zelensky attended an annual Arab League summit also held in Saudi Arabia.