UN Secretary-General António Guterres said it was right to visit Russian President Vladimir Putin and that one needed “to deal with those that cause the problem or that can solve the problem” to find solutions.
“It makes full sense to talk to the leader of the Russian Federation; it makes full sense to talk to any other relevant actors in the present crisis," he said at a press conference in Vienna.
The UN chief said the Putin meeting had produced “concrete results” and resulted in the evacuation of civilians trapped in the Ukrainian city of Mariupol.
“I think the lives that were rescued of civilians that were in the bunkers of Mariupol deserve that I meet anybody in any part of the world without having any doubt that that is the right thing to do,” Guterres said when asked by reporters whether his Moscow visit had been the right thing to do.
Guterres was at the news conference with Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer and Austrian Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg Wednesday,
Nehammer, who in April became the first European Union leader to meet with Putin since the invasion of Ukraine, also defended his decision to travel to Moscow, saying, “there cannot be one talk too many, only one too few.”