Vol 18, No 3 (2018): Prospects for South—South Cooperation. 40th Anniversary of the Buenos Aires Plan of Action



Gosovic B.


The “South-South cooperation” concept is still not widely known or used, except in the framework of the United Nations. Yet, its inception goes back more than 60 years, when the idea was crystallized as a key building bloc of the national liberation and anti-colonial struggle of developing countries1. The struggle found its apogee in the UN and was marked by the Congo crisis that witnessed the deaths of Patrice Lumumba and Dag Hammarskjold. In March 2019, the United Nations will hold the 2nd High-level Conference on South-South cooperation, in Buenos Aires, Argentina, to discuss the state and prospects of South-South cooperation (SSC) and chart a path for the future. The Conference will also mark the 40th anniversary of the 1978 UN Conference on Technical Co-operation among Developing Countries (TCDC), also held in Buenos Aires, which adopted the Plan of Action for Promoting and Implementing Technical Cooperation among Developing Countries (thus the acronym for BAPA+40 or Buenos Aires Plan of Action + 40). BAPA+40 offers a new opportunity for the international community and, more importantly, the Global South to focus attention on South-South cooperation. This cooperation is important not only for development and national-sovereignty aspirations and needs of the developing countries and their peoples, but also for these countries’ greater role and influence in the world arena. Consequently, South-South cooperation holds a promise of the developing countries playing a key role in reforming and shaping the · When the editor of the Vestnik RUDN International Relations , published by Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia (RUDN University), formerly Patrice Lumumba University, approached me with the suggestion to contribute an article on South-South cooperation for the journal’s special issue devoted to the 2019 UN High-level Conference on South-South Cooperation, he stressed the importance of including footnotes, and also suggested that I liven up the text with some recollections from my own academic and professional experience. I have obliged by providing ample footnotes parallel to the main body of the text, in the hope that this unorthodox, eclectic essay - partly historical, partly analytical and partly prescriptive - may serve as useful reference for those working on South- South cooperation, and also for researchers of this subject and the large student body from the Third World, especially Africa, studying at RUDN University, some of whom may in the future take part in a South-South cooperation undertaking. world order to respond to the shared needs and objectives of humankind. The essay approaches this question from a point of view widely shared in developing countries and is inspired by their decades-long collective struggle in the world arena.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):459-478
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Briceño-Ruiz J.


South-South Cooperation (SSC) has become one of the major trends in the International Relations of the new millennium. Initiatives of political cooperation, economic and technical assistance can be traced back to the 1960’s, for example the Bandung Conference of non-aligned countries or the creation of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) under Ra ú l Prebisch’s aegis [Braveboy-Wagner 2009; Prebisch 1954, 1969]. Nevertheless, the emergence of China and the BRICS and a new period of high oil prices have produced an increased involvement of middle-income states in initiatives of cooperation with other countries of the Global South. Venezuela has been an actor in this wave of SSC during the government of Hugo Ch á vez. Certainly, SSC is not new in the Venezuelan external relations because Caracas implemented programs of cooperation to supply oil in special conditions to some Central American and Caribbean countries since the 1970’s. Example of this were the Puerto Ordaz Agreement, approved during the Carlos Andr é s P é rez administration (1974-1979) and the San Jos é Agreement, a Venezuelan-Mexican initiative implemented in the early 1980’s [Grayson 1985]. Similarly, Carlos Andr é s P é rez played a role in the promotion of a New International Economic Order and in the establishment of the Latin American Economic System (known in Spanish as SELA) [P é rez 1980, 1983]. However, the logic of Venezuelan South-South cooperation was transformed since the rise to power of Ch á vez in 1999 and in particular after his victory in the recall referendum convened in 2004. Ch á vez aimed to transform the Venezuelan foreign policy since the beginning of his government. One of his goals was obviously the deepening of the relations with the Global South. Venezuela as a middle-income country became a driver in the new dynamics of SSC both in Latin America and the Caribbean and beyond the Western Hemisphere. This paper analyses this increasing involvement of Venezuela in initiatives of SCC, in particular the reasons that led Ch á vez to promote those initiatives. Due to the particular narrative furthered by the Venezuelan government to explain its SSC agenda, supposedly based on solidarity, complementarity and cooperation, this paper compares Venezuelan strategy of international cooperation with more traditional forms of North-South Cooperation (NSC). To achieve such a goal, a qualitative methodology is used in the paper based on the review of the literature on international cooperation and on the evaluation of international cooperation promoted by the Venezuelan government.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):479-496
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Alekseeva T.A., Goreslavsky S.S.


The article describes the history of Venezuela's military-technical cooperation (MTC, arms trade) with foreign states in the period from the 1950s until now. There are three stages of the military-technical cooperation of Venezuela: pre-Chaves stage (before Hugo Chávez came to power), Chávez stage, post-Chávez stage (after Hugo Chávez's death during the reign of Nicholas Maduro). The nature and direction of the MTC, as well as the structure of suppliers of weapons and military equipment, as well as the factors that contributed to this orientation are described for each of these stages. The conclusion is made that the MTC of Venezuela depends on two key factors - the political attitudes of the current leadership and the market environment for Venezuela's key export commodity - oil. Taking into account the severe economic, social and financial crisis that hit Venezuela, China remained the only exporter continuing large shipments of military equipment to Venezuela. At the same time, a slight recovery in oil prices allows Russian exporters to expect the Venezuelan arms market to recover in the medium term. However, competition with Chinese exporters of military equipment will require granting Venezuela large-scale soft loans. At the same time, the Venezuelan debt market will remain high-risk because of political instability in the country, foreign policy pressures and volatility of hydrocarbon prices. If the government of Nicholas Maduro falls and the Bolivarian revolutionary project is scrapped, Caracas will be politically and militarily reoriented to the US and other Western countries with a high degree of probability. However, the inertia of Russian-Venezuelan military-technical cooperation will be a solid foundation for its continuation after the stabilization of the economic situation in the country, regardless of the foreign policy orientation of the future governments of Venezuela. In any case, the Russian political leadership and the management of the military equipment exporters, working together with the expert community and academic science, must constantly carefully assess the economic and political risks of continuing the Russian-Venezuelan military-technical cooperation, on the one hand, and its potential commercial and geopolitical dividends, on the other.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):497-516
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Muhr T., Azevedo M.d.


Framed by contested interpretations of the Buenos Aires Plan of Action, this article aims to conduct a first evaluation of the BRICS development and education cooperation agenda as a case study of South-South cooperation (SSC). Methodologically, as a theory-based case study that integrates exploration with illustration and explanation, an analytical review of Anglophone academic BRICS education literature combines with contents and discourse analysis of BRICS cooperation documents from 2009-2017. While the mainstream international and comparative education literature, embedded in (neo)realist international relations theory, limits itself to individual BRICS member country case studies, a critical approach associated with counter-dependency theory in conjunction with SSC as an analytical category transcends methodological nationalism by exploring common agendas, projects, relations and potential synergies generated within BRICS as an analytical unit. While a more pronounced and assertive BRICS SSC agenda has emerged over time, the findings do not permit to unambiguously conclude that BRICS education cooperation produces a counter-structure to the neoliberal global governance of education. However, we nonetheless perceive BRICS education cooperation as contributing to building a counterdependency structure. Future empirical research will have to inquire about the de facto implementation of this agenda.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):517-534
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Bond P.


The article is dedicated to the analysis of centrifugal tendencies within the framework of BRICS and to their influence on the processes, proceeding in the system of global world. Factors, which stimulate these tendencies are examined. The author considers that, in spite of positive potential and the notable position, which the countries of BRICS play under the conditions of global crisis phenomena, by their present economic policy they contribute to the sanitation “of imperialism”; activate the negative manifestations of the global “crisis of capitalism”. In the author’s the opinion multipolarity strengthens the neoliberal nature of institutes, especially in spheres of finances, trade and climate. The corporations, which are based in the countries of BRICS, demonstrate super-exploitation in the course of the accumulation of capital both in their regions and beyond their limits. The article is based on comprehension of documents of international organizations, including UNCTAD, analytics views, sometimes adhering to contrary opinions. The main aim of the author is to prove the possibility to move in positive direction. The article contains the claim to the society of BRICS members to consider summit of BRICS in Johannesburg in 2018 as an invitation for serious discussion of the problems of contemporary global policy.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):535-549
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Zaccara L.


The Islamic Republic of Iran is one of the most active players in the framework of South- South cooperation. During the Cold War period Iran treated South-South cooperation as an instrument for providing an independent foreign policy and defending the rights of “oppressed” peoples from the influence of colonizers and imperialists. Nowadays this vector of cooperation is used by Iran as tool for gaining regional superiority in the Middle East and the Muslim world in general. This article describes the Iranian foreign policy strategy and determinants from the Shah Pahlavi period until Hassan Rouhani presidency in order to assess whether the tools used to foster South-South cooperation for becoming regional power and achieving international recognition by the international community were useful. The author uses qualitative methodology in order to answer the following research questions: to analyze the Iran’s foreign policy literature, to identify the SSC initiatives in the post-bipolar era during the presidency of Hashemi Rafsanjani, Khatami, Ahmadinejad and Rouhani, to explain the essence of “non-aligned strategy” and third-worldism. The article also covers the participation of Iran in the international institutions of the Global South, including Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), G77, etc.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):550-564
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Ozkan M.


It is a fair treatment, without any exaggeration, to argue that the rise of Turkey in Africa in multiple areas as an actor is rather novel for foreign policy of Ankara. From development assistance to economy, politics to security, Turkey is now an influential player in African politics. Turkey’s Africa policy has more meaning than a normal foreign policy relation. It is also a mature deepening of South- South cooperation (SSC) in Turkish foreign policy. One of the most novel parts of Turkey’s foreign policy since 2002 is its endeavor to be part of the South-South cooperation and increase its visibilities in development aid projects. This involvement - both at state and NGO levels - is particularly palpable on the African continent. Rather than following the footsteps of other countries, such as traditional donors, Ankara has been trying to develop its own understanding and implementation - the Turkish way - based on experiences mostly gained from Balkans and Central Asian republics. These dimensions explain Turkey’s development policy at ideational, societal and institutional levels in Somalia and beyond in Africa. Religion along with trade is one of the key drivers of this policy at societal and state levels. At ideational front, there has been a new geographical imagination in Turkey that sees Africa from a totally different perspective comparing to a decade ago.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):565-578
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Almezaini K.


This article is dedicated to the phenomenon of the “emerging donors” activity within the South-South cooperation (SSC). The case of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) foreign aid demonstrates new principles and instruments of SSC; first of all it is solidarity and engagement with the UN and other governmental and non-governmental aid organizations to contribute to the development of the Global South countries. The visibility of the UAE at the regional (Middle East) and international level led the country to contribute to all types of aid activities, particularly humanitarian efforts. As a matter of fact, the UAE is a ‘humanitarian nation’, where aid has become part of its daily foreign policy activities. Consequently, its relations with countries in the “South” and developing countries became much stronger due to the fact that it has contributed to their economic developments and humanitarian efforts. South-South cooperation includes transfer of technologies and resources between the developing countries. Using predominantly quantitative methodology the author analyses the UAE strategy of the foreign aid and proves its coherence with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) of the United Nations. Moreover, the author shows the extension of the UAE foreign aid “map”: largest aid recipient for the UAE are mainly in Asia and Africa where the poorest countries in the world exist.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):579-594
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Deych T.L.


The article is dedicated to the struggle for resources in Africa and Arab East, and especially the China’s role in this struggle. Announced by the Beijing in 2002, the course of “going abroad” was marked by the economic expansion of Chinese companies in Africa and Arab countries, largely due to the interest in raw materials, primarily in oil. At the same time, the African and Arab countries are among the foreign policy strategic priorities of the leading Western powers, whose activity in this region has also increased. As shown in the article, the competition for access to natural resources contributed to the emergence of conflicts in the region. The methodological basis of the study is a comparative political approach, methods of analysis and synthesis. The scientific novelty of the paper is that, although the problem of the struggle for resources in Africa and in Arab world is reflected in publications in our country and abroad, the peculiarities of China’s position in this matter have not been yet the object of serious research. The analysis of the topic is relevant in the conditions when Western countries attempt to regulate crises by force, often bypassing the Security Council and the UN Charter. Some analysts view the USA and NATO actions in Libya and the French campaign 2012 in Mali in the light of West desire to displace China from Africa. They also connect crisis in Syria and Iraq with US actions. As the paper shows, Beijing remains committed to the principle of non-interference in internal affairs of other states and stands for political solution of conflicts. But at the same time, it pays an increasing attention to strengthening its military presence in Africa and Arab countries. The author comes to the conclusion that the realization of the initiative “One belt - One road” increases China’s needs in resources for the implementation of ambitious projects in the space of the “belt and road”. The Western countries will resist, so the struggle for resources will not weaken.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):595-611
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Kostyunina G.M., Baronov V.I.


The purpose of the article is to identify the foundations of China’s integration policy and the features of its integration agreements with developing countries, i.e. in the framework of the South- South model. The basis of the Chinese integration strategy is the principle of “big country morality”, which allows to assist developing countries with small territory and to a lesser extent proceed from accounting for the economic advantages of membership in an agreement (no wonder some agreements have the effect of deviating trade for the PRC). The developing countries are China's main partners in the integration agreements (12 out of 16). The article compares the norms of China's integration agreements with individual partner countries, and examines the impact of membership on Chinese foreign trade relations and identifies the most effective agreements. The main conclusions of the authors include the prevalence of the South-South model as bilateral agreements, the liberalization of trade in goods and services, the priority in signing agreements with the countries of Asia; relatively narrow scope and rarely include issues of protection of intellectual property rights, competition policy, ecology, public procurement; application of a flexible approach to the selection of partners for integration agreements and the content of agreements; more dynamic growth of China’s exports to partner countries on integration agreements; Integration agreements with ASEAN, the Republic of Korea and Pakistan became the most effective for the PRC.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):612-627
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Kupriyanov A.V.


The holding of joint exercises is one of the forms of cooperation in the South-South format. It contributes to strengthening military-political ties between the countries of the Global South and ensuring security in the key regions. An example is IBSAMAR, a joint naval exercise involving the Indian, Brazilian and South African Navies. The emergence of a new geopolitical construct (the Indo-Pacific region) and the growth of its popularity in the Indian expert and political community make it necessary to rethink the place of IBSAMAR in India’s security system. The article analyzes the main imperatives that induce India to participate in this format: the desire to maintain dominance in the Western Indian Ocean and involve the countries of East Africa in its foreign policy orbit, to ensure the security of one of the strategic “choke points” to the Indian Ocean, the intention to strengthen ties with South Africa and Brazil, taking into account the need to ensure the security of movement of goods (especially hydrocarbons) through the South Atlantic and to demonstrate its independence and multi-vector nature of its external policy. Analyzing the proposals of Indian experts on the possible expansion of the IBSAMAR format and the creation on its basis of a regional security structure, the author comes to the conclusion that it is impossible to implement them without a radical change in the Indian external strategy. At the same time, the experience gained in the holding of IBSAMAR can be in demand within the framework of security cooperation in the Russia-India-China format.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):628-641
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Katkova E.Y.


The article contains a historical overview of Australia's migration policy and analysis of the Chinese diaspora’s role in building an Australian multicultural society. The relevance of the study is determined by the increased importance of the human rights and racial discrimination problems in the developed countries’ policy discussion in connection with the strengthening of the world processes of integration. Those problems are not new in Australia, until the early 1970s the “White Australia Policy” restricted immigration from non-European countries, particularly those of Asian background, with the goal of creating an “Anglo-Celtic” Australian nation. Post-war mass migration, mostly from Europe, had a significant impact on the ethnic composition of the population. This situation put pressure on the government to recognize cultural diversity and in the early 1970s led to the creation of the concept of a multicultural society. The aim of the study is to follow the evolution of public opinion on migration and to assess the role of the Chinese diaspora in the formation of the Australian new immigration policy. In addition, the author also examines the problems of integration, racial discrimination and residual racism in the Australian multicultural society. In conclusion, the author pointed out that despite the existence of some challenges for migrants relating to the social integration people from all over the world now harmoniously coexist in Australian society. Today, the Chinese diaspora is the largest Asian diaspora in Australia and one of the factors affecting the political and economic processes in the country.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):642-655
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Shelepov A.V.


The article is focused on the activities of two recently established multilateral development banks (MDBs) - the BRICS New Development Bank (NDB) and Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) - in mobilizing private infrastructure investment. Unlike other MDBs, these banks specialize exclusively on sustainable infrastructure projects and are currently creating mechanisms to attract private investment. These factors, as well as Russia’s leading role in both banks, make it necessary to study the mechanisms used by the NDB and AIIB to mobilize private sector funds and make recommendations for their further expansion and development. To achieve this goal, this article presents an analysis of both banks’ documents providing for their engagement with the private sector and mobilizing its resources, and compares qualitative and quantitative characteristics of practical cooperation between private investors and the two MDBs. Based on the analysis, the author makes recommendations on improving and expanding the list of mechanisms used to mobilize private financing. In particular, the AIIB, following the NDB example, should start attracting capital in the member countries financial markets as soon as possible. The NDB needs to ensure the prompt launch of its Project Preparation Fund operations, while the similar AIIB’s fund should focus on raising funds from private investors to finance its activities. It will also be instrumental for the NDB to clearly formulate a strategy for financing loans without sovereign guarantees. In addition, both banks should expand the set of tools used for mobilizing private investment and consider provision of guarantees, expert work and support directly to borrowing countries, as well as exchange of experience and participation in joint projects.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):656-672
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Denisova T.S.


The subject of the present study is the mechanisms of political and economic interaction of the People's Republic of China and the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The analysis of relations between China and African countries, as a rule, has a generalized character, although in practice they vary considerably across the continent. Therefore, it seems reasonable to study each case of bilateral contacts separately. Relations between China and Nigeria are developing faster than those between China and other African states. To a certain extent, this is due to the fact that the “Asian giant” - China - has the world's largest population and the fastest growing world economy, while the “African giant” - Nigeria - is the most populous country on the continent and has in recent years become the largest African economy and now seeks to become one of the 20 largest economies in the world. Although, of course, the main reason for China’s growing presence in Nigeria is the huge reserves of hydrocarbons that China’s national economy desperately needs, and Nigeria's vast consumer market that Chinese manufacturers are actively penetrating. However, unlike the relations of the Celestial Empire with other African countries, the relations of China with Nigeria in the last two decades have taken a shape of a strong political union supported by close cultural ties. The expansion of economic and political cooperation between the PRC and African countries raised the issue of balancing the positive and negative factors of China's growing presence on the continent. The analysis of the model of the Sino-Nigerian cooperation in various fields has shown that to date, despite the existence of certain problems, the development of trade and economic relations is a promising direction of bilateral cooperation.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):673-685
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Volgina E.V.


This article is an attempt to explore the emergence and expansion of left ideas in Bengal, the key province of colonial India. Nowadays the major part of the province is a part of the West Bengal state, headed by communists for decades. A communist state in a capitalist country is a phenomenon, which cannot be explained merely by economic reasons. A closer scrutiny reveals a certain correlation between the travels to the West by prominent Bengali public figures and leftist thoughts in their works between the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Therefore, their travel narratives, or travelogues, which present the West as the epicenter of rapid economic, scientific and technological development, causing, however, an observable spiritual degradation of society attracts a special attention. None of the travelers introduces him/herself as a consistent socialist or communist, but the Western model comes under severe criticism, though the importance of technical development for India is commonly recognized. This results in the positioning the Soviet system as an alternative to the European and American ways, as a model that is closer and more attractive for India.

Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):686-700
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ROLE OF GLOBAL SOUTH IN THE MULTIPLEX WORLD Interview with Professor AMITAV ACHARYA, UNESCO Chair in Transnational Challenges and Governance, Distinguished Professor at the School of International Service of American University

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Amitav Acharya is the UNESCO Chair in Transnational Challenges and Governance and Distinguished Professor at the School of International Service, American University, Washington, DC. He is the first non-Western scholar to be elected (for 2014-15) as the President of the International Studies Association (ISA), the largest and most influential global network in international studies. Previously he was a Professor at York University, Toronto, and the Chair in Global Governance at the University of Bristol, U.K. He held the inaugural Nelson Mandela Visiting Professorship in International Relations at Rhodes University, South Africa in 2012-13 and the inaugural Boeing Company Chair in International Relations at the Schwarzman Scholars Program at Tsinghua University in 2016-18. He was a Fellow of Harvard’s Asia Center and John F. Kennedy School of Government, and was elected to the Christensen Fellowship at Oxford. His books include Constructing Global Order [Acharya 2018a]; The End of American World Order [Acharya 2018b]; Why Govern? Rethinking Demand and Progress in Global Governance [Acharya 2016]; The Making of Southeast Asia [Acharya 2013]; Whose Ideas Matter [Acharya 2009] and et. His essays have appeared in leading international affairs journals such as International Organization, International Security, International Studies Quarterly, Journal of Asian Studies, Foreign Affairs, Journal of Peace Research, International Affairs, and World Politics. He has received two Distinguished Scholar Awards from the ISA, one in 2015 from its Global South Caucus for his “contribution to non-Western IR theory and inclusion” in international studies, and another in 2018 from ISA’s International Organization Section that recognizes “scholars of exceptional merit... whose influence, intellectual works and mentorship will likely continue to impact the field for years to come”. In his interview, Professor A. Acharya talks about non-western IR theories, Global South issues and concept, contemporary international studies, multiplexity and the role of new institutions of global governance.

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REVIEW OF THE BOOK: Acharya, A. (2018). The End of the American World Order. Cambridge: Polity, 2nd edition, 224 p

Grachikov E.N.



Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):706-715
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REVIEW OF THE BOOK: Braveboy-Wagner, J.A. (Ed.). (2016). Diplomatic Strategies of Nations of the Global South. The Search for Leadership. New York: Palgrave-Macmillan, 453 p

Eremin A.A., Tsvyk A.V., Yurtaev V.I.



Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):716-726
pages 716-726 views

REVIEW OF THE BOOK: Bergamaschi, I., Moore, P. & Tickner, A.B. (Eds.). (2017). South-South Cooperation Beyond the Myths. Rising Donors, New Aid Practices? United Kingdom: Palgrave Macmillan, 334 p

Borzova A.Y., Chikrizova O.S., Zabella A.A.



Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):727-739
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REVIEW OF THE BOOK: Gray, K. & Gills, B.K. (Eds.). (2017). Rising Powers and South-South Cooperation. (ThirdWorlds). Abingdon: Routledge, 204 p

Salitsky A.I.



Vestnik RUDN. International Relations. 2018;18(3):740-744
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