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looking beyond borders

foreign policy and global economy

Archive for the category “South Asia”

Gotabaya Rajapaksa Wins Sri Lanka Presidential Election

Gotabaya Rajapaksa has won the Sri Lankan presidential election after a closely fought race against ruling party candidate Sajith Premadasa, with the country’s Election Commission declaring him the winner on Sunday. “I would like to inform everyone that I will execute everything you trusted in me [to do],” Rajapaksa said at the results announcement, flanked by his brother Mahinda, a former two-time president.

Read Here – Al Jazeera

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Why Is The World Talking Less About Sri Lankan Presidential Polls This Time?

There is little or no excitement in global capitals over the Sri Lankan presidential polls this time, unlike during the last two or three elections of 2005, 2010 and 2015. For most in the ‘international community’ (read: West), one of the two main contestants is ‘unwelcome’ and the other is ‘unknown’.

Read Here – ORF

The End Of Sri Lankan Democracy?

One of Asia’s oldest democracies may be in jeopardy. Sri Lanka’s presidential election next month, is expected to bring to power another member of the Rajapaksa family, whose affinity for authoritarianism, violence, and corruption is well known. While Sri Lanka’s democracy survived the last test – an attempted constitutional coup by outgoing President Maithripala Sirisena a year ago – it may not survive a Gotabaya Rajapaksa presidency.

Read Here – Project Syndicate

In Afghanistan And Kashmir, It’s The 1980s All Over Again

While a superpower negotiates an exit from Afghanistan, India stirs up a hornet’s nest in Kashmir. It is the 1980s, and the world is at an inflection point that led to a major insurgency in Kashmir, the Afghan civil war, the rise of the Taliban, and the attacks of 9/11. Again today, the world is facing no less an important transition period as the United States is set to conclude a preliminary peace agreement with the Taliban and India’s Hindu nationalist government continues its communications and media blackout in Kashmir after having revoked the region’s nominal autonomy this month.

Read Here – Foreign Policy

Sri Lankans Up in Arms Over US Military Pacts

Two defence cooperation agreements between the United States and Sri Lanka, the already signed Acquisition and Cross-Servicing Agreement (ACSA) and the under-negotiation Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA), are triggering concern, criticism, and controversy in the Indian Ocean island.

Read Here – The Diplomat

Beware The Decline Of U.S. Influence In South Asia

The United States does have important interests in the region which range from cultivating peace in Afghanistan to reigning in Chinese ambitions in Asia-Pacific. Realizing these objectives will require greater participation in regional affairs particularly between India and Pakistan, this for the sake of the United States and the region itself.

Read Here – The National Interest

Farewell To South Asia

“Political South Asia” was an invention of the 1980s. It has not survived the test of time. As India’s footprint goes way beyond the Subcontinent, Bangladesh becomes the throbbing heart of the Bay of Bengal and an economic bridge to East Asia and Sri Lanka emerges as an Indian Ocean hub, Delhi needs to reimagine its economic and political geography.

Read Here – The Indian Express

The China – India – Nepal Triangle

China wants to invest in big connectivity projects in Nepal but prefers to bring its Asian competitor, India, on board. Some Nepali and Chinese scholars see this as an opportunity for trilateral cooperation between Nepal, India, and China, but Indian policymakers and academics have not shown much interest.

Read Here – The Diplomat

India And Pakistan Are Quietly Making Nuclear War more Likely

The Pakistan navy is likely to soon place nuclear-tipped cruise missiles on up to three of its five French-built diesel-electric submarines. It has also reached a deal with China to buy eight more diesel-electric attack submarines that can be equipped with nuclear weapons. These are scheduled for delivery in 2028. Even more disturbing, Pakistani military authorities say they are considering the possibility of putting nuclear-tipped cruise missiles on surface vessels like the Zulfiqar.

Read Here – Vox

Nepal PM Oli’s Visit To Delhi Signals A New Equilibrium

Both domestic politics and regional dynamics have changed appreciably since Oli last visited New Delhi in 2016 when Nepal was under an undeclared border blockade by India. India felt slighted that Nepal’s major political parties, including Oli’s Communist Party of Nepal-Marxist Leninist (CPN-UML), had failed to take New Delhi in confidence about the content of the new constitution. Nepal’s leaders, on the other hand, insisted that it was Nepal’s internal affair.

Read Here – The Indian Express

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