Friday, May 22, 2015

China and the Middle East Security Puzzle

The security challenges for China in the troubled region are mounting.

By Andrea Ghiselli

THE DIPLOMAT - May 07, 2015

The upheaval inside the Muslim world since the beginning of the Arab Spring and now with the Islamic State in Syria, Iraq, the war in Yemen, and its consequences are difficult phenomena to understand. This article provides a brief review of the two security challenges that China has to face in the Middle East.
The first one is related to the well-known “go global” trend that began at the beginning of this century and that touches almost all sectors of the Chinese economy. Much ink has been spilled analyzing the repercussions of the war Libya for Chinese investments and the Chinese attitude towards risk-management and risk-prevention in volatile countries. Briefly, China learned a lesson and has henceforth acted according to its economic, military and diplomatic capabilities to prevent “another Libya.” After the massive evacuation of some 30,000 Chinese citizens and the loss of assets and investments worth several billion dollars, China’s diplomacy has focused on the risk-prevention side.