Defining democracy: Biden’s summit is a good context for democracies to remind themselves what the system means

News: USA President hosted the “Summit for Democracy“. There are 100-plus countries that participated in the summit to build a wide-ranging alliance against autocracies.

Why China is against this Summit for Democracy?

China claimed it does a better job of reflecting “the people’s will”. It also attacked the US dismissal of “forms of democracy” different from its own as itself undemocratic. For instance, Pakistan was invited, and it did not participate. On the other hand, countries such as Bhutan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka were not invited at all.

Why the Summit for Democracy is in question?

While the USA plans to bring together the democracies of the world, it itself left Afghan democracy’s forces crushed under the Taliban’s brute wheels. Also, there is a painful retreat of democracy from Afghanistan to Hong Kong and Myanmar.

Also read: Why India will be scrutinised at Summit for Democracy
Why does democracy need to be widened?

Democracies should also always be alive to what democracy really means. Democracy needs to be widened to look beyond elections and focus on values like liberty, freedom of expression, and vibrant civil society. Thus, democracy should be wider than limited democracy.

Source: This post is based on the article “Defining democracy: Biden’s summit is a good context for democracies to remind themselves what the system means” published in Times of India on 13th December 2021.

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