On a hillside in northeastern Kazakhstan, south of the Russian border, a simple and stark slogan looms over the city of Oskemen: “Kazakhstan,” reads the message in giant white letters arrayed across the green slope.
The Crimea crisis is putting pressure on Kazakhstan’s long-standing, multi-vectored foreign policy, which has sought to balance the competing interests of Russia, China and the United States in Central Asia.
Last month’s annexation by Russia of Crimea and the West’s reaction have placed emerging regional powers, which have generally supported Moscow’s position on key geopolitical developments, in a difficult position, according to U.S. analysts.
When Western powers, led by the United States, decided to throw Russia out of the Group of 8 (G8) industrial nations, it was aimed at punishing and "isolating" President Vladimir Putin for his intervention in Ukraine and "annexation" of Crimea.
Russia’s state-run oil giant Rosneft wants to purchase a majority stake in the state-controlled company that owns all of Kyrgyzstan’s civilian airports.
History, not only law, matters: like how Crimea and Abkhazia-South Ossetia - basically Russian-Orthodox – became Ukrainian and Georgian, respectively.
The two-day, much-ballyhooed Nuclear Security Summit (NSS) in the Netherlands, which concluded Tuesday, was politically haunted by the upheaval in Ukraine - the former Soviet republic that renounced some 1,800 of its nuclear weapons in one of the world's most successful disarmament exercises back in 1994.
The observation that the Chinese characters for the word “crisis” combine the characters for “danger” and “opportunity” has become a staple of Washington foreign policy discourse for years.
In Donetsk’s Lenin Square, Yuroslav Korotenko keeps a constant vigil inside a tent erected just a few feet away from a massive statue of Soviet leader Vladimir Lenin.
Russia’s storming of the Ukrainian naval base in Crimea just as Iran and world powers wrapped up another round of negotiations in Vienna earlier this week represent seemingly contradictory bookends to a world that some believe is spinning out of control.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, conscious of the stark ineffectiveness of the Security Council over the upheaval in Ukraine, is engaged in a round of shuttle diplomacy with Russian and Ukrainian leaders to help resolve the crisis in that region.
As the West imposes what have been called the most comprehensive sanctions on Russia since the end of the Cold War, many ordinary Russians say they have no fear of any economic measures the United States or the European Union may take against their country.
Crimean officials have reported that roughly 97 percent of Crimeans voted for independence from Ukraine on Sunday, with a turnout of about 80 percent. Yet the security situation in Crimea has led many to question how free the vote really was.
As Crimea prepares to become part of Russia following a referendum which much of the international community says has no legitimacy, families on the peninsula are being forced apart by the political upheaval while others are considering leaving the region.
Amidst rising tensions within Ukraine, between its government and Russia, and even more between Russia and the West, many are now beginning to fear the beginning of a new Cold War. Talk of sanctions is finding new supporters, and there are proposals to freeze plans for a G8 summit scheduled in Russia later this year.