Germany's Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock: 'I think it is extremely important that we never again make ourselves so dependent on a country that does not share our values'

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock praised President Cyril Ramaphosa's peace mission to Russia and Ukraine alongside other African heads to resolve the ongoing conflict.

Ahead of leaving for South Africa to meet her counterpart Naledi Pandor on Tuesday, Minister Baerbock issued a statement on Monday, disclosing that during the visit she would like to talk about how "South Africa can leverage its weight to help bring an end to Russia's aggression in Ukraine and to preserve the UN Charter."

"Being a good listener and identifying opportunities for closer cooperation – that's what I'll be doing during my trip to South Africa," the minister said in the statement, as per the official Federal Foreign Office website.

She went on to share that as an African opinion leader in the United Nations, the G20 and COP, South Africa is one of Germany's key partners when it comes to addressing global issues including food security, climate change, and healthcare.

"In all of these areas, I see time and again that when the country of Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu raises its voice against injustice, the world listens," Minister Baerbock said, adding that this is the reason why she wants to talk about how South Africa can help to bring Russia-Ukraine conflict to an end.

The minister noted that President Ramaphosa's African peace initiative made it clear that this ongoing conflict is not just impacting Europe but also Africa.

Minister Baerbock went on to share that South Africa is clear proof that the country's foreign policy, interests, and values are not opposed to one another, but instead depend on one another.

She added, "It is precisely the country's vibrant democracy, its free and vocal press, and its independent judiciary that make South Africa an attractive location for investment and generate the kind of deep and multifaceted cooperation that only two democracies can enjoy."

The foreign minister of Germany also noted that this cooperation will also help the people in a palpable way - be it through the expansion of mRNA vaccine production in South Africa or Germany's investments in "green technologies of the future so that South Africa can overcome its energy crisis and at the same time reach its climate goals in a socially equitable way."

Minister Baerbock also emphasized "intensifying" South Africa and Germany's relations as they both share the same geopolitical interest.

Talking about the dramatic developments in Russia, Baerbock believes it is essential to meet South African partners to understand how they look at the current global situation.

Germany is not the only country that is helping South Africa in various ways to get over the energy crisis. Previously, Ramokgopa revealed that South Africa has sought China's help in resolving the ongoing energy crisis by asking for solar panels, battery storage, wind turbines, and renewables technology.

Aside from this, South Africa came under fire last month when the country was accused of supplying weapons to Russia against Ukraine. Since the conflict began, South Africa has taken a neutral stance.