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U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris speaks on stage at the 2024 Munich Security Conference on February 16, 2024 in Munich, Germany. (Johannes Simon/Getty Images)
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U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris will attend the upcoming global peace summit to be held on June 15-16 in Switzerland, the White House said on June 3.

The announcement comes a few days after it was reported President Joe Biden would likely miss the event as it clashes with a campaign fundraiser he is set to attend alongside, among others, George Clooney, Julia Roberts, and Jimmy Kimmel.

"The Vice President will underscore the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to supporting Ukraine’s effort to secure a just and lasting peace, based on Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and the principles of the U.N. Charter," the White House said in a statement.

"The Vice President will reaffirm support for the people of Ukraine as they defend themselves against ongoing Russian aggression."

The statement also said U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan would be attending.

Reports that Biden would not attend the event prompted President Volodymyr Zelensky on May 28 to say his absence would  "only be met by an applause by Putin, a personal, standing applause by Putin."

"I believe that the peace summit needs President Biden, and other leaders need President Biden because they will look at the U.S.’s reaction," Zelensky said.

Saudi Arabia does not plan to be present at the event because Russia will not be there, it was reported on June 2, despite the country hosting an international summit on the peace formula in August 2023.

On June 2, Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said Hungary has not decided whether to take part in the peace summit as "not all sides of the war" will be present at the event.

Zelensky has accused Russia of "blackmailing some leaders and trying to block the participation of some countries."

The peace summit will be held on June 15-16 in the Burgenstock resort in Switzerland.

Ukraine hopes the summit will address several key areas, such as energy security, the exchange of captives, the return of deported children, global food security, and other topics.

Some 107 states and international organizations have confirmed their participation in Ukraine's global peace summit, President Volodymyr Zelensky's spokesperson, Serhii Nykyforov, said on June 3 on national television.

Elsewhere on June 3, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning responded to an accusation from Zelensky on June 3, pushing back on Zelensky's claims that China is trying to sabotage the upcoming global peace summit.

The previous day, Zelensky accused China of "working hard" to prevent countries from participating in the summit, which is scheduled to be held in Switzerland on June 15-16.

China has never "fanned fire or fueled the flames" of Russia's full-scale war in Ukraine, Mao said.

"We believe that we can get the understanding and support of all parties," she added, saying that China's position on the summit has been "open and transparent."

China allegedly declined an invitation to participate in the summit as the terms it required to attend were not met, Reuters reported on May 31, citing several sources with direct knowledge of the matter.

China responds to Zelensky’s accusation of interference in global peace summit
China has never “fanned fire or fueled the flames” of Russia’s full-scale war in Ukraine, said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning.

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