Asia is divided in its condemnation of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The more advanced economies, such as Japan, South Korea and Singapore, not only approved the resolution, but they had already imposed sanctions on Russia. Taiwan, too, although not represented at the UN, has expressed its condemnation of Russian actions and aligned itself with Western sanctions. However, many Asian countries have opted for a broadly neutral approach with significant differences between their positions. The most relevant ones are those of China and India.
Only days after Russia’s President Vladmir Putin stated his intention to rely on Syrian fighters to boost the country’s manpower, Chechen warlord Ramzan Kadyrov announced that he had travelled to Ukraine to show support and meet with Russian troops.
The MED This Week newsletter provides expert analysis and informed insights on the most significant developments in the MENA region, bringing together unique opinions on the topic and reliable foresight on future scenarios. Today, we turn the spotlight on the Iran nuclear talks, focusing on the consequences of the last-minute requests raised by Russia in this crucial moment of the negotiations.
While developments on the ground are rapidly evolving, what we have witnessed thus far in Ukraine is the coexistence of brutal military force and (unsuccessful) attempts to negotiate a ceasefire. What are the possible future scenarios and ways out of this conflict? What role should the EU and other actors such as China and Turkey play in facilitating a sustainable solution?
The MED This Week newsletter provides expert analysis and informed insights on the most significant developments in the MENA region, bringing together unique opinions on the topic and reliable foresight on future scenarios. This week, we focus on the rise in food prices that the MENA region is experiencing in the wake of the Russia-Ukraine war.
“Our friendship is as strong as steel”, reads a famous propaganda poster celebrating the strength of the Sino-Soviet relationship. Similar tones are used today.
"China is Putin’s best ally" or " China lets Russia attack Ukraine so that it can later decide to invade Taiwan... ". These are some of the assumptions that have been heard more frequently over the last few days about the war in Ukraine. Indeed, the situation is much more complex than that. China is not simply an ally of Russia and, barring drastic changes that may arise with no prior notice in these uncertain times, it has no intention of invading Taiwan in the short term. Let’s see why.
Russia and Ukraine account for 30% of global wheat exports. Today’s conflict is inevitably taking its toll on wheat prices worldwide. Only a few hours after Russian troops entered Ukraine, the price of wheat peaked at a record high of 344 euros a ton on Euronext.
Following Ukrainian President Zelensky’s announcement of the creation of a new International Legion of Territorial Defense, essentially inviting foreigners to join the fight against Russia and promising them arms upon arrival, reactions have been mixed. Whereas some saw his plea as a desperate call for help and urged troops and civilians to respond to the call, others expressed greater concerns that this could lead to a renewed flood of foreign fighters.
The MED This Week newsletter provides expert analysis and informed insights on the most significant developments in the MENA region, bringing together unique opinions on the topic and reliable foresight on future scenarios. Today, we turn the spotlight on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, focusing on how countries in the MENA region are reacting to the outbreak of the war.
The war was predictable, its course is not. The US intelligence was able to identify with remarkable accuracy the concentration of Russian troops and the directions of their initial attacks, but many factors of uncertainty will impact the progress of the invasion.
International conflicts and crises are extremely complex phenomena and – at least from the “outside” – they should be analysed in the least biased way possible. This is not always easy to achieve, in part because Western media and expert debates often fail to include local voices, different sensitivities and less mainstream views. The Ukraine crisis is no exception. Some crucial points are taken for granted in the Western discourse, but they are still contested realities and should be framed carefully. Should NATO welcome Ukraine’s membership?