U.S., 6 others say they support APEC after Russian invasion protest



(Reuters) – Representatives of seven nations, together with those that walked out of an Asia-Pacific commerce ministers assembly in Bangkok to protest Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, stated on Sunday they support the group and host nation Thailand.

Representatives of the United States, Australia, Canada, Chile, Japan, the Republic of Korea, and New Zealand stated in a joint assertion that they had “grave issues” over the humanitarian disaster in Ukraine.

“Reaffirming the significance of the rules-based worldwide order that underpins an open, dynamic, resilient and peaceable Asia-Pacific area, we strongly urge Russia to right away stop its use of power and utterly and unconditionally withdraw all of its navy forces from Ukraine,” the nations stated.

Representatives from Canada, New Zealand, Japan and Australia joined the Americans, led by U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai, in strolling out of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) assembly on Saturday.

The walkout came about whereas Russian Economy Minister Maxim Reshetnikov was delivering remarks on the opening of the two-day assembly of the group of 21 economies.

The delegations from 5 nations that staged the protest returned to the assembly after Reshetnikov completed talking, a Thai official stated.

(Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by Paul Simao)

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