On the face of it, focusing on Taiwan as the world’s worrisome hotspot may seem an odd choice. The past year has witnessed an unusual amount of turmoil – the ravages of the coronavirus outbreak and the resulting global economic fallout, deepening political dissention in the United States and weakening American international leadership, and nationalism, intolerance and isolationism on the ascent across the globe. The entire post-World War II order seems to be breaking down under the strain.
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The Ethiopian PM received the 2019 Nobel Prize for his peace agreement with Eritrea, breaking nearly 20 years of stalemate. After the Tigray conflict erupted last November many observers asked: “He got the Nobel Peace Prize, but starts a war the next year: why”?
Will 2021 be the year in which Europe finally learns to stand on its own two feet and find the strength and maturity to tackle its internal and foreign policy challenges? Before we embark on an answer, it is worth establishing one clear fact: 2021 will still be the year of the pandemic, both in Europe and worldwide. While we can hope that a vaccine might quell the health emergency, it will certainly not wipe out the devastating social and economic repercussions of Covid-19.
While the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic plunged the globe into an unprecedent state of immobility, a gradual reopening is beginning. The deep economic recession that has followed may spark new forms of migration and changing routes, even as it constrains other movements. What are some of the first indications as to the drivers of migration in a post-pandemic world? And is Europe geared up for dealing with a new migration wave?
In 2020, the intermittent border battle between the Houthis and Saudi Arabia has gained in frequency, accuracy and targets, turning into the most slippery dimension of the Yemen war. This is a rising, dangerous trend: risks of miscalculation accentuate on both sides, also offering new casus belli between conflicting parties.
On 22 March 2020, a contingent of 104 Russian military doctors and health workers arrived in Italy, carrying ventilators and other medical equipment. Their boxes and vehicles carried stickers reading ‘from Russia with love’. The operation was allegedly meant to be a charm offensive, a ‘gesture of solidarity’ with no geopolitical or other hidden objectives carried out in the framework of the Kremlin’s ‘health diplomacy’ strategy.
Under President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, the Egyptian military is tightening its grasp on the economy and strangling civilian politics and society — but this is nothing new. Rather, it reflects a decades-old phenomenon that dates to the 1960s under former president Gamal Abdel Nasser. Yet, while not a phenomenon, under Sisi, the military has significantly increased its roles in commercial enterprises and embarked on new infrastructure projects.
Since 2013, Egypt has been strengthening its naval power: this particularly regards the strategic direction of the Red Sea. In fact, the military declared “strategic zones of military importance”, areas where infrastructural, mining and tourism-related projects are flourishing.
Although the foreign policies of major powers do not change dramatically with changes in government, India’s foreign policy vision has been evolving rapidly since the Modi government came to power in May 2014. This evolution is only natural for a nation that is rising in the global power hierarchy. External Affairs Minister S.
Since 11 July of this year, protests against the arrest of former popular regional governor Sergei Furgal have continued in Khabarovsk, one of the largest cities in Russia’s Far East. The protest has neither leaders nor organization. It originated as a spontaneous civil protest, but very quickly turned into a political and anti-Kremlin one. The sleepy society very quickly turned into a civil society.