MONALISA VERMA/MILITARY ANALYST
The recently concluded G20 event in India followed by a detailed Delhi Declaration document has come at a time when the world is getting divided into camps like the Cold War era. The declining powers and ascending powers need to find a middle path to resolve most of the pressing issues the world is facing today. This time it was visible that emerging economies and Global South have scored a victory. Truly, the economic balance and power dynamics is shifting within the G20, away from advanced economies of the West to emerging giants, particularly in Asia, Africa and Latin America.
The G20 is the most active and delivering forum at this time and no other forum could match its potential by any standard. It not only controls 86.4 per cent of global trade and commerce, yet its influence is unmatched in all forms.
But this time, there was a crisis of trust and the deficit was growing. Yet, the Delhi Declaration has emerged as a strong ground for all the countries to come forward and play a meaningful role. The attempt to reduce G20 forum into another UN Security Council type body has failed.
The Indian Presidency of G20 was surrounded by speculations that whether China and Russia will soften their positions on Ukraine War or the event will face a Bali type uncertainty or there will be no declaration at all spoiling moths of hard work.
Hectic Indian diplomacy and hard work of diplomats belonging to other countries forged a consensus among the members. That finally delivered the outcome to every one’s surprise. Most diplomats had lost hopes as divergent views were crimping into the stage, engulfing its success.
It started with Russian President Vladimir Putin opting out of the event with a polite note that he does not want to steal the whole limelight of the event due to Russia’s differences with the West. Then, Chinese President Xi Jinping’s decision not to attend the event sparked speculations about possible reasons. Why?
Beijing offered no reasons. Whatever could be the reason, Beijing should not have done this as President Jinping is visible in public, undertaking tours inside China. It is not that he was unmovable. Thus, the talk of his Premier about forging unity in the G20 could be considered as empty words when China does not attach seriousness to such global events.
Today, China needs the world more than the world needs China. It is high time the Chinese leadership should come to senses and take right path. This could create right conditions for global consensus building since China is looking for global center stage.
The world will never become unipolar again. Anybody harboring such dream is going to bite the dust. The world will be multi-polar in nature and diversity will be core of its engagement strategy as human beings will be increasingly integrated leaving behind smaller identities of the past.
Traditionally, Chinese are strong believers of high level visits and top leadership level interactions in their own diplomatic maneuver to find solution to pressing issues. Even President Jinpng is a believer of grandeur. But this time such action was missing. His absence could cost China dearly in future.
The leaders must attend the events even if there is personal dislikes or certain choices as the G20 forum is for the global good where unity and consensus are vital factors. China needs to correct its attitude on this front and in future it should adhere to what it preaches and what it practices. There is no scope for any gap or else no one will trust China. In any human action, the basic fulcrum is trust.
Without the presence of two important leaders, the Summit in Delhi has achieved a remarkable progress on most contentious issues even opening door for Africa to become its 21st member. It is congratulatory for India to fast forward the membership aspiration of African Union.
Now, the point is trust gap is widening within the G20 which is a fact. The Western attempt to isolate Russia may have achieved partial success but it cannot have any direct bearing on the battlefield outcome in Ukraine.
Nothing is permanent, nor can continue to perpetuity. History is full of such anecdotes. At the end, Russia and Ukraine will have to sit together and find a lasting peace. The announcement of long range weapons for Ukraine is easy to garner cheap publicity but the diplomatic consequence could be very high.
Already, the whole world including both the warring parties are suffering despite scoring false victories day in and day out, and if the conflict will extend further then it will create more complications.
Thus, it is high time, the West and Russia should find a middle path. Although diplomacy is a deceiving game, the sincerity towards a just settlement of the conflict will be in the interest of every one. The origin of all human problems or conflicts bears one clear signature – lack of trust and justice.