Since 2018, Italy and Malta have restricted access to their ports for NGO migrant rescue vessels. Nadia Petroni writes that while both countries have faced criticism for this policy, it should be noted that since the 1990s, most EU member states have erected barriers along their borders to prevent irregular migration. There is therefore a degree of hypocrisy in […]
When the Lisbon Treaty came into force in 2009, many observers anticipated the newly established High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, together with the European External Action Service, might facilitate greater unity and coherence in EU foreign policy. Drawing on evidence from the EU’s role in the Middle East Peace Process, Federica Bicchi and Lisbeth Aggestam illustrate […]
Book Review: Unwanted Neighbours: The Mughals, the Portuguese and their Frontier Zones by Jorge Flores
In Unwanted Neighbours: The Mughals, the Portuguese and their Frontier Zones, Jorge Flores explores the ways in which the Portuguese Estado da India—situated on the coastal peripheries of the Mughal empire—dealt with their Timurid neighbours from c. 1570 to c. 1640. Unwanted Neighbours is a book that is extremely rich in thematic concerns, empirical details and includes a varied cast of characters. It also […]
Why EU states are converging on restrictive migration policies, despite their different political traditions
Differing political cultures and migration traditions among EU member states have given rise to a variety of national policy approaches toward irregular migration. Nadia Petroni explains that while in principle this diversity hinders agreement on common asylum and migration policies, EU member states are now increasingly converging toward more restrictive migration policies.
National policy approaches are deeply rooted in historical […]
A significant percentage of greenhouse gas emissions stem from agriculture, but many national climate policies still overlook the agricultural sector. Drawing on a new study, Nicole M. Schmidt shows that while mentions of agriculture in national climate policies are growing, particularly in the EU and Africa, there remains a highly fragmented picture globally, with over half the policy documents […]
Men between the ages of 18 and 39 are often assumed to be the most likely to survive troubling conditions in refugee reception centres. Drawing on recent research on the Greek island of Samos, Gemma Bird highlights that this is not always the case. Vulnerabilities are not fixed, and in environments such as the one on Samos, the basic […]
A new EU Central Asia Strategy was adopted by the European Council on 17 June. Thomas Kruessmann assesses the content of the new strategy, writing that the EU’s efforts to pursue ‘non-exclusive partnerships’ with Central Asian countries are likely to be heavily restricted by China and Russia’s influence in the region.
The new EU Central Asia Strategy (The EU and […]
In For the Love of Humanity: The World Tribunal on Iraq, Ayça Çubukçu illustrates how different and sometimes colliding understandings of justice, human rights, legitimacy and international law co-existed in response to the Iraq occupation through the case of the World Tribunal on Iraq, which sought to document and provide grounds for adjudicating war crimes committed by the US, the UK and their allied […]
In 2009 the EU adopted the Concept on Strengthening EU Mediation and Dialogue Capacities, its first-ever strategic document focusing specifically on mediation. Ten years later, the EU’s concept and practices of mediation need an update, write Julian Bergmann, Toni Haastrup, Arne Niemann and Richard Whitman.
The first two years of implementation of the EU Global Strategy focused on advancing the […]
EU defence policy has traditionally been intergovernmental in nature: member states have typically adopted decisions through unanimity, while supranational institutions, such as the European Commission and European Parliament, have had little formal power. Pierre Haroche writes that recent developments are now changing this approach, with defence policy becoming increasingly supranational and politicised.
On 18 April, the European Parliament (EP) approved, […]
Book Review: International Courts and Mass Atrocity: Narratives of War and Justice in Croatia by Ivor Sokolić
In International Courts and Mass Atrocity: Narratives of War and Justice in Croatia, Ivor Sokolić focuses on the contradictions that can arise between the ‘truths’ provided by international courts’ judgments and national war narratives, focusing on the understudied case of Croatia. This is an in-depth analysis that will be a must-read for transitional justice scholars and practitioners both in the Balkans and […]
From 1974 to 1979, the EEC and Arab League met regularly for the Euro-Arab Dialogue, but efforts to establish close relations failed to meet expectations. Philipp Hirsch writes that today, the European Union and League of Arab States are once again attempting stronger cooperation. But based on historical experience, Brussels should not invest too much hope in the capacity […]
The campaign for the European Parliament elections on 23-26 May offers an opportunity for key EU policy areas to be debated. Yet as Anna Nadibaidze writes, the issue of EU enlargement in the Western Balkans has so far remained far from the agenda. She explains that with public opinion focused on other topics and both mainstream and Eurosceptic parties […]
After two decades in power, Abdelaziz Bouteflika has announced that he will resign as President of Algeria. Luigi Lonardo explains that despite the announcement, there are signs it may not yet be game over for the country’s regime.
Almost ten years after the Arab uprisings, twenty years after taking power, Algeria’s president Bouteflika announced on Tuesday 2 April that he […]
The decision to change the name of Macedonia to ‘North Macedonia’ brought an end to a protracted bilateral disagreement between the country and Greece. Zoran Nechev and Adnan Ćerimagić write that the experience offers a rare lesson in how the will to compromise and build peaceful cooperation can overcome entrenched disputes.
The Western Balkan region is not an island isolated […]
Book Review: Inside Asylum Bureaucracy: Organizing Refugee Status Determination in Austria by Julia Dahlvik
In Inside Asylum Bureaucracy: Organizing Refugee Status Determination in Austria, Julia Dahlvik conducts an in-depth case study of Austria’s former Federal Asylum Office (FAO) to explore how bureaucrats and other decision-makers adjudicate asylum cases. The book offers insightful conclusions that can lead to tangible policy changes, finds Victoria de Keizer.
This review is part of a theme week published in the run-up to International […]
The EU is expected to approve a new strategy for engaging with countries in Central Asia this year. Ann Sander Nielsen writes that in developing the new strategy, the EU must avoid compromising its founding values under the guise of ‘principled pragmatism’.
During the first part of this year, the European Union will adopt a new strategy for its engagement […]
Tensions have grown in recent months between the EU and the United States over Iran, which was underlined at a US-backed conference on the Middle East in Poland last week that was largely sidestepped by many European governments. Cornelius Adebahr writes that the EU is right to take a more comprehensive approach to the region and resist attempts to […]
In Down to Earth: Politics in the New Climatic Regime, Bruno Latour explores the political and philosophical challenges proper to a time defined by an environmental and socio-economic crisis. Rodrigo Muñoz-González welcomes this energetic, compelling and provocative attempt to find an alternative vision to the contradictory and flawed project of modernity.
Down to Earth: Politics in the New Climatic Regime. Bruno Latour (trans. by Catherine […]
Why is the EU unable to adopt a binding solidarity mechanism for the distribution of asylum seekers?
Under the so called ‘Dublin Regulation’, asylum seekers are usually deemed to be the responsibility of the country where they first entered the EU. But following the migration crisis that began in 2015, there have been efforts to reform this system given it places greater strain on countries such as Italy and Greece, who faced large inflows due to […]