Moscow [Russia], November 23: Russian President Vladimir Putin told the leaders of the Group of Twenty (G20) on Wednesday that it was necessary to think about how to stop "the tragedy" of the war in Ukraine, some of his most placatory remarks to date about the conflict.
Putin's decision to send troops into Ukraine in February 2022 triggered Europe's deadliest conflict since World War Two and the gravest confrontation between Russia and the West since the depths of the Cold War.
Addressing G20 leaders for the first time since the start of the war, the Kremlin chief said some leaders had said in their speeches that they were shocked by the ongoing "aggression" of Russia in Ukraine.
The remark, although clearly intended for international consumption, is one of Putin's most dovish on the war for months and contrasts with his sometimes long diatribes about the failings and arrogance of the United States.
Fighting in Ukraine since February 2022 has killed or wounded hundreds of thousands, displaced millions more and devastated swathes of the country's south and east.
Putin used the word "war" to describe the conflict instead of the current Kremlin term of "special military operation".
The conflict in eastern Ukraine began in 2014 after a pro-Russian president was toppled in Ukraine's Maidan Revolution and Russia annexed Crimea, with Russian-backed separatist forces fighting Ukraine's armed forces.
About 14,000 people were killed there between 2014 and the end of 2021, according to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, including 3,106 civilians.
He also said it was surely shocking that doctors in Gaza were having to perform operations on children without anaesthesia.
Source: Fijian Broadcasting Corporation