The Domino effect of West-Russia relations? Social and political implications of the controversies over Ukraine for Kazakhstan - Russia relations.

Stream: Panel 69 - International Relations: Europe and World Politics 
Date: Wednesday, 28 September 2016
Time: 9.00 am – 10.30 am


Some of the most challenging issues in contemporary international relations have been issues of cooperation versus confrontation between the West, Russia, China, the Islamic world, and other actors with interests in ex-Soviet Eurasia. These recent challenges have stimulated new discussions on the nature of international affairs after the collapse of the USSR. In particular, Kazakhstan is often believed to be at the centre of further clashes between international interests in the region. Post-Soviet Eurasian development trends reflect the presence of multiple nation-state actors because the oil assets in Kazakhstan have triggered US and Chinese capital interest, the entrenchment of international trade relationships, and security issues arising from the proximity of Kazakhstan to Afghanistan. The Ukraine’s impact on bilateral relations between Russia and Kazakhstan has mostly been a negative one in recent years. This is particularly evident in the tensions related to the establishment of the Eurasian Economic Union, as well as multiple examples of political and social controversies. In this paper, political relations in the region will be analysed by examining official discourses and policy-making, principally as they are expressed at the level of sub-state actors, parliamentary leaders, political experts and the population. In particular, the issues of justice and perception of justice resulting from the new, post-Ukrainian controversies in the region will be analysed and explored.


Yelena Nikolayevna Zabortseva (Presenter), University of Sydney
Dr. Yelena Nikolayevna Zabortseva’s recent experience includes lecturing in World Politics at the Department of Government and International Relations (IR), University of Sydney. She holds a Specialist in IER from KazGAG(Kazakhstan), Master of Arts in IR from MGIMO (Russia), and a PhD degree from the University of Sydney. Her professional experience has also entailed work as Head of IR Department at Kazakhstan’s Financial Superintendent. Her recent book on strategic relations between Russia and Kazakhstan is available via: