mandag 7. mars 2022

Russia's attack on Ukraine reveals political fault lines in Asia

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi called him a "dear friend." Chinese leader Xi Jinping went a step further, calling him his "best and bosom friend." But Russian strongman Vladimir Putin's unprovoked assault on Ukraine has thrown Russia's previously warm relations with the Asian powers into question.

Both China and India have refused to condemn Russia's brutal invasion outright, and both abstained from voting on United Nations Security Council and General Assembly resolutions demanding Moscow immediately stop its attack on Ukraine.

But with the United States making clear it views countries that don't condemn Putin's war as aligned with Russia, the world's two most populous nations are facing increased international pressure to speak out -- or risk being seen as complicit. That neither country has chosen to do so has illuminated Russia's outsized influence in Asia, where arms sales and no-strings-attached trade have allowed Moscow to exploit regional fault lines and weaker ties to the West.