By Anna Matveeva
Central Asia Policy Brief, No. 3, July 2012
For two decades bilateral ties with individual countries, energy interests, and military-security lobbying drove Russia’s policy towards Central Asia. Lately, a broader range of considerations has come into play . Russia’s role in the region remains active, but is changing, and is shaped by a growing variety of factors, sometimes acting in contradiction to one another. This brief asks whether we are witnessing the makings of a ‘Russia First’ strategy, i.e. voluntary disengagement from security field in Central Asia, when only the issues threatening the Russian Federation directly will be addressed. Or does Moscow still believe that it has serious enough stakes in the region to justify a more robust approach to stability and security?
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