Ramaphosa arrives safely in Kyiv Ukraine amid Polish security conundrum
Ramaphosa is now in the Ukrainian capital Kyiv, for deliberations as a member of the African Peace Mission - with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
African peace keeping delegation in Ukraine. Picture – GCIS
The Presidency spokesperson Vincent Magwenya confirmed there were no threats to the president’s safety despite his security team being detained in Warsaw over documents and permits.
Ramaphosa is safe
“I would like to assure all South Africans that there has been no compromise whatsoever to the president’s safety due to the impasse that involved the charter flight with the presidential protection services team and the media,” said Magwenya.
Watch: Vincent Magwenya updates the nation on Ramaphosa’s Ukraine visit
“Our officials are engaging with their Polish counterparts to resolve the impasse so that the pps team and the media can proceed with the journey as planned”.
Ramaphosa, who arrived in Warsaw on Thursday (around the same time as the security team’s SAA charter), paid a courtesy visit to Polish President Andrzej Duda, before departing on his official plane for the south of Poland.
Poland shares borders with both Ukraine and Russia and is deeply affected by the regional conflict.
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Ramaphosa in Ukraine
President Ramaphosa is now in the Ukrainian capital Kyiv, for deliberations as a member of the African Peace Mission – with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
“The Mission comprises the leaders of South Africa, Zambia, the Comoros, Congo Brazzaville, Egypt, Senegal and Uganda, as representative of a continent that has felt the adverse economic impact of the conflict,” explained the Presidency.
Ramaphosa has, in recent weeks, been in conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Zelenskyy, China’s President Xi Jinping and leaders of Brics countries and the Secretary-General of the United Nations to facilitate a peaceful resolution to the violent onslaught.
South Africa has maintained a “non-aligned” stance on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and is facing heated resistance from American lawmakers seeking sanctions on the country over its relationship with Russia.
Ramaphosa is expected to leave Kyiv and continue to St Petersburg, Russia, where the African delegation will engage with Putin on Saturday, 17 June.
He is scheduled to return home on Sunday, 18 June.