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BRICS summit adopts hybrid mode; PM Modi’s virtual attendance possible

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The eagerly awaited BRICS Summit, originally planned for Johannesburg on August 22-24, will now be held in hybrid mode. Russian President Vladimir Putin has opted to attend the Summit virtually, while Russia will be represented in person by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

The adoption of a hybrid mode for the BRICS Summit has sparked speculation whether Prime Minister Modi might choose to attend virtually as well. Sources indicate that some participants may opt for the virtual mode in such circumstances, but it remains uncertain whether Modi will attend the summit in-person or virtually.

The BRICS Foreign Ministers’ meeting was conducted virtually, with External Affairs Minister Dr. Jaishankar joining his counterparts from China, South Africa, Russia, and Brazil.

According to South African diplomat Anil Sooklal, almost 40 countries have shown interest in becoming part of the BRICS group of nations.

In addition to the 22 countries that have formally applied for membership, numerous nations, including those from the Global South, are eager to join BRICS. Countries such as Argentina, Iran, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Cuba, Congo, Comoros, Gabon, and Kazakhstan have expressed their interest in becoming BRICS members.

Regarding the upcoming BRICS Summit, which is scheduled for next month, speculations about President Putin attending in person were put to rest. Kremlin’s spokesperson Dmitry Peskov confirmed that President Putin will participate in the Summit via video conference, ensuring his full-fledged involvement. Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, on the other hand, will attend the summit in person.

Comment and Counter

A diplomatic exchange occurred between German Vice-Chancellor Robert Haeck and Russia’s Ambassador to India, Denis Alipov, during Haeck’s visit to India. Haeck urged democracies globally to take a firm stance on denouncing Russian aggression in Ukraine, which drew a response from Ambassador Alipov suggesting that Haeck should focus on India-Germany relations as intended.

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