African Union officially part of G20 summit


The African Union formally took its seat on Saturday as a new member of the G20 at the invitation of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The expansion of the group is a diplomatic victory for Modi, who faces national elections next year and has used the hosting rights for this year’s forum to build his image as an international statesman.

Just before his opening speech, Modie greeted the chairman of the African Union and president of the Comoros Islands, Azali Assoumani, with a hug.

“India has submitted an offer to grant permanent membership of the G20 to the African Union. I believe that everyone agrees with this,” Modi said in his opening address at the summit. “With everyone’s approval, I request the head of the African Union to take his seat as a permanent G20 member.”

Assoumani subsequently took his seat among world leaders.

It has been increasingly difficult to reach consensus among deeply divided members over the war in Ukraine in recent years.

“The world is in a crisis of confidence,” Modi added. “The war increased this breach of trust. If we could overcome Covid-19, we can also overcome this collective crisis of confidence.”