Russia kicked off three days of high-level summitry on July 8, hosting leaders of several Asian and developing countries that it hopes will form the foundation of a new, non-Western world order.
Leaders of countries including China, India, Brazil, South Africa, Pakistan, Iran, and most of the Central Asian states gathered in the central Russian city of Ufa for simultaneous summits of the BRICS countries and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). The two groups have been key instruments in Moscow’s strategy to bolster its international position in the wake of its estrangement from the West and the crisis in Ukraine, and the joint summits are an opportunity for Russia to show that, in spite of the efforts of European countries and the United States, it is not isolated.
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Joshua Kucera is a Washington, DC-based freelance writer who specializes in Central Asia, the Caucasus and the Middle East. He is the editor of EurasiaNet's Bug Pit blog.