Japan–Russia relations need more than just energy

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Russian President Vladimir Putin meet in Sochi, Russia. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Anthony V. Rinna, Sino-NK

On 16 May 2016 Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Presidential Envoy to the Far Eastern district, Yury Trutnev, met with officials from Japanese and Russian energy and metallurgical companies. The meeting followed a summit between Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Russian President Vladimir Putin to discuss enhancing bilateral ties.

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What happened to Russia’s ‘pivot to Asia’?

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov (L) and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi attend a joint press conference at the Chinese Foreign Ministry in Beijing, China on 29 April 2016.

Authors: Dmitry Filippov, University of Sheffield and Peter Marino

In early 2014, Russia faced economic sanctions in response to its annexation of Crimea. Many in the country viewed the sanctions as proof that the West has contempt for Russia’s ‘sphere of influence’ in Ukraine and was trying to subvert Russian foreign policy. Responding to this pressure from the West, Moscow turned its attention to the East — specifically, to China.

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Could domestic politics shake the US–Japan alliance?

US President Barack Obama and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the Nuclear Security Summit. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Pandu Utama Manggala, National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies

Signed in 1951, the US–Japan Security Treaty and the alliance it established have endured for over six decades and continue to play an instrumental role in shaping the regional security order. But with Republican presidential nominee frontrunner Donald Trump’s ‘America first’ isolationist foreign policy views gaining traction in the United States, concerns are mounting over the future of the alliance.

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India–Bangladesh economic ties gain momentum

Two Indians drive a three-wheeler loaded of tree branches, outskirts of New Delhi, India. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Tridivesh Singh Maini, JSIA

While attention has focused on India’s strained ties with its neighbours, some notable strides have been made in the bilateral relationship with Bangladesh. Progress on the political front has captured the spotlight, with the recent Land Boundary Agreement. But both sides have also made significant progress in developing their economic ties and connectivity.

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Is China’s Arctic strategy really that chilling?

A Chinese paramilitary police officer stands guard as the Xue Long (Snow Dragon) icebreaker carrying Chinese scientists during their thirtieth Antarctic expedition leaves the polar expedition base dock in Shanghai, China, 7 November 2013. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Adam P. MacDonald

As climatic and environmental changes increase the accessibility of the Arctic, opening up the possibility of shorter shipping lanes and the ability to tap into large natural resource deposits, states within the region and beyond are beginning to look north.

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Why South Korea should reopen the Kaesong Industrial Complex

Korean People's Army Lt. Col. Nam Dong Ho is silhouetted against the truce village of Panmunjom at the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), which separates the two Koreas, in Panmunjom, North Korea. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Jean Lee, New York University School of Law

On 11 February the South Korean government abruptly shut down the Kaesong Industrial Complex (KIC), a joint inter-Korean industrial zone located just 10 kilometres north of the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ), as a punishment for North Korea’s recent nuclear test and rocket launch. Read more…

North Korea sanctions still aiming for denuclearisation?

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un talking with scientists and technicians involved in research of nuclear weapons, North Korea. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Ulv Hanssen, Free University of Berlin

On 2 March, in the wake of North Korea’s latest nuclear test and satellite launch, the UN Security Council unanimously passed a new set of stinging sanctions. Among other things, these include a partial ban on North Korean exports of coal, iron and iron ore, and a blanket ban on other items, such as gold and rare earth minerals.

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