"Asia and Africa today"
- is a scientificl monthly journal (in Russian)
of the Russian Academy of Sciences
Included in Russian Science Citation Index on
WoS platform, and EBSCO Publishing.
ISSN 0321-5075. Published since July 1957.


 "Asia and Africa today" № 5 2017



AziaAfrika 05 2017


 Top Problem

SYRIAN TRAGEDY. THE BIRTH OF MONSTERS by Alexei M. VASILIEV, academician, Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS); Honorary President, Institute for African Studies (RAS); Chair, African and Arab Studies, People's Friendship University of Russia (PFUR); Editor-in-Chief, "Asia and Africa today" journal
The reason for the civil war in Syria was the combination of the crisis of the Ba’athist regime and an active intervention in the events of external forces aimed at overthrowing of the government. The regime managed to maintain the loyalty of the greater part of the army, of the security agencies and the support of a large part of the population. But an active information war against the Syrian government was combined with supplying the opposition with weapons, finances, and food. The first attempts of a political settlement, including K.Annan’s plan, failed. Among the opposition, the greatest influence acquired the most influential Islamist organizations Jabhat al-Nusra and IGIL. The pro-Western part of the armed opposition was united into an umbrella organization called the National Coalition.
Keywords: the preconditions for the civil war in Syria, the plan of K.Annan, the National Coalition, the Syrian National Council, the Syrian Free Army, Jabhat al-Nusra, IGIL



DEMILITARIZATION OF POST-CONFLICT STATES IN AFRICA by Sеrgei A. TISHKOV, PhD (Political Sciences), Assistant Professor, V.V.Lukyanov Orel Law Institute of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia ``````    
 Author made comparative study of the range of activities related to sustaining peace running by United Nations multidimensional peace operations in Africa that fall under the heading of «disarmament, demobilization and reintegration» of excombatants. Disarmament and demobilization were evaluated as necessary factors of providing of secure environment and sustainable peace process. Special attention is paid to the problems of the social and economic reintegration of ex-combatants and their dependants. The role of local communities for post-conflict recovery and reconstruction and the problems of most vulnerable groups are examined also.
Keywords: UN, peacebuilding, peacekeeping missions, disarmament, demobilization, reintegration, combatant


Nigeria is a major oil producing country in which European and multinational corporations and businesses have large stakes. The instability in the region is therefore a concern for the International Community. The continued attacks by the Islamic fundamentalists in North-East Nigeria and the increasing attacks in the Lake Chad Basin, along the border with Chad, Niger and in the northern provinces of Cameroon, also have the potential of destabilizing the entire region with far-reaching security and humanitarian consequences. Once Boko Haram’s actions crossed borders and affected neighboring countries, the conflict became a regional one and needed to be handled differently
Keywords: United Nations, African Union, Nigeria, Boko Haram, Lake Chad Basin Commission


Sea ports in North Africa countries have key significance in logistical provision of the process of foreign trade. Therefore ports are also one of key factors which influence to the integration in the Mediterranean in direction north - south. But today they are overloaded, as well as demand modernization and expansion, for which investment are necessary, including investment from foreign sources. However foreign investors have interest only to the seaports which have big international role, and number of these seaports is restricted in the region.
Keywords: North Africa, ports, cargo turnover, routes, investments, logistics


SOMALI IN GREAT BRITAIN: SEPARATION OR UNITY? by Grigory A. KARPOV, PhD (History), Institute of African Studies, RAS
The article is devoted to the analysis of the Somali diaspora in Britain, provides a brief overview on the history of Somali migration and contains key data on the diaspora nowadays. Its focus is on studying the specifics of Somalis, their challenges and their minor progress in the integration into British society. Emphasis has been put on the factor of the unity of the Somali migrants as a tribal society and the disunity as a nation, as well as maintaining the nomadic way of life by the Somali people, their constant migration across borders and continents.
Keywords: United Kingdom, Africa, migration, Somali diaspora


RELIGION EDUCATION IN THE CONTEMPORARY SOUTH AFRICA by Natalia A. VORONINA, Post-graduate student, Institute for African Studies (RAS)
The article touches upon up to what extent the role of religion in school education has been transformed since apartheid. It also analyses the National policy on religion and education which pursues building-up coherent multicultural South-African society. The author reveals controversies regarding the secular trend and analyses the outcomes of the National Policy as 10 years have passed since it came into force.
Keywords: Religion education, South Africa, “National policy on religion and education”


ROUND TABLE - IGAD 30TH ANNIVERSARY by Ekaterina A. ELKINA, Research Fellow, Institute for African Studies, RAS; Sergey V. KOSTELYANETS, PhD (Political Science), Senior Research Fellow, Institute for African Studies, RAS; Tatiana V. KOCHANOVA, Senior Research Fellow, Institute for African Studies, RAS; Alexander A. TKACHENKO, PhD (Economics), Head, Center for North African and African Horn Studies, Institute for African Studies, RAS
The Centre for North African and African Horn Studies of the Institute for African Studies held the round table «IGAD and the Role of Regional Organizations in the Resolution of Armed Conflicts». The participants of the roundtable included researchers from the International Centre for African Studies (Khartoum, Sudan), Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow State Institute of International Relations, as well as representatives of African diplomatic missions. The themes included the role of IGAD in regional integration, its role in the settlement of the conflicts in Sudan and South Sudan, interests of global actors in the region, prospects for the establishment of a regional peacekeeping forces, etc.
Keywords: East Africa, conflict resolution, regional organizations, Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), armed conflicts


 Policy, Economy

ISLAM AND THE YEMENI CONSTITUTIONS: EXPERIENCE OF COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS by Timur R. KHAIRULLIN. Post-graduate student, Institute of Oriental Studies, RAS, and Andrey V. KOROTAYEV. Dr.Sc. (History), Head, Laboratory of Monitoring of the Risks of Sociopolitical Destabilization, National Research University Higher School of Economics
This article analyses the norms of the Constitution of the Republic of Yemen in 1991, relating to Sharia and Islam in general. For this purpose, a comparative analysis of the current Constitution of the Republic of Yemen to the previous constitutions of the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen and the Yemen Arab Republic in 1978 and 1970 respectively. It is shown that in the 1991 Constitution the Sharia of Islam was given quite a modest place compared with the previous constitutions of the north and south Yemen. This result is largely due to just a certain compromise between Northern and South Yemeni elites. Parallel analysis of political development allows one to understand the causes of quantitative and qualitative changes in the rules of Islam in these constitutions, as well as gives an approximate forecast of constitutional development.
Keywords: Yemen, Sharia, sunnis, shiites, constitution, islam


POSITIVE DISCRIMINATION IN EDUCATION IN PRC: PRO ET CONTRA by Maria A. SOLOSHCHEVA, PhD (History), National Research University Higher School of Economics (Saint Petersburg)
 The article contains a description of the methods of the positive discrimination used by the Government of PRC in education towards the national minorities and an analysis of the problems that occur when implementing these methods. The author takes the Tibetan ethnic minorities’ educational situation as the main example, because the lowest educational rates in PRC are shown in the Tibetan Autonomous Region. The author concludes that the positive discrimination shouldn’t be regarded as the main instrument of the effacement of social inequalities, although it shouldn’t be refused yet.
Keywords: positive discrimination, education, PRC, Tibet, ethnic minorities



DEVELOPMENT OF RENEWABLE ENERGY IN ARAB COUNTRIES by Anna Yu. SHAROVA, PhD (Economics), Institute for African Studies, RAS; Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology
The article examines the current development of renewable energy in the Arab countries. It concludes that despite having significant potential non-hydro renewable sources are not widely spread in the region. At the same time «Pan-Arab Renewable Energy Strategy 2030» adopted in 2013 witnessed the beginning of a new era in the power sector of the Arab countries. The article analyzes the implementation of basic institutional, financial, technical tools for the state support. Based on this analysis the regional leaders were identified where the most favorable conditions for the development of renewable energy were created.
Keywords: renewable energy, Arab countries, non-hydro renewable energy, wind energy, solar energy, governmental support measures


The article presents three models of economic growth in agriculture of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN): Vietnam, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Each of these countries has made significant progress in the transformation process of agricultural production, agriculture in these countries developing as export-oriented, but the level of integration into the world economy is different. Malaysia shows a model of agricultural growth, focused on the implementation of the price rents at the maximum level of inclusion in the world economy. Indonesia shows the Eastern model of agriculture resettlement. Vietnam shows a growth of foreign investment in agricultural production based on new forms of contract farming.
Keywords: Southeast Asia, ASEAN, agriculture, economic growth, factors of agricultural production, labor productivity, land productivity, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia


 Foreign Expert Opinion

VIETNAM: IMAGE OF RUSSIA IN THE MIRROR OF THE MEDIA by T.Z.NGUEN (Vietnam), Post-graduate student, Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia
The following various factors influence formation of the image of Russia in Vietnamese society - the current state of RussianVietnamese relations; positive stereotypes of ideas about Soviet Russia and the Russian people; technical capabilities and policy of Vietnam’s networked media; Russia’s position in the international arena. There is a reason to conclude that television and network media are the most effective channels that form and spread in Vietnam a positive image of Russia.
Keywords: media, Vietnamese-Russian relations, the image of Russia, Soviet Russia, Russian


 History Pages

UNUSIAL PARK IN MALAYA by V.A.Pogadayev, PhD (History)
The first natural recreational park that serves as «green lungs» of Kuala Lumpur was named after its founder Sir Gerald Templer, British High Commissioner in Malaya in 1952-1954 whose tactics against the communist rebellion were held up as a model for counterinsurgency. Templer Park is known for its karst monolith Bukit Takun which rises 400 meters above the road connecting the capital of Malaysia Kuala Lumpur with the town of Rawang. The integrity and unique character of Templer Park is under threat from the attempts of annexation of some of its territories for development projects. The history of the park reflects the formation history of the country and focuses the challenges it is confronting with today.
Keywords: Malaysian Parks, Gerald Templer, the Communist Party of Malaya, emergency in Malaysia


 Book Review

RUSSIA - SOUTHERN AFRICA: 300 years on one planet by N.I.PETROV
In 2010, there was not noted an important, in my opinion, anniversary - the 300th anniversary of the first mention in Russia of South Africaб a very remote from our country region at that time. In the «Geography or short earthly description» published in 1710, among the African countries known at the time, the Monomotapa, rich in gold and precious stones, is mentioned. About this rare edition of Peter’s times, the famous African scientist A.B.Davidson speaks in his book «... is also called Africa». (Moscow, Prinipium, 2017). The author scrupulously, without losing a single important detail, explored the process of cognition by Russian explorers and sailors of this region of the Earth from the beginning of the XVIII century and to the twentieth century.


* Summary