Kazakhstan, Hungary Build on Strong Political, Economic, Cultural Ties, Ambassador in Budapest Says

The Astana Times | Mar 26, 2015

Ahead of the visit to Astana by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán in early April, Nurbakh Rustemov, Kazakhstan’s Ambassador in Budapest, shared his views on the bilateral relations and their future, touching, among other things on the interesting and long-standing cultural links between the two countries. 

The Long Read: Why Russia Should See Off China in Central Asia’s New Great Game

The National | Mar 26, 2015

Russian President Vladimir Putin has been zipping in and out of Central Asia’s capitals, determined not to let the five Stans – Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan – slide out of Moscow’s orbit. “For Russia, it is about maintaining influence, economic and cultural, and maintaining Central Asia as a security buffer.”

In Shadow of Boko Haram, Cameroon Combats Extremism at Home

U-T San Diego | Mar 26, 2015

But the country is also mobilizing soft power. The government sponsored a conference this week where Islamic and Christian leaders discussed promoting religious tolerance. Earlier this month, Cameroon announced $8 million in grants for young people who start businesses in the north, the country's poorest region and the one where most Muslims live.

China Alone in Claims to Sea

Manila Standard Today | Mar 26, 2015

“China is aware it has to engage in a battle of public opinion and shape the narrative in its favor given the weak legal case it is standing on,” Del Rosario said, adding that the Philippines chose to pursue international arbitration “to preserve a valued friendship” with China.

‘EU Has Very Poor Capability in Terms of Understanding Russia’s Concerns’

RT | Mar 26, 2015

A report on EU-Russia relations by a UK House of Lords committee admits that the EU totally miscalculated Moscow’s reaction to the developments in Ukraine because of a lack of Russian experts, says Lord Peter Truscott. Britain's House of Lords has been debating a report suggesting relations between the EU and Russia have reached a critical level. 

Obama’s Anti-Israel Blitz Has Gone Too Far

The Washington Post | Mar 26, 2015

At times President Obama sounds almost incoherent on Iran. On one hand he says, like the Israeli prime minister, that he does not see a peace deal in the near future. (“What we can’t do is pretend that there’s a possibility for something that’s not there. And we can’t continue to premise our public diplomacy based on something that everybody knows is not going to happen at least in the next several years.”) So they are on the same page? 

Chinese Foreign Policy Comes of Age

The New York Times | Mar 26, 2015

China’s public offer to mediate peace talks between the Taliban and the Afghan government marks a notable departure in Chinese foreign policy. It is the first time Beijing is taking a genuine leadership role, on its own initiative, on a geopolitical issue both sensitive and significant.

5 Things You Need to Know About the Iran Talks

CNN | Mar 26, 2015

The world is watching for what could turn out to be either a historic achievement for international diplomacy -- or, just as easily, a disappointing failure -- as negotiators sit down this week in the tranquil lakeside city of Lausanne, Switzerland, to hammer out a framework nuclear deal with Iran before March 31.

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