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Cyber Security, Digital Transition, Technology Geopolitics & Worlds In-Defense In-Security Pensiero Strategico

Open newsletter – march 26, 2022 p.m.

OUR MAIN TOPIC IS THE GEOSTRATEGY OF RISK

TODAY

  • RUSSIA – UKRAINE (impact, reactions, consequences)
  • AROUND THE WORLD. ONGOING RELATIONS, CRISIS, CONFLICTS
  • LOOK IN CHINA

 

RUSSIA – UKRAINE (impact, reactions, consequences)

by Reuters

Russian oligarchs are welcome in Turkey but must abide by international law in order to do any business, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Saturday. (read more)

by and  – Reuters

The mayor of Lviv said another rocket had hit the city in western Ukraine on Saturday, not long after two rockets struck its outskirts in what appeared to be the first attacks within the city’s limits since the start of the war with Russia. (read more)

by NV

U.S. President Joe Biden insisted that Washington would support Kyiv until its victory in the Russian invasion of Ukraine, according to Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, speaking via video address following the meeting in Warsaw, Poland, on March 26. (read more) 

by Kyiv Post

At least five people were wounded Saturday in two strikes on the western Ukrainian city of Lviv, the regional governor said, in a rare attack on a city that has escaped serious fighting since Russian troops invaded last month. (read more)

by Kyiv Post

The United Nations must be reformed, while Russia, as an aggressor power, cannot be blocking discussions of war it is waging against Ukraine. (read more)

by Kyiv Post

A combat unit manned by Belarusian volunteers recently formed to fight on Ukraine’s side in its war with the Russian Federation (RF), a 24 Channel TV news report said on Saturday, March 26. (read more)

by Kyiv Post

In response to Russian ongoing invasion of Ukraine, Switzerland’s Federal Council took the decision on March 25 to adopt further sanctions against Russia in line with the latest package of sanctions. (read more)

by Kyiv Post

Joe Biden meets two Ukrainian ministers in Warsaw, the first face-to-face talks between the US president and top Kyiv officials since Russia’s invasion began. Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba and Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov make a rare trip out of Ukraine in a possible sign of growing confidence in the fightback against Russian forces. (read more)

by Timothy Snyder – Kyiv Post

Today President Joe Biden is in Warsaw to meet with Polish leaders and talk to Ukrainians who have fled the Russian invasion. The U.S.-Polish relationship was strained before Russia invaded Ukraine, and has had its awkward moments during the war. But Poland is an important NATO ally, has an army that matters, and has taken about two million refugees from Ukraine. The Biden visit is meant to smooth the wrinkles. (read more)

by Al Jazeera

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has urged Qatar, a world leader in the export of natural gas, to boost its output to counter what he called the Russian “threat” to use energy as a weapon. In a surprise appearance at Doha Forum international conference on Saturday, the Ukrainian president called on energy-producing countries to step in so that Moscow cannot use its oil and gas wealth to “blackmail” other nations. (read more)

by Al Jazeera

Russian forces in Ukraine apparently have shifted their focus from a ground offensive aimed at the capital, Kyiv, to instead prioritising what Moscow calls “liberation” of the contested Donbas region, suggesting a new phase of the war. It appears too early to know where this will lead. Has President Vladimir Putin scaled back his ambitions in search of a way out of the war? The dug-in defensive positions taken recently by some Russian forces near Kyiv indicate a recognition of the surprisingly stout Ukrainian resistance. (read more)

by Al Jazeera

Many European countries boost their defence budgets with an increase in demand for American-made weapons. (read more)

by Willy Wo-Lap Lam – The Jamestown Foundation

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leadership has subtly changed the tone of its characterization of the Russian war against Ukraine. It is highly doubtful, however, that supreme leader President Xi Jinping will alter the substance of his basic Russian policy, which is to build a Sino-Russian axis against the eastward expansion of the U.S.-led Western coalition in both Europe and the Indo-Pacific theaters. Yet the kind and degree of the People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) economic and other types of assistance to Russia will not be finalized pending President Vladimir Putin’s maneuvers as he seeks to overcome the failure of Russian forces to vanquish Ukrainian resistance one month into the war. The Xi leadership’s wait and see approach to the conflict might change if a desperate Putin were to use chemical or biological weapons in Russia’s “special military operations” against Ukraine. Chinese reactions will also be influenced by the outcomes of U.S. President Joe Biden’s meetings with leaders of NATO, the EU, and the Group of Seven nations in Europe this week. (read more)

AROUND THE WORLD. ONGOING RELATIONS, CRISIS, CONFLICTS

CHINA – INDIA

by Global Times

China and India should stick to their own development paths and join hands to safeguard peace and stability both in the region and the world, putting their differences over the border issues at a proper position in the bilateral relations, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said during a meeting with Indian National Security Advisor Ajit Doval on Friday. (read more)

IRAN NUCLEAR DEAL

by Maziar Motamedi

The European Union’s coordinator will head to Iran in an effort to help Tehran and Washington finalise stalled negotiations on restoring the 2015 nuclear deal, from which former United States President Donald Trump pulled out unilaterally in 2018. Enrique Mora, deputy secretary-general of the European External Action Service and coordinator for nuclear talks, will arrive in the Iranian capital later on Saturday and is reportedly expected to visit Washington on Monday. (read more)

NAGORNO – KARABAKH

by Reuters

Russia’s defence ministry said on Saturday Azeri armed forces had entered a zone that is the responsibility of Russian peacekeepers in the Nagorno-Karabakh region and had set up a surveillance post in violation of an agreement. (read more)

PAKISTAN

by Al Jazeera

Tens of thousands of people have started marching to the Pakistani capital in a show of opposition to Prime Minister Imran Khan who is expected to face a vote of no confidence next week. Supporters from the party of former PM Nawaz Sharif began their “long march” on Saturday in the eastern city of Lahore, the political bastion of Sharif and his Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party. (read more)

SOUTH CHINA SEA 

by Liu Xuanzun – Global Times

The US Navy has reportedly deployed three spy ships simultaneously to sensitive waters near China over the past week in a provocative move experts said on Thursday aims to boost its submarine and anti-submarine warfare capabilities against the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA), after the US “acknowledged its shortcomings” with last year’s undersea collision of the USS Connecticut nuclear-powered attack submarine in the South China Sea. (read more)

SRI LANKA

by Al Jazeera

One of Sri Lanka’s biggest fuel suppliers has raised the price of petrol by nearly 20 percent, the second increase in as many weeks, as the country struggles to import oil without dollars. Lanka IOC, a fuel retailer which accounts for a third of the market, on Saturday said it raised the petrol price to 303 rupees (just over $1) a litre, up from 254 rupees. (read more)

USA – CHINA

by Global Times

In the latest sign to block Chinese firms in the telecommunications sector, the US relevant authority added China Telecom (Americas) Corp and China Mobile International USA to its list of communications equipment and service providers, citing the so-called threats to US national security. (read more)

USA – NIGERIA

by Al Jazeera

The United States has imposed new sanctions on individuals connected with Nigeria’s armed group Boko Haram, the Treasury Department announced. Six Nigerian nationals who were found guilty of setting up a Boko Haram cell in the United Arab Emirates to raise funds for fighters in Nigeria have been placed on the sanctions list. (read more)

YEMEN

by Al Jazeera

At least seven people have been killed in air raids conducted by the Saudi-led coalition on Sanaa and Hodeida in Yemen. Brigadier General Turki al-Malki, a spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition, was quoted as saying on Saturday by the state-run Saudi Press Agency (SPA) that the raids targeted “sources of threat” to Saudi Arabia. (read more)

LOOK IN CHINA

by Global Times

The US Embassy in China published an article on Thursday promoting a Nazi-glorifying Ukrainian organization, a stark contrast to the anti-Nazi political claim of the US. In the article the US embassy published via its WeChat public account on Thursday evening, it ran an introductory promoting the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America, while mentioning something rather worrying that the organization had patronized the two films on Stepan Bandera and Roman Shukhevych. (read more)

by John S. Van Oudenaren, Yani Najarian – The Jamestown Foundation

As the Russian military struggles to make headway in its invasion of Ukraine, U.S. and European Union officials have cited intelligence reports that Moscow has solicited military assistance from Beijing (South China Morning Post, March 15). In addition to sorely needed supplies like ration packs, Russia requested weapon systems including surface to air missiles (SAMs), combat drones, and armored vehicles. People’s Republic of China (PRC) Ministry of Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Zhao Lijiian vigorously denied reports that Moscow had asked Beijing for such assistance as “U.S. disinformation targeting China” (PRC Embassy in the US, March 14). Nevertheless, Russia has been interested in purchasing military technology in areas where China is a leader for some time including the Pterodactyl II (翼龙, yi long) combat drone, which is produced by the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) (Alexander Gabuev Twitter, March 15). However, negotiations will take time and such a deal is unlikely to rapidly materialize. If Russia does end up acquiring weapons from China it will be a major role reversal of the traditional pattern in the Sino-Russian arms trade. China has of course long been a major buyer of Russian armaments, and increased its purchases when Moscow lifted its moratorium on sales of advanced weaponry following its military intervention in Ukraine in 2014; such curbs had previously been in place to forestall reverse engineering by China. In light of this major possible pendulum swing, what then is the state of China’s arms export industry? (read more)

by Christelle Genoud – The Jamestown Foundation

As the U.S. and other Western nations announced diplomatic boycotts of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) frequently exhorted the international community to keep politics out of the games (People’s Daily, December 8, 2021). Spokespersons of the Beijing Organizing Committee also objected to the “politicization” of the Olympic Games, and claimed that the closed loop Olympic bubble was solely a COVID-19 containment measure necessitated by growing concerns over the spread of the Omicron variant in China (Global Times, January 5). Although, the creation of a closed loop bubble was ostensibly undertaken for epidemic prevention purposes, it also had the impact of isolating athletes and journalists, and forestalling unwanted international focus on poor human rights conditions in China. (read more)

by Ryan D. Martinson, Conor Kennedy – The Jamestown Foundation

The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has quietly changed the way it interacts with U.S. military forces in the Western Pacific. Instead of just tracking and monitoring U.S. ships and aircraft, demanding they leave sensitive areas, the PLA has embraced an approach that favors hostile encounters as preparation for future conflict with the United States. In PLA parlance, it is “using the enemy to train the troops”—nadi lianbing (拿敌练兵). (read more)