Chinese President Xi Jinping has called for the immediate release of all civilians who have been detained during the Israel-Hamas war. This call was made during a summit organized by BRICS nations, where Xi spoke through video addressing leaders from Brazil, Russia, India, South Africa, and Iran. He emphasized the urgency and importance of an immediate cease-fire and cessation of hostilities. Xi stressed that all parties involved should stop violence and attacks against civilians and reiterated the need for the release of detainees.
China’s leader also emphasized the need for heightened humanitarian assistance for the population in Gaza. He pledged that China would provide essential supplies and assistance as needed. Xi further called for a halt to forced relocations and the indiscriminate targeting of civilians in Gaza. While no joint declaration was agreed upon during the summit, this event is yet another step in the ongoing efforts by BRICS nations to balance the influence of the United States.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi did not attend the event; instead, he sent External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar. This action highlighted some division within BRICS regarding the Gaza crisis. Earlier, Modi had expressed support for Israel in the conflict with Hamas, further indicating discord within the group.
Xi had previously called for an immediate cease-fire in the war in October. His sentiment was echoed by other leaders during the summit, including South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, who highlighted the lengthy and devastating nature of the crisis and called for a swift resolution.
Meanwhile, China hosted talks with officials from Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Egypt, the Palestinian Authority, and others in an effort to ease hostilities related to the Gaza crisis. These discussions aimed at stopping further military escalation and providing necessary humanitarian aid. In his speech, Xi urged the international community to take concrete measures to prevent the conflicts from escalating and destabilizing the entire Middle East. He called for the prompt organization of an international peace conference to build consensus for peace in the region.
Leaders and officials from Saudi Arabia, Iran, Egypt, Ethiopia, Argentina, and the United Arab Emirates, who have been invited to join BRICS from the following year, also participated in this significant online summit.
This content was curated from Bloomberg Businessweek and updated with additional details about Narendra Modi skipping the summit.