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BRICS: The Club in the Club

The BRICS countries – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – risk losing their international credibility if they don't behave as responsible donors, writes GCAP Russia co-chair Vitaliy Kartamyshev.

These five countries produce about 20% of the world's economic output and account for a growing percentage of official development assistance. But it's clear that the BRIC have “fewer scruples” about how this aid impacts human rights, democracy, women and ethnic minorities.

At a minimum, the BRICS should adopt a set of guiding principles to ensure that they do not uphold political regimes that impoverish communities, exploit natural resources and undermine the development prospects of recipient countries.

In an article originally published by the Heinrich Boell Foundation as part of a series of G20 updates, Kartamyshev also argues that decisions by the BRICS, G20, G8 and other such clubs are poorly understood by the country's citizens and even the media. Civil society networks and movements have a role to play here – through education and adding to the political discourse.

Have Your Voice Heard by G20 Leaders

Moblog is a web and mobile community where people document their lives from their mobile phones. We make it easy to send in pictures and texts or video, and people can even just call in their posts. Moblog works alongside NGO's such as Greenpeace UK, Amnesty International and Oxfam GB to explore ways for people to easily engage with campaigns via their mobiles. The G20Voice project represents an amazing opportunity to give people around the world a voice that can be heard at the G20 Summit, and that's where Moblog and our voice partner Spinvox come in.

Through the Spinvox voice to text service and Moblog's mobile blogging platform, we are able to provide a service enabling people all over the world to simply call a local number to ask a world leader attending the summit a question. The technology converts the speech to text, and posts it along with the audio to the G20Voice moblog. All of the questions asked will be collated and the best of them will be asked directly of the world leaders to whom they are posed. The bloggers at the event are your voice, all you need to do is ask the question that matters to you most by calling the relevant number below:
Numbers after the jump