Asia-Pacific leaders seek unity on war, economic ills, virus

Pacific Rim leaders were striving to find common ground on the war in Ukraine and other dire threats to humankind in an annual meeting that began Friday at a heavily guarded venue in Thailand’s capital.

The annual summit of the 21-member Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum is the last of three back-to-back meetings of world leaders in the region.

On Thursday, foreign and commerce ministers were completing their yearlong effort to form a consensus on an array of often-divisive issues.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said he saw signs of a “convergence” in views about how to move forward in solving the world’s problems.

Whether that might enable Thailand as host of the meetings to produce a final joint statement remained to be seen: consensus generally is required among the 21 APEC members, including Russia. None of the earlier APEC preparatory meetings this year issued statements due to disagreements over whether to mention the conflict.

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