U.S. President Barack Obama sent a letter to President Nursultan Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan congratulating him on his new term in office following the April 26 election and saying he was looking forward to working with him on global and regional security issues, the Akorda announced on April 29.
The Joint Study Group of Israel and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) has concluded its study on the feasibility of establishing a free trade zone between the new economic union and Israel, Novosti-Kazakhstan reported . The group will give its recommendations over the summer, after which formal negotiations could launch.
Richard Nephew is Director of the Economic Statecraft, Sanctions, and Energy Markets program at Columbia University’s Center on Global Energy Policy, and the former Deputy Coordinator for Sanctions Policy at the US State Department.
One year and one month have passed since both chambers of the Federal Assembly gave President Vladimir Putin a standing ovation when he announced that Crimea was once again part of the Russian state.
Kazakhstan’s Centre for Energy Saving and Increasing Energy Efficiency and DENA have signed a partnership agreement in Berlin, Germany.
The United Kingdom is going to the polls on Thursday. Elections electrify the countries in which they are held, but in most cases they make little difference. In this case, the election is a bit more important. Whether Labour or the Tories win makes some difference, but not all that much. What makes this election significant is that in Scotland, 45 percent of the public voted recently to leave the United Kingdom. This has been dismissed as an oddity by all well-grounded observers. However, for unsophisticated viewers like myself, the fact that 45 percent of Scotland was prepared to secede was an extraordinary event.
Polish President Bronisław Komorowski announced last month that he would argue at the May meeting of the Eastern Partnership in favour of visa-free travel for Ukrainians. This would allow citizens of these two countries to travel freely throughout Europe for short-stays such as tourism.
Russia has been notoriously brazen in using state-owned companies as instruments of national power. President Vladimir Putin's natural-gas wars with Belarus and Ukraine made headlines and sometimes left substantial parts of Europe in the cold. But Moscow's exploits in other energy-related areas have been less noticed.
As Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visits the United States on April 26-May 3, all eyes in China are watching how Abe speaks about ongoing historical memory issues and how he is strengthening the U.S.-Japan alliance. By revising the defense guidelines on April 27 and speaking in front of a joint session of Congress on April 29—the first time for a Japanese leader—Abe made arguably the most high-profile visit ever by a Japanese prime minister to the United States.
Turkmenistan and the European Union have expressed interest in creating a new international legal mechanism for ensuring reliable and stable supply of energy resources, said the message from Turkmen government.
In early April 2015, the Polish Internal Security Agency’s Governmental Computer Security Incident Response Team (also known as CERT—Computer Emergency Response Team), released its annual report on cyber security in Poland (Cert.gov.pl, April 3). According to the report’s findings, Poland came under a record number of hacker and cyber attacks in 2014—7,498 specific cyber attack “incidents” last year, compared to 5,670 confirmed incidents in 2013, 457 in 2012, and 249 attacks verified by CERT in 2011 (Cert.gov.pl, accessed April 28). In addition to a marked escalation in cases, the threat and level of sophistication of the registered cyber attacks also increased compared to previous years, in many cases pointing to state backing. The report highlights a series of high-profile hacking and distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks against key Polish state and financial websites in mid-August 2014, including the homepage of Poland’s president and the Warsaw stock exchange. Those incidents were promptly claimed by an online group calling itself “Cyber Berkut,” which stated it was acting in retaliation against the Polish government’s support of the post-EuroMaidan Ukrainian authorities.
Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has said Greece is in the final, critical stretch of talks with its international creditors and that he believes an interim deal will be in place by May 9.
Afghanistan hopes that Azerbaijan will open an embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan’s ex-President Hamid Karzai said in an interview with Trend April 28.
China's top legislature on Friday ratified the protocol to the Treaty on Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone (NWFZ) in Central Asia.
An incident where the ship guarding the laying of NordBalt cable between Lithuania and Sweden was forced out of the zone has not affected the project, the energy minister has said.