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Non-Interference No More? China’s Evolving Approach to Global Security

By Giulia Sciorati China has begun renegotiating its once unwavering non-interference policy as the country has ascended to global power status. For years, China has attempted to reconcile its image of “responsible great power” with its narrative of “peaceful rise”, ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Misadventures in the Skin Trade

This week I spent a few days in Cape Town, in time for a minor, if telling, crisis in international agricultural trade. A ship crammed with 19,000 (mostly still living) cows was stuck in Cape Town harbor, en route from Brazil to the Middle East.
As South African animal welfare authorities scrambled to inspect the horrors on board, the city was enveloped in a powerful farmyard funk. The entire episode can ...

Drawing in the Relational Net of Influence & Power

By Felix Brender 王哲謙 With analysts ruminating over the rise of China for the past decades, we have seen a more recent trend among the Western academy that attempts to see what China wants and does through a Chinese lens and perhaps ...

How Ties With a Small Pacific Island Country Highlights China’s Reputational Statecraft

By Lukas Fiala & Kenddrick Chan Among the many noteworthy consequences of Taiwan’s recent elections, Nauru’s recognition of the One China Principle is perhaps the most underappreciated one. Having announced the diplomatic switch from Taipei to Beijing shortly after election ...

Small Islands in Great Power Politics 

By Saniya Kulkarni In the past two weeks alone, two island states have made shifts in their foreign policies to align more closely with China. The states in question are, of course, Nauru and the Maldives – the former used to ...

Island Fever? Taiwan’s General Elections as an Opportunity for the Global South to Revisit Its Relations With China

By Felix Brender 王哲謙 The mood in Taiwan’s capital Taipei is as somber as it tends to be mere days before the elections. As usual in the runup to the elections, the PRC has increased its posturing, as part of the wider ...

Latin America’s Diplomacy: Balancing EU and China With Mercosur

By Alvaro Mendez and Chris Alden The negotiations for the EU-Mercosur Free Trade Agreement (FTA) have spanned over two decades and are now facing renewed delays. This prolonged process is a crucial moment in Latin America's trade policy, especially as Brazilian ...

China’s Crisis Diplomacy Is in Overdrive – but to What Effect?

By Lukas Fiala 方朗克 When China’s Horn of Africa Envoy, Xue Bing, returned to Ethiopia earlier this week, he did so in the context of China’s increasingly proactive diplomacy across Africa and the Middle East. From the conflict in Gaza to the peace ...

What Can We Learn From China’s Response to the Gaza Crisis?

By Lukas Fiala 方朗克 With a first truce between Israel and Hamas and the initial release of hostages in the headlines, we should begin to draw wider lessons from China’s response to the crisis to enhance our understanding of Beijing’s approach to ...

Of Choke Points, Copper Mines and China

By Chris Alden and Alvaro Mendez The Panama Canal has run nearly dry. Or to be more exact, the artificial lake that serves as a staging site for ships coming into the canal from the Pacific Ocean is so depleted after ...

China’s New Defense Minister Comes at a Critical Time

By Lukas Fiala and Felix Brender 王哲謙 Earlier this week, the sacking of Li Shangfu — China’s now erstwhile Minister of National Defense and State Councilor — made the headlines around the world. Li had been MIA for weeks, and was the second ...

Can’t Be Ambiguous and Mediate: The Limits of China’s Involvement in Israel-Palestine

By Felix Brender 王哲謙 and Lukas Fiala Invigorated by having kicked the Saudi-Iranian deal over the finish line earlier this year, China had initially tried to appear neutral and present itself as a potential mediator in the most recent escalation in violence between Israelis ...
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