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Asia Pacific Covid-19

Vaccine Rollout Could Improve the Economic Outlook in the South Pacific, While an Outside Power-struggle Lingers

Pacific Island Countries (PICs) are on the road to economic recovery as vaccine programs begin, potentially reviving tourism and trade in the region. However, the region’s economy remains the subject of external influence.

Eurasia Politics

Russia and its ‘diversionary space race’?

The International Space Station (ISS), that hub of extra-terrestrial cooperation, recently announced that Russia will be withdrawing from its team from 2025. Russia plans to set up a separate orbital space station by 2030. As a result, there has been much debate about what this means in terms of Russia-US  and Sino-Russian relations. However, little attention has been paid to the domestic implications of Russia’s decision: is it an attempt to divert attention from the ongoing saga with Alexei Navalny and muster patriotic fervor?

Latin America Politics

Honduras and Vaccine Diplomacy: Are Increased Relations with China Likely?

Honduras, one of the few countries that recognize Taiwan as a sovereign state, is making attempts to build diplomatic bridges with China in order to acquire the much needed Covid-19 vaccines. So far, only 1% of the Honduran population has been vaccinated. This situation constitutes another chapter in the so-called ‘vaccine diplomacy’, where geopolitics comes into play in vaccine acquisition.

Environment International

The role of cities in climate governance

Cohesive populations, proximity to their citizens, and data capabilities offer cities a pivotal role in climate action alongside national and international actors. If clear goals are set, local circumstances accounted for, and other governance partners effectively collaborated with, cities could lead in the fight against climate change.

Africa Security

Can the US’s New Special Envoy to the Horn of Africa Set a New Policy Direction?

The US’s Special Envoy to the Horn of Africa, Jeffrey Feltman, returned from his first visit to the region last week. The newly created post which brought Feltman, a veteran of the UN and the State Department, out of semi-retirement, shows the strategic importance of the region to Biden’s foreign policy priorities and his desire to mark a clear break with the Trump era. What is less clear is whether Biden represents a policy shift from longer term American approaches to conflict and security in Africa.