The BRICS Allure: Understanding Nations’ Aspirations to Join

According to South Africa’s top diplomat in charge of ties with the bloc, more than 40 states have indicated interest in joining the BRICS group of nations. A day after South Africa announced that Vladamir Putin of Russia will not be attending the BRICS summit scheduled for August 22–24, Anil Sooklal and representatives from the department of foreign affairs addressed journalists in Johannesburg’s major commercial hub.The summit of nations attempting to counterbalance the perceived hegemony of the U.S.-led West in international affairs is centered on the question of how quickly and how far to extend the club, which is made up of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa.

Sooklal claimed that there were “an equal number of countries that have informally expressed interest in becoming BRICS members… (including) all the major global south countries” in addition to the 22 countries that have officially requested membership. Argentina, Iran, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Cuba, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Comoros, Gabon, and Kazakhstan have all indicated interest in joining the BRICS, which South African leaders want to become a champion of the developing world. Hosting the summit had been a challenge for South Africa. If Putin appeared for alleged war crimes committed by Russia during its invasion of Ukraine, which Putin denies, the International Criminal Court (ICC), which issued a warrant against him in March, would have to detain him.

However, the host announced on Wednesday that Sergei Lavrov, the foreign minister of Russia, would be attending in the president’s place. Western nations have criticized South Africa for what they perceive to be an unduly sympathetic approach towards Russia, a longtime supporter of the ruling African National Congress (ANC), which has fought against white minority rule since it was a liberation movement. South Africa insists that its position on the Ukraine war is neutral and that it should be resolved through talks. Speaking to the media on Thursday, diplomats claimed that South Africa’s recognition as a mediator in the dispute by both parties, as opposed to Western nations’ sabre-rattling, had validated their position.

A peace offer put forth by President Cyril Ramaphosa and several African leaders last month was heard by Russia, but it was ultimately rejected. Has isolation and censure brought us any closer to peace? No,” said Zaheer Laher, acting director general for global governance for South Africa. However, participation would move the parties closer to a negotiation.




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