EU Foreign Affairs

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    Kosovo election: When the elites teamed up to see through their KLA troubles

Kosovo election: When the elites teamed up to see through their KLA troubles

Kosovo held parliamentary elections on 11 June. A coalition led by former PM Ramush Haradinaj won the election with around 35% of the vote, while the left-wing opposition party Vetevendosje and the coalition associated with outgoing Prime Minister Isa Mustafa each held around 25%. The backdrop to the election was an ongoing adjudication over war crimes committed by the […]

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    The silver lining in Trump’s Paris pullout: A chance for the EU and China to take the leadership mantle

The silver lining in Trump’s Paris pullout: A chance for the EU and China to take the leadership mantle

Donald Trump’s decision to pull the United States out of the Paris Climate Agreement produced a strong reaction from European leaders. Charles F. Parker argues the decision may provide an opportunity for the EU to strengthen its climate change leadership by forging an alliance with China. He suggests that there were several silver linings to the US withdrawal, but the EU […]

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    The Marshall Plan speech at 70 – and the lessons it can provide for today’s challenges

The Marshall Plan speech at 70 – and the lessons it can provide for today’s challenges

The 70th anniversary of the Marshall Plan speech given by US Secretary of State George Marshall on 5 June 1947 was recently celebrated. The speech outlined the principles of the Marshall Plan, under which the United States provided financial support to help rebuild Western Europe after the Second World War. Effie G. H. Pedaliu writes that while the conditions present […]

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    President Trump’s speech on the Paris Agreement was full of confusion and bogus claims

President Trump’s speech on the Paris Agreement was full of confusion and bogus claims

Donald Trump has indicated that he intends to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement. Bob Ward writes that the President’s speech put forward a confused interpretation of the agreement, included references to climate research that has previously been debunked, and gave a highly misleading account of the agreement’s impact on the United States’ coal industry.

Credit: Chairman […]

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    The Western Balkans could be the first casualty of a ‘connectivity war’ between the EU and Turkey

The Western Balkans could be the first casualty of a ‘connectivity war’ between the EU and Turkey

The EU negotiated a deal with Turkey during the migration crisis that aimed to halt the flow of people into Europe. But recent tensions between the EU and Turkey have raised questions about whether this deal will be viable in the long-term. Vuk Vuksanovic writes that relations between the EU and Turkey can be conceived of as a potential ‘connectivity […]

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The Eurovision in Ukraine was an exercise in soft power

Eurovision 2017, held in Kyiv, may have lacked overt politicisation when it came to the performances showcased on stage, especially in comparison to previous years. But as Roch Dunin-Wąsowicz argues, the contest nevertheless delivered a carefully constructed ideological message about Ukraine’s European aspirations and its pride in its cultural heritage and traditions, while also signalling comradeship with the Slavic […]

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    Russia ups its game in the Balkans, but the West should avoid responding in kind

Russia ups its game in the Balkans, but the West should avoid responding in kind

Russia has recently been accused of stoking tensions in the Balkans by waging ‘information warfare’ in the region. Jarosław Wiśniewski writes that even if these allegations are true, the West should avoid responding in kind. Rather than engaging in the same tactics, the carrot of European integration should be used to exert greater influence.

Images of Vladimir Putin placed on an […]

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    West is best: How ‘stabilitocracy’ undermines democracy building in the Balkans

West is best: How ‘stabilitocracy’ undermines democracy building in the Balkans

Recent months have seen unrest in Macedonia, with a violent protest at the country’s parliament, while other countries in the Balkans such as Montenegro have also witnessed large anti-government protests. Srđa Pavlović argues that the West’s approach to the Balkans has suffered from what he terms ‘stabilitocracy’, with the EU and United States backing governments that promise stability, but have […]

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    Who are the protesters in Serbia, and what do they really want?

Who are the protesters in Serbia, and what do they really want?

Serbia’s recent presidential election, which was won by Prime Minister Aleksandar Vučić, gave rise to a wave of protests in several urban centres across the country. But there is still a great deal of uncertainty over the identity and motivations of the protesters. As the demonstrations are about to resume after an Easter break, Maja Bjeloš traces the origins […]

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    Erdoğan accuses Germany of echoing the Nazis – but his own record on anti-Semitism is shameful

Erdoğan accuses Germany of echoing the Nazis – but his own record on anti-Semitism is shameful

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan recently generated controversy in Germany after he compared the actions of German officials with Nazis. The comments came following Germany’s decision to block political rallies linked to an upcoming referendum in Turkey on 16 April. Marc David Baer argues that the incident should be used to shine a light on the Turkish government’s own deployment of […]

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    Why China’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ initiative should be taken more seriously by the EU and how it can be an interregional success

Why China’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ initiative should be taken more seriously by the EU and how it can be an interregional success

The so called ‘One Belt, One Road’ initiative is a plan by China to foster stronger cooperation and connectivity with other countries in Europe and Asia. Andreas Grimmel and Susanne My Giang shed light on the fact that the initiative has the potential to unlock a new kind of integration that focuses not only on bringing states within regions together, […]

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How western populism weakens democracy in Ukraine

What does the election of Donald Trump and the rise of ‘populist’ parties across Europe mean for Ukraine? Iryna Solonenko argues that populism in Europe, and in the West generally, plays into the hands of anti-democratic forces in the country, supporting Russia’s destabilising influence and threatening Ukraine’s democratic future.

During the Euromaidan protests in 2013/2014 and their aftermath, when the […]

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  • Permalink A sign at Tbilisi Airport celebrating the Association Agreement signed between the EU and Georgia, Credit: Max FrasGallery

    Four takeaways from Albania’s EU visa liberalisation journey for Georgia

Four takeaways from Albania’s EU visa liberalisation journey for Georgia

New rules allowing Georgian citizens to travel to the Schengen Area without a visa will come into full effect today. As Max Fras writes, EU visa liberalisation has been presented by the Georgian government as a major success story, but drawing on the experience of Albania, he presents four lessons that the country’s politicians should keep in mind now […]

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    Mehriban Aliyeva: The many faces of Azerbaijan’s First Lady and new Vice President

Mehriban Aliyeva: The many faces of Azerbaijan’s First Lady and new Vice President

On 21 February, Mehriban Aliyeva was appointed as the Vice President of Azerbaijan, a post that was created via a constitutional referendum in September 2016. But her appointment has generated controversy, not least because she was appointed by her husband, the current President, Ilham Aliyev. Arzu Geybullayeva writes that with the country’s economy badly hit by the recent fall […]

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The West needs to call Russia’s bluff in the Balkans

Some commentators have hinted at the imminence of another war in the Balkans, highlighting Russia’s supposed role in such an escalation. Dimitar Bechev argues that no such conflict is on the cards: Moscow is exploiting a vacuum left by the West’s retreating pull factor in the region, while autocrats in the Balkans are playing along. He writes that the EU should […]

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    If NAFTA fails, Canada should reach across the Atlantic to the UK

If NAFTA fails, Canada should reach across the Atlantic to the UK

The future of the North American Free Trade Agreement is looking increasingly uncertain under Donald Trump as president of the United States. In case NAFTA implodes, Armand de Mestral proposes the creation of the Atlantic Free Trade Area between Canada and the United Kingdom, in a framework involving Europe and the US.
NAFTA has been in force since 1994. It replaced […]

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    What does Trump’s war on the media mean for the future of political journalism?

What does Trump’s war on the media mean for the future of political journalism?

Donald Trump has been highly critical of the American media since taking office as President. George Kassimeris suggests that the media establishment were partly responsible for this reaction given their critical coverage of Trump’s campaign, but that the President’s continued attacks on the media are now a core part of his survival strategy.

The on-going toxic vendetta between President Trump […]

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    Mastering Trump’s mastermind: Sebastian Gorka and the struggle between Islam and the West

Mastering Trump’s mastermind: Sebastian Gorka and the struggle between Islam and the West

British-born Sebastian Gorka was appointed as Deputy Assistant to the President of the United States by Donald Trump in January and is viewed as one of the key figures behind the President’s national security strategy. Steve Fuller presents an analysis of Gorka’s world-view, writing that his conception of an ideological struggle between Islamic jihadism and the West may ultimately […]

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    Trump and the Balkan Princes: What Trump’s presidency means for South East Europe

Trump and the Balkan Princes: What Trump’s presidency means for South East Europe

Donald Trump’s presidency has already raised a number of major questions about the United States’ relationship with its key allies and neighbours. But what impact will his administration have on the Balkans? Florian Bieber outlines four reasons why Trump’s presidency will matter for the region, building on his previous article ‘Ten rules by a 21st-century Machiavelli for the Balkan Prince’.

Niccolò […]

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    Why Trump’s Wall is not racist, the Muslim ban is, and why the difference matters

Why Trump’s Wall is not racist, the Muslim ban is, and why the difference matters

In his short time in office, President Trump has signed an order to construct his long-promised border wall with Mexico, and another which would stop refugees from entering the US and placed a 90-day ban on immigrants from seven Muslim countries. Eric Kaufmann writes that Trump’s Muslim ban classifies as ‘racist’ as it is based on an irrational fear of […]

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