East Asian Reactions to Russia’s War in Ukraine: Governmental and Civil Society Responses


A hybrid u:eastasia lecture by Alfred Gerstl, Olga Khomenko, Steven Denney & Martin Mandl, moderated by Agnes S. Schick-Chen

While the European Union and its member states strongly condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on 24 February and have since provided humanitarian or even military support to Ukraine, the responses of the governments in Northeast and Southeast Asia are less unified. Japan, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan joined the Western countries in sanctioning Russia, clearly emphasizing Russia’s responsibility for launching the war. Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida drew a parallel to China’s perceived assertiveness in the South and East China Sea. Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen emphasized the unity of the Ukrainian citizens “to fight against the invasion by a powerful country”. Other nations, including Indonesia and Vietnam, but also the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), do neither make comparison to China’s policies nor openly criticize Russia. Rather, they demand to end the war, find a peaceful resolution and refer to rather abstract principles of international law.

This panel discussion will analyze the various strategic, economic and domestic motives of the governments to either unequivocally condemn Russia or to avoid naming and shaming Moscow. Moreover, the panelists will also (discuss the) point to different reactions of civil societies in East Asia which are not necessarily in line with the positions taken by the respective national governments. The spectrum is (also very) quite broad (and not necessarily in line with the positions taken by the respective national governments), ranging from strong support for Ukraine to some sympathies for “strongman” Vladimir Putin allegedly fighting against a US-dominated international order. By bringing together the perspectives of the national governments and the civil societies, this panel aims to initiate a multi-facetted (and comprehensive) discussion of East Asian reactions to Russia’s war against Ukraine. 

| Date & Time |

u:japan lecture | s04e09
u:eastasia lecture #3
Thursday 2022-05-19, 17:00~19:00
max. 50 participants (on site) + max. 300 participants (online) 

| Place & Preparations | 

LIVE @ Campus of the University of Vienna
Department of East Asian Studies, Japanese Studies
Seminarraum JAP 1, 2K-EG-21, Ground floor to the left
Spitalgasse 2, Hof 2.4 (Campus), 1090 Vienna, Austria

Please visit these links for university’s special and general information regarding the current restrictions.

| Plattform & Link |

… and STREAMED online
Meeting-ID: 682 7348 1009 | PW: 623081

Instructions and Netiquette (in English and German)
How to join a lecture via Zoom Meeting (in English)
Frequently Asked Questions (in English)

| Further Questions? |

Please contact ujapanlectures.ostasien@univie.ac.at or visit https://japanologie.univie.ac.at/ujapanlectures/s04/#e09.