Friday, April 16, 2010

IBSA, BRIC Summits Call For Cooperation Between Nations

India on 15 April joined Russia, Brazil, China and South Africa in holding back-to-back summits of IBSA (India-Brazil-South Africa) and BRIC (Brazil-Russia-India-China) that underscore a shared quest for greater collective influence within the changing geometry of the international system.

Building Strong Moral Force
The two groupings -- of which Brazil and India are common members -- were originally meant to meet here over two days in the rising powers' answer to the G7 platform of top industrialized countries. But with China's President Hu Jintao cutting short his visit because of an earthquake in Qinghai, the IBSA forum and the BRIC group both met within hours of each other on April 15.

Calling IBSA "a strong moral force in today's unsettled world," Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who arrived here from Washington on 14 April, said the significance of the grouping extended well beyond the bilateral ties between its three members. Among the areas he identified for coordination within IBSA were greater access to developed markets, reform of the United Nations, climate change and terrorism. Brazil was represented at the summit by President Lula da Silva and South Africa by President Jacob Zuma.

Iran's Nuclear Issue
The IBSA nations further advocated a peaceful and negotiated solution to Iran's controversial nuclear programme and asked Tehran to fully cooperate with the IAEA and UN Security Council Resolutions.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh along with Lula and Zuma recognized the right of Iran to develop nuclear programs for peaceful purposes in keeping with its international obligations.

They called upon Iran to fully cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and comply with the relevant UNSC resolutions. They also reiterated the need for a peaceful and negotiated diplomatic solution of the issue.

Coherent International Commitment on Afghanistan
With regard to Afghanistan, the leaders expressed concern at the continuing deterioration of the military and political situation in Afghanistan, the growth of terrorism, including cross-border terrorism promoted by Taliban and Al-Qa'ida, and its links with international terrorism. They reiterated, in this context, that a coherent and a united international commitment, both in its developmental and security/military aspects, remained of paramount importance.

In this context, they also emphasized the need to strengthen the Afghan National Security Forces. They agreed to continue to cooperate and coordinate their efforts to impart greater strength to the process. They reaffirmed their commitment to a democratic, pluralistic and stable Afghanistan. They underlined the centrality of the regional aspect in the reconstruction and development process in Afghanistan.

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