Showing posts with label World and Communities. Show all posts
Showing posts with label World and Communities. Show all posts

Monday, September 19, 2022

Media Review: India's economy has surpassed that of the United Kingdom in terms of size, making it the fifth largest in the world

    Monday, September 19, 2022   No comments

India succeeded this year by taking advantage of the events surrounding it and getting as far as possible from the war in Ukraine and the sanctions imposed by European countries on Russia, so that its economy exceeded the United Kingdom and made it the fifth largest economy, knowing that this transgression is not the first time, as India, the former British colony, has already emerged as the fifth The strongest economy in the world, surpassing Britain and France in 2019, according to a report by the World Population Review Center, based in the British capital, London.

Weeks ago, the International Monetary Fund revealed in its latest figures that just a decade ago, India's GDP was the eleventh in the world, but with 7% growth expected for 2022, India's economy has surpassed that of the United Kingdom in terms of size .


According to the International Monetary Fund, the growth of the Indian economy was accompanied by a period of rapid inflation in the United Kingdom, which led to a cost-of-living crisis and the risk of a recession, according to what the Bank of England predicted.


The IMF also explained that this situation, along with a turbulent political period and Brexit, led to Indian production exceeding the United Kingdom in the last quarter of 2021, with the first of 2022 offering no change in the arrangement.


Looking ahead, the International Monetary Fund expects India to overtake the UK more until 2027, making India the fourth largest economy by then, and leaving the UK in sixth place.


On an adjusted basis, using the dollar exchange rate on the last day of the first quarter, India's economy in "nominal" monetary terms in the quarter ending March was $854.7 billion. On the same basis, the UK economy was at $816 billion.

Reasons for the growth of the Indian economy

And the newspaper "The Guardian" revealed that one of the main reasons for the rise of India's economy is its ability to develop its manufacturing sector.


The newspaper considered that India has already benefited from a large educated middle class, which contributed to the development of the information technology and pharmaceutical sectors on a global level.


It also has strong consumer demand, which accounts for about 55 percent of the economy, compared to less than 40 percent in China, according to the newspaper.


Indian President Modi's market reforms, which included lowering the corporate tax from 35% to 25%, and opening India to more foreign investment, have also contributed to the liberalization of entrepreneurs.


The same context was reported by the American newspaper "The New York Times", which attributed this growth to a set of government policies, including increased public investment, forgiveness for debtors, credit guarantees that helped keep inflation relatively under control, and time the public from economic shocks.


Good relations with Moscow and Brussels in the service of the economy

In the same article, The New York Times noted that India's purchase of discounted oil from Russia, contrary to the wishes of Western allies, helped prevent the country's energy prices from rising.


India's neutral stance on the war in Ukraine has also allowed the volume of trade between India and Russia to rise by nearly 120% this year, according to Russian Presidential Aide Yuri Ushakov.


Indian Ambassador in Moscow Pavan Kapoor also noted that the volume of trade between Russia and India has been growing in size and scope in recent months. He added that companies in both countries are working to overcome obstacles to closer cooperation posed by sanctions.


India has moved towards enhancing exchange with partner countries using local currencies, which will strengthen its currency, and is currently working with Moscow on taking bilateral measures to expand the use of national currencies in mutual settlements.


Likewise, India has boosted its purchases of Russian crude over the past six months, while the United States has repeatedly urged New Delhi to support setting a price ceiling for Russian oil, which the latter has not agreed to.


Data in July showed that India's imports of crude oil from Russia jumped to a record level of about 950,000 barrels per day in June, which constitutes about 20% of the total imports of the third largest consumer of crude in the world.


On the other hand, India decided, in June, to resume negotiations with the European Union after a 9-year hiatus, with the aim of concluding a free trade agreement at the end of 2023.


The European Union is India's third largest trading partner, and the value of exchanges between them amounted to about 120 billion euros in 2021.


Britain retreat

The decline in Britain's global ranking, according to the "Bloomberg" website, is an uncomfortable development for Prime Minister Liz Truss, whose country is facing the highest inflation rate in four decades, with the risks of economic recession rising.


The latest official data showed that the British economy grew less than expected in July, raising the risk that the country may have already entered a recession, with demand for electricity falling due to a sharp rise in energy fees, and the construction sector affected by a jump in the cost of raw materials.


Warnings of recession, inflation and economic problems in Britain continue daily, and recently, for example, British government experts warned that the country would plunge into a deeper energy crisis, within a year, without an immediate plan to improve homes and dramatically reduce demand for gas.


Thursday, September 15, 2022

What is the Shanghai Organization and what are its goals?

    Thursday, September 15, 2022   No comments

Two major events are happening this week: a summit meeting bringing the leaders of the nation-states that are members (or possibly future members) of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO); and the signing of the final document making Iran full member of this intergovernmental organization (IGO). Iran will add about 90 million people to this bloc of countries, bringing the percentage of the world population represented in this IGO to more than half the world's population.

The activities of the Shanghai Cooperation Summit began in the Uzbek city of Samarkand, with the participation of leaders of member states, led by Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

On Thursday, the Chinese and Russian presidents will meet bilaterally at a regional summit, which looks like a front against the West, at the height of severe tension exacerbated by the war in Ukraine.

In Samarkand - a key stop on the ancient Silk Road - Xi and Putin will be joined by leaders of India, Pakistan, Turkey, Iran and other countries for the two-day Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit, which is the first in-person summit of the SCO leaders since 2019.

Russia’s leader, Putin, has played a major role in this organization; the reasons are explained in this in-depth analysis.

This review note explains both events, starting with an overview of the organization.


What is the Shanghai Cooperation Organization?

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) is a Eurasian international organization, founded in the form of a political, economic and military alliance, in the Chinese city of Shanghai, on June 15, 2001, by 6 countries initially, namely: China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. These countries, with the exception of Uzbekistan, were members of the "Shanghai Five-Year Group" established on April 26, 1996 in Shanghai.

 

Subsequently, India and Pakistan joined the organization as full members, on June 9, 2017, at the Astana Summit. During the organization's summit held in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, on September 17, 2021, the members agreed to change Iran's status in the organization from an observer member to a full member.

 

The organization also includes non-member observer countries, including: Belarus, Afghanistan, Mongolia, Nepal, Cambodia, Armenia and Sri Lanka. It comes after the member states of the "dialogue partnership", including Turkey, which became a member since 2012, and recently Egypt and Qatar joined as well. There are many countries interested in establishing relations with the organization, such as: Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, UAE, Iraq and Syria, All of them seek to join the "dialogue partnership".

 

The vast area that includes the member states of the Shanghai Organization extends from north to south; From the Arctic to the Indian Ocean, from east to west; From Lianyungang in China to Kaliningrad in the Russian Federation, in addition to Iran, the 5 countries with nuclear capabilities will be united into one regional organization.

 

Members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization make up nearly half of the world's population and nearly 5/3 of the Eurasian land mass, making it the world's largest regional political alliance. The Shanghai Organization in the West is often called the "Eastern Alliance".

 

Shanghai and enhance mutual trust policies


During the Saint Petersburg Summit in 2002, the organization signed its charter, which explains its objectives, principles, structures and modes of action, for recognition in international law. In September 2003, the charter of the organization entered into force.

 

According to the charter of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, summits of the Council of Heads of State are held annually in designated places, alternately, in alphabetical order of the name of the member state in Russian. The Charter also stipulates that the members of the Council of Heads of Government (ie, Prime Ministers) meet annually at a place decided by the members of the Council.

 

The objectives of the organization revolve around promoting policies of mutual trust and good-neighbourliness among member states, combating terrorism and strengthening security, combating crime and drug trafficking, and confronting separatist movements and religious or ethnic extremism.

 

Shanghai .. and regional security

Since its establishment in 2001, the organization has mainly focused its efforts on issues of regional security and combating terrorism, national separatist movements and religious extremism. Regional development has also become among its priorities.

 

The organization intends to further develop its permanent body, the Regional Anti-Terrorism Structure (RATS). Between 2011 and 2015, under the coordination of the Regional Counter-Terrorism Structure, the authorities in the member states of the organization were able to prevent 20 terrorist attacks from taking place. It was still in the planning stages, avoiding 650 crimes of a terrorist and extremist nature, removing 440 terrorist training camps and neutralizing 1,700 member organizations of the international terrorist, according to the Secretary-General of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Rashid Alimov.

 

The organization arrested more than 2,700 members of proscribed armed groups and their associates, and persons suspected of criminal activities, while 213 persons linked to terrorist or extremist organizations were handed over, with many of them sentenced to long prison terms. 180 suspects were placed on wanted lists, 600 secret bases equipped with weapons were discovered, and more than 3,250 indiscriminate explosive devices were confiscated, in addition to 10,000 weapons, about 450,000 pieces of ammunition, and more than 52 tons of explosives, according to Alimov.

 

The organization has enjoyed observer status in the United Nations General Assembly since 2005. In April 2010, the secretariats of the United Nations and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization signed a joint declaration on cooperation.

 

The Organization's General Secretariat has also established partnerships with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the World Tourism Organization and the International Organization for Migration, in addition to its ongoing cooperation with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific and the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism .

 

In the context of special anti-drug operations conducted within the territories of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization over many years, the organization seized about 69 tons of lethal heroin from traffickers, and this figure constitutes about 14% of the drugs seized worldwide.

 

The UN Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs, as well as the UN Center for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia, maintain regular contacts with Shanghai Cooperation Organization officials.

 

Military and counter-terrorism activities

The peoples of this organization constitute about half of humanity, which makes it a huge fundamental entity that cannot be underestimated politically, economically or militarily in the global system, and over the past few years the activities of the organization have expanded to include increasing military cooperation, exchanging intelligence information and combating terrorism.

 

The organization says that it "conducts military exercises regularly among members to enhance cooperation and coordination against terrorism and other external threats, and to maintain regional peace and stability."

 

There have been a number of SCO joint military exercises. The first was held in 2003, with the first phase taking place in Kazakhstan and the second in China. Since then, China and Russia have cooperated in large-scale war games in 2005, 2007 and 2009, sponsored by the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

 

More than 4,000 soldiers participated in the 2007 joint military exercise, known as the "Peace Mission", which took place in Chelyabinsk, Russia, near the Ural Mountains. After the successful completion of these war games, Russian officials started talking about India joining such exercises in the future.

 

The organization conducted maneuvers under the name "Peace Mission 2021", with the participation of Russia, China, India, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan, in addition to Belarus, which participated for the first time in these maneuvers aimed at "fighting terrorism", which lasted for 4 days.

 

Some Western observers described the organization as the "NATO of the East", and classified it as an emerging military bloc to be wary of, and as the largest anti-American bloc in the region.

 

Regional Economic Development

The organization sought to help develop regional economies, create favorable conditions for trade and support investment initiatives from Eastern Europe to the Russian east coast and China, as well as build an integrated road transport system.

 

The size of the economies of the member states of the organization, in the year 2020, amounted to about 18.4 trillion dollars, while the intra-OIC trade jumped to 6.2 trillion dollars during the same period.

 

Since the establishment of the organization nearly 21 years ago, China has proposed a long-term goal of establishing a free trade area among member states, in addition to taking other immediate measures to improve the flow of goods in the region.

 

The organization established its own Business Council, on June 14, 2006, with the aim of expanding economic cooperation among member states, establishing direct relationships between financial communities, and facilitating the practical promotion of multilateral economic projects.

 

In the same year, the organization also established what is known as the “Confederation of Interbank Banks” (SCO IBC) with the aim of providing financing and banking services for investment projects sponsored by the governments of the member states of the organization, as the SCO IBC meets in particular based on the consensus of all parties once At least every year.

 

Priority areas of cooperation within the SCO include: providing financing for projects focused on infrastructure, basic industries, high-tech industries, export-oriented sectors and social enterprises, issuing and providing loans based on generally accepted international banking practices, and organizing pre-export financing to stimulate trade and economic cooperation between Shanghai Cooperation Organization member states, and other areas of common interest.

 

The countries of this organization are seeking to integrate among themselves at the economic level, in order to break the US-imposed embargo, especially Iran, Russia and China, to attract Asian investments and supply energy products.

 

The Shanghai Organization, in all its countries, has great potential on the geopolitical level, in the field of oil, gas, electric power, and many others. Any new country obtaining membership in the organization will lead to the economic integration that the organization aims to, and this matter will certainly strengthen the position of the East vis-à-vis the Western countries that adopt a unipolar policy.

 

Iran is a full member of the "Shanghai Organization" .. Timing and economic importance


Meeting with Iran’s president, Putin reminded the Iranian leader of Russia’s role in the process and stated that now Russia will take its relations with Iran to the next level:

“Russia has done everything for Iran to become a full-fledged member  of Shanghai Cooperation Organization, Russian delegation with representatives of 80 large Russian companies will travel to Iran next week.”

Iran's acceptance as a full member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization at this time is not without connotations, as it coincides with changes inside and outside Iran. Changes appear in its favor, especially in terms of getting it out of the US economic embargo, which officially began with its signing of the strategic partnership agreement with China.

In another expansionary step with great significance at various levels, the organization announced at its meeting today, through the words of Chinese President Xi Jinping, its agreement to grant Iran full membership in it, after it had been an observer member in it for years. The Chinese president said, “Iran will be considered a full member.” in the Shanghai Organization at today's meeting."

Significance of membership timing

The granting of Iran full membership in the Shanghai Organization at this time seems remarkable, as it was followed by:

 

1- The China-Iran strategic agreement, which was signed in Tehran on March 27, after a regional tour by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi that included the Gulf states and Turkey.

 

The "Strategic Partnership Document", as it was called, is a 25-year agreement between the two countries, covering the political, economic, military and industrial fields.

 

This agreement serves both countries, as it guarantees the global economic giant a further growth in its role and consolidation of its presence on the international scene, especially in the countries that the United States has placed on the list of “forbidden areas” imposed by its harsh economic sanctions.

 

It also guarantees Iran an open outlet through which it is liberated from these sanctions, disposes of its oil production that America does not buy, and prevents other countries from buying it by imposing sanctions on them, in an attempt to put economic pressure on Iran to change its political positions, and Iran imports In return for its exported oil, it needs industrial equipment, machinery and expertise, and it is preparing its ports and infrastructure with Chinese assistance, allowing the latter to use these facilities to export its products through land and sea towards the eastern shores of the Mediterranean, then to the European continents in the north and Africa in the south.

 

2- The complete and urgent US military withdrawal from Afghanistan, the country that has been occupied by the United States and its NATO allies for 20 years, located within the borders of the Eurasian region, and implanted between the two major countries in the world, China and Russia, as the United States sought to prevent their convergence and impede their growth economy, especially China, by cutting off its land and sea exports to the West, and threatening its security by igniting wars and security disturbances.

 

Here, it is worth noting that it is not a coincidence or a detail that the organization was formed only about 4 months before the anniversary of the American invasion of Afghanistan, and against the drums of this war that the United States and Britain had waged after the September 11 attacks that toppled the World Trade Center in New York. It also targeted the US Department of Defense (Pentagon).

 

The American role obstructing the work of the Shanghai Organization and the growth of China’s economic standing was demonstrated by the hastening of the leaders of the “Taliban” movement, which quickly and gradually seized all the Afghan regions in conjunction with the departure of the occupying forces, to visit China and meet officials in its Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and their emphasis on the pivotal Chinese role in Reconstruct the country exhausted by occupation and conflicts, and reassure them that they will not use Afghan lands to target the security of other countries.

 

3- The election of a new president of Iran last June, the head of the judiciary and the strongman, Ibrahim Raisi, by a large margin of votes over his closest remaining rival, after the withdrawal of the most famous names nominated in his favor, as former chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili.

 

Since the beginning of his term, Raisi has sought to enhance his country's presence and position in the world, by strengthening its relations at the regional level, and benefiting from all its capabilities, foremost of which is its geographical location. He reached Eurasia through a corridor linking the north with the south.

 

Before heading to Tajikistan, Raisi said that his country's participation in the summit "will focus on our economic and cultural relations with Asian countries," and stressed that "cooperation with neighboring countries and the region is a top priority for Iran's foreign policy."

 

Last August, Raisi declared that strengthening Iran's relations with Russia and China, the two main members of the organization, was a priority of his foreign policy.

 

Opening economic fields to Iran and liberating it from the American blockade

Among the three previous points, the strategic agreement between Iran and China, which represents the most prominent pillar of the organization, is the most important thing that contributed to Iran's accession to it, so that it appears that what happened is nothing but an expansion of the official international recognition of Iran's regional role and presence, and a greater contribution to its removal. Under the American economic blockade, and in opening the fields to it by both China and Russia, whose President Vladimir Putin stated during his speech at the summit, that his country “supports the decision submitted for approval by the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization regarding the start of procedures for Iran’s admission to the organization , stressing the mutual importance of its accession by saying that this would "increase the international authority of the organization."

 

In the first Iranian comment, the spokesman for the Presidency of the Iranian Parliament, Nizamuddin Mousavi, considered, in an interview with ISNA, that what we are witnessing is "the establishment of a new world order where the Quartet of Power in the East (Russia, China, India, Iran) is considered one of the most important international players in this new world order," he added, adding that "Iran's accession to this organization, despite Washington's opposition, proves that the era of unilateral policies is over and we are witnessing the establishment of a new world order."

 

In economic terms, Mousavi said that his country's accession "means reaching a market of 3 billion people, and this is a great opportunity that we must have a roadmap to exploit in the best way."

 

This accession was preceded by the nuclear negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 countries, rounds of which were conducted in the Austrian capital Vienna in the last months of the term of former President Hassan Rouhani, with talk of preparing for other rounds after the formation of the first Iranian government under President Ibrahim Raisi. Without neglecting the positive visit of the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Rafael Grossi, to Tehran, and his meeting with the head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, Mohammad Eslami.

 

All of the foregoing contributes to comforting Iran with the beginning of the era of President Ibrahim Raisi, and makes it approach an international position that it seeks to reach despite the obstacles of its enemies to this, which will also put it in front of major challenges in order to hold on to these gains and take advantage of the new opportunities available.

 

___________________________________________________

This weekly events review included research notes and analysis from Reda Zeidan.


Friday, July 22, 2022

Lavrov before his African tour: Russia and Africa continue to reduce the shares of the dollar and the euro in their dealings; military missions in Ukraine is now beyond Donbass region

    Friday, July 22, 2022   No comments

Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has had a very busy month in July. He has visited a number of Asian and African countries mainly to explain Russia's position on the war in Ukraine and to thank some states for not joining the sanctions imposed against his country. It would seem that his trip was successful to the extent that he was able to even revise the mission of Russia's special military operation in Ukraine, it is now about more than the Donbass region. Here is a rundown of key events and statements.

___________________________

On Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin asked Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov to report on his recent foreign tour.

During his meeting with members of the Russian Security Council, Putin said: "Today, we will discuss some issues on the international agenda, and I ask the Minister of Foreign Affairs to talk about the results of his foreign tour. I have read his written reports, but I would like to share these results and impressions from your tour with colleagues." .


Besides Lavrov, the meeting was attended by Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishusti, Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matvienko, Russian Security Council Deputy Chairman Dmitry Medvedev, Presidential Administration Head Anton Vaino, Federal Security Service Director Alexander Bortnikov, as well as Special Presidential Envoy for Environmental Protection and Transport Sergei Ivanov .


Lavrov recently completed a foreign tour that included Mongolia and Vietnam, as well as Indonesia, where he participated in the meeting of foreign ministers of the "Group of Twenty", and met a number of its foreign ministers, with the exception of foreign ministers of Western countries and the United States.


The "Group of Twenty" meeting represents a prelude to the Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Group of Twenty to be held next November in Indonesia, which it invited Russian President Vladimir Putin to attend.


Next week, Lavrov will tour a number of African countries, starting next Sunday in Egypt, where he will deliver a speech before the League of Arab States.


Earlier, the Russian Foreign Minister noted that "Russia and African partners are constantly working to reduce the dollar and euro shares in their mutual trade."


*****

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov start an African tour, starting with a visit to Egypt, on Sunday, in an effort to benefit from the desire of some countries to join non-Western alliances.


In Egypt, Lavrov would meet officials who are trying to raise the level of strong relations with Russia to the level of their close relationship with the United States, which sought with other Western powers to isolate Russia by imposing severe sanctions on it, after its military operation in Ukraine, on February 24.


After meeting with members of the Arab League in Cairo, Lavrov is  heading to Ethiopia and Uganda, the two countries whose relations with the West have recently been strained, and then to the Republic of the Congo.


Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that "Russia and African partners are constantly working to reduce the shares of the dollar and the euro in their mutual trade."


"The current geopolitical situation requires a certain adjustment of our interaction mechanisms, first of all, we are talking about the need to ensure uninterrupted logistics and the creation of financial settlement systems that are protected from external interference," added Lavrov.


"Russia, in cooperation with partners, is taking steps to expand the use of national currencies and payment systems, and is constantly working to reduce the share of the dollar and the euro in mutual trade," Lavrov said.


The minister noted that Russia "supports the creation of an independent and efficient financial system that is not vulnerable to possible influence from unfriendly countries."


He added, "Developing a comprehensive partnership with African countries remains among the important priorities of Russia's foreign policy. We are open to its further construction in line with the strategic decisions taken at the first Russia-Africa Summit at the end of October 2019 in Sochi."


The Minister stressed that Russia is open to building a comprehensive partnership with African countries, and will continue to fulfill its obligations to provide these countries with food, fertilizers and energy carriers, noting at the same time that Western sanctions against Russia have exacerbated the difficult situation in the food market.


In a related context, the Russian Foreign Minister expressed his country's appreciation for the balanced position of Africans regarding what is happening in and around Ukraine. "We know that African colleagues do not agree with the overt attempts of the United States and its European subordinates to dictate their will to everyone, to impose a unipolar model of world order on the international community," he said. "We appreciate the balanced position of Africans."


"Despite unprecedented external pressure, our (African) friends did not join the sanctions against Russia. Such an independent line deserves deep respect," he added.


*****


On Wednesday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov confirmed that Russian President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly talked about sanctions on "North Stream-2" and reducing the share of gas supplies through "North Stream-1" to reach 50% of its capacity, considering that "therefore, Europe is responsible for the energy crisis, not Russia."


In an exclusive interview with "Sputnik" and "RT", Lavrov said that "in principle, his country will not abandon the old economic chains, and will work to build new, more reliable chains, and this is what Russia is doing in the current circumstances."


Lavrov noted that "there are a number of new economic initiatives, including the "North-South" corridor extending from St. Petersburg to the Indian Ocean and from India to Vladivostok, adding that "there are a whole number of projects, which are now at a high degree of implementation." ".


He pointed out that Russia has "excellent and distinguished relations with Africa since the era of the Soviet Union," adding: "We participated in the construction of giant industrial projects on the African continent, in addition to the role of the Soviet Union in liberating many African countries from colonialism."


Lavrov revealed the expected visits to Africa this year, explaining that "it will include Africa, Egypt, Ethiopia, Uganda and Congo. He considered Africa, India and China as very promising markets."


Since the launch of the Russian special military operation on February 24, Western countries have imposed severe and unprecedented economic and financial sanctions on Russia.


Russian President Vladimir Putin stressed that "Russia does not plan to occupy Ukrainian territory," explaining that "Russia's goal is to protect people who, for 8 years, have been subjected to persecution and genocide by the Kyiv regime."


The sanctions range from banning oil exports, tying up the banking sector, and preventing companies from major countries from dealing with the Russian market, in addition to banning dealing through the “Swift” system for international banking transactions, freezing the assets of the Russian Central Bank in Western countries, as well as closing the airspace to Russian aircraft. And he imposed direct sanctions on deputies and the circle surrounding the Kremlin, right up to Russian President Vladimir Putin personally.


On the other hand, the sanctions imposed on Russia cast a shadow on international supply and supply chains, and confused the European economy first, especially in the sectors of energy, trade, manufacturing, banking and markets, in addition to their repercussions on global food prices.


*****


Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Wednesday that Moscow's military missions in Ukraine have gone beyond the eastern Donbass region.


Lavrov: "The facts of geography have changed since officials from Russia and Ukraine held negotiations in Turkey in late March that failed to achieve any breakthrough."

"Now the geography has changed, and it is no longer related to the two republics, but also to the Kherson and Zaporizhzh regions and a number of other regions," Lavrov added, referring to lands outside the two republics that were completely or partially controlled by Russia.


"The process continues in a logical and diligent manner," he added, noting that "Russia may need to go deeper."


At the beginning of this month, the Russian Ministry of Defense announced "the liberation of the territory of the Lugansk People's Republic", and Russian forces took control of areas outside Donbass, especially in the southern regions of Zaporizhia and Kherson.


Lavrov: Peace talks with Ukraine are useless

With regard to peace talks with Ukraine, Lavrov said that it was "useless to conduct them" for the time being. Lavrov noted that the first rounds of talks with Ukraine proved that Kyiv "does not want to discuss any issue seriously."


"They will not be able to formulate anything that deserves serious attention from serious people," the Russian foreign minister added, "and we have already realized that."


Talks between Russia and Ukraine stalled in mid-April, Lavrov said, explaining that Western arms supplies to Ukraine had altered the Kremlin's calculations.


Lavrov also stated that the United States of America and the United Kingdom want to push Russia to confront Europe, by providing them with arms to Ukraine.


It is noteworthy that the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, had confirmed, last June, that "the Russian air defense systems will break down the weapons obtained by Ukraine from the West like nuts."


Tuesday, July 12, 2022

Days before Putin's visit to Tehran, Iran inaugurates the North-South International Corridor

    Tuesday, July 12, 2022   No comments


Days after India called on Iran to activate the road, rail, and sea transportation systems linking Mumbai to Saint-Petersburg and less than one week before Russia's president lands in Tehran, Iran runs train south inaugurating the transport systems that will link India to northern Europe.

The International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC) is a 7,200-km-long multi-mode network of ship, rail, and road route for moving freight between India, Iran, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Russia, Central Asia and Europe. 

Last week, India urged Iran to activate the 7,200 km International North-South Transportation Corridor (INSTC), The Tribune newspaper reported.

With this development, India's trade with Russia is set to take a turn toward becoming much cheaper and faster as the two nations are planning to establish a corridor that passes through Iran and facilitates transport between them.

The INSTC is a transportation network that includes sea, road, and rail routes and links Russia and India, with Moscow and New Delhi seeking to activate the route due to them upping their bilateral trade by up to $13 billion in the last quarter of 2021. The trade even increased in terms of oil and other commodities.

Several central Asian countries will benefit from trade via the INSTC, such as Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia.

Dry runs have shown transit time decreasing by up to 25 days from 40-45 days on this route, which would cut transportation costs by 30%. The INSTC is also not under any sanctions since it is an alternative to the Suez Canal, and it is not dominated by Western countries.

Iran declared on Thursday its readiness to employ its capacities to contribute to the establishment of sustainable peace in the South Caucasus region, which includes Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia. 

The Secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, Ali Shamkhani, called for establishing agreements that will lay down the groundwork for an increase in the volume of economic exchanges between the two neighboring countries considering their significant potential.

"Interestingly, all 18-odd countries touched by the INSTC route have never been active backers of unilateral sanctions announced periodically by the West," The Tribune reported. Trade links within the region have been disrupted due to the unilateral sanctions imposed on Russia and Iran.

Meanwhile, The Economic Times reported that Russia had started transporting container trains to India through the eastern branch of the INSTC.

The INSTC, if activated, could become an alternative to traditional routes such as the Suez Canal, the Mediterranean Sea, and the Bosporus strait.

India also called on Iran to include its Chabahar Port to be brought under the INSTC, which would provide sea access to Afghanistan and emerge as a commercial transit hub for the region.

India has highly close ties with Iran, mainly due to New Delhi's dependence on Iranian crude oil despite the US sanctions on Tehran. The Islamic Republic also enjoys pivotal geographic importance, as it provides an alternate route to Afghanistan and Central Asia without India having to resort to Pakistan, a nation whose ties with New Delhi are frayed.


Putin visits Iran to participate in a summit with Erdogan and President

    Tuesday, July 12, 2022   No comments

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed today, Tuesday, that Russian President Vladimir Putin will visit Tehran on July 19.

Peskov said that President Putin will hold talks with his Iranian counterpart, Ibrahim Raisi, and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, within the framework of the meeting of leaders of the guarantor states of the Astana Process on the Syrian settlement.

He continued, "The president's trip to Tehran is already being prepared. There will be a meeting of the heads of the guarantor states of the Astana process to promote the Syrian settlement. In addition to the tripartite meeting, of course there will also be bilateral meetings and separate talks with the Turkish president," adding: "Yesterday we announced high-level contacts. The level between Putin and Erdogan, and the meeting will take place there."

The Iranian Mehr news agency had earlier quoted the head of the Iranian Parliament's Economy Committee, Mohammad Pour Ibrahimi, that President Putin would visit Iran next week.

"Potential consultations between Putin and my president are likely to focus on developing economic cooperation between Iran and Russia," Ebrahimi said.

The announcement of the visit coincides with US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan saying that his country has information that Tehran is preparing to provide Moscow with hundreds of drones, and train Russian soldiers to use them.

In a meeting with his Iranian counterpart, on June 29, on the sidelines of the sixth summit meeting of the countries bordering the Caspian Sea, Putin confirmed that both countries are in constant communication on security issues, and that they have many things to talk about.

Raisi said, at the time, that Russian-Iranian trade relations are developing, and nothing will stop this development, commenting: "The agreements we reached are under implementation, and this indicates that the will of our two countries aims to develop trade and economic relations."


Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Heads of Caspian Sea states agree to use the sea for peaceful purposes; Putin: Joint exploitation of oil and gas fields in the Caspian Sea is already underway; Raisi: Cooperation between Caspian countries is of increasing importance due to international developments

    Wednesday, June 29, 2022   No comments

The Caspian Sea heads of state agreed, during their sixth summit, held in the Turkmen capital Ashgabat, today, Wednesday, to use the Caspian Sea for peaceful purposes and to provide security in the region.

In the statement of the summit, the presidents reaffirmed that the activities of the riparian states of the Caspian Sea will be carried out on the basis of the following principles: "Using the Caspian Sea for peaceful purposes, transforming it into an area of ​​peace, good neighbourliness, friendship and cooperation, and solving all issues related to the Caspian Sea by peaceful means."

An agreement was also reached on respect for sovereignty, territorial integrity, independence, sovereign equality of states, non-use of force or threat of force, mutual respect, cooperation and non-interference in each other's internal affairs, as well as on ensuring security and stability in the Caspian Sea region. .

In turn, Russian President Vladimir Putin, during his participation in the sixth summit of the countries bordering the Caspian Sea, referred to his country's call to deepen partnerships between the five Caspian countries, stressing that "the joint exploitation of oil and gas fields in the Caspian Sea is already being implemented." ".

Putin explained that "deepening partnerships between the five countries includes the policy and security sectors, and the five Caspian Sea regions should increase cooperation in rapid response to natural and other man-made emergencies," adding: "I propose to invite countries participating in the Tehran Agreement, which aims to to the protection of the Caspian Sea to the Conference".

Among Putin's proposals is the establishment of the Caspian Sea Film Festival.

Russian President Vladimir Putin is visiting Ashgabat to participate in the Sixth Caspian Sea Summit, at the invitation of the President of Turkmenistan, Sardar Berdymukhamedov.

Also participating in the summit are the presidents of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, Iran's Ibrahim Raisi, and the Republic of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev. The meeting is held in accordance with the agreement, which was reached in light of the results of the previous summit in Aktau, Kazakhstan in August 2018.

On June 27, the Russian President's Assistant, Yuri Ushakov, announced that Russian President Vladimir Putin would meet with Iranian President Ibrahim Raisi, during their participation in the Caspian Sea Summit scheduled for June 29.

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi welcomed the initiatives presented by the heads of states bordering the Caspian Sea, to develop economic cooperation in the fields of transportation, shipping, investment, tourism, and other economic activities, in particular, the need to strengthen cultural relations and protect the fragile environment of the Caspian Sea.

In his speech at the Sixth Summit of the Caspian Sea Countries, in Ashgabat, today, Wednesday, Raisi stressed that relations between Iran and Turkmenistan have always been expanding, pointing to the availability of opportunities and energies in order to raise the level of bilateral cooperation.

He declared his country's readiness for comprehensive cooperation on the basis of mutual respect and mutual benefit.








Friday, June 17, 2022

Putin: Energy and food problems are the result of the West's wrong policies; All objectives of the Russian military operation in Ukraine will be achieved

    Friday, June 17, 2022   No comments

 Russian President Vladimir Putin stressed today, Friday, that "the world is diverse and one framework cannot be imposed on everyone from one center," adding: "The world is no longer the same as before."

In his speech at the Petersburg International Economic Forum, Putin said that "the United States of America announced that it had won the Cold War and considered itself descended from heaven."

He recalled what he said in Davos a year and a half ago that the "unipolar world has ended" and that there are strenuous attempts to try to restore it, noting that "it is no longer possible to ignore the interests of the new centers of power in the world."

"Outdated geopolitical illusions have undermined confidence in global currencies," Putin said.

The West expected the ruble to collapse, but what happened was the opposite

The Russian president pointed out that "the West's measures to destroy the Russian economy failed and did not bear fruit," explaining that "the reaction of the Russian people came against what the West wanted, as we have increased strength and cohesion."

Putin stressed that "the Russian financial system is stable," noting that "the West expected the ruble to collapse and reach 200 against the dollar, but what happened was the opposite and their expectations were not fulfilled."

"The goal of the sanctions was to bring down the Russian economy, but they did not succeed because the Russian economic sector worked efficiently," he said.

"The Russian people are a strong people who will deal with any problem, and this is evidenced by the thousand-year history of our country," Putin said.

He added that "European politicians have harmed their countries' economies," noting that "the consequences of sanctions imposed on Russia will be $400 billion on European economies."

He stressed that "sanctions can be imposed on any country, including European countries and any European companies."

The European Union has completely lost its sovereignty

During his speech, Putin saw that "the European Union has completely lost its sovereignty, is subject to external dictates, and implements everything that is dictated to it," noting that "inflation growth in some eurozone countries has now exceeded the level of 20%."

Considering that "the world has reached this situation as a result of the activities carried out by the seven major industrialized countries at the level of economy and politics."

There is a danger that Ukrainian wheat will go to finance arms deals

"The Russian military operation in Ukraine was an excuse to hold Russia responsible for all the mistakes," the Russian president said, stressing that "the special military operation in Donbas has nothing to do with the situation in Europe."

He pointed out that "the United States was at the forefront of exporters in the global market, but the US role has now changed."

Putin pointed out that "the West deliberately created a food crisis by buying foodstuffs in world markets above its actual needs," adding that "the United States was the main supplier of many food commodities, and today it has become an importer rather than an exporter."

He revealed that "Russia is interested in exporting 50 million tons of wheat, a priority for needy countries in the countries of the Middle East and Africa," explaining that "the West is pursuing the same old policy of plunder and imperialism, but in a new way."

He added, "Democratic procedures, elections in Europe sometimes look at what's going on there, what forces come to power. It all seems like a screen [to camouflage], because political parties are alike, like twins, superseding each other. However, the The essence of this does not change, the real interests of citizens, national business are being pushed more and more into the backyard, to the fringes.”

He stressed that Russia does not obstruct food exports from Ukraine and that it is not the one who planted mines in the ports, and said in this context, "We will secure the transportation of grain from the ports, but the Ukrainian side should secure the ports from what they planted of sea mines."

Putin warned that "there is a danger that Ukrainian wheat will go to finance arms deals."

Putin: All objectives of the Russian military operation will be achieved

Putin said that "the reason for the energy crisis in Europe lies in the wrong policy of the European Union and the unjustified dependence on alternative energy," stressing that "there was no escape from the decision to launch military currency, as the Donbas residents were subjected to abuse by the Western-backed Ukrainian regime."

Putin added that "all the objectives of the Russian military operation will be achieved," adding that "our soldiers are defending the homeland, the people and human values, and they are resisting extraneous values ​​and moral decay."

He pointed out that "sovereignty in the 21st century is indivisible."

He denounced Western actions, saying: "The West has always been generous in raising the level of hostility against Russia and creating a poisonous atmosphere of Russophobia."

Putin: Russia will not be isolated

Putin pointed out that "the change in the Russian economy and its ability to confront sanctions is what we have made over the past years," noting that "the structure of Western sanctions was based on a false belief that Russia is not a self-sufficient economy."

"The sanctions provide us with a great opportunity and impetus to move forward with regard to technological independence," he said, adding that "Russia will not undergo the process of isolation that the hostile countries thought we would submit to."

He added that "Russia will deal with leaders who want to deal with it, who are able to distinguish between the interests of their countries and foreign dictates."

Putin predicted that "the current situation in Europe will lead to an escalation of radicalism in the future to change the ruling elites," adding that "everyone working with Russia is under unprecedented pressure from the United States and the European Union."


Friday, May 13, 2022

Medvedev warns of 10 catastrophic consequences of sanctions against Russia

    Friday, May 13, 2022   No comments

 The deputy head of the Russian National Security Council, Dmitry Medvedev, said that the post-sanctions world against Russia will bear a catastrophic 10 points.

This came in a post on his Telegram channel, where he indicated that what will happen is actually reality and "not out of expectations"; a translation of his statement follows:

__________________

What will happen next, or the World after anti-Russian sanctions (not a forecast at all)


1. A number of global supply chains of goods will collapse, a major logistical crisis is possible, including the collapse of the activities of foreign airlines that are prohibited from flying over Russian territory.

2. The energy crisis will intensify in those states that have imposed “shooting their own feet” sanctions on the supply of Russian energy carriers, further growth in fossil fuel prices will continue, and the development of the digital economy in the world will slow down.

3. A full-fledged international food crisis will come with the prospect of starvation in individual states.

4. A monetary and financial crisis is possible in some countries or communities of countries, associated with the undermining of the stability of a number of national currencies, galloping inflation and the destruction of the legal system for protecting private property.

5. New regional military conflicts will arise in those places where the situation has not been peacefully resolved for many years or the significant interests of major international players are ignored.

6. Terrorists are becoming more active, believing that the attention of Western authorities today is diverted to a showdown with Russia.

7. New epidemics will begin, caused by the rejection of honest international cooperation in the sanitary and epidemiological sphere or by direct facts of the use of biological weapons.

8. There will be a decline in the activities of international institutions that have not been able to prove their effectiveness in the course of settling the situation in Ukraine, such as, for example, the Council of Europe.

9. New international alliances of countries based on pragmatic rather than ideological Anglo-Saxon criteria will be formed.

10. As a result, a new security architecture will be created, in which de facto, and then de jure, the existing realities are recognized: 

a) the weakness of Westernized concepts of international relations such as "Order based on rules" and other senseless Western junk; 

b) the collapse of the idea of ​​an American-centric world; and 

c) the presence of interests respected by the world community in those countries that are in an acute stage of conflict with the Western world.

_______________________________________

01:00; FRIDAY THE 13TH of May, 2022.

Thursday, April 28, 2022

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres walks in war zone characterizes the war in Ukraine as “absurd”, could see his own “grandchildren running in terror.”

    Thursday, April 28, 2022   No comments

ISR Comment:

To Mr. Guterres: There is another absurd war that is also absurd and was allowed to go on for seven years: The war in Yemen. But perhaps the children of Yemen do not look like your grandchildren, so that is why you cannot relate, you cannot imagine them to be your children; so you don’t visit Yemen’s destroyed cities and watch the children dying of hunger and lack of basis medicine because of the suffocating embargo by a regime that threatened to cut off aid to UN organizations if its crimes against children was reported by any UN agency. Perhaps, if the UN and many Western states spoke forcefully against the many wars in Muslim communities initiated or enabled by the West, the world will be more united and successful in preventing this war. Consistency is an element of justice. The bigotry and discrimination against communities of the Global South will haunt those complicit in all human rights crimes and will destroy the reputation of the UN organization for its failure to support for the poor and vulnerable.


The News:

Guterres - who is on his first visit to Ukraine since the start of the Russian war on the country on February 24 - said in front of destroyed buildings accompanied by soldiers and local officials, "I imagine my family in one of these houses, I see my grandchildren running in terror, the war is absurd in the 21st century, any war that is not acceptable in the 21st century.”

While touring damaged towns outside Kyiv, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres urged Russia to cooperate with war crimes probes. Meanwhile, German lawmakers approved sending heavy weapons to Ukraine. DW has the latest.

Biden proposes using seized Russian oligarch assets to compensate Ukraine

The White House proposed using assets confiscated from Russian oligarchs to compensate Ukraine for damage caused by Russia's invasion of the country.

This would enable "transfer of the proceeds of forfeited kleptocratic property to Ukraine to remediate harms of Russian aggression," the White House said in a statement.

To date, European Union allies have frozen more than $30 billion (€ 28,6 billion) in Russian assets, including almost $7 billion in luxury goods belonging to oligarchs, including yachts, art, real estate and helicopters, the White House said.

The United States has "sanctioned and blocked vessels and aircraft worth over $1 billion (€950 million), as well as frozen hundreds of millions of dollars of assets belonging to Russian elites in US accounts."

...

source: https://www.dw.com/en/un-chief-guterres-decries-absurdity-of-war-in-visit-to-ukraine-live-updates/a-61615670


Most popular articles


ISR +


Frequently Used Labels and Topics

A Week in Review Academic Integrity Adana Agreement afghanistan Africa al-Azhar Algeria All Apartheid apostasy Arab Spring Armenia Arts and Entertainment Asia Bangladesh BRICS Brotherhood CAF Canada Caspian Sea Chechnya China CIA Civil society colonialism communism Conflict Constitutionalism Contras Corruption Coups Crimea Crimes against humanity Democracy Despotism Diplomacy Dissent Dmitry Medvedev Economics and Finance Economy Education and Communication Egypt Elections energy environment Erdogan Europe Events FIFA FIFA World Cup FIFA World Cup Qatar 2020 Food Football France freedom of speech Gaza GCC GDP Genocide geopolitics Germany Global Security Globalism globalization Greece Grozny Conference Hamas Health hijab History and Civilizations Human Rights Huquq Ideas IGOs Immigration Imperialism Imperialismm india Indonesia Instrumentalized Human Rights Inter International Affairs International Law Iran IranDeal Iraq ISIL Islam in America Islam in China Islam in Europe Islam in Russia Islam Today Islamic economics Islamic law Islamic Societies Islamism Islamophobia Jordan Journalism Khamenei Kurdistan Law and Society Lebanon Libya Majoritarianism Malaysia mass killings Media Media Bias Middle East Military Affairs Morocco Muslim Ban Muslim Women and Leadership Muslims Muslims in Europe Muslims Today Nationalism NATO Nelson Mandela Nicaragua Nigeria North America North Korea Nuclear Deal Nusra OPEC+ Pakistan Palestine Poland Politics and Government Populism Poverty Propaganda Prophet Muhammad Protests Public Health Putin Qatar Quran Racism Raisi Regime Change religion and conflict Religion and Culture Religion and Politics religion and society Resistance Rohingya Genocide Russia Salafism Sanctions Saudi Arabia Science and Technology SCO Sectarianism security sharia Sharia-compliant financial products Shia Soccer socialism Southwest Asia and North Africa Space War Sports Sports and Politics Supremacy SWANA Syria terrorism Tourism transportation Tunisia Turkey Turkiye U.S. Foreign Policy UAE uk ukraine UN United States Uprisings US Foreign Policy USA Volga Bulgaria wahhabism War and Peace War Crimes West Western Civilization Western Sahara WMDs women rights World and Communities Yemen Zionism

Search for old news

Find Articles by year, month hierarchy

_______________________________________________

Copyright © Islamic Societies Review. All rights reserved.