This week witnessed the revelation of an upcoming route for Turkish foreign policy as the 11th Ambassadors' Meeting took place in the capital province of Ankara, with state authorities presenting the main agenda of the country through a series of speeches. As a NATO member state that has strong ties and history with the EU and a critical presence in some of the major crises in the world, the usual Turkish diplomatic topics were on the table throughout the meeting, including ties with the U.S., Turkey's approach toward Europe, the migration crisis and close relations with Russia. One topic, however, came the forefront in the meeting since it offers a new vision that might shape the future of Turkish foreign policy as a whole: the Asia Anew initiative. The new initiative was officially announced Monday by the Foreign Ministry as an aim to improve ties with Asian countries in different regions that would include cooperation in education, the defense industry, investments, trade, … [Read more...] about Asia Anew: Initiative to shape future of Turkish diplomacy
Belt and road initiative map
Tajik President Emomali Rakhmon and his Kyrgyz counterpart Sooronbai Jeenbekov shared a symbolic embrace at the frontier and also held talks with Tajik and Kyrgyz communities, according to press releases from both presidential offices. Tajikistan's presidency said the talks had focused on "delimiting the state border" and "preventing and resolving border incidents". Jeenbekov's office called the meeting "historic" and urged the two countries to "impart momentum" to talks over demarcation. A Tajik citizen was killed after fighting broke out between the two communities on Monday in the Tajik exclave of Vorukh, which is completely surrounded by Kyrgyz territory. Tajikistan's border service said that a Kyrgyz crowd had thrown stones and used firearms against a Tajik crowd, leading to the fatality and at least seven serious injuries. The conflict began after Kyrgyz citizens attempted to raise flags inside the exclave, the Tajik border service said. Violence continued the following day and a … [Read more...] about China and Russia vie for support in Central Asia
Russia is the latest country to try to find ways to police its online borders, sparking the end of the internet as we know it. By Sally Adee 14 May 2019 In 1648, the Treaty of Westphalia was signed, ending 30 years of war across Europe and bringing about the sovereignty of states. The rights of states to control and defend their own territory became the core foundation of our global political order, and it has remained unchallenged since.In 2010, a delegation of countries – including Syria and Russia – came to an obscure agency of the United Nations with a strange request: to inscribe those same sovereign borders onto the digital world. “They wanted to allow countries to assign internet addresses on a country by country basis, the way country codes were originally assigned for phone numbers,” says Hascall Sharp, an independent internet policy consultant who at the time was director of technology policy at technology giant Cisco.After a year … [Read more...] about The global internet is disintegrating. What comes next?
"If you know the other and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles." China's emperors used to receive their guests and vassals in the Forbidden City or in their summer residences. But today, their successors only rarely do so. There are simply too many of them coming. So to host large receptions, Chinese President Xi Jinping has had a sumptuous conference center built on the outskirts of Beijing, amidst lush gardens and pavilions, not far from the Great Wall. Last week, it was packed, as delegations from 150 countries showed up, including 37 heads of state and government, almost twice as many as attend the annual G-20 summit. They were there at Xi's invitation for the second Silk Road Summit, celebrating China's global infrastructure and development program, officially known as the Belt and Road Initiative. At the first summit two years ago, only 29 presidents and prime ministers attended. This time, in addition to stalwart Chinese allies from Asia, Africa … [Read more...] about The China Question: Time to Find a New Approach to Beijing
The country was tied with Uganda this year for having the most physically fit population, with the WHO citing a three-decade cultural shift that has resulted in Finns eating more vegetables, exercising more, and smoking less. Interestingly, the rankings were unveiled on the same day that a FinHealth study found that over half of young Finnish men and a third of young women are overweight, the highest level in recorded history. In other news, the culture and lifestyle sections of various broadsheets have been focusing on Helsinki’s emergence as a major foodie destination, with one outlet describing the city as “the next Copenhagen”, a nod to the Danish capital’s influence on the ‘New Nordic Cuisine’ movement. Finally, foreign policy hawks have been paying increasing attention to China’s latest activities in Finland and the wider Baltic Region, expressing concern that planned funding and infrastructure initiatives … [Read more...] about Finnish fitness, a foodie revolution, and “China’s newest playground”