Indonesia’s Special Presidential Envoy for Interfaith Dialogue and Civilization Affairs at MGIMO

September 3rd, Indonesia’s Special Presidential Envoy for Interfaith Dialogue and Civilization Affairs Prof. Syafiq Mughni accompanied by the representatives from the Indonesian Embassy in Moscow paid a visit to MGIMO.

The Rector welcomed guests and shared MGIMO’s experience in academic cooperation with the ASEAN countries. Both sides discussed education opportunities for Indonesian students at MGIMO. The meeting was as well attended by MGIMO Vice-Rector Artem Malgin, the ASEAN Centre’s Director Victor Sumsky and the Sanctions Policy Expertise Center’s Director Ekaterina Arapova.

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ASEAN Kid’s Summit at the All-Russian Children’s Center “Ocean”

August 1st-3rd, under the programme “Children of the World” at the All-Russian Children’s Center “Ocean” in Vladivostok the ASEAN Kids Summit was held. It was prepared and organized by the ASEAN Centre’s members, namely Valeria Vershinina, Analyst, Maria Mamaeva, Senior Expert, and Daria Borisova, Master student at the programmer “Area Studies”.

Children from three ASEAN member-counties – Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam participated in the event. Russian side was presented by children from the educational programme “Young Diplomats” under the Association of Russian Diplomats.

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SPIEF-2019 as the Moment of Truth for Russia and China (and not Only Them)

“Putin and Xi stand up in St. Petersburg as a united front against Trump,” CNN declared bluntly, summarising the results of the SPIEF-2019 in terms of the China-Russia-USA triangle. Equally clear and sober assessments were expressed shortly after the forum by many other influential press outlets and authoritative commentators. There is a “Moment of Truth,” when everyone simultaneously opens his or her eyes and observes the true state of affairs in the world. A moment that is priceless in the midst of information wars and fake news waterfalls. A moment that is impossible to “drown” in caveats and reservations, which differs to global decision-makers, who consider delicacy the surest sign of weakness, writes Viktor Sumsky, Director of the ASEAN Center MGIMO University.

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ASEAN Centre Welcomes Delegation from Centre for Policy Analysis and Development on American and European Regions, MFA of Indonesia

On May 16th the delegation from the Centre for Policy Analysis and Development on American and European Regions Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the Republic of Indonesia led by the Director Dr. Ben Perkasa Drajat paid a working visit to the ASEAN Centre. The Indonesian guests were welcomed by the Director of the ASEAN Centre Dr. Victor Sumsky, the Deputy Dean of the School of International Relations and Senior Expert of the ASEAN Centre Dr. Ekaterina Koldunova, the ASEAN Centre’s Senior Expert Dr. Ilya Dyachkov and Analyst Ms. Valeria Vershinina.

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Russia’s Ambivalence about an Indo-Pacific Strategy

More than half-a-decade has passed since Russia started its ‘Turn to the East’, a foreign policy reorientation toward Asia. Throughout this period, the international environment as well as the Russian position in global and regional affairs has changed dramatically. In 2012, hosting the APEC Summit in Vladivostok, Russia saw a generally positive international attitude and was optimistic about cooperation with both West and East. However, the 2014 political crisis in Ukraine followed by a referendum in Crimea, which laid the background for the peninsula’s incorporation into Russia, and sanctions against Russia from the United States and the EU brought Russia’s relations with the West to their lowest point since the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Under these constraints it seemed logical to enhance interaction with partners beyond the West whose attitudes toward Russia remained more pragmatic rather than ideological. The economically vibrant Asia-Pacific region, home to Russia’s key strategic partner China, represented the core geographical area where Russian foreign policy decision-makers naturally looked to as the alternative.

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