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French President Emmanuel Macron and China’s President Xi Jinping gesture during a press conference in Beijing.

Blondet Eliot/ABACA via Reuters Connect

Most of the world prefers not to choose

As the US-China rivalry deepens, many countries – including close US allies – have made it clear that they don’t want to be forced to choose between the world’s two largest economies. They are engaging in an increasingly delicate dance to try and maintain constructive relations with both.

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India's G-20 agenda overshadowed by Ukraine war

Carl Bildt, former prime minister of Sweden, shares his perspective on European politics from Delhi, India.

What was the outcome of the foreign ministers meeting of the G-20 countries here the other day?

Well, the Indians are trying to get the G-20 to focus on food security, energy security, to be the voice of the Global South in a complicated global situation. But of course, the meeting was dominated by the controversy over Russia's war with Ukraine. And while the Indonesian chairmanship last year managed to get the agreement on the text on that particular issue, this time the Russians, followed by the Chinese, are distinctly not. And the end result was there was no agreement. The Indians, anyhow, issued a communique noting that the Russians and the Chinese did not object and tried to focus the meeting as much as they could on issues that they considered important, rightly so, for the Global South in terms of the effect of the conflict.

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picture of Planet Earth.

Annie Gugliotta

Ukraine’s war and the non-Western world

A new poll provides more evidence that Western and non-Western countries just don’t agree on how best to respond to the war in Ukraine.

Most Americans and Europeans say their governments should help Ukraine repel Russian invaders. Many say Russia’s threat extends beyond Ukraine. People and leaders in non-Western countries mainly want the war to end as quickly as possible, even if Ukraine must surrender some of its land to Russia to bring peace.

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A motorist rides past a hoarding decorated with flowers to welcome G20 foreign ministers in New Delhi, India, March 1, 2023.


What We’re Watching: Tense G-20 talks in India, Finland’s fence-building, China’s economic activity, Chicago’s mayoral runoff

An awkward G-20 summit in Delhi

When G-20 foreign ministers met in New Delhi on Thursday, it was, as expected, an awkward affair. While India, the current G-20 chair, had hoped that the bloc would focus on issues of importance to the Global South, like climate change and the global food crisis, the agenda was disrupted by US-Russia bickering over the war in Ukraine, which US Secretary of State Antony Blinken called "unprovoked and unjustified war", while Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov blamed the West for not doing enough to extend a deal to allow Ukrainian grain exports that will soon expire. Of course, focusing on anything else was going to be a tall order when the top diplomats of the US, China, and Russia were all in the same room. (President Biden and Xi Jinping last met at the G-20 summit in Bali in November, though there was no bilateral meeting between the US and Russia.) In a sign of how fractured Washington's relationship remains with these two states, Blinken on Wednesday again urged Beijing not to send lethal weapons to Russia and canned China’s peace plan for Ukraine. As for US-Russia relations … need we say more? India, which has gone to painstaking lengths to maintain its neutral status over the past year, says it thinks the group can get stuff done. But at a meeting last month of G-20 financial heads, the group couldn’t even agree on a joint statement.

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Europe Grapples With Insecurity, Instability, & Proxy War | Davos 2023 | Quick Take | GZERO Media

Europe grapples with insecurity, instability, and proxy war: Davos 2023

Ian Bremmer's Quick Take: Hi everybody, Ian Bremmer here from Davos. We're just kicking off the annual forum in Switzerland, its 53rd Annual Meeting. And here I am in the cold, but not absolutely frigid, to talk with a bunch of global leaders and 52 heads of state showing up. 2,700 world leaders are going to be here for the week, and that means that you can get a hell of a lot of work done in a relatively short period of time.

Big issues to be discussed. Well, first and foremost, we are in Europe, and that means they are feeling a lot more negatively about the geopolitical environment than we are across the Atlantic. Why? Because the Russian invasion is affecting them directly. It's the permanent end of a 30-year long peace dividend for Europe. It means they are all dramatically ramping up their security spend. They think they're going to have to for the foreseeable future. It means that energy prices, even though they've managed to do a lot on that and they're lower than people expected, they're still a lot higher for the foreseeable future than they would otherwise want. And also, of course, because there are massive numbers of refugees that are being hosted in Europe still from Ukraine, and the concerns about insecurity, instability, what it means to be fighting a proxy, hot war against the world's largest nuclear power right across the border, that's something that people are still trying to grapple with on the mountains here.

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Putin attends a meeting with Senegal's President and African Union chair Macky Sall in Sochi.


Are the West’s efforts to isolate Russia doomed?

In response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the US and Europe have launched a concerted campaign to punish Russia economically and isolate it politically. The West wants to send a strong message to other powers that might be tempted to violate the so-called rules-based international order. But many developing countries across Asia, Africa, and Latin America are reluctant to go along, blunting the effectiveness of this campaign. We spoke to Eurasia Group expert Christopher Garman to better understand the reasons for their skepticism, and what the consequences are likely to be.

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