Re-assessing Russia’s Pivot to the East: Comparing the Response of Asian Countries to Russian Actions in Crimea and Donbas
Ka-ho (Frank) Wong, Moscow State Institute of International Relations, Russia
Since the Crimean crisis in 2014, Russia has accelerated the shift of the strategic focus toward the Asia-Pacific region to avoid international isolation and pursue diplomatic diversification. The scholarly evaluation of the effectiveness of Russia’s pivot to the East is divided into two camps. Some call the pivot a success because of Moscow’s growing strategic cooperation with China, while others find it falls short of expectations due to relatively limited ties between Russia and other Asian countries. This article proposes that Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine offers an opportunity to make a practical assessment of the Russian pivot to Asia. It aims to compare and contrast the response of Asian countries to Russia’s military intervention in Crimea and Donbas. In particular, whether these countries recognize the independence of Ukraine’s separatist regions (Crimea, Donetsk, and Luhansk), express condemnation of Russian actions, and impose sanctions against Russia over Ukraine are examined. The findings illustrate if Russia receives more or less political support from Asian countries after its pivot to the East. They will have implications for the West’s efforts to isolate Russia and Moscow’s ability to diversify its relations with non-Western countries in the post-conflict era.
Presentation Date/Time: Sunday, December 11, 2022 (09:20)
Session: Session 1
Room: Fai Kham Room