with Daniyar Kosnazarov and Fuad Shahbazov
Xi Jinping announced China’s ambitious Belt and Road Initiative in Astana in 2013. Its land component – the Silk Road Economic Belt- aims to create transport corridors and increase connectivity from China to the west – through Russia and Belarus, and along roads and railways through Central Asia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Turkey. In this presentation, Daniyar Kosnazarov will analyze the projection of China’s soft power in Kazakhstan, and explain how a range of actors from countries are involved in this process. He will draw attention to the barriers which limit Chinese public and cultural diplomacy in Central Asia. Fuad Shahbazov will explain how in the South Caucasus, all three countries are interested in boosting cooperation with China to develop infrastructure projects. However, these ambitions are hampered by ongoing conflicts between the countries. China remains reluctant to become involved in regional conflicts, focusing instead on developing economic links and positioning the region as a gateway to Europe. As China continues to engage the states of the South Caucasus, this approach will be tested.
Fuad Shahbazov is a Baku-based policy analyst and author. His expertise include regional security, religious extremism, and military and defense industries. He is currently at the Daniel Morgan Graduate School of National Security in Washington DC. He was a Research Fellow at the Center for Strategic Studies under the President of Republic of Azerbaijan from 2016-2018. He was also a Visiting Researcher the Asian Center for Strategic Studies in Istanbul, Turkey, as well a Research Assistant at the European Policy Center in Brussels. Mr. Shahbazov is also a frequent analyst for BBC, Al Jazeera, Times of Israel, Jamestown Foundation, The Diplomat, and Central Asian – Caucasus Institute. He holds an MA degree in Political Science from University of Bologna.
Daniyar Kosnazarov’s research interests include youth, social media, and popular culture. As a visiting fellow at The George Washington University, his research focuses on the values and higher education expectations of Kazakhstan’s Generation Z. Mr. Kosnazarov is also the Editor-in-Chief of Steppe, an independent digital media outlet in Kazakhstan covering technology, entrepreneurship, education, leisure, and art. He is experienced working for both the government and private think tanks of Kazakhstan, and previously worked as Chair of the Department of Strategic Analysis at Narxoz University, evaluating strategy implementation. He previously was awarded an MA in International Relations and Regional Studies, Tsukuba University (Japan) 2012, and a BA in International Relations, Selcuk University (Turkey), 2009.
9:00: Opening Remarks
9:30-11:00: Panel 1: “Contextualizing the Re-education Camps
James A. Millward, Georgetown University
Sandrine Catris, Augusta University
Sean R. Roberts, The George Washington University
Michael Clarke, Australian National University
11:00-11:30: Coffee Break
11:30-1:00: Panel 2: “Documenting the ‘Re-education camps’ “
Sophie Richardson, Human Rights Watch
Timothy Grose, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology
Seiji Nishihara, Kagoshima University
2:00-3:30: Panel 3: “Impact of the Camps on Uyghur Communities
Joanne Smith Finley, Newcastle University
Darren Byler, University of Washington
Elise Anderson, Indiana University
Dilnur Reyhan, French National Institute for Oriental Studies (INALCO)
3:30-5:00: Roundtable on Responses of the International Community
Artemy M. Kalinovsky is Senior Lecturer of East European Studies at the University of Amsterdam. He is also the author of A Long Goodbye: The Soviet Withdrawal from Afghanistan (Harvard University Press, 2011), and co-editor with Sergey Radchenko, of The End of the Cold War and the Third World (Routledge: 2011), as well as the Routledge Handbook of Cold War Studies with Craig Daigle (2014). More recently, he co-edited, with Michael Kemper, Reassessing Orientalism: Interlocking Orientologies in the Cold War Era (2015) and Reconsidering Stagnation: Ideology and Exchange in the Brezhnev Era (Lexington, 2016), with Dina Fainberg. His work has appeared in the Journal of Cold War Studies, Cold War History, Foreign Policy, National Journal, Foreign Affairs, and the Washington Post
9:00 Coffee and pastries
9:30-11:30am. Panel 1. Russia’s Engagement Strategies in the Middle East
Nikolas Gvosdev (Naval War College/Foreign Policy Research Institute; Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs)
Russian Strategic Goals in the Middle East
Ekaterina Stepanova (National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations (IMEMO), Russian Academy of Sciences in Moscow)
Russia’s Policy on the Middle East Conflicts: Regionalization and what it Means for the West
Mark Katz (George Mason University)
Not Getting Any Easier: Putin’s Middle East Balancing Act
Anna Borshchevskaya (Washington Institute for Near East Policy)
Putin’s Russia in the Middle East: is there an Endgame?
12:00-2:15pm. Panel 2. Russia’s Military Involvement in Syria and its Impact
Michael Kofman (CNA Analysis and Solutions)
Russian Military Operations in Syria and their Implications for Russian Armed Forces
Gregory Simons (Uppsala University)
Russia in the Middle East: Emergence of a new Geopolitical Shatter Belt?
Antonio Giustozzi (King’s College London)
Putin’s Masterpiece: Russia’s Military and Diplomatic Role in Syria through Syrian and Iranian Eyes
Maria Omelicheva (National Defense University)
Russia in Syria: Reshaping the Global Order or Fighting Terrorism?
Igor Delanoe (French-Russian analytical center Observo, French-Russian Chamber of Commerce, Moscow)
How does Moscow Intend to Support Syria’s Reconstruction?