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Wang Yi urges full play to strategic significance of ‘greater BRICS’

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BEIJING: Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Monday called for a full play to the strategic significance of “greater BRICS” to build the platform for cooperation among emerging markets and developing countries into one of openness and inclusiveness.

In the face of the battle between forces promoting a multipolar world and those upholding unipolar hegemony and between economic globalization and anti-globalization sentiments, “we should follow the trend of history and stand on the side of fairness and justice to make the right choices,” Wang told those in attendance at the first BRICS foreign ministers’ meeting after the group’s expansion in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia.

Originally comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, the BRICS group welcomed Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates as new members during the bloc’s summit in August 2023. Their membership took effect on January 1, 2024.

“Looking to the future, the ‘greater BRICS’ group should shoulder responsibilities and take action,” said Wang, who is also a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee.

He called for more efforts to build the group into a new type of multilateral cooperation mechanism among emerging markets and developing countries that features openness and inclusiveness.

Wang said the group should have firm confidence in multilateralism and draw up a new blueprint for future global development.

It should take the lead in safeguarding the international system with the United Nations at its core, resolutely resist acts that undermine the international order and trample on international rules and push for the realization of an equal and orderly multipolar world and inclusive economic globalization, he said.

Wang urged strengthened coordination and cooperation within the group to light up a shining “South moment” and place development at the center of important international agendas.

A scene from the BRICS foreign ministers’ meeting in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, June 10, 2024. /Chinese Foreign Ministry

The Chinese foreign minister said the group should be determined to maintain peace and security and provide new impetus to the political settlement of hotspot issues.

“No matter how complex the situation is, we cannot give up dialogue and consultation. No matter how acute the conflict may be, we must remain determined to seek a political solution,” said Wang.

He called for efforts to secure an immediate, comprehensive and sustainable ceasefire in Gaza, alleviate the humanitarian crisis and prevent the spillover of the effects of the conflict, support Palestine’s full membership in the United Nations and restart the two-state solution to realize lasting peace in the Middle East.

As the Ukraine crisis continues to drag on, China supports the timely convening of a genuine peace conference recognized by both the Russian and Ukrainian sides, with the equal participation of all parties and a fair discussion of all peace options, said Wang.

BRICS should adhere to the principles of independence, objectivity and impartiality, promote the international community’s consensus on peace and oppose inciting a “new Cold War,” he said.

Wang also urged a commitment to openness, inclusiveness and win-win cooperation to bring BRICS cooperation to a new level.

The BRICS foreign ministers issued a joint statement following Monday’s meeting.