How Karimov’s death will test Russia-China relations

(From The National Interest)

Islam Karimov, the leader of Uzbekistan since 1989, has officially been pronounced dead, ending a days-long Schrödinger dilemma. The ensuing power vacuum and leadership scramble will lay bare the true nature of the indeterminate Russia-China nexus.

FILE PHOTO - Uzbekistan's President Karimov gestures during a meeting with Russian counterpart Putin in Ufa, Russia

Uzbekistan’s President Islam Karimov gestures during a meeting with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Ufa, Russia, July 10, 2015. REUTERS/BRICS/SCO Photohost/RIA Novosti/File Photo

Between the coup attempt in Turkey, Chinese embassy bombing in Kyrgyzstan and Europe “going down the drain,” much has been whispered about the rise of autocratic Eurasia and the decline of the democratic West. Beijing and Moscow, the thinking goes, are working together to systematically challenge the dominance of Washington and its allies. A few recent developments have stoked speculation over this alleged anti-Democratic alliance: the Russian use of Iranian airbases to bomb Syrian rebels, murmurs that Turkey may host Russian jets and Kremlin news outlets boasting of a coming Russian-Chinese military alignment. Read More

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