THE ROLE OF XINJIANG IN THE FOREIGN POLICY OF RUSSIA AND USSR IN THE CENTRAL ASIAN REGION (SECOND HALF
OF THE 19TH – FIRST HALF OF THE 20TH CENTURIES)
Bashkuev V. Yu.
The article considers geopolitical and economic significance of Chinese province of Xinjiang for the imperial Russian and Soviet foreign policy in the late 19th – first half of the 20th centuries. Due to the remoteness from the seats of power in China and constant political turbulence of the region, the relationships between Russia and Xinjiang in the specified historical period are mostly regarded as bilateral. The author highlights the meaning of Xinjiang as a buffer territory during the periods of political turmoil in the province, as well as during Russian revolutions and the Civil War. Special attention is paid to the development of geopolitical relations between Xinjiang and USSR in the 1920s – 1940s when the only land route for the Soviet military and economic assistance to the Kuomintang government in a struggle against Japan ran through the territory of Xinjiang.