"Asia and Africa today"
- is a scientificl monthly journal (in Russian)
of the Russian Academy of Sciences
Included in Russian Science Citation Index on
WoS platform, and EBSCO Publishing.
ISSN 0321-5075
Published since July 1957.

 

 "Asia and Africa today" № 9 2017

 

 

Aziaafrika 09 2017

 

 Top Problem

SYRIA: ARGUMENT OF AIR-SPACE FORCES by Alexei M. VASILIEV, member, Russian Academy of Sciences; Editor-in-Chief, “Asia and Africa today” journal ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )
September 30, 2015 representative of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces in Iraq met with the US military attache and informed him that in an hour the Russian aviation will begin striking at the positions of the IGIL in Syria. This turn of events neither the American leadership nor its allies foresaw.
 The propaganda response of the United States and other Western countries was expected: it was necessary to find pretexts to "condemn" the actions of the Russian military security services, accuse them of striking at "moderate" opposition, killing civilians, etc.
Further in the article follows the text of the author's interview with the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation M.L. Bogdanov, who tells in detail how the Russian position was formed, which led to the decision to participate in the Syrian war by Russian air and space forces?
Interesting facts and analysis of events in Syria the author quotes from materials of his another interviews - with academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences V.Naumkin, senior political adviser of the Special Envoy of the UN Secretary General for Syria Staffan de Mistura. In it, in particular, it is emphasized that "one should not deceive himself and say that Russia is fighting in Syria exclusively with IGIL. She is at war with all the terrorists and their accomplices.
Keywords: Syria, IGIL, Russia's position, actions of Russian air and space forces, the propaganda reaction of the United States

 

 Policy, Economy

CHINA’S “NEIGHBORING DIPLOMACY” IN EAST ASIA by Yana V. LEKSYUTINA, Dr. Sc. (Political Sciences), Associate Professor, Department of American Studies, Saint-Petersburg State University ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )
The article provides an in-depth analysis of Beijing's “neighboring diplomacy” which is aimed at harmonizing China’s relations with its neighbors and assertion of its role as a regional leader. The article concludes that China’s “neighboring diplomacy” towards some of its neighbors simultaneous incorporates two contradicting approaches: economic and diplomatic engagement with neighboring countries, but growing pressure on them in territorial disputes. By doing so, Beijing is sending mixed signals to its near-abroad countries, which leads to the deterioration of China’s regional image. Under the circumstances of implementation of these two contradicting approaches, China’s “charm offensive” doesn’t work the way Beijing intends it to.
Keywords: China, “neighboring diplomacy”, “peripheral diplomacy”, “charm offensive”, China’s rise, East Asia, South China Sea

 

CHINA AND MONGOLIA: GEOPOLITICAL INTERRELATIONS BETWEEN SOFT POWER AND ROUGH WEAKNESS by David K. BABAYAN, PhD (History), Associate Professor, Artsakh State University, Republic of Armenia ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )
In the Sino-Mongolian relations there is an application of different strategies by China and Mongolia, the states that differ substantially by their military, political, economic and demographic potentials, to maintain balanced and good neighborly relations with each other. The basis of Beijing’s policy towards Mongolia is the strategy of soft power. The main strategy of Ulaanbaatar can be classified as «rough weakness» aimed at making inexpedient the application of brute force by the neighbor. In practice these diametrically opposite strategies can effectively balance each other. It should be noted that for China three is a temptation to conduct an assertive policy. However, Beijing is strongly constraining possible temptations and apparently will strictly follow this policy in the future too.
Keywords: China, Mongolia, «soft power», «rough weakness», global geopolitical trends

 

THE SITUATION IN THE STATE OF DARFUR by Galina I. SMIRNOVA PhD (Economics), Senior Research Fellow, Institute of Oriental Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )
In this article the author analyses the conflict in Darfur  erupted in 2003 between the two main rebel armed groups: “Sudan People Liberation Movement/army” and “Movement for Justice and Equality”. Author showed that as a result of efforts of the international intermediaries Sudanese government concluded the peace agreement with recently created “Movement for freedom and equality”, known as The Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD). At the same time, the other rebel armed groups refused to subscribe the agreement and this circumstance obstructed the drawing up common position for the political decision of the conflict. The article also analyses the aspiration of the armed groups, which did not subscribed DDPD, to unify with the civil political opposition to prepare common project of comprehensive peace agreement alternative to the DDPD, and why the government of Sudan couldn’t satisfy their demand. The special attention was given to the geopolitical rivalry between the USA and China for access to natural resources of Sudan.
Keywords: conflict, Darfur, government, rebel groups, peace agreement, world powers, natural resources

 

THE POWER CRISIS OR THE PROBLEM OF POLITICAL LEADERSHIP IN COTE D'IVOIRE by Lyubov M. SADOVSKAYA, PhD (History), Senior Research Fellow, Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )
The article analyses the socio-political crisis in Сote d'Ivoire in early 2017 and nearly led the country to a social explosion. One of the main reasons it was a crisis of authority provoked by the referendum on changing the Constitution. Assesses the military uprising and actions of trade unions, proclaimed simultaneously with a General strike of employees, which was joined by teachers and students. Discusses the measures taken by President A.Ouattara to prevent the spread of this crisis throughout the country.
Keywords: Сote d'Ivoire, the rebellion, the army, the strike, the unions, A.Ouattara

 

DYNAMICS OF SOUTH AFRICA'S FOREIGN POLICY IN THE CONTEXT OF THE CURRENT POLITICAL SITUATION by Alexandra A. ARKHANGELSKAYA, PhD (History), Research Fellow, Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ), and Dmitriy V. KOCHETOV, applicant, Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )
South Africa's foreign policy today is a reflection of the internal political crisis. Given the instability of the global economy, the lack of a strong unity in the ANC leadership, the growth of tension in society cannot exclude the continuation of political and social upheavals. The main risks in South Africa are related to the socio-economic problems, which comprise potential danger of the destabilization of society.
Keywords: South Africa, Africa, Russia, crisis, international relations, foreign policy

 

ATOMIC ENERGY INDUSTRY IN CHINA: PATH OF «PEACEFUL RISE» by Artem V. GONCHARUK, the State Atomic Energy Corporation “Rosatom”, Russia ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )
This article analyses the path of “peaceful rise” of China on the case study of the atomic energy industry. Three stages are consecutively reviewed: studying of foreign technological experience in atomic energy, self-development, and “rise” itself. The steps for developing of Hualong indigenous reactor technology through accumulating of foreign knowledge are studied. This paper pays significant attention to the prospects of establishing and developing of atomic energy industry in China as well as to selection of basic technologies for further gradual increase of atomic generation capacities. These technologies are supposed to allow Chinese equipment to meet the highest standards of the most advanced nuclear facilities. Apart from that the prerequisites to provide solid ground for peaceful rise on international nuclear technologies market and to secure future leadership in science-intense and high-tech industries are reviewed.
Keywords: China, rise, atomic energy, Hualong, Generation-4

 

AFRICA ON THE WAY TO INNOVATION TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT by Lyudmila N. KALINICHENKO. Research Fellow, Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ), and Zinaida S. NOVIKOVA. PhD (Economics), Senior Research Fellow, Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )
 The article deals with the role of information and telecommunication technologies (ICT), innovation and technology achievements in the social and economic development of Africa’s countries. The ICT and mobile phones have become the key components towards solving the problems of “Millennium Villages Project” in the poorest Sub-Saharan region.
 The ICT expansion on the continent has given the impact to the creation of the technology hubs. Latest innovations are implemented through technology parks construction and environmental safety is considered to be of great importance. The authors also focus their attention on some creative entrepreneurs that contributed to the economic and social growth of their countries.
 Keywords: ICT, level of development, “Millennium Villages”, innovation centres, high technology parks, robotics

 

 Russia and The East

RUSSIAN LANGUAGE IN MONGOLIA TODAY by Vladislav I. TERENTYEV, PhD (History), Mongolian National University. Mongolia, Ulaanbaatar ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )
The article describes the current status of the Russian language in Mongolia. The image and place of the Russian language is characterized on materials, made by personal observations and statistics in the context of the popularity of English, Chinese, Korean and Japanese languages in the educational process of Mongolia. It is known that the Russian population continues to perceive the modern Mongolia as the former «sixteenth satellite Soviet Republic» and believed that the Russian language is still widely spoken here. However, young Mongolians prefer to study other languages in reality under geopolitically and ethnoculturally changing situations. At the same time, part of the Mongolian elites are still interested in the language of the «northern neighbor». Therefore, it is necessary to create needs for Russian-speaking personnel and cadres as well as to expand presence of Russian education under a new phase of development in Mongolia.
Keywords: Mongolia, the Russian language, language’s image, Russian’s images

 

PROBLEMS OF GENDER INEQUALITY IN THE ARAB COUNTRIES by Veronica V. KOSTENKO, Laboratory for Comparative Social Research, NRU HSE, Russia ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )
    The article summarizes the most popular theoretical approaches to gender inequality in Islamic societies, and particularly in the Arab countries. Gender inequity in the region is a matter of international concern in Academia and among politicians, though it is still understudied due to the lack of reliable empirical data. Scholars study the problem of female mequality in predominantly Islamic societies from cultural and religious, historical, economic and institutional, and critically feminist standpoints. However, the discourse that could unite those approaches is yet young, which leads to obvious lacunae in academic knowledge.
Keywords: gender inequality, women in Islam, feminist critique. Women in Arabic countries

 

 Scientific Life

CHINA: THE CONSTRUCTION OF A SMALL WELFARE COMMUNITY "XIAOKANG" by Elena I. KRANINA, PhD (Economics), Senior Research Fellow, Institute of Far Eastern Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )
Tthe Institute of Far Eastern Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences hosted a scientific conference of the Center for Social and Economic Research of China on the theme: "The 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020) is the most important stage in building a "xiaokang". At the conference, 30 reports were presented, the total number of participants exceeded 100 people, including employees of academic institutions, university professors, post-graduate students and students of Moscow universities. The conference program consisted of two thematic sections: "Common Problems" and "Branch and Regional Problems".
Keywords: China, scientific conference, results of the 12th Five-Year Plan, "xiaokang" society, 5th session of the National People's Congress

 

 Book Review

ECOWAS: FORTY YEARS OF COOPERATION
Review of the book: «ECOWAS. Problems of Regional Integration. Moscow, 2016. 281 p. (In Russ.)
Svetlana M. SHLENSKAYA, Senior Research Fellow, Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )
Keywords: Africa, ECOWAS, integration, trade and economic cooperation, sovereignty