India is Holding Back the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and BRICS

Yesterday, Chinese President Xi Jinping addressed the 13th meeting of Security Council Secretaries of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in Beijing. During the meeting, President Xi stressed the importance of enhanced cooperation between SCO members in the fight against the “three evil forces” of extremism, separatism and terrorism. As one of the international security bodies …

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Russian President Vladimir Putin (center) inspects the road section of the road-and-rail Crimean Bridge over the Kerch Strait on March 14, 2018. Photo: AFP / Yuri Kochetkov

Popular Putin Prepares for Cold War 2.0

Immediately after his official inauguration on Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to announce a new government. And a bombshell is in the making. The new cabinet is bound to be a Stavka: that is, a war cabinet. In the context of the interminable Russiagate saga, increasingly harsh US sanctions, the Skripal charade (which, …

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Chinese President Xi Jinping welcomes Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the BRICS Summit in Xiamen on September 4, 2017. Photo: AFP/Fred Dufour

It’s BRI Against Indo-Pacific All Over Again

All bets are off on the outcome of India Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s potentially ground-breaking meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping this Friday and Saturday in Wuhan. Things have not exactly started in auspicious mode. After a meeting in Beijing of foreign ministers represented at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), India, once again refused to support …

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Iran's Hassan Rouhani, Turkey's Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russia's Vladimir Putin after a summit on Syria on April 4. PHOTO: AFP/ADEM ALTAN

From Ankara to Moscow, Eurasia Integration Is on the Move

As presidents Vladimir Putin, Hassan Rouhani and Recep Tayyip Erdogan met in Ankara for a second Russia-Iran-Turkey summit on the future of Syria, Moscow hosted its 7th International Security Conference attended by defense ministers from dozens of nations. A more graphic illustration of the synchronicity drive towards Eurasia integration would be hard to find. Crucially, …

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What would Confucius do? Photo: iStock

Will the Putin-Xi Era Supersede the Western Liberal (Dis)Order?

The Chinese constitutional amendment allowing Xi Jinping the possibility of further presidential terms — staying in power long enough to bring “national rejuvenation” combined with the Russian election re-confirming Vladimir Putin in the presidency have assured consistency and continuity for the Russia-China strategic partnership way into the next decade. This will facilitate the interaction between …

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Souvenir necklaces with a portrait of Chinese President Xi Jinping are displayed for sale at a stall in Tiananmen Square in Beijing on February 26, 2018. Photo: Reuters/Thomas Peter

The Xi Silk Road is Here to Stay

It took only two sentences for Xinhua to make the historical announcement; the Central Committee of the CCCP “proposed to remove the expression that ‘the president and vice-president of the People’s Republic of China shall serve no more than two consecutive terms’ from the country’s constitution.” That will be all but confirmed at the end of the …

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Afghanistan Ready to Play Connector Role in Eurasian Integration

One of the top roller-coaster sagas in what, some years ago, I christened Pipelineistan, has yielded a definitive twist. The US$8 billion,1,814-kilometer Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India pipeline (TAPI) was officially inaugurated on Friday, in full pomp, and with proceedings broadcast live on Afghan TV, on the Turkmen-Afghan border close to Herat. Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani hosted Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan …

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Russia, Pakistan Edge Closer in New Cold War Conditions

Afghanistan, no doubt, was what brought Pakistani Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif to Moscow on a ‘working visit’ on February 20. This was Asif’s second meeting with Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in the past 5-month period. They last met in New York on the sidelines of the UNGA session in September. The Russian Ministry took pains …

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China Builds Military Base in Afghanistan

The Afghan province of Badakhshan borders China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. It used to be part of an artery between the East and West known as the ancient Silk Road. Today, that road is being revived as an element of China’s “One Belt, One Road” (OBOR) initiative, which has prompted major infrastructure construction in Afghanistan and Central Asia, …

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