News / Europe

BRICS Neutrality on Ukraine a Diplomatic Win for Putin

Russia's President Vladimir Putin (l) with Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff during an agreement signing ceremony at Planalto Presidential Palace in Brasilia, Brazil, July 14, 2014.
Russia's President Vladimir Putin (l) with Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff during an agreement signing ceremony at Planalto Presidential Palace in Brasilia, Brazil, July 14, 2014.
Reuters

A summit of the BRICS group of emerging market countries will abstain from criticizing Russia's recent actions in Ukraine, Brazilian officials said, a diplomatic victory for President Vladimir Putin.

The summit statement will make only a passing reference to Ukraine and will echo the neutral stance adopted by Russia's fellow BRICS countries - China, India, Brazil and South Africa - at the United Nations, according to Brazilian diplomats organizing Tuesday's meeting in Fortaleza.

Facing efforts to isolate Russia by leading Western nations, the BRICS summit provides Putin with a welcome geopolitical platform to show he has friends elsewhere, economic powers seen as shaping the future of the world.

“Russia wins by having Putin at an international meeting where Ukraine is not an issue. It implies that the BRICS reject Western efforts to turn it into a pariah,” said Oliver Stuenkel, an expert on the group at Brazil's Getulio Vargas Foundation.

The BRICS refusal to criticize Russia for annexing Crimea and stirring up rebellion in eastern Ukraine shows that the United States and Europe can no longer co-opt emerging powers into adopting their positions, Stuenkel said.

The BRICS is a diverse group known for its anti-Western rhetoric and a multipolar view of the world that Putin is advocating. Yet none of its members support Russia on Ukraine, and they all abstained when the U.N. General Assembly passed a resolution criticizing the annexation of Crimea in March.

“Abstention is always a big win for Russia when it comes to criticism of relations with its neighbors, and this is what we are going to see at the Fortaleza summit,” said Marcos Troyjo, director of the BRICLab center at Columbia University in New York.

The geopolitical platform provided by the BRICS has become more important for Putin since some doors began to shut on Moscow, such as membership of the G-8 club of leading industrial nations.

“Having been spurned by the G-7, Putin can turn to the BRICS and say, 'Well, I have another peer group and they are the rising powers of the future,”' said Edward Verona, a former president of the U.S.-Russia Business Council and senior advisor at strategic advisory firm McLarty Associates in Washington.

Putin is on a Latin American tour aimed at raising Russian self-esteem and thumbing his nose at the United States, starting with a visit to communist Cuba, Washington's longtime ideological foe in the region.

Seeking to extend Russian influence in Latin America, Putin signed a nuclear energy cooperation deal with Argentina to bolster trade ties.

On Sunday, he attended the World Cup final in Rio. Russia will host the next soccer tournament in 2018.

In Fortaleza, the BRICS leaders will launch a development bank aimed at providing developing countries with an alternative source of finance from the World Bank and International Monetary Fund dominated since World War II by the United States and other Western nations.

The bank, which will have initial capital of $50 billion, is expected to be headquartered in Shanghai. Russia is vying for the first five-year presidency.  

You May Like

US, Brazil's Climate-Change Plan: More Renewables, Less Deforestation

Officials say joint initiative on climate change will allow Brazil, United States to strengthen and accelerate cooperation on issues ranging from land use to clean energy More

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Reporting from Somali capital for past decade, Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal has been working at one of Mogadishu's leading radio stations covering parliament More

After Nearly a Century, Voodoo Opera Rises Again

Opera centers on character named Lolo, a Louisiana plantation worker and Voodoo priestess More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: michael from: Ukraine
July 15, 2014 3:59 PM
Mr Putin always amazes me. His allies Include Belarus, Iran, North Korea, Cuba, and a few other who are they countries. He is trying to get support from someone because the major players have shunned him. He keeps pushing the envelope from taking bombers to the limit and within US air space, Buzzing warships in the Black Sea to harboring criminals. This does not sound like a rational man. I would like to make something clear. Russians believe they can win a war against the USA and actually want a war to prove their might. While Russia is number two as far as military might it is not considered a super power. Russia is in second place but that is a very far and distant second place. To put things into perspective let us image Russia in a 100 yard dash with the USA. the USA runs a 9.5 sprint and russia a 11.2 . In the track world that is still second but the race was comical. Russia has approx 5500 airplanes and the USA 15500. The Usa has 12 Aircraft carrier battle groups (will be) Russia 1 and that is old and fairly useless. Then we will talk about the pilots , better that we do not. Putin may read this and have me thrown in prison for 10 years. But I do have one word (VODKA) how Russians love it ))) Russia should be careful for what it wishes. If there is a war it will be the end of Russia,

by: Terry
July 15, 2014 11:10 AM
I am somewhat surprised that VOA commented rather objectively on this particular news item instead of pushing a U.S. or N.S.A. / C.I.A. / State Dept. bias. I am now inclined to check out VOAS once in a while, being careful-of course-to analyze the report (s) to see if it is objective and in in keeping with the reality and facts of the world and / or presenting valid, opposing views....

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishui
X
Abdulaziz Billow
June 30, 2015 2:16 PM
Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video US Gay Marriage Ruling Yields Real-life Impact

Friday’s landmark Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage throughout the United States is an outcome few thought possible just years ago, and shows a nation that increasingly tolerates and even celebrates the hopes and aspirations of gay people. VOA’s Michael Bowman spoke to a same-sex couple that will benefit from the high court ruling, and to a Christian scholar who is apprehensive about its potential consequences for America’s faith community.
Video

Video Syrians Flee IS Advance in Hasaka

The Syrian government said Monday it has taken back one of several districts in Hasaka overrun by Islamic State militants. But continued fighting elsewhere in the northern city has forced thousands of civilians from their homes. In this report narrated by Bill Rodgers, VOA Kurdish Service reporter Zana Omer describes the scene in Amouda, where some of the displaced are taking refuge.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video S. Korea Christians Protest Gay Rights Festival

The U.S. Supreme Court decision mandating marriage equality nationwide has energized gay rights supporters around the world. Gay rights remain a highly contentious issue in a key U.S. ally, South Korea, where police did a deft job Sunday of preventing potential clashes between Christian protesters and gay activists. Kurt Achin reports from Seoul.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Nubians in Kenya Face Land Challenges

East Africa's ethnic Nubians have a rich cultural history that dates back thousands of years, but in Kenya they are facing hardships, including the loss of lands they have lived on for generations. They say the government has reneged on its pledge to award them title deeds for the plots. VOA's Lenny Ruvaga reports.
Video

Video Syrian Refugees Return to Tal Abyad

Syrian refugees in Turkey confirm they left their hometown of Tal Abyad because of intense fighting and coalition airstrikes, not because Kurdish fighters were engaged in ethnic cleansing, as some Turkish officials charged. VOA Kurdish Service reporter Zana Omer, in Tal Abyad, finds that civilians coming back to the town agree, as we hear in this report narrated by Roger Wilkison.
Video

Video Military Experts Question New Russian Tank Capabilities

Russia has been showing off its new tank design – the Armata T-14. Designers claim it is 20 years ahead of current Western designs - and driving it feels like playing a computer game. But military analysts question those assertions, and warn the cost could be too heavy a burden for Russia’s struggling economy. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.
Video

Video In Syrian Crisis, Social Media Offer Small Comforts

Za’atari, a makeshift city in Jordan, may be the only Syrian refugee camp to tweet its activities, in an effort to keep donors motivated as the war in Syria intensifies and the humanitarian crisis deepens. Inside the camp, families say mobile phone applications help hold together families that are physically torn apart. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.

VOA Blogs