Russia’s Rosoboronexport in Visit to DefExpo India 2022 for Joint Production of AK-203 Assault Rifles

According to the Financial Express Online, a special delegation from Rosoboronexport, the sole state agency for Russia’s export and imports of weapons and one of the leading actors in international arms trade, took part in the DefExpo India 2022 that was held from October 18th to 22nd in Gandhinagar (Siddiqi, 2022). The exhibition represented a formidable opportunity for the Russian delegates to discuss the future local production of Kalashnikov AK-203 assault rifles within the framework of the Indo-Russian Rifles Private Limited (IRRPL) (Orujie Rossii, 2022).

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The Russia – Iran Strategic Partnership in the Shadow of Ukraine’s War

Closer ties between Putin’s Russia and the Islamic Republic of Iran in the field of security cooperation (voennoe sotrudnichestvo) has attracted significant attention from Western foreign policy-makers and academic scholars in recent years. Diplomatic isolation and commonly shared dissatisfaction with the long-established American hegemony has driven both countries into a pragmatic, stable and mutually beneficial rapprochement nearly a decade after a new chapter in their relationships was opened in 2012 (Ghadbeigy, 2017). By this time the return of Vladimir Putin to power was clearly interpreted as marking a watershed moment in Russian foreign policy doctrine and strategies that had long since been in vogue under the rule of Dmitriy Medvedev (Kozhanov, 2015).

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Short-Term Necessities and Long-Term Implications of the Russian “Partial Mobilisation” Call

After the Ukrainian counteroffensive in Kherson in August, on the 21th of September Putin launched a call for “partial mobilisation” of Russian men between the ages of 18 and 50, with the aim of enlisting 300,000 soldiers amongst the reservists and former military personnel (Il Post, 2022). Three weeks later, the recruitment operation is said to have enlisted over 200,000 people, as stated by the Russian Defence Minister Shoigu (Cancian, 2022) (Il Post, 2022). Even if it is early to say, Russia is calculating whether the new recruits should be sent to the front without proper training as “cannon fodder” (Bathon, 2022), or whether to send them to the 80 camps and 6 training centres outlined by the Russian Defence Minister (Il Post, 2022). Currently the decision appears to be somewhere in between the two, with some of the recruits trained for fewer than three days before being sent to the front, while others completing the training phase.

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NATO’s Interoperability in the Asia-Pacific Area

Last February, Presidents Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping solidified their mutually supportive relationship with the issuance of the Joint Statement of the Russian Federation and the People’s Republic of China on the International Relations Entering a New Era and the Global Sustainable Development. In the document, Russia reaffirms its support for the one China policy in reference to the Taiwan dispute. In return, China opposes the NATO enlargement policy by opposing both the inclusion of Eastern European countries and the increase of the North Atlantic Council’s interests in Pacific Asia. As a result of this geopolitical shift, NATO had to revaluate its strategic agenda in both Europe and Asia-Pacific. The 2022 Strategic Concept can be considered the main pillar of a new, more cohesive NATO strategy.

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The EU Energy Security: Challenges and Opportunities

Europe is experiencing an unprecedented energy crisis since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine started. This is highlighting the challenges that the continent is facing, especially concerning energy. This is one of the reasons why energy security plays a central role in the common security plans of the EU and NATO allies.

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