Russia seeks to counter West with BRICS framework

Russia is hosting a BRICS foreign ministers' meeting as the West steps up its involvement in Ukrainian issues.

The two-day meeting started Monday in the central Russian city of Nizhny Novgorod. The group includes Russia, China, India and other emerging countries.

Russia, which holds the BRICS chairmanship, says the group has expanded to 10 members, with Iran, the United Arab Emirates and others joining this year.

The World Bank notes that the 10 countries have about 45 percent of the world's population, with 3.61 billion people.

Moscow said 22 nations were expected to take part in Tuesday's session, including Thailand, Turkey and others that are interested in the group.

Russia says the BRICS framework will play a central role in a new global system.

Meanwhile, the West, which supports Ukraine in its fight against the Russian invasion, is increasing its involvement in the conflict.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy visited France last week and spoke with President Emmanuel Macron, US President Joe Biden, and other officials. This week, a G7 summit and an international meeting on a peace plan advocated by Ukraine are set to take place.