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Deadly Russia/China Clash by Jan 1, 2024

Flourishing Futures Nuclear Risk Tournament

Question

The Wikipedia page on Russo-Sino foreign relations notes that:

"The two countries share a land border which was demarcated in 1991, and they signed a Treaty of Good-Neighborliness and Friendly Cooperation in 2001. On the eve of a 2013 state visit to Moscow by Chinese leader Xi Jinping, Russian President Vladimir Putin remarked that the two nations were forging a special relationship. The two countries have enjoyed close relations militarily, economically, and politically, while supporting each other on various global issues."

However, researchers for the Middle East Institute write:

"Although China and Russia have strengthened their relationship, there remain obstacles for close cooperation. For example, Russian commentators have increasingly raised concerns about China’s ambitions and influence in Central Asia, an area historically within the Russian sphere of influence. Russian leaders have expressed growing concerns regarding China’s investments in the energy-rich but sparsely-populated Russian Far East. The Middle East is a new theater for potential friction between the two powers."

Given these two states' large militaries and nuclear arsenals, it is important to gain a clearer sense of the probability of conflict between them.

Will there be a deadly clash involving gunfire or explosives between Russia and China before 2024?

The below are criteria for positive resolution:

  • A gun is used if it is fired. An explosive is used if it is detonated. Guns do not include weapons that are designed to be less than lethal such as tasers, rubber bullet guns, or bean bag guns. Similarly, explosives do not include weapons that are designed to be less than lethal such as flash bangs.

  • There is at least one death as a result of the clash. The death need not be caused by the explosive or gunfire.

  • The military clash can take place in any place or location as long as it involves identifiable Russian and Chinese forces.

  • The conflict must occur on or before December 31, 2023 UTC.

Resolution will come from reputable new sources or from direct reports from their government, or government officials.

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Prediction

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