Biden wants Russia to be expelled from G20

General view shows an empty table before G20 heads of state and government attend a roundtable meeting during the G20 summit in Rome, Italy, October 30, 2021. (Reuters photo)

US President Joe Biden wants Russia to be expelled from the Group of 20 major economies forum over its military operation in Ukraine, says US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen.

Speaking at a House Financial Services Committee hearing on Wednesday, Yellen also warned that the United States would boycott some G20 meetings if Russian officials want to attend them.

She said that Russia’s actions in Eastern Europe will have “enormous economic repercussions in Ukraine and beyond.”

"President Biden's made it clear, and I certainly agree with him, that it cannot be business as usual for Russia in any of the financial institutions," Yellen said. "He's asked that Russia be removed from the G20, and I've made clear to my colleagues in Indonesia that we will not be participating in a number of meetings if the Russians are there."

Indonesia holds the presidency this year and will host a finance meeting in July and a leaders summit in November. The group’s finance ministers and central bank governors are also slated to meet in person and virtually in Washington in April on the sidelines of International Monetary Fund and World Bank meetings.

Meanwhile, Moscow has said that President Vladimir Putin plans to attend the G20 summit in Bali this year and has received China's backing to stay in the group.

The latest remarks by Yellen raised questions about the future of the G20, which has been the premier global economic and policy forum since the 2008-2009 financial crisis.

This comes as the US Senate reached a deal on a package to end normal trade relations with Russia and codify a Russian oil ban. The chamber is expected to pass the two bills on Thursday.

Ukraine and its Western allies, including the US, have accused Russia of committing war crimes in Bucha, a suburb of the Ukrainian capital.

Russia has dismissed the accusations that it carried out a civilian massacre in Bucha, terming it a “monstrous forgery” staged by the West to discredit it.

Yellen said, “Treasury is committed to holding Russia accountable for its actions so it cannot benefit from the international financial system.”

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