As of February 24, Russia's invasion of Ukraine has become a hot controversial issue around the world. For this column, we will see two things: the reason why Russia invaded Ukraine, and the influence of the war on the whole World and South Korea as well as between the two countries. Kyungnam Times ● 25 ➜ Reasons for Russia’s invasion 1. Ukraine's Geographical Location Ukraine is located between Europe and Russia and has been pressed by many countries for its geographical location. The country has become a place for Russians to have access to Europe and the ocean, but also an essential point of entry into Asia for Europeans and vice versa. It is said that Ukraine is situated in a strategic position to attack Russia or Europe. In fact, the straightline distance between the Russian capital, Moscow and the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, is only 750 kilometers. 2. Ukraine’s Fertile Land Most of Ukraine's land consists of ‘Chernozem,’ a plot of land that does not require fertilizer. It is said to be one of the most fertile soils in the world. In addition, there are wide plains, steppes, and plateau areas that are good for cultivation. As of 2014, the amount of grain harvested was 60.5 million tons, and exports were 11 million tons. Ukraine’s land contains 70 natural resources such as asphalt, anthracite, and iron. 3. Joining the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is an organization which was first created by the United States, Canada, and eight other European countries after the conclusion of World War ll. Presently, Ukraine is in the process of joining NATO to avoid such incidents; for instance, Russia's annexation of the Crimean Peninsula. Because Russia was concerned that NATO troops may be deployed to Ukraine sometime in the near future, their decision to invade Ukraine was irreversible. The Impact of the War on Ukraine and Russia on the World and South Korea While Russia is still invading Ukraine, the world has criticized and enforced sanctions that are affecting Russia’s economy, culture, transportation, etc. Regarding transportation, airlines from various countries decided to detour without passing through Russian airspace even though the decision made flight time much longer. Major global companies such as Microsoft, Adobe, IKEA, and Nike have stopped service and production in Russia; also spoken out about their support for Ukraine. But most impressively, the gaming industry has spoken about their support as well. For example, 11-bit Studios, which developed the game ‘This War of Mine,’ has been well received for showing the pain and cruelty of war and donated $850,000 in revenue over the week. In South Korea, the government has decided to cooperate with the United States by sanctioning Russia. Since Korea has imposed its sanctions, more than 200 Korean companies in Russia may be adversely affected. For example, the U.S. has decided to ban all imports of Russian oil and gas; the demand increased due to the war, but there was limited supply. So, the price of oil in the United States increased highly. In doing so, Korea could not avoid the influence of the Russian invasion, because its oil prices also increased. In some cases, the price was over 2,300 won, and the average price rose to 2,004 won, but now it is slightly down to 1,990 won. Russia's military is said to be bombing facilities such as schools and hospitals and sexually assaulting civilians, not ending in indiscriminate slaughter of Ukrainian civilians, 26 Now&Here Kyungnam Times ● 27 and Ukraine's death toll is 3381. Diplomats from various countries around the world are shown resisting Russia by leaving the UN meeting at the start of the Russian minister's speech in this regard. However, countries like China and North Korea are taking different positions from other countries. This is because both countries do not want to create uncomfortable relations with Russia as the same communist countries. The Russian invasion also gave North Korea a justification to rush to develop nuclear weapons. This is because Ukraine also signed a Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurance. Under the agreement, the signatories have to offer Ukraine security assurances in exchange for its adherence to the Treaty on the NonProliferation of Nuclear Weapons. However, Russia invaded Ukraine, violating the agreement. The Russian invasion of Ukraine set a bad precedent. South Korea and North Korea have similar geographical positions to Russia and Ukraine. Thus, North Korea has the justification to follow Russia and pursue a stronger missile test system toward South Korea without fear of the outcome of the U.N. Security Council. Korea's international recognition continues to grow and Korea has been among the top 10 economies in the world. Currently, the U.S. decided to impose economic and diplomatic sanctions on Russia rather than military sanctions. During the war, South Korea is in a difficult situation to maintain friendly relations with Russia and China because Korea must join the sanctions against Russia in step with its top ally, the United States and other European countries. In the process, Korea should wisely endure Russia's antipathy and political and economic retaliation against South Korea, trying not to make Russia completely hostile to Korea.
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