Russian-Chinese security cooperation

The Bear and the Dragon

Authored by: Marcel de Haas

Routledge Handbook of Russian Security

Print publication date:  February  2019
Online publication date:  January  2019

Print ISBN: 9780815396710
eBook ISBN: 9781351181242
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter elaborates on the development, current status and likely future of Sino-Russian cooperation in the field of security, as it has advanced since the start of Putin’s presidency in 2000. Security is understood in a broad context – that is, in addition to the military-political domain, energy security will also be discussed, since energy is a strategic asset (for the survival) of a state. First, the military, demographic, social and economic cooperation and challenges of the strategic security partnership between Moscow and Beijing are analysed. The next section describes how Russia and China operate in Central Asia, a strategic region for both of them. Subsequently, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), a political, economic and security entity, is on the agenda, with China and Russia as the leading actors. Finally, evaluating the aforementioned areas of cooperation, the question arises whether Russia’s security could become under threat from China.

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