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'The plight of the poor is forgotten' says Pandor as BRICS ministers gather in Cape Town

@BRICSza - Twitter South African Foreign minister Naledi Pandor, speaking during a meeting of FM of BRICS economic bloc in Cape Town, South Africa Friday June 2, 2023.   -  
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Naledi Pandor, ministre sud-africaine des Affaires Etrangères prenant la parole au 2eme jour des échanges des chefs de la diplomatie des BRICS, le 2 juin 2023 à Cape Town.

South Africa

On the second day of talks between the foreign ministers of South Africa, China, India, Brazil and Russia, diplomats from a dozen other countries were invited.

Known as the Friends of the BRICS, this group of states includes Saudi Arabia, Iran, Gabon and the Comoros.

The heads of diplomacy of the BRICS countries met to discuss the accession process for future members of their bloc.

In a speech on Friday 2 June in Cape Town, South Africa's head of diplomacy criticised the attitude of the world's most industrialised countries.

"As countries gathered in this room today, we together represent a significant majority of the world's territory, population and economy", said the South African foreign minister.

The global South

Russia's invasion of Ukraine has led to soaring food and energy prices in much of the world, exacerbating food insecurity in poor countries.

"We are looking at a world that has failed to cooperate," said Naledi Pandor.

"We are aware that the industrialised countries have not kept their commitments to developing countries. They have continually tried to shift their responsibilities onto the countries of the global South."

"The plight of the poor is forgotten and the major powers are engaged in a global conflict. We cannot allow localised conflict to replace the ambition to eradicate global poverty, the greatest global challenge," she added.

"So we must find a way to bring global attention and resources back to this troubling fact."

Naledi Pandor did not answer any questions about a possible appearance by the Russian president at the BRICS summit in August.

Pretoria's official invitation to President Vladimir Putin to come to South Africa for the summit was issued before an International Criminal Court (ICC) arrest warrant was issued for Mr Putin.

As a member of the ICC, South Africa is theoretically supposed to arrest the Russian president if he enters its territory.

The organisation, which currently has 5 member states, is calling for a "rebalancing" of the world order.

Pretoria, which claims to hold a neutral position and to want to favour dialogue, has not condemned Moscow since the start of the war in Ukraine, which worries some of its Western partners.

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