G20 Foreign Ministers Gather in Rio as Group’s Relevance in Defusing Tensions Is Put to the Test

The G20 has the potential to defuse international tensions, being a group that unifies the G7 Western powers and most of the BRICS nations representing the multipolar world.

It represents 85% of the global GDP, 75% of global trade, and two-thirds of the world population. It is perhaps the perfect forum – other than the UN – to discuss world tensions and ways to improve multilateral organizations.

However, as Foreign Ministers gather in sunny, unbearably hot Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, this potential does not seem primed to operate in the near term.

With continued fighting between Russia and Ukraine, the war in Gaza, and various other hot spots around the world, diplomats are not optimistic an upgrade in global governance will advance easily within the group of the world’s largest economies.

The host, Brazilian President Lula da Silva, will try to steer the group in his own direction, with ‘reform of global governance’ a top priority for the G20 this year, along with the inevitable fable of ‘curbing climate change’ and the mostly symbolic goal of ‘reducing poverty.’

Reuters reported:

“‘We are living in a world with no governance and the proliferation of conflicts is unprecedented. There is a lack of governance to deal with global challenges’, diplomat Mauricio Lyrio, Brazil’s G20 sherpa, told reporters on Tuesday.

He said there is consensus today on the need to reform the United Nations, where Brazil has advocated the expansion of the Security Council, a proposal that has not gained momentum due to the resistance of nations with veto power since the world body was created after World War Two.”

There’s a general lack of agreement when it comes to changes at the United Nations.

“‘This meeting will essentially be a venting session to build the case for multilateral reform and diagnosing the problem’, a European diplomat told Reuters.”

Lula’s accusations of atrocities by Israel in Gaza – which he called genocide – have triggered a diplomatic crisis with an Israeli reprimand and Brazil recalling its ambassador.

That will certainly damage his ability – not very great to begin with – as a consensus builder.

But people who can move the needle in the geopolitical reality will also be there: Blinken and Lavrov.

“The two-day meeting held at a Rio marina will start on Wednesday with an overview of the global situation and its conflicts, including the wars in Ukraine and Gaza.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will face each other across the table for the first time since they spoke briefly face-to-face at last year’s foreign ministers’ meeting in New Delhi.”

Lula’s bid to make the G20 a space for finding common ground suffered with his heavily criticized comments on the war in the Middle East.

France24 reported:

“The comments drew outrage in Israel, which declared him ‘persona non grata’, and could overshadow any bid to de-escalate the conflict via the G20.

‘If Lula imagined he was going to propose peace resolutions on Israel or Ukraine, that just got swept off the table’, international relations specialist Igor Lucena told AFP.”

The Foreign Ministers will discuss global governance reform that, is a favorite issue for Brazil, which wants a greater voice at international institutions.

“‘The number and gravity of conflicts has returned to the level of the Cold War. That brings new urgency to the issue’, said Brazil’s top diplomat for G20 political negotiations, Mauricio Lyrio.

‘We need to adapt the international system to prevent new conflicts’, he told journalists Tuesday. ‘Now, we’re just putting out fires’.”

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The post G20 Foreign Ministers Gather in Rio as Group’s Relevance in Defusing Tensions Is Put to the Test appeared first on The Gateway Pundit.

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