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The EU-Western Balkans summit: is there any hope?

The EU-Western Balkans summit in Slovenia on 6 October ended with a renewed sense of heightened impatience with the blockages in the accession processes of the six candidate countries. There is an urgent need for the economic and investment plan, that was proposed exactly one year ago, to materialise – especially as it is a […]

Lessons from the Afghan crisis in migration and asylum

The brutal enormity of the Afghan crisis with the return of the Taliban to Kabul has shaken the world. Following the withdrawal of US and NATO troops from Afghanistan, the Taliban’s subsequent rapid takeover of the country and the collapse of the Afghan government in mid-August, a political, humanitarian and security crisis has unfolded. Right […]

Why territory matters: from place-blind to place-based policies

We live in transformational times. Because of the pandemic, but also because of the social and economic transitions caused by automation, the ecological emergency, and the evolving international context. In these testing times, our progressive agenda is more important than ever. We did not go into politics to be bystanders but to make a difference […]

Facing the risks: making strategic autonomy work in practice

Over time, the concept of European strategic autonomy has come to encapsulate the EU’s desire to chart its own (foreign) policy course according to its own laws, interests, and values. At risk of being sucked into the emerging whirlpool of intensifying global competition, if not unbridled US-China rivalry, the case for such an objective seems […]

The US cannot escape the European strategic autonomy debate

The US may wish to stay away from the European strategic autonomy debate, but the future of the transatlantic relationship remains the defining factor of the discussion. If the Biden administration is serious about engaging with allies, it needs to clarify its position on the concept. The European debate on strategic autonomy often seems stuck […]

European strategic autonomy and human rights

The debate about the EU’s strategic autonomy has picked up again – not least because the sudden US-withdrawal from Afghanistan in September 2021 surprised Europeans in such a bad way. One reason for this was the insufficient communication and coordination of Europe’s most important ally, the US. The second reason is that it made very […]

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