Recent publications from the Finnish Institute of International Affairs (FIIA) – Spring/summer 2016

FIIA

 

Reports

  

Mika Aaltola & Anna Kronlund (eds.), After Rebalance: Visions for the future of US foreign policy and global role beyond 2016

The publication can be downloaded here.

Katri Pynnöniemi & András Rácz, Fog of Falsehood: Russian strategy of deception and the conflict in Ukraine

The publication can be downloaded here.

Briefing Papers

 

Michael Haltzel, Sticking to the Rules: The United States view on strengthening the OSCE

The publication can be downloaded here.

David Cadier, Detour or Direction? The Europeanisation of France’s policies towards Russia

The publication can be downloaded here.

Katri Pynnöniemi & Charly Salonius-Pasternak, Security in the Baltic Sea Region: Activation of risk potential

The publication can be downloaded here.

Marco Siddi, Privileged Partners? Italy should use its leverage for constructive policies towards Russia

The publication can be downloaded here.

Toni Alaranta, The problematic EU-Turkey refugee deal: The EU downplays its structural foreign policy in order to secure internal unity

The publication can be downloaded here.

Niklas Helwig, Will Angela Merkel cope with the populist challenge? The German chancellor faces opposition to her migration policies in Europe and at home

The publication can be downloaded here.

Katja Creutz & Marco Siddi, Committing to humanity? The World Humanitarian Summit offered a glimmer of hope among all the crises

The publication can be downloaded here.

Recent publications from the Prague Institute of International Relations (IIR) – Spring/summer 2016

IIR_LOGO

 

The Centre for International Law of the Institute of International Relations, Prague, has released a series of observations entitled “The International Law Reflections.” These observations illustrate the current and pressing issues in international law to the Czech general public.

Tamás Lattmann, Judgment in the Savchenko case, New International Law Reflections

Judgment in the Savchenko caseDebated judgment by a dubious judicial forum in a murky legal environment. The current analysis tries to shed some light to some of the legal questions, without examining the charges on their merits.

The publication is available here.

Tamás Lattmann, The case against Russia for the attack on flight MH17, New International Law Reflections

According to the news, a new legal proceeding has been initiated against Russia and its president Vladimir Putin for the downing of the Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 in the airspace of Ukraine on 17 July 2014. The present analysis by Tamás Lattmann examines the outlines of the case.

The publication is available here.

Recommendations from members of the TEPSA network to the incoming Slovak Presidency, May 2016

tepsahighThe Trans European Policy Studies Association (TEPSA) has the tradition to formulate recommendations to the incoming Council Presidency. These recommendations have been prepared by the following members of the TEPSA network: Iain Begg (TEPSA Board, LSE, London), Katrin Böttger (TEPSA Board, IEP, Berlin), Ilvija Bruģe (LIIA, Riga), Atilla Eralp (CES-METU, Ankara), Diāna Potjomkina (LIIA, Riga), Mark Rhinard (UI, Stockholm), Funda Tekin (CIFE, Berlin) and Guido Tiemann (IHS, Vienna). They do not necessarily represent the view of TEPSA or its member institutes.

Pre-Presidency 2016 BratislavaFunda Tekin presented the recommendations to the incoming Slovak Presidency at the occasion of the TEPSA-IESIR Pre-Presidency Conference on 2 and 3 June 2016 in Bratislava. The conference was organised by the Institute of European Studies and International Relations (IESIR), Faculty of Social and Economic Sciences, Comenius University in Bratislava in cooperation with the Trans European Policy Studies Association (TEPSA), and with the support of the Slovak Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the PONT project.

Migration Crisis

TEPSA has urged previous EU presidencies to devise truly collective solutions to the migration crisis. This should be done out of principle as well as common sense – even the most self-interested, rationalist analysis shows that strengthened management of the EU’s common border, distribution of resources to assist with an orderly asylum process at overwhelmed entry points, and greater shared responsibility for hosting refugees will help to end the crisis. Yet state-centric solutions are on the rise, as the Visegrad Four’s refusal to accept refugee relocation and Hungary’s highly restrictive asylum criteria serve to illustrate. To make matters worse, the European Commission seems content to accept these individualistic solutions. The Commission’s proposals on migration reform, from both April and May of this year, allow for harsh treatment of asylum seekers at the external border in exchange for reinstating Schengen (reopening internal borders). TEPSA urges the Slovakian Presidency of the EU to resist this ‘deal with the devil’ and encourage member states to see beyond their short-term impulses in exchange for long-term, collective solutions.

EU-Turkey relations

Slovakia takes over the EU Presidency at a time when EU-Turkey relations are strained, but more vital than ever, not least because of the refugee crisis. The EU has re-discovered Turkey as a “key strategic partner” and restarted accession negotiations and the visa liberalization procedure with Turkey as well as strengthened institutional EU-Turkey relations through biannual EU-Turkey Summits and regular meetings at the highest levels. At the same time there has been backsliding in Turkey’s reform process vis-à-vis the Copenhagen criteria, while the authoritarian drift in Turkey’s political system continues unabated, with power increasingly in the hands of President Erdoğan.

We urge the Slovak Presidency to keep up the close and balanced dialogue and relations with Turkey. At the same time the EU Presidency should not turn a blind eye Turkish breaches of European values. Specifically we believe the Slovak Presidency can play a key role by:

  • Pushing for the EU to take a clear stance on EU-Turkey relations as well as calling on Turkey to accept and act according to the respective conditions and rules. The visa liberalization procedure, for example, should only be finalized if Turkey implements the reforms linked to the procedure including the anti-terror law.
  • Provide external incentives for internal reforms: the next chapters of accession negotiations that should be opened – if any – are Chapters 23 and 24.
  • Ensure full implementation of the EU-Turkey Deal: although contested, the EU-Turkey Deal has caused a decrease in migration to the Greek islands. This deal needs full commitment on both sides. Inside the EU, the Slovak Presidency would provide a strong signal by committing to the resettlement programme as part of the EU-Turkey Deal, because a fair burden-sharing among EU Member States is essential for its success. At the same time “outsourcing” of migration management should not be the EU’s sole strategy: the Slovak presidency needs to ensure that financial and structural support to Greece continues.
Populism

In the last decade, increasingly euro-sceptical populism – mainly, but not only, right-wing – has been evident in most member states of the European Union. Populist notions are particularly effective in political domains which are inherently complicated, driven by symbolic politics, and characterised by low levels of public information on many key facets of European integration.

TEPSA calls on the incoming Slovak presidency to recognise, and respond to, three major drivers of populist euro-scepticism:

  • Policy gridlock within and among EU institutions;
  • A lack of popular support and legitimacy;
  • The democratic deficit of the European Union.

We urge the Slovak Presidency to counter the growing negativity by shifting the discourse from one that portrays so many common policies as a zero-sum game played among the member states, to one that emphasises the positive-sum outcomes from well-conceived policies that benefit all member states.

EU-Russia and EU-Ukraine relations

Given its external border with Ukraine, Slovakia has a strong interest in fostering a coherent and effective EU policy towards Russia. Progress towards a resolution of the Ukraine crisis can be advanced by:

  • Continuing the two-track approach of supporting Ukraine and the other Eastern Partnership countries in their transformation processes while at the same time stabilising and diversifying EU-relations with Russia. A key facet of this that the Slovak Presidency should encourage is a more active EU investment policy in Ukraine, in order to decrease the proportion of Russian capital, especially in strategic industries
  • But also acknowledging that the expression “Minsk II is dead” becomes progressively harder to refute in successive meetings of the Normandy format. Since they appear to achieve little or no progress in their negotiations, the Slovakian council presidency should seek alternative ways to overcome this stalemate. If a clearer path is not found by the end of the Slovak presidency, there is substantial danger of the conflict in eastern Ukraine ossifying.

With regards to the reform processes in Russia and the Eastern Partnership countries, the Slovak Presidency should build on the momentum from the ‘Panama Papers’ to work towards EU insistence on greater financial transparency and accountability in these countries. Such an initiative would help to deter repetition of scenarios witnessed in the case of Moldova, where the seemingly pro-European elite was engaged in large-scale corruption, and would be effective as a type of sanctions against Russian officials violating norms of international security and human rights. In particular, increased attention must be paid to suspicious deals involving EU nationals and EaP and Russian partners, especially regarding laundered funds located in the EU. The reform process should aim to achieve the progressive substitution of post-Soviet business norms by Western business ethics. Concerning EU-Russia relations, Slovakia will have the difficult task of negotiating amongst the EU-member states and their differing stances concerning the future development of these relations. In the spirit of not seeking to ‘punish’ societies for the actions of their governments and promoting closer ties between European and Russian societies there should also be attention to positive incentives. These should include new strategies for engaging Russian civil society through such instruments as massively increased students’ and youth exchanges, academic cooperation and track II dialogues with easier Schengen entry procedures for Russian nationals. These exchange opportunities may be not only bilateral (EU-Russia) but also involve Eastern Partnership countries.

The economy

Although the recent improvement in Eurozone growth is encouraging, the recovery from the crisis remains fragile. It is, therefore, a disappointment that the efforts of successive presidencies to revive the Europe 2020 strategy have been ineffectual. An approach going beyond the worthy but limited ambitions of the European Fund for Strategic Investment – the Juncker Plan – is needed to demonstrate to increasingly sceptical publics that the EU can make a difference. The Slovak Presidency should seize the opportunity to give fresh momentum to the Europe 2020 strategy or a successor strategy, focusing relentlessly on jobs and growth. The EU needs a budget fit for the challenges of today rather than the previous century. After the high-level group on own resources, chaired by Mario Monti, presents its report, it will be incumbent on the Slovak Presidency to ensure that its findings are acted upon and not left on the shelf to gather dust. Specifically a clear timetable with binding deadlines should be set for implementing new own resources.

Click here to dowload the PDF version of TEPSA’s recommendations

Eastern Neighbours and Russia: Close links with EU citizens (ENURC)

The ENURC project focused on developing EU citizens’ understanding of the topic of the Eastern Neighbourhood and Russia. The project aimed at encouraging citizens’ interest and involvement in this policy which has an impact on their daily lives. Following the ongoing crisis in Ukraine and the growing tensions between the EU and Russia, security of the EU citizens and peace at the edge of the EU is becoming ever more relevant. The EU’s response to Russia showcases the diversity of interests among the EU member states since some member states are dependent on Russia for their energy supply and fear security implications of a more assertive Russia.

This project offered five main activities in five different member states for whose citizens the relation with Eastern Neighbours and Russia is key –  Romania, Germany, Latvia, Sweden and Finland. TEPSA’ s partners in this project were the Romanian Centre for European Policies (CRPE), Institut für Europäische Politik (IEP), Latvian Institute of International Affairs (LIIA), The Swedish Institute of International Affairs  (UI) and The Finnish Institute of International Affairs (FIIA). The activities attracted an audience of in total 791 participants coming from the following EU member states: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany,  Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden and the UK.

The activities approached the topic from different angles: economics, geopolitics, development and enlargement, in order to illustrate the diversity of interests and perceptions on this topic. Besides the five project activities, the project also entailed an EU wide study on the public perceptions on EU’s Eastern Neighbours and Russia. The questionnaire focused on the following four questions related to the Eastern Neighbours and Russia: 1) What are dominant views in your country on future relations with Russia? 2) How do the events in Ukraine affect the views in your country on EU relations with Eastern Partnership countries? 3) How was the Eastern Partnership Summit in Riga on 21-22 May 2015 assessed in your country? 4) Does the EU need its own army in order to face up to Russia and other threats according to assessments in your country?

Past events at the Institute for World Economics, Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences – Spring 2016

Hungary

 

2-15 February 2016, Botswana and Namibia – field research in Africa

Judit Kiss and Zsuzsánna Biedermann visited different institutes and met governmental officiers, as well as local researchers to map the dangers and chances of raw material economy

22-23 February 2016, Budapest – Budapest Business School Faculty of International Management and Business Campus

Ágnes Szunomár, Tamás Novák, Miklós Szanyi took part and gave lectures at the Conference on the Current Issues of Economic and Social Integration in Hungary and Taiwan.

Joe Forgacs, The social psychology of prejudice: Implications for the politics of the European refugee crisis

23 February 2016, Budapest – Europe Club

Speaker: Joseph P. Forgacs, DPhil, DSc. (Oxford) Scientia Professor, University of New South Wales, Sydney

“Understanding Russian Influence in Europe”

29 February 2016, Washington – Center for Strategic & International Studies

András Deák was a participant and had a lecture at the conference Understanding Russian Influence in Europe.

Conference in memoriam Margit Rácz: “Changing Europe – Integration and Crisis”

7 March 2016, Budapest – Headquarters of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences

Investment pause in the Russian economy and how to overcome it

10 March 2016, Budapest – within the frames of the IWE CERS HAS series ‘Economics with policy’ Oleg Buklemishev held a seminar under the title Investment pause in the Russian economy and how to overcome it.

Change, money – New planning period in the EU’s development policy

22 March 2016, Budapest – Europe Club

Péter Heil expert in development policy, Corvinus University, associate professor: Change, money – New planning period in the EU’s development policy

“V4 Goes Global: Exploring opportunities in V4 cooperation with BASIC emerging powers”

22 March 2016, Warsaw – Polish Institute of International Affairs

Ágnes Szunomár represented the institute at the closing event of “V4 Goes Global: Exploring opportunities in V4 cooperation with BASIC emerging powers” 

Title of the book containing the reseach studies: V4 Goes Global. Exploring Opportunities and Obstacles for Visegrad Countries Cooperation with Brazil, India, China and South Africa.

April 14 2016, Budapest – IWE CERS HAS

Within the frames of our institute’s workshop talk series Tamás Gerőcs ​ junior research fellow was focusing on the Chinese currency. He drawed two models of internationalization of the yuan. ​Either a more hegemonic role in the international financial system​ when the yuan could compete with the dollar to become the leading unit of account in trade, reserve and investment functions of a world currency. Or the other model which suggests a partial or ‘basic’ convertibility​ with modest international function of the yuan. It could become an anchor currency in the intra-Asian trade.

“Resilient Europe?” – 23rd International Conference of Europeanists

April 14-16 2016, Philadelphia, by the Council for European Studies

Tamás Novák in his paper ‘Austerity – Selective Austerity – Non-Austerity: Experiences of Central European EU Members States’ attempted to explore the conclusions that can be drawn from the divergent strategies of Central European EU member countries as regards austerity measures or alternative approaches to such measures.

April 19 2016, Budapest – Europe Club

György Raskó agrarian economist: Comparative analysis of agricultural development in the EU and in Hungary, with special emphasis on the efficiency of production

Recent publications from the Finnish Institute of International Affairs (FIIA) – Spring 2016

FIIA

 

FIIA Helwig1

 

Niklas Helwig, Europe’s New Political Engine: Germany’s role in the EU’s foreign and security policy, Report

Sören Scholvin, Geopolitics: An Overview of Concepts and Empirical Examples from International Relations, Working Paper

FIIA Sinkkonen1

Elina Sinkkonen, New horizons and internal reforms: The regional implications of China’s military posture, Briefing Paper

FIIA Kapyla1

Juha Käpylä, Harri Mikkola & Toivo Martikainen, Moscow’s Arctic dreams turned sour? Analysing Russia’s policies in the Arctic, Briefing Paper

FIIa Martikainen1

Toivo Martikainen & Antto Vihma, Dividing the EU with energy? Unpacking Russia’s energy geoeconomics, Briefing Paper

FIIA Comments

András Rácz, Viktor Orbán walks a tightrope between Brussels and Moscow: Hungary’s strategic dilemma about Russia has not been resolved

Veera Laine, The spring that never came: One year after Boris Nemtsov’s murder, Russia’s liberal opposition is threatened, repressed and ridiculed

Marco Siddi, Italy at loggerheads with the European Commission and Germany: Has Matteo Renzi taken a euro-critical stance?

Charly Salonius-Pasternak, The Swedish defence policy paradox: Sweden wants to stay militarily non-allied while seeking ever closer defence cooperation with others

Carrie Weintraub, NATO redefined? Nato’s anti-human smuggling mission in the Mediterranean ­highlights the organization’s broader priorities

Jyrki Kallio, China’s National Congress sacrifices the economy for politics: The new Five-Year Plan is dedicated to maintaining the Party’s leadership

Bart Gaens, Aung San Suu Kyi’s shadow presidency: Myanmar’s new civilian government faces numerous challenges

Recent publications from the Prague Institute of International Relations – Winter 2015/16

 

Prague Institute of Intl Relations

pub1Uroš Svete, Damijan Guštin, Janja Vuga, Rok Zupančič, Jelena Juvan, The Small State Facing Asymmetric Environment: A Reconsideration of the Identity? – The Slovenian Experience, Institute of International Relations, Prague, ISBN 978-80-87558-24-9.

The book The Small State Facing Asymmetric Environment: A Reconsideration of the Identity? – The Slovenian Experience, which was co-authored by our Associate Research Fellow Rok Zupančič and published by the IIR publishing house, analyses asymmetry in warfare from the perspective of a small nation by combining a historical, a defence-strategic and also a wider security approach, including certain moral-legal and technological dimensions. Its primary objective is to prove that small countries, “often endowed” with rich historical experience, can also significantly contribute to discussions of asymmetric warfare and understandings of conflicts. It thus aims to fill a gap in the field, as similar studies in the field mostly focus on powerful states. The book mainly focuses on Slovenian asymmetric experiences, as Slovenia went through a series of dramatic alterations in the last 60 years. The Slovenes were forced to use an asymmetric approach during the Second World War, but today Slovenia is a part of both NATO and the EU alliance. And thus it is increasingly faced with situations where an asymmetric approach is used against it (especially in Afghanistan). The book also analyses how the still present and strong historical memories of asymmetric warfare cause almost schizophrenic political and social reactions and a huge identity crisis in Slovenia. The authors argue that in Slovenia the division within the nation, which has escalated in World War II and the years that followed, is still present nowadays, and the planned reconciliation of the nation has not happened yet.

pub 2Petr Kratochvíl, Věra Řiháčková, Domestic political context since 1989: Russia as a dividing element in Czech society, Jacek Kucharczyk and Grigorij Mesežnikov (eds.), Commissioned by the Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung offices in Prague and Warsaw, Warsaw, 2015, ISBN: 978-80-906270-2-4 (Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung Prague, Opatovická 28, Praha 1, 110 00, Czech Republic).
In “Diverging Voices, Converging Policies: The Visegrad States’ Reactions to the Russia-Ukraine Conflict”

In order to explain the differing reactions of individual Visegrad countries to the Russia-Ukraine Conflict, the offices of the Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung in Prague and Warsaw asked their partner organizations to systematically analyze how these countries have dealt with the Russia-Ukraine conflict. The result is the report “Diverging Voices, Converging Policies: The Visegrad States’ Reactions to the Russia-Ukraine Conflict”. Particular consideration was to be given to the differing historical experiences, public opinions, economic relations, and energy and foreign policies of the Visegrad countries. Our Director Petr Kratochvíl co-authored (together with Věra Říháčková) one of the contributions to this report.

Lukáš Tichý, The EU Integration Discourse in the Energy Relations with Russia, Slovak Journal of Political Sciences. Volume 16, Issue 1, Pages 60–85, ISSN (Online) 1335-9096, DOI: 10.1515/sjps-2016-0004, January 2016.

The energy issue has long been one of the most discussed and controversial topics in relations between the European Union and the Russian Federation. The intention of the present article is to provide an attempt to overcome the largely non-discursive way of looking at the energy interaction of the EU and the RF, a view which is also anchored in the security conditions, and to analyze EU energy relations with Russia in the years 2004 – 2014 through an integration discourse. On the theoretical level, the article is based on a critical constructivism, which in relation to the discourse as the main concept reflects a number of fundamental knowledge. At the methodological level, the article is based on discourse analysis as a basic methodological tool through which the author examines the EU text documents.

pub 3Michal Kořan et al., V4 Trust – the Czech Presidency of the Visegrad Group (2015–2016), The Think Visegrad – V4 Think Tank Platform, International Visegrad Fund, February 2016.

The V4 Presidency Mid-Term Review Report assesses the first half of the Czech V4 presidency and suggests key recommendations for the remaining time of the presidency. The assessment is based on the Presidency’s own priorities, but also on the overall context in which the Presidency is taking place. The report is based on individual opinions of its authors and also, partly, on existing analyses provided by Think Visegrad throughout the year 2015.

Past events at the Latvian Institute of International Affairs (LIIA) – Autumn 2015

Logo-Latvia

“Security in the Heart of Asia” Central Asia- NATO partnership: Challenges and Opportunities”
23 November 2015

111The discussion on contemporary security challenges in Central- Asia was opened with a keynote speeches by Lolita Čigāne, Chair of the European Affairs Committee of the Parliament; Latvia and Igors Apokins, Ambassador- at- large; Latvia. The speakers were featured from the EU and Central- Asian states and consisted of Nargis Kassenova (KIMEP University: Kazakhstan), Nazokat Kasymova (Tashkent State Institute of Oriental Studies/ UN Office on Drugs and Crime Regional Office for Central- Asia; Uzbekistan), Neil John Melvin (Stockholm International Peace Research Institute; Sweden), Józef Lang (Centre for Eastern Studies, Poland) and Māris Andžāns (Resarch Fellow in the Latvian Institute of International Affairs), and was moderated by Andris Sprūds (Director of the Latvian Institute of International Affairs).2222

The topics covered included the stability of Afghanistan after the withdrawal of NATO forces, radicalization of the society and terrorism, organised crime and drug trafficking, border management. The event was organised with the support of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO).

More information and pictures can be found here.

ENURC event: “Eastern Neighbourhood Economies between the EU and Russia”
22 October 2015

The public discussion was aimed at providing an expert assessment, and discussing with the society how the EU and Russia affect the economic situation in the Eastern Partnership states and assessing the social and political implications of this influence. The goal was to identify the available legal and strategic tools that could be applied by the2 EU in order to more substantially impact policies of the Eastern Neighbourhood states.

The discussion was set in two panels. One of them focused on the European Union and its aims and influence in the Eastern Neighbourhood, however the other touched upon economic aspirations and external influences from the perspective of the Eastern Neighbourhood states.

Experts from the EU and the Eastern Partnership states were featured:  Andris Sprūds (Director of the Latvian Institute of International Affairs), Juris Poikāns, Latvian Ambassador-at-Large for Eastern Partnership, David Cadier (London School of Economics and Political Science, UK), Guillaume Van der Loo (Centre for European Policy Studies, Ghent European Law Institute, Belgium), Aldis Austers (LIIA, Latvia), Gunilla Herolf (Royal Swedish Academy of War Sciences), Cornel1 Ciurea (Institute for Development and Social Initiatives “Viitorul”, Moldova), Stepan Grigoryan (Analytical Centre on Globalization and Regional Cooperation, Armenia), andAndrei Yeliseyeu (Belarussian Institute for Strategic Studies).

The event was part of the TEPSA project “Eastern Neighbours and Russia: Close links with EU citizens – ENURC and was organised with the support of the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, the Europe for Citizens programme of the European Union, and The Black Sea Trust, a project of the GMF.

“Preventing Nuclear War in Northern Europe”
20 October 2015

In the roundtable discussion, organised in a close cooperation with the Institute for National Defence and Security Policy Studies at the Swedish Defence University and the Stimson Center (USA), participants discussed two nuclear war scenarios in the Baltic region and their prevention possibilities. The discussion also focused on the option to establish a Baltic Nuclear Weapons Free zone and its realistic viability.

The event featured experts from the United States, Latvia and the Northern Europe: Lars Hedström (Executive Director, Institute for National Defence and Security Policy Studies), Ulrika Kumlien (Research Assistant, Institute for National Defence and Security Policy Studies), Barry Blechman (Co-founder, Stimson Center), Ira Lechner (Founder, Project High Hopes), Jānis Kažociņš (State Secretary’s Advisor, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Latvia), Veiko Spolītis (Member of the Parliament of the Republic of Latvia and others).

The roundtable was moderated by Andris Sprūds (Director of the Latvian Institute of International Affairs).

ENURC event: “The new Russia as a challenge for the European Policy”, 22 September 2015

IEP+Europeforcitizens

 

iep1aThe second event organised in the framework of the ENURC project was the Lunch Debate organised by the project partner IEP in Berlin. IEP organises “Lunch Debates” on key topics of the current agenda of European politics. On September 22, 2015 the ENURC IEP Lunch Debate was hosted in the representation office of the German state Saarland. The keynote speaker was Dr. h.c. Gernot Erler, member of the German Bundestag and coordinator for intersocietal cooperation with Russia, Central Asia and member countries of the Eastern Partnership. The debate on “The New Russia as a Challenge for European Politics” was moderated by Dr. Katrin Böttger, Deputy Director of the Institut für Europäische Politik (IEP).

Erler’s speech which was divided into three sections: the partnership with Russia, the Ukraine crisis and its significance for EU-Russia relations, and the future of these relations. According to Erler, the Russian Federation has undergone with the European Union a relation of “ignored alienation” since 1990. From the EU’s perspective, a joint and strategic partnership with Russia had developed thanks to the regular EU-Russia Summit and the intensifying civil society and economic alliances. However, Russia increasingly alienated itself from the idea of establishing congruent interests. Russia’s constructive participation in the nuclear negotiations with Iran, the call to establish an anti-terror coalition against the IS in Syria, along with the recently active action against separatists in eastern Ukraine have made it clear that the Russian Federation is less interested in isolation and an escalation of the Ukraine conflict and more interested in a western orientation, according to Erler.

The ENURC IEP lunch debate attracted an audience of 170 participants. It provided an excellent occasion for German nationals and citizens from other countries to share their views on the impact of Russia on the European Union. There were 26 nationalities present during the event. There were participants from Germany, the United States, Russia, Canada, Norway, Uzbekistan, Hungary, Poland, Portugal, Ukraine, Latvia, Finland, Estonia, Slovakia, Moldova, Lithuania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, Bulgaria, Romania, Spain, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Denmark and Sweden. For the Europe for Citizens Programme only EU member states are included when calculating the number of participating countries, so 17 EU member states.

You can download here the programme and the report of the event.

More information on the event can be found on the IEP website.

Past Events at the Institute for World Economics, Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences – Winter 2014/15

Hungary

“Missed opportunity: history and current state of the relations between the European Union and Russia”

24 February 2015, Club Europe, Budapest

The meeting was chaired by Péter Balázs, former European Commissioner and Minister of Foreign Affairs, and the speaker was the well-known expert and professor of the topic, Zoltán Sz. Bíró (in Hungarian).

Conference in New Orleans

20 February 2015, New Orleans

At the conference organised by the International Studies Association (ISA) senior researcher Tamás Novák gives a lecture on the effects of the TTIP on the Eastern European region.

Workshop on convergence and catching up by the Central European region

16 February 2015, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Budapest

Joint workshop on the different aspects of convergence and catching up by the Central European region, with researchers from the three member institutes of the KRTK research centre, namely senior researchers Gábor Oblath, Zoltán Gál, Krisztina Vida, Margit Rácz and director Károly Fazekas

Lecture by Prof. Mihály Simai

12 February 2015, IWE Budapest

Lecture by academician prof. Mihály Simai about the recent World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos and its consequences for Hungary (in Hungarian)

“The EU at the crossroads”

9 February 2015, Universidad Tecnologia de Monterrey, Mexico City

Prof. András Inotai’s speech on “The EU at the crossroads” in Spanish language

Thursday workshops – regular monthly workshop at IWE

5 February 2015, Budapest

At the February event senior researcher András Deák presented the topic of energy relations between Russia and the EU, Russia’s energy potential, its export capacities, physical infrastructure and economic interests – followed by a lively debate (in Hungarian)

“United Arab Emirates (RAKIA) Road Show”

3 February 2015, Radisson Hotel, Budapest

Prof. András Inotai participated at the conference ofthe Hungarian-Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce entitled “United Arab Emirates (RAKIA) Road Show” focusing on the topic “Eastern opportunities – efficient business management and taxation”

Lecture by Research director Margit Rácz

29 January 2015, European Representation, Budapest

Research director Margit Rácz gave a lecture at the “Europe Direct” meeting on growth and employment perspectives in the EU as well as on the current state and challenges of EMU (in Hungarian)

“Diversity of gas supplies as a key precondition for the effective V4 gas market”

29 January 2015, Masaryk University Brno

Senior researcher András Deák made a presentation on “Diversity of gas supplies as a key precondition for the effective V4 gas market” at the IVF Think Tank Platform in Brno

DGAP workshop

28 January 2015, DGAP Berlin

Senior researcher András Deák contributed to the DGAP workshop with a lecture on: “Energie- und Energieaußenpolitik Ungarns vor dem Hintergrund der Spannungen zwischen der EU und Russland”

Round table conference on the role of think-tanks in Hungary

22 January 2015, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest

Round table conference with different research institutes on the role of think-tanks in Hungary – at the occasion of the publication of the report by the University of Pennsylvania on the “Global Go To Think Tank Index” (GGTTI) where IWE is the 39th among the 50 listed economic policy think-tanks in the world. At this conference IWE was represented by vice-director Miklós Szanyi.

“Special relations between the European Union and Switzerland”

20 January 2015, Club Europe, Budapest

Lecture given by Erzsébet Nagy, former Ambassador of Hungary to the Swiss Federation (in Hungarian)

Thursday workshops – regular monthly workshop at IWE

8 January 2015, Budapest

At the January event vice-director of IWE, Miklós Szanyi gave an introductory lecture on the vast topic of the increased role of states in the national economy after the crisis first from a theoretical perspective and then on the example of Hungary – followed by a lively debate (in Hungarian).

Past events at the Finnish Institute of International Affairs (FIIA) – Summer 2014

FIIAok

CUSPP Summer Session
August 2014

The Center for US Politics and Power (CUSPP) at FIIA organized the very first Summer Session on the topic of Nordic-Baltic Security and US Role in the Region after Ukraine in Helsinki and Tallinn in August, 2014.

The aim of the Summer Session was to provide a platform to discuss the topic from different perspectives and it gathered researchers and experts from Europe and the US. The themes included in the programme were US global rebalancing and its impact to the region, transatlantic relations and US politics, dependencies and cooperation (military and trade), regional military cooperation, NATO, cyber and flows, Arctic and the sce¬narios of insecurity. The forthcoming FIIA report on the issue will fur¬ther continue on the themes of the Summer Session.

The Summer Session is part of the agenda of the CUSPP that aims to provide a platform for the research on the US global role and US foreign and domestic policy in Finland and to strengthen CUSPP networks internationally. The Center’s visiting scholar programme not only invites scholars from the US to contribute the research focuses of the Center but also provides possibilities for its own researchers to visit the US.

Eurasian Union project

The EU’s Eastern Neighbourhood and Russia Research Programme has conducted a research project on the prospects of Eurasian integration.

The project concluded that the Eurasian Economic Union has, on paper, the potential to transform economic relations in the region and to offer an alternative ot the EU in the post-Soviet space. However, weak institutions and large asym¬metry between member states are continuing to hinder closer ties and the crisis in Ukraine has led to an increasingly hostile international environment. Hence, the union faces an uphill struggle to maintain momentum and deliver the results member states desire.

Kultaranta Talks, 8-9 June 2014, Finnish Institute of International Affairs (FIIA)

The Kultaranta Talks, a foreign policy discussion event, gathered around one hundred foreign policy experts and debaters at the President of the Republic’s summer residence at Kultaranta in Naantali on 8-9 June 2014. Among the main themes were Russia, Europe, cyber security and defence capability. The Kultaranta Talks are aimed at creating a new kind of national debating event based on open and critical consideration of Finnish for­eign and security policy. The Office of the President of the Republic of Finland organised the Talks in cooperation with FIIA.

Costas Melakopides, Pragmatic Idealism Revisited: Russia’s Post-1991 Cyprus Policy and Implications for Washington, Mediterranean Quarterly (2012), Duke University Press, Vol.23, No 4, pp 107-134.

Costas Melakopides, Pragmatic Idealism Revisited: Russia’s Post-1991 Cyprus Policy and Implications for Washington, Mediterranean Quarterly (2012), Duke University Press, Vol.23, No 4, pp 107-134.

Abstract: Having previously applied the concept of pragmatic idealism to the “like-minded middle powers” during the Cold War, the author now aims to extend its application to great powers and even superpowers. This essay challenges the stereotypical realist conception of Russia’s Cyprus policy, demonstrating that, besides its pragmatic features, it reveals idealistic motives, especially since 1991. These motives issue from a rich nexus of historical, religious, and cultural bonds, resulting in support for essentially idealist legal norms and ethical values that defend the rights of the Republic of Cyprus. Moreover, since President Barack Obama’s worldview is widely, and properly, perceived to exhibit pragmatic idealism, it should follow that Washington’s own Cyprus policy should be refashioned along such principled lines.

The article is available here.

Lecture on “Russia’s Deepening Crisis”, IIRPS VU, November 13th 2012

David Satter, former Moscow correspondent, experienced expert of Russia and the former Soviet Union, senior fellow at the Hudson Institute and fellow of the Foreign Policy Institute of the John Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) gave a Lecture on “Russia’s Deepening Crisis” at IIRPS on November 13th. During his lecture, Satter focused on the years of Vladimir Putin’s presidencies and pointed out the differences between his first two election periods and the current one after his reelection in 2012.

A recording of Satter’s 30-minute lecture can be found at the institute’s website: click here.

The first 100 days of Putin’s presidency see a tightening of the screws, Sean Roberts, FIIA Comment 7 (2012)

If Dmitry Medvedev was conciliatory in his final months as president, then Vladimir Putin seems intent on a more combative approach. But the Putin administration’s confident moves to re-establish order hide a deeper fear of more protests and a possible colour revolution scenario ahead of the autumn regional elections.

All FIIA publications can be downloaded from the institute’s website.

TEPSA Brief: EU energy security – the Russia factor and future prospects for the Southern Corridor, May 2011

By Marco Siddi

In the wake of both the uprisings that have destabilized Northern Africa and the nuclear disaster in Japan, future prospects for EU energy security look less and less promising. The rapidly growing public opposition to nuclear power and the current insecurity concerning energy supplies from Northern Africa are only the two latest elements of a series of factors that seriously challenge the European Union’s objectives in the energy field. EU domestic production of all fossil fuels has been decreasing for more than a decade. At the current rate of extraction, oil reserves will be depleted within eight years, which will make the Union more dependent on its Russian, Middle Eastern, Norwegian and North African suppliers. Domestic production of natural gas has been decreasing since 1996, while demand increased greatly in the last 15 years. Dependency on gas imports will increase further to reach an estimated 73-79% of consumption by 2020 and 81-89% by 2030, mostly due to the depletion of indigenous resources. Prospects look bleak also for nuclear power, particularly after the Fukushima accident in Japan has led some of the largest EU countries, notably Germany and Italy, to reconsider their policies in this respect.

Please click here to read the entire brief and feel free to contact Marco Siddi  (marco•siddi©tepsa•eu)   to discuss and to learn more on the future developments about this issue.

Expert Conference: “The EU, Russia and Eastern Europe – Dissenting views on security, stability and partnership?”, 2010

The expert roundtable conference “The EU, Russia and Eastern Europe – Dissenting views on security, stability and partnership?”, organised by the IEP and the Trans European Policy Studies Association (TEPSA), with kind support of the Volkswagen Foundation, took place on 22th and 23th November 2010 at the Representation of the Saarland to the Federation in Berlin.

Forty participants – among them international experts from academia and the policy-making community – gathered at the Representation of the Saarland to the Federation to discuss three different, though interrelated topics: the issue of the ‘shared neighbourhood’ in the EU-Russia relations, the future of the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) and the security dimension of EU external action in the (South) Eastern neighbourhood. The EU-Russia relations in the light of the ‘common neighbourhood’ was the first topic under discussion. The review of possibilities for political cooperation between the EU and Russia in the post-Soviet space crystallized diverging positions on possible policy fields, tools and relevant actors (EU institutions, member states, economic or societal actors). The second panel aimed at discussing and evaluating the impact of the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) and the Eastern Partnership (EaP). While both achievements and limits were highlighted, the discussion focused on the (theoretical, practical and psychological) impact of membership conditionality. In the third panel participants discussed institutional developments of the EU’s Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP). Moreover, the policy was analysed from a regional perspective (i.e. implications for the Balkans) as well as around analytical lenses (i.e. long-term processes that are external to actors’ policy decisions). Finally, a dinner debate with Borys Tarasyuk, former Foreign Minister of Ukraine, focused on the state of affairs of the EU-Ukraine relations, reasons for the failure of the Orange Revolution, and Ukraine’s positioning between the EU and Russia.

Conference report is available here.

IEP/TEPSA Conference’s Report: The EU, Russia and Eastern Europe. Dissenting views on security, stability and partnership? 22-23 November 2010 in Berlin

The expert roundtable conference “The EU, Russia and Eastern Europe – Dissenting views on security, stability and partnership?”, organised by the IEP and the Trans European Policy Studies Association (TEPSA), with kind support of the Volkswagen Foundation, took place on 22th and 23th November 2010 at the Representation of the Saarland to the Federation in Berlin.

Forty participants – among them international experts from academia and the policy-making community – gathered at the Representation of the Saarland to the Federation to discuss three different, though interrelated topics: the issue of the ‘shared neighbourhood’ in the EU-Russia relations, the future of the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) and the security dimension of EU external action in the (South) Eastern neighbourhood. The EU-Russia relations in the light of the ‘common neighbourhood’ was the first topic under discussion. The review of possibilities for political cooperation between the EU and Russia in the post-Soviet space crystallized diverging positions on possible policy fields, tools and relevant actors (EU institutions, member states, economic or societal actors). The second panel aimed at discussing and evaluating the impact of the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) and the Eastern Partnership (EaP). While both achievements and limits were highlighted, the discussion focused on the (theoretical, practical and psychological) impact of membership conditionality. In the third panel participants discussed institutional developments of the EU’s Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP). Moreover, the policy was analysed from a regional perspective (i.e. implications for the Balkans) as well as around analytical lenses (i.e. long-term processes that are external to actors’ policy decisions). Finally, a dinner debate with Borys Tarasyuk, former Foreign Minister of Ukraine, focused on the state of affairs of the EU-Ukraine relations, reasons for the failure of the Orange Revolution, and Ukraine’s positioning between the EU and Russia.

Conference report is available here.

Past events at the Latvian Institute of International Affairs (LIIA) – Autumn 2014

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Public debate on “(Not so) Soft Power? How Russia and the EU Influence the Neighborhood”
10 October 2014

The concept of “soft power” has been widely used and abused, often without a clear conceptual definition. This public discussion on 10 October 2014 took place in the framework of a project run by the LIIA, which aims to shed more light on the issue, providing an impartial analysis, conceptual (re)definition and recommendations to policy-makers. The discussion had a particular focus on Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia and the Baltic States. Some of these countries are striving to join the EU, some are already members, but to some extent both groups are still “grey areas” subject also to Russian influence. The event featured speakers from Georgia, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania and Russia. names?

More information can be found here.

Workshop on “Mass Media – Competing for People’s Hearts and Minds in Russia’s Neighborhood”
12 September 2014

On 12 September, LIIA co-organized a workshop “Mass Media – Competing for People’s Hearts and Minds in Russia’s Neighborhood”, which was held under the Chatham House Rule. The event gathered prominent experts from Russia, the European Union and the Eastern Neighborhood.

Past events at the Institute of International Affairs (IIA) of University of Iceland – Autumn 2015

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The Institute of International Affairs (IIA) at the University of Iceland has organized a number of open seminars on various topics this fall semester. The seminars include:

The West and Russia: New Cold War? New Détente? Managing Rivalry?
18 November 2015

This seminar was held by Andrew Cottey, Senior Lecturer, Jean Monnet Chair in European Political Integration and Head of Department in the Department of Government, University College Cork, Ireland.

Helsinki 40 plus: The OSCE and Small States
13 November 2015

Open OSCE “Helsinki 40 plus” seminar organised by the OSCE Communication and Media Relations Department in collaboration with the University of Iceland’s Institute of International Affairs and the Centre for Small State Studies

A New Era in Cuba?
9 November 2015

This seminar was held by Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo, Cuban writer, journalist, blogger, editor, photographer and social activist who fled Cuba in 2013 after having been subjected to political oppression in his country of origin.

United Nations and the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals
28 October 2015

This seminar was held by Christian Friis Bach, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (ECE) and Denmark’s former Minister for Development Cooperation.

The Science of Disaster Management
19 October 2015

This seminar was held by Robin Grimes, the Chief Scientific Adviser of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Magnús Tumi Guðmundsson, Professor of Earth Sciences at the University of Iceland

 

ENURC conference: “The EU and its Eastern Partners: A Struggle for Stability, Security and Prosperity”, 26 November 2015

UI

UI ENURC

On 26 November 2015 The Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI) together with the Trans European Policy Studies Association (TEPSA) hosted a conference about the European Union’s Eastern Partnership policy and the prospects for security, stability and prosperity in Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine.

The first panel, entitled “New Challenges and Threats: How to Improve the EU’s Eastern Partnership Policy?” featured keynote speakers from the EEAS, La the Latvian Parliament and the Eastern Partnership Ambassador of Sweden, who all shared insights from their work within the EU and the national decision-making processes.  The second panel, entitled “More Effective Support for the EU’s Eastern Partners: How?” addressed the challenges that Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia and Belarus have to master. The four invited experts from the respective ENP countries shared their insights into the difficult domestic political conditions, and how these countries relations with the EU are influenced by the external pressures from the Russian government. The Third panel, entitled “The Challenge of Communicating the Eastern Partnership “post-Crimea”” focused on one of the biggest challenges that the EU, the member states, and Eastern neighbours are facing: how to explain to EU citizens, and the citizens of the Eastern partners, what the Eastern partnership is, what the EU does, why and how the member states are engaged in the ”Eastern Partnership”, and what closer relations with the EU will mean for the citizens and for European security, stability and prosperity? The panelists discussed how the EU can make itself understood. It brought together experts closely familiar with the challenges of communicating the Eastern Partnership.

The conference was attended by 118 participants (12 speakers, 1 moderator and 105 people in the audience). Participants had very diverse national backgrounds: Sweden, Belgium, Hungary, Moldova, Germany, Portugal, the Netherlands, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Slovakia, Romania, Panama, Latvia, Cyprus, Russia, Finland, Japan, Bulgaria, Estonia and Serbia. Among these, 14 EU member states were represented.

The conference was followed by an Expert Roundtable on New Strategic Communication Challenges in Europe: How do we identify, understand and address disinformation? Against the background of growing concerns in Europe about the effects of Russian propaganda in the Eastern neighbourhood and even the EU, the roundtable discussion focused on the challenge of how to respond to disinformation and the abuses of the open information spaces. Participants explored ways and means of identifying and addressing disinformation that is spread by different actors through traditional and new “social” media channels and platforms. Both the conference and the roundtable discussion were moderated by Anke Schmidt-Felzmann, Researcher in UI’s Europe programme.

The full conference programme can be downloaded here. The report of the conference can be found here.

More information about the event can be found on UI’s website.

You can find below the podcasts of the panels:

Panel 1 

Panel 2

Panel 3

20th Annual Conference on “Security architecture in the CEE: present threats and prospects for cooperation”, Central European Political Science Association, Vilnus, 25-26 September 2015

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On 25-26 September 2015, the Central European Political Science Association in cooperation with the Institute of International Relations and Political Science (IIRPS) and the Lithuanian Political Science Association held a major conference in Vilnius, entitled Security architecture in the CEE: present threats and prospects for cooperation. The conference was organized with the aim to mark the remarkable transition of the Central and Eastern European countries from soviet-type planned economy and Communist dictatorship to market economy and democracy, new arising conditions for a spread of post-modern security challenges and initiatives and how political systems of these countries are able to deal with it despite rather low quality of democracy and governance in the region, fragile political stability and sensitivity to economic breakdowns of these countries.

The conference covered broad range of topics such as Economic crisis and its security implications, Populism and Political Radicalism in CEE, Minority politics in Central and Eastern Europe, Challenges of energy security, Military-civil relations in CEE democracies, Russia’s place in European security architecture, NATO beyond 2014, NATO enlargement: possibilities for Ukraine and Georgia, Complexities of informational wars, Cyber security issues in CEE, Co-operation between the EU and NATO in security matters, The presence and challenges for the EU Eastern Partnership policy, Relevance of post-modern security challenges in CEE region, Significance of CEE security studies for international politics, Contribution of CEE political research for general theory and Current issues of normative political theory in CEE.

The mentioned list of sub-themes or/and panels is surely not comprehensive. While participants were especially invited to respond to the conference theme, proposals on other aspects of Central European politics were considered as well. The conference was opened to the researchers from all the countries with the interest in Central European affairs.

The academic program for the conference was organized in the usual format of panels. Each panel comprised four to five papers plus chair. We welcomed individual paper proposals and / or complete panel proposals as well.

More information can be found here.

Past events at the Prague Institute of International Relations (IIR) – Autumn 2014

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The conference “The Prague Agenda 2014”
4-5 December 2014, IIR, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic

The international conference “The Prague Agenda 2014”, organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic and the Institute of International Relations in Prague was held on 4–5 December 2014.

The aim of this international conference, the fourth of this kind, was to further discuss the issues related to the “Prague Agenda” announced by US President Obama in April 2009. The prospects and challenges related to the 2015 NPT Review Conference as well as regional aspects of the nuclear disarmament in the Middle East and Asia were in focus. Non-proliferation, nuclear disarmament and security were among the main topics discussed. The whole world should be able to secure its space against potential nuclear threats. Europe is mostly in danger in this respect because of the increasing possibilities of Middle Eastern countries gaining nuclear materials and technology. Read more.

6th International Symposium “Czech Foreign Policy”
19-20 November 2014, IIR, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic

2014 was already the sixth year in which the Institute of International Relations organized this phenomenally successful symposium on Czech Foreign Policy, traditionally held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic. The history of this unique event goes back to 2009. That year’s symposium was the first time that there was a presentation of Czech foreign policy aimed at the professional and public community, and it had a slightly different, previously unseen format. The VIth International Symposium was held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs from the 19th to the 20th of November, 2014. Read more.

A public lecture “The Internal Balance of Power in Current Russia and the Opposition’s Chances to Reach Out to the Society”
14 October 2014, IIR, Forum 2000

Forum 2000 in cooperation with the Institute of International Relations presented a public lecture with the title “The Internal Balance of Power in Current Russia and the Opposition’s Chances to Reach Out to the Society” by Professor Andrey Zubov who is a Russian historian and political scientist, a Doctor of History, and a former Professor of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO).

Read more here.

 

ENURC project seminar: “From a ‘Strategic Partnership’ to a Strategic Problem? Whither EU-Russian Relations”, 4 December 2015

FIIA

FIIA1The re-assessment of the overall EU-Russia relationship was the subject of the debate in the final conference of the ENURC project, held in Helsinki on 4 December 2015. The conference started with an opening statement of Prof. Wolfgang Wessels, the Chairperson of TEPSA, who also presented the findings of the pan-European study on citizens’ perceptions on Eastern Neighbourhood and Russia. Dr. Teija Tiilikanen, director of FIIA, opened the conference, underlining the importance of exchanging views within the EU on its relations with its Eastern partners.

The three panels of the conference covered EU-Russia security relations; economic relations and energy relations. In his conclusion on the results of the event, Dr Arkady Moshes stated that, the EU-Russian strategic partnership does not exist anymore, even though this may not be officially acknowledged. The EU-Russian conflict has become the new normal.

In addition to the seminar, the final conference included a dinner debate on 3 December for the speakers hosted by the Director of FIIA. This pre-conference event also aimed to provide an opportunity for the speakers to exchange ideas related to their conference presentation, and it proved to be extremely fruitful for the planning and coordination of the public interventions in the conference.

FIIA2The event attracted 114 participants. Around half of the participants came from Finland (65), but also nationals from 30 other countries: Austria, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Sweden, United Kingdom, Russia, Morocco, Serbia, Ukraine, South Africa, Egypt, New-Zealand, Indonesia, Palestine, Malaysia, United States, China, Mexico and Belarus. Counting only EU member states, 17 countries were participating to the event.

The full conference programme can be downloaded here.

You can find the report and the podcasts of the conference on the FIIA website.

ENURC event: “The Economic influence of the EU and Russia on the Eastern Partnership States”, 22 October 2015

LIIA

The third event organised within the framework of the ENURC project is an event in Riga, Latvia on the economic influence of both the EU and Russia on the Eastern Partnership states. The event combined an expert meeting on 21 October 2015 and a public discussion with a wide audience on 22 October 2015. This combination ensured a very high level of expertise and state of the art among the speakers, which was of great interest to the general audience attending the public sessiliia1on.

 The expert meeting was an exchange of views on evaluating the economic presence of Russia and the EU in the Eastern Neighbourhood. The meeting had as aim to develop a concept for a book on Eastern Partnership focusing on the impact of the Deep and Comliia2prehensive Free Trade Agreements (DCFTAs) or their prospect, in all six Eastern Partnership countries.

The public discussion focused on “Eastern Neighbourhood Economies between the EU and Russia”.
Here experts from the region in question and several EU member states presented and discussed this topic from their diverse (national) standpoints.

The exchanliia3ge of views among experts gathered 11 experts from Latvia, France, Sweden, Belgium and ENP countries Moldova, Armenia and Belarus. The public event gathered over 100 policy makers, diplomats, academics, students, civil society representatives and not-organised citizens. 81 signatures of participants were collected, hence the total number of 81 participants included in the reporting of the project.

There was a majority of the participants coming from Latvia itself, but they had the opportunity to interact with citizens from Italy, Sweden, Finland, Germany, all six Eastern Partnership countries (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Republic of Moldova and Ukraine), Norway, Canada, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Japan.

The full conference programme can be downloaded here.

More information about this event can be found on the LIIA website.

Past events at the Finnish Institute of International Affairs (FIIA) – Spring 2016

FIIA

 

FIIA eventsNathalie Tocci, Deputy Director at Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI), gave a presentation at a two-day EU Global Strategy seminar on EU’s Strategic Vision for Relations with Russia and the Eastern Neighbourhood. The seminar was organised in cooperation with EUISS and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland.

Photo: Mattias Lehtinen / FIIA

 

Europe’s New Political Engine: Germany’s role in the EU’s foreign and security policy
15 April 2016, Finnish Institute of International Affairs, Helsinki

 

International crises and a leadership vacuum in Europe forced the economically strong Germany to learn how to lead the EU’s foreign and security policy and to become Europe’s new political engine. For example, Germany played a key role in the Western response to the Ukraine conflict. Berlin had to determine how to show more international responsibility, while adhering to its traditional foreign policy tenets. There is an active discussion on Germany’s unfamiliar role as a foreign policy leader and the implications for the EU’s foreign and security policy. How did Germany’s foreign policy and its role in the EU change in recent years? What are the implications for its partners in Europe and the Common Foreign and Security Policy? How can potential global ambitions in German foreign policy be reconciled with its European vocation? These and other questions were discussed in the light of current international political developments.

The seminar marked the publication of the FIIA report “Europe’s New Political Engine: Germany’s role in the EU’s foreign and security policy”, which presents the results of a trans-European research task force. The research project and this seminar have been organized in cooperation with the Konrad Adenauer Foundation.
Opening remarks: Teija Tiilikainen, Director, the Finnish Institute of International Affairs
Elisabeth Bauer, Head of the Office for the Baltic and the Nordic countries, Konrad Adenauer Stiftung
Speakers:
Thomas Bagger, Head of Policy Planning, German Federal Foreign Office
Niklas Helwig, Senior Research Fellow, the Finnish Institute of International Affairs
Lisbeth Aggestam, Associate Professor, University of Gothenburg
Comments: Antti Kaski, Director of Policy Planning and Research, Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland
Chair: Juha Jokela, Programme Director, the Finnish Institute of International Affairs

 

 

From EU ”Poster Child” to a Dysfunctional State? Assessing the situation in Moldova
26 April 2016, The Finnish Institute of International Affairs, Helsinki

 

For a considerable period of time Moldova was perceived as a most promising candidate to play the role of a success story in the EU’s policy in the Eastern Neighbourhood. It concluded an Association Agreement with the EU and was the first country in the region to which Brussels granted the visa-free regime. Moreover, at least some hope was seen for an eventual resolution of the conflict in Transnistria. This positive picture, however, shattered when corrupt practices and the in-fighting within the ruling governmental coalition placed the country at risk of an oligarchic state capture and a protracted political crisis – if not a total state failure. The seminar arranged at the Finnish Institute of International Affairs looked into the current political situation in Moldova in order to understand whether and how the European orientation of the country and its reform process could be sustained. Also, the event aimed at assessing what has gone right or wrong in the EU policy towards Moldova.
Speaker: Ryhor Nizhnikau, PhD candidate, the Skytte Institute, University of Tartu
Comments:
Päivi Peltokoski, Director of Unit for Eastern Europe and Central Asia, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland
Kristi Raik, Senior Research Fellow, the Finnish Institute of International Affairs
Chair: Arkady Moshes, Programme Director, the Finnish Institute of International Affairs

Past events at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI) – Winter 2014/15

UI

“Russia: Eurasian and Nationalist Visions for Future Russian Policy”
12 February 2015

The Seminar on “Russia: Eurasian and Nationalist Visions for Future Russian Policy” took place at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI) on 12 February 2015. UI organised a discussion on Russian nationalist and Eurasianist visions for the future of the country and its policy. Eurasianism – an ideology that gives Russia a unique position of an Asian as much as a European country – has become an important part of Putin’s foreign policy during his third presidency. At the same time, on the domestic scene a new generation of Russian ethnic nationalists challenges the state system and current Russian policy. How does President Putin respond to the new challenges?

More information can be found here.

“EU as Global Actor”
11 February 2015

The Seminar, “EU as Global Actor” took place at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI) on 11 February 2015. The workshop focused on the trends in the development of the European foreign policies, and an assessment of the performance of the EU as a global actor, as the European Foreign Policy Scorecard 2015 is presented.How did the EU as a whole respond to the global and regional challenges in 2014? Has the EU changed its policy course? What role did Sweden play in EU’s common foreign policy?

More information can be found here.

“The World 2015: Challenges to EU Foreign and Security Policy”
22 January 2015

The Seminar, “The World 2015: Challenges to EU Foreign and Security Policy” took place on 22 January 2015.
The Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI) invited a wide audience to a discussion on EU’s Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and the role of the European External Action Service (EEAS), their current developments and future challenges.

Discussions covered: What is the current state of institutional development in EU foreign and security policy? How will the EEAS manage to respond to the issues it is faced with? What are the most important challenges, and can these be dealt with in the prevailing setting?

More information can be found here.

The full seminar is available on YouTube.

Russia 2015: Key Domestic and Foreign Policy Challenges
22 January 2015

The Seminar on Russia 2015: Key Domestic and Foreign Policy Challenges was held at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI) on 22 January 2015.

Lilia Shevtsova, associate fellow at Chatham House presented on the substance and key arguments of the new Kremlin Strategy for Russian consolidation and foreign policy. Other issues covered were; what are the mechanisms of the new patriotic mobilization; the survivability of the political regime and the roots of the tension between Russia and the West? What does the Russian society think?

More information can be found here.

The full seminar is available on UI-play.

Past events at the Institute for World Economics, Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences – Winter 2013/2014

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The Institute of World Economics organised the following Europe Club monthly events:

– End-year evaluation and short-term prospects of the European integration (with Péter Balázs, former EU-Commissioner and minister of foreign affairs, Péter Tálas and László Valki), 28 January 2014
– Utilization of EU transfers in Hungary (Péter Heil), 25 February 2014
– The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (Lutz Göllner from the European Commission and Zsolt Becsey), 3 March 2014
– Critical assessment of the Eastern Partnership (Tamás Szigetvári), 18 March 2014
– Hungary and the European Union: evaluation of one decade of membership and personal thoughts about the future of the Union (András Inotai), 15 April 2014

The Institute of World Economics organised the following other events:

IWE workshop on welfare state models presented by Ágnes Orosz, followed by a discussion (in Hungarian), 9 January 2014

IWE workshop on youth unemployment and basic income presented by Annamária Artner, followed by a discussion (in Hungarian), 6 February 2014

Russia’s strategy in international politics and the global economy: Russia’s relations with the United States (Mihály Simai), with China (Ágnes Szunomár) and energy issues (Csaba Weiner), 12 March 2014

IWE special workshop on Hungary’s EU membership: multiannual financial framework (Miklós Somai), comparative analysis of membership of the Visegrad countries (Krisztina Vida) and of the Baltic States (Sándor Meisel), crisis management and EMU (Margit Rácz), 27 March 2014

The Institute of World Economics also organised activities abroad:

András Inotai’s lecture on “Ungarn, die Europaeische Union und Deutschland”, conference linked to the prize provided to András Inotai by the Thyssen-Stiftung in October 2013, 16 January 2014, Cologne

Tamás Novák on “Implications of TTIP on global economic integration of Central and Eastern Europe” presentation given at the conference entitled: “Before and After the TTIP: The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership between the European Union and the United States”, 28 February 2014, Conference at the University of Miami

András Inotai on “Alternative against austerity: a future-oriented strategy for Europe” organized by Progressive Economic Initiative of the Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament, 6 March 2014, Brussels, round table discussion

Tamás Novák on “Impact of the European Union Crisis on V4 Countries: Old and New Challenges”, 26 March 2014, Annual Conference of the International Studies Association, Toronto

XVth April International Academic Conference on Economic and Social Development, Csaba Weiner on “The Contest for Gas Resources and Markets in the Post-Soviet space: Dependence and Diversification”, Moscow, 2 April 2014

András Inotai on “The neighbourhood: Ukraine, the EU and the Russian problem” International conference on Progressive Renaissance for Europe, organized by FEPS and Progressive Economic Studies, 4 April 2014, Brussels, round table discussion

András Inotai on “What growth and employment strategies for Europe?” (same conference and organizers as above), 4 April 2014, Brussels, round table discussion

“Russia and the World: 2015 IMEMO Forecast”, Prague Institute of International Relations, 29 January 2015


Prague Institute of Intl Relations

The Centre for European Security of the Institute of International Relations Prague had the pleasure of hosting Boris Frumkin and Irina Kobrinskaya, two scholars from IMEMO (the Russian Institute of World Economy and Internacaruseltional Relations) who presented their institute’s annual forecast ‘Russia and the World’ for 2015.

More information can be found here.

Past events at Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI) – Spring 2016

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Beyond the Deadlock: What Future for EU-Russia Relations?”
18 April, Rome.
Conference organised in cooperation with Valdai Discussion Club.

Italian-German Town Hall Meeting”
05 April, Rome
Conference organised within the framework of the “Dialogue on Europe” project. The third European Town Hall Meeting took place with representatives from Italian civil society and the German Minister of State for Europe, Michael Roth. More than 100 participants followed the invitation of the Berlin-based think tank Das Progressive Zentrum, the Italian Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI) and the German Foreign Office, to discuss European challenges and the Italian-German relationship.

Italy and the European Economic Governance”
17 March, Rome
Conference with Pier Carlo Padoan, Italian Minister of Economy and Finance, on an European strategy for growth and stability.


Brexit and the future of the EU: Italy’s Position and Interests”
11 March, Rome
A meeting on Italy’s position and interests concerning Brexit and the future of Europe, with Marco Piantini (Adviser to Italy’s Prime Minister Matteo Renzi for European Affairs) and Paolo Ponzano (Senior Fellow, Robert Schuman Centre, European University Institute, Florence).

“The EU, the OSCE and the European Security Order”

8 March, Rome
International conference in cooperation with the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). Dissemination event of the Final Report of the Panel of Eminent Persons on European Security as a Common Project.

“The EU and the global development framework. A strategic approach to the 2030 Agenda”
7 March, Rome
In cooperation with EU Institute for Security Studies (EUISS) and Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, with the contribution of European Centre for Development Policy Management (ECDPM) and the strategic partnership of Compagnia di San Paolo. Among the speakers: Christos Stylianides, European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, and Mario Giro, Deputy Minister, Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

Study for the European Parliament: “The frozen conflicts in the European Eastern Neighbourhood and their impact on the respect of human rights”, by András Rácz

TEPSA+DROI

 

Study frozen conflictsTEPSA has recently coordinated a study for the European Parliament’s Subcommittee on Human Rights (DROI), authored by András Rácz, senior research fellow at the Finnish Institute of International Affairs (FIIA).

The study deals with “The frozen conflicts of the EU Eastern Neighbourhood and their impact on the respect of human rights”. The frozen conflicts analysed are those of Crimea, Transnistria, Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Nagorno-Karabakh. In this study, the author provides a detailed overview of the actual human rights situation in the region. In particular, the focus of the analysis is on the access to the justice system, as well as on the abilities of the de jure or de facto authorities to administer justice. Particular attention is paid to Crimea because the rapidly worsening human rights situation there affects far more people than the population of the other four frozen conflicts combined. International community actions, as well as the role of civil society in protecting human rights are also analysed in detail.

The author argues that, regarding the four pre-2014 frozen conflicts, due to the uncertain legal status of these territories, the international community (including the European Union) has very limited options for getting directly engaged in defending human rights. However, the international community could do much more to hold Moscow accountable for the human rights situation in Crimea, as well as in other parts of the Russian Federation.

The European Parliament has for András Rácz a key responsibility in sustaining public attention and awareness towards the human rights situation in the regions, including both the pre-existing conflicts as well as Crimea.

The full study can be downloaded here.

Editorial TEPSA Newsletter September 2014: “The Neighbouring Policy of the European Union: it is Soft Power that is needed!”, by Prof. Jaap de Zwaan, TEPSA Secretary General

Map editorialIn a period of ten years the geopolitical situation at the external borders of the European Union has completely changed. Of course, the Israeli-Palestine conflict unfortunately is a lasting one, during the last decade the situation has in fact only worsened. However, apart from that central problem, a lot of unrest and conflicts have occurred in our neighbourhood. First the invasion in Iraq. Then the Arab Spring which has become an Arab Winter if not worse. The revolution resulted in an unstable Arab world, giving rise inter alia to a civil war in Syria which is now out of control. It also paved the way for a Northern Africa in transformation (Tunisia, Libya, Egypt and recently also Algeria where a French tourist was murdered by a terrorist group). Since a couple of years, we furthermore experience a massive influx of migrants and refugees coming from Northern and Central Africa, looking for a better future notably in Europe. Recently the cruelties of IS in Iraq and Syria have only added to the disasters and dramas which already took place in that region.

This year, also the border between Ukraine and the Russian Federation was unilaterally modified by Russia: an unprecedented violation of the territorial integrity of an independent state in Europe’s recent history. As a consequence, the relationship between the EU and the Russian Federation is now full of tensions, whereas the Union is faced with a weakened Ukraine at her Eastern external borders.
This being so, one has to recognize that the last ten years the EU has more or less neglected the relations with her neighbours. The enlargements of 2004, 2007 and 2013 as well as the economic crisis kept us busy. Moreover our approach with regard to the new Eastern neighbours (ENP, Eastern Partnership) is a rather artificial one. In the course of the negotiations to conclude an association agreement, the EU requires them to implement our norms, values and policies. However, the new neighbours -although clearly European states- are not allowed to become new inhabitants of our common house, if it is only in the long run. Such an approach appears to be contradictory and has to change. Peace and security on the European continent requires us to develop a new policy.

We should start to fully exercise our Soft Power capacity in our relations with all our neighbours, whether in the East or in the South. First of all humanitarian aid has to be provided where necessary. Then assistance is needed in the process of reconstruction and institution building, including the setting up of independent judiciaries. We must also support economic reforms and democratic changes. Apart from that, the development of people to people contacts and academic cooperation has to be stimulated. Student and youth exchanges as well as internship programs should be developed. Of course preliminary conditions and requirements also have to be set: notably the firm aspiration of the neighbour in question to strive at democracy, respect for human rights and the rule of law.

At a certain moment this approach has also to be applied in the contacts with the Russian Federation. Because, whether you like it or not, Russia is an important neighbour of the EU. The development of stable relations with that country can only contribute to stability on the whole European continent. In that context it can also facilitate the intensification of our contacts with former Soviet Republics: Ukraine, Moldova and Belarus, as well as in the Southern Caucasus: Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan. As to the energy sector, an interdependence between Russia and the EU does already exist. However, in the future Russia may also become an important market for our small-, medium-sized and big companies. Moreover well-developed people to people contacts are more than welcome. Be that as it may, first of all satisfactory solutions for the outstanding military, political and economic problems in Ukraine have to be found.

So, an innovated neighbourhood policy has to be developed in the coming period as a priority of EU policy, in the interest of peace and security on our European continent. For that purpose initiatives are to be expected in the first place from the European Commission: a new but challenging responsibility of the new commissioner for Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Johannes Hahn!

Picture source: http://eeas.europa.eu/enp/images/enpmap-web-big.gif

Assessing the Common Spaces between the European Union and Russia

by Krassimir Nikolov (ed.), BECSA in cooperation with TEPSA, Sofia, February 2009.

Analyses in this volume are based on research assigned for the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament (EP) by the Policy Department of the EP’s General Secretariat.

Conference “Between Cooperation and Competition: Major Powers in Shared Neighbourhoods – Lessons for the EU”, 22 September 2016, College of Europe, Bruges

CoE1

On 22 September 2016, the Department of EU International Relations and Diplomacy Studies at the College of Europe, Bruges campus, in cooperation with the UN University-Institute on Comparative Regional Integration Studies organises the international conference “Between Cooperation and Competition: Major Powers in Shared Neighbourhoods – Lessons for the EU”.

The conference aims at comparing major powers’ interactions in ‘shared neighbourhoods’. Starting from the EU perspective, it considers the EU’s neighbourhood policies vis-à-vis its Eastern and Southern neighbours and then looks for comparisons with other major global powers with neighbourhood policies, the US, the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China), Turkey and the Gulf states

For more information on the conference and to register (before 19 September 2016), please visit the conference website.

Past events at the Institute of International Relations and Political Science, Vilnius University – Spring/summer 2016

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Conference “Statehood and its Discontents: Russia, Eastern Europe and Eurasia”
15-17 June, 2016, Vilnius, Lithuania

Joint Miami University Havighurst Center for Russian and Post-Soviet Studies and Vilnius University Institute of International Relations and Political Science Conference “Statehood and its Discontents: Russia, Eastern Europe and Eurasia” on June 15-17, 2016, Vilnius University Institute of International Relations and Political Science.

In the post-Cold War era territorial borders have been continuously contested during the wars in Chechnya, the Caucasus, and more recently Ukraine. The conflict in Crimea and Eastern Ukraine has brought the questions of statehood and sovereignty again to the forefront of popular, political, and scholarly debates. This conference explores historical and contemporary challenges to statehood and emergence of alternative sovereignty and governance regimes. The potential topics include, but are not limited to: hybrid warfare, financial sovereignty, radical politics, nationalism, supranationalism, terrorism, secessionism, migration and displacement, memory and identity. Keynote speakers: Karen Dawisha (Miami University), Ramūnas Vilpišauskas (Vilnius University) and Artemyi Troitsky.

More information about the conference and call for papers can be found here.

Past events at the Institute for World Economics, Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences – Autumn 2014

Hungary
Club Europe, 14 October 2014, Budapest

The regular club meeting will host Mr. Daniel Schraad-Tischler and Christian Kroll experts of the Bertelsmann Foundation who will present two recent reports (namely “Sustainable Governance Indicators” and “EU Social Justice”).

Thursday workshops – regular monthly workshop at IWE
Club Europe, 13 October 2014, Budapest

The guest of this special event will be Dr. László Andor, outgoing Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion. Mr. Andor will dedicate his speech to the big topic of „Europe after the Crisis”.

Club Europe, 16 September 2014, Budapest

Lecture by Professor Ludger Kühnhardt, Director of the Research Centre for European Integration at the University of Bonn, entitled “The European Union after the elections and ahead of new challenges”. The professor’s thought-provoking presentation was followed by a lively debate about Europe’s future, including special issues for Germany and Hungary.

Conference on “Engagement or Containment: EU-Russia Relations in Turbulent Times and the Role of Central Europe”

25 September 2014, CEU Centre for EU Enlargement Studies, Budapest
Presentation by senior researcher of IWE, András Deák at Panel III. – Pipelines, plants and European energy networks: dealing with dependency.

Conference on “The Czech Republic’s Strategy for Competitiveness 2015”
Panel “Trade, FDIs and Value Added of V4 Countries”

18 September 2014, Prague
In the above indicated panel senior researchers of IWE, Andrea Éltető and Ágnes Szunomár gave a presentation on “Trade and investment between the Visegrad and Northeast Asian countries with a special emphasis on China and Hungary”

Conference entitled “Development and Use of Natural Gas in the Danube Region: Prospects and Opportunities”
16 September 2014, Natural Gas Europe, Budapest

Contribution by senior researcher of IWE, András Deák, expert in energy matters with special regard to Russia.

IISES event entitled “13th International Academic Conference”
15-18 September 2014, Antibes, France

At this conference senior researcher of IWE, Katalin Völgyi delivered a presentation on “Economic regionalism and FDI inflows in the ASEAN region”

11 September 2014, Budapest

At the latest event senior researcher of IWE, István Kőrösi gave an introductory lecture on “The renewability of social market economy in the midst of the challenges of the 21st century” followed by an unusually long debate (in Hungarian).

“The NATO Summit in Wales – First Assessments”, Research Centre of Strategic Defence Studies
8 September 2014, Budapest

Senior researcher of IWE, András Deák made a presentation at this international expert seminar.

Biannual Conference of EACES (European Association of Comparative Economic Studies)
4-6 September 2014, Budapest

To this big international event, hosted by the Corvinus University Budapest, five researchers of IWE contributed with a presentation, namely Andrea Éltető, Ágnes Orosz, Miklós Szanyi, Ágnes Szunomár and Csaba Weiner.

2nd High-Level Symposium of Think Tanks of China and Central and Eastern European Countries
2-3 September 2014, Bled, Slovenia

Senior researcher of IWE, Ágnes Szunomár contributed to this event with a presentation.

Club Europe, 26 August 2014, Budapest

Lecture by Dr. Szabolcs Fazakas, Hungarian member of the European Court of Auditors in Luxembourg. Mr. Fazakas gave a very interesting, first-hand insight into the recent publication entitled “Special Report on the establishment of the European External Action Service” prepared by the European Court of Auditors.

The Baltic Sea Regional Dimension & EU-Russia Relations

Summary of the sixth session of the Russia-EU-Baltic Roundtable held from 17-18 April 2008 in Riga and hosted by the Riga office of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation in cooperation with the Latvian Institute of International Affairs (LAI).

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