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African peace mission to visit Ukraine and Russia

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa (R) stands with Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in Cape Town   -  
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South Africa

South African president, Cyril Ramaphosa, announced on Tuesday that six African leaders are planning to travel to Ukraine and Russia to help find a solution to the war.

Ramaphosa added that Russian president Vladimir Putin and the Ukrainian leader Zelenskyy had agreed to receive the African peace mission in their respective capitals.

"The two leaders that I had occasion to speak to, that is President Putin and President Zelenskyy, agreed that they would be willing to receive a mission of the African heads of states in both Moscow and Kyiv. I agreed with both of them that we would commence with the preparations for the engagements with these African heads of state. The Secretary General of the United Nations was also briefed and so is the African Union office also briefed", said the South African president.

The initiative was drawn up by Zambia, Senegal, the Republic of Congo, Uganda, Egypt and South Africa.

The announcement came a day after Ramaphosa said South Africa had been under "extraordinary pressure" to pick sides in the conflict, following accusations from the United States that Pretoria supplied weapons to Moscow, a move that would break with its professed neutrality.

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