Category: Asia

North-eastern Syria: lasting peace unlikely as instability and conflict set to increase

North-eastern Syria: lasting peace unlikely as instability and conflict set to increase

Russia and Turkey’s deal halted the Turkish-led operation in North-Eastern Syria and avoided direct confrontation between Turkey and Syrian forces. The situation remains tenuous, however, as lasting peace settlements between all sides remains a distant prospect. The continuing presence of Turkish-backed rebels in former SDF areas along with a worsening humanitarian crisis will gradually destabilize…

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2019 Turkish Local Elections: An Explanation of the Ruling Party’s Failure

2019 Turkish Local Elections: An Explanation of the Ruling Party’s Failure

The Turkish local elections of 2019 resulted in a failure for President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his ruling party, which lost votes in the country’s three largest cities: Izmir, Istanbul and the capital, Ankara. This crucial breakdown of the Justice and Development Party is an outcome of enduring political, economic, and social struggles within Turkish…

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Energy (In)Security in Central Asia

Energy (In)Security in Central Asia

“Central Asia, a region with significant strategic importance due to its geographic location and energy resources, is severely affected by the uneven distribution of energy resources, low investment, corruption and gross mismanagement that prevents them from harnessing energy security and from seizing opportunities in the energy market. Most importantly, the Soviet legacy in the five…

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What Does Iran’s Threatened Withdrawal from the 2015 Nuclear Agreement Mean for U.S.-Iranian Tensions?

What Does Iran’s Threatened Withdrawal from the 2015 Nuclear Agreement Mean for U.S.-Iranian Tensions?

“Iranian President Hassan Rouhani announced that Iran will begin to reduce its compliance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) if the remaining members observing the deal fail to ease the weight of U.S. sanctions. European efforts to circumvent U.S. sanctions have thus far rendered insufficient results due to the overwhelming economic pressure of…

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Strategic Turnaround? Russia’s Support to the Afghan Taliban and its Strategic Implications

Strategic Turnaround? Russia’s Support to the Afghan Taliban and its Strategic Implications

“We know that the Russians are involved, stated U.S. Army General John Nicholson during an interview with the BBC, publicly accusing Russia of smuggling loads of weapons to the Taliban. Russia’s logistical and financial support to the Afghan Taliban is a short-term security insurance, and a profitable long-term investment, for the Kremlin’s future geopolitical manoeuvres.”…

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Qingdao Summit: China is still in the driver’s seat of the SCO

Qingdao Summit: China is still in the driver’s seat of the SCO

“June’s Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Qingdao, Shandong saw visits from delegates of all SCO members, most notably leaders Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin of China and Russia. Despite it being promoted as a primarily multilateral organisation and platform, it is clear that this year’s summit reflects China’s role as its dominant force.” By…

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China’s long term policy in the South China Sea

China’s long term policy in the South China Sea

The South China Sea (SCS) is a major regional hotspot that embodies critical strategic importance in the Asia Pacific region […] as the de facto regional hegemon, China’s bold claims over almost the entire sea have triggered maritime standoffs and bilateral disputes with its neighbours, such as the legal fight with the Philippines and several…

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Sino-Russian Energy Relations

Sino-Russian Energy Relations

“Russia has one-fifth of the world’s global oil reserves within its borders, but much of its energy potential is untapped. Ensuring that energy exports remain a viable source of revenue relies on expanding extraction projects into the Russian Far East, thus requiring foreign investment.” By Benjamin Hawkin