South Africa Gearing Up to Host All BRICS Leaders in August, Including Putin, Says Sherpa

Earlier this year, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov announced that the 15th BRICS Summit will be held in Durban, South Africa, in late August.

In March, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov stated that no decision had been made yet regarding the participation of Russian President Vladimir Putin in the forthcoming BRICS event.

South Africa is looking forward to all BRICS leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, to personally participating in the August summit, Anil Sooklal, Sherpa of the Republic of South Africa in BRICS, told Sputnik.

“We have confirmation that all leaders will attend the summit,” Sooklal said.

Although in March, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that no decision had been made yet regarding the participation of Russian President Vladimir Putin in the forthcoming summit, nevertheless, the sherpa stated that South Africa is expecting Putin to take part.

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Sooklal said that, since Putin had received the invitation sent by South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, and no disavowals of any kind was expressed, the African nation is preparing for a full-fledged summit.

South Africa’s BRICS sherpa has also raised concerns over the US-led West’s pressure on Russia, including unilateral sanctions against Moscow, stressing that the United Nations (UN) sanctions are the only ones considered by the African nation.

The sherpa noted, that South Africa does not accept any sanctions, which are not approved by the UN, what’s more, Russia-South Africa relations are now stronger than ever.

He also stressed that cooperation amongst those in the BRICS has only strengthened and become more intense due to pressure from the US-led West, adding that many countries are expressing their eagerness to join the association.

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Earlier this year, during a meeting with the regional heads of office of the Russian Foreign Ministry, the Kremlin’s top diplomat, Sergey Lavrov, stated that the number of countries applying to join the BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) had surged to 20.

In January 2023, Naledi Pandor, South Africa’s Minister of International Relations and Cooperation said that BRICS was working on criteria for nations that want to join the bloc and a decision on accepting newmembers may be made by the end of 2023.

Recently, before the kickoff of the 17th Session of the South Africa–Russia Joint Inter-Governmental Committee, Naledi Pandor especially stressed the level of South Africa-Russia relations.

“While we are friends with many all over the world, we cannot become sudden enemies at the demand of others,” the South African diplomat said.

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BRICS is an informal association of the world’s major developing economies.

The four founding members of BRICS – Brazil, Russia, India, and China – originally set up the bloc in 2005 (the association was known as BRIC at the time).

After South Africa joined in 2010, its name was changed to BRICS. Potential candidates for accession include such countries as Algeria, Argentina, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey.

These nations have expressed their willingness to join the bloc over the past months and years.

Algeria is amongst those African countries which have officially applied to join the association.

Furthermore, in mid-March, Zimbabwean politician and governing Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front (ZANU–PF) party speaker Christopher Mutsvangwa stated that his country was also eager to join BRICS.


By Sputnik News

Published by Sputnik Globe



Republished by The 21st Century

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of




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