Asian-Pacific region

The “Cartoon” Incident in Sino-Australian Relations

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The reason for the latest scandal in Sino-Australian relations was when an official representative from the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs posted a cartoon on Twitter about, to put it mildly, the “serious costs” incurred by the “limited contingent” of Australian armed forces during their stay in Afghanistan. Throughout this period, which can be counted as starting in November…

Australia Faces New Challenges in its Relationship With China

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The relationship between Australia and China has deteriorated markedly over recent months. Each side is blaming the other for the deterioration, and amid the flurry of frankly anti-China propaganda emerging from most of the major Australian news outlets it is difficult to establish what went wrong and who precisely is to blame. It is possible however…

Australia and France in the Pacific Ocean

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France is a major player in Oceania, a place where Australia, which has a leading position in this vast region of the South Pacific, has historically developed solid, neighborly relations. From the middle of the XVIII century to the present, France has owned New Caledonia (with the world’s fourth largest nickel reserves and a French military base), Wallis and Futuna…

The Malabar Naval Exercises have Begun

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In the series of events that is unfolding in the Indo-Pacific region, one very remarkable event was “phase 1” (from November 3-6 this year) in the latest Malabar international naval exercises, which are most often (but not always) held in the Bay of Bengal in the Indian Ocean. This time, the format for the Malabar exercises, and the issue of whether it would take place…

China’s Reaction to Australian Thoughtlessness Makes an Overdue Point

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For all of this century, China has been Australia’s most important trading partner. By 2019 it took more than one third of all Australian exports. This percentage had grown steadily each year. It was not alone in representing the importance of the Chinese market to the Australian economy. In 2019 China also became the largest source…

The “Domino Effect” in Oceania and Competition among World Powers

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Even after gaining independence, the countries in Oceania are facing pressure from more powerful regional players that want to keep them in their spheres of influence, and secure strategically important positions in the Pacific Ocean for themselves. At the same time, the expression of national volition is becoming…

Singapore and Fiji: the Strongest Relationship in Oceania

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Singapore is a thriving island city-state located in Southeast Asia next to Indonesia and Malaysia. A bit fewer than 6 million people live in the country, which is small in terms of area but the size of its GDP is comparable to prosperous European countries like Belgium or Switzerland. Singapore has always maintained friendly trade…

Australia Faces Challenging Times Caused by Deteriorating Relations with China

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A recent article published in Russia Today on 13 October 2020 by Tom Fowdy raised some very important issues affecting Australia’s economic well-being. That economic position is rapidly deteriorating as the country’s crucial economic relationship with China disintegrates at an accelerating rate. Australia’s export structure has had several…

Will 2020 be the Year Bougainville Gains Independence?

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Bougainville Island (which is slightly larger than Cyprus in terms of area) and the smaller Buka Island that is adjacent to it, and that has the capital which bears the same name, is located in the northern part of the Solomon Islands archipelago in the southern Pacific, and is part of Papua New Guinea (PNG), the largest state in Oceania…

Australia is Learning the Hard Way the Price of its Adherence to US Foreign Policy

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In his recent article, a Canadian analyst Patrick Armstrong took a detailed look at current United States policy toward its European allies. Although he does not mention Australia once in his article, much of what Mr Armstrong has to say about United States policy toward its European “allies” is of direct relevance to Australia…

The United States and China in Oceania: the Showdown Is Heating Up

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During the modern stage in the geopolitical rivalry among world powers to gain influence in the Asia-Pacific, where it shows up most vividly is in the southern part of the Pacific Ocean: Australia, China, the United States, and Japan are all trying hard to become chummy with the countries in Oceania, but each of those is pursuing…

The Holy Synod Expands the Scope of its Pastoral Responsibility to Papua New Guinea

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Over the past few years, both Russian and foreign media have increasingly been reporting on the development of Russia’s relations with Papua New Guinea, the largest island nation in Oceania, with a population of almost 9 million people. Another area of media interest has been the activities…


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