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War in Ukraine is revealing a new global order – and the ‘power south’ is the winner

By Nathalie Tocci

20 Sep 2023 · 4 min read

informed Summary

  1. The term "global south" is increasingly being used to refer to a diverse group of countries, including developing nations, former colonies and economic powerhouses like China and India. These countries are seeking to have their independent voices heard in global affairs, rather than being shaped by the West.

It came as an unpleasant surprise to many in Europe and North America that so many countries – many more than the 30 or so that abstained in UN votes condemning Russia for its invasion of Ukraine – refused to go along with sanctions on Putin’s Russia. Forty countries sanction Russia, but two-thirds of the world’s population live in countries that do not.

The geopolitical split over Russia’s war on Ukraine emerged starkly again at the recent G20 summit in India in early September. A consensus could only be reached on a watered-down statement that referred to the “war in Ukraine” without mentioning Russia’s aggression.

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