QUARTZ - May 19, 2014
Vladimir Putin spent most of a recent interview with Chinese state media praising the “exemplary collaboration” between Russia and China in recent years. He listed a wide range of areas, from financial services to the aircraft industry, where his country wants to partner with its “trusted friend.”
But Putin’s interview also highlighted a polarizing meeting that takes place in Shanghai this week. Putin promises that the talks will lead to “a new security and sustainable development architecture in Asia-Pacific”—a task that has become increasingly important as China aggressively moves into disputed territory in the South China Sea.
Known as the “Summit of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia,” or CICA, the meeting is a once-every-four years gathering of Asian nations. Started by Kazakhstan president for life Nursultan Nazarbayev, the group’s members include some of the world’s most powerful non-Western non-democracies and dictatorships, as well as Israel and India: