On November 27, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov held discussions with former South African President Thabo Mbeki, who arrived in Moscow to take part in the 9th Primakov Readings International Scientific and Expert Forum. Mbeki is a politician, the second President of South Africa (1999–2008).
Both reviewed various aspects of the Russia-South Africa’s bilateral strategic partnership, and also a number of current issues on the international agenda, with emphasis on the developments in Ukraine and the situation in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
Prior to their brief meeting, Lavrov delivered a speech and answered series of question from participants’ gathering, which is held as the annual Primakov Readings forum of experts and academics, initiated in 2015. Now, it is one of the largest international discussion platforms on issues of world politics, security and economics. Reputable Russian and foreign scientists, politicians, diplomats, journalists, and representatives of the expert community are traditionally invited to participate in the Readings.
In the context of the tectonic changes taking place, the global geopolitical landscape, the topic of the current meeting – “Horizons of Post-Globalization” – was especially relevant.
The sessions provided for within the framework of the event cover a wide range of topics that are very important for all of humanity: “Political risks for global energy markets”, “The Middle East: the tragedy and challenges of the unfinished conflict”, “China-USA: rivalry, interdependence, global context”, “ Central Asia, the South Caucasus and Russia in search of new development models”, “Russia-Africa: from program guidelines to practical results”, and many other sessions and discussions on a number of topical issues.
Representatives came from Azerbaijan, Armenia, Bangladesh, Egypt, India, Iran, Kazakhstan, China, Cuba, Nigeria, Oman, Syria, the USA, Turkey, Uzbekistan, Uganda, Finland and South Africa participated.
Lavrov spoke, at length, over about Russia’s views on fundamental global development trends, specifically the ongoing rise of a farer multipolar world, developments on Russia-Ukraine and Palestinian-Israeli conflicts.
Referring to many global events that are unfolding dynamically and shaping the multipolar order, Lavrov said that it was a tested-time for strength and adequacy in the face of new realities. It outlines a new polycentric architecture now taking shape, the process may take a long time to attain perfection.
There are emerging new centers, steadily strengthening their sovereignty and looking for a fairer, equitable distribution of global benefits, and this encourages countries in different regions to forge solidarity, according his interpretation.
Lavrov quoted President Vladimir Putin when he said at the last extraordinary G20 summit held Nov. 22 that “a significant share of global trade, investment and consumer activity is shifting to Asian, African and Latin American regions, where the majority of the world population lives.”
The unbalanced and unfair model of globalization is becoming a thing of the past. It is a common interest for many new centers to accept new concept based on principles of international law, cultural diversity and the right to determine their own paths of development.
Primakov Readings forum is dedicated to the memory of outstanding Russian statesman, diplomat and academic Yevgeny Primakov. Primakov was a Russian politician and diplomat who served as Prime Minister of Russia from 1998 to 1999. During his long career, he also served as Foreign Minister, Speaker of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union, and chief of the intelligence service and later became member of the Presidium of the Russian Academy of Sciences.