One Silk Road, Two Great Powers

By Ernesto Gallo, Giovanni Biava, Ernesto Gallo

The ‘New Economic Silk Road’ was launched by China’s President, Xi Jinping, in September 2013 in Kazakhstan’s capital, Astana. A few months later (in January 2015) Astana became one of the three capital cities of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU), which started with Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Russia, and later enlarged to Kyrgyzstan and Armenia. Other governments (India and Japan among them) have since stepped up their engagement in Central Asia; last but not least, Iran has joined the game after its international ‘rehabilitation’ and gradual sanction-lifting. Is a new ‘Great Game’ under way? Who will control Eurasia? More specifically, how are relations between China and Russia evolving? Can the two ‘Great Powers’ co-exist in the region?

Russia Alters Geopolitical Balance in South Caucasus With New Energy Project

By Vasili Rukhadze

On April 13, the energy ministers of Russia, Georgia, Armenia and Iran met in the Armenian capital of Yerevan, where they agreed to create a single, common electricity market among these countries. For this purpose, bilateral Russia-Georgia, Armenia-Georgia, and Armenia-Iran projects are being planned to expand the capabilities of the four neighbors’ energy systems (News.am, April 13).

Kazakhstan: An exemplary non-nuclear-weapon state

By Gülay MUTLU & John DYKES

On April 5, 2009 in the Czech capital of Prague US President Barack Obama declared to the world “America’s commitment to seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons”. This unprecedented speech by an American head of state sparked a wave of enthusiasm among peoples and governments that had long urged the world’s internationally condoned nuclear-weapon powers (the US, Russia, France, Great Britain, and China) and the international community at large to step up their efforts to prevent the spread of nuclear materials and weapons across the globe as well as to pursue concrete steps towards worldwide nuclear disarmament.