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Russia

The EU needs a cool-headed Eastern Policy

By Reinhard Krumm / 15 March, 2021

Despite what looks like increasing tensions between the European Union and Russia, both blocs will stay neighbours for the foreseeable future. The EU should face up to this reality, work on a common policy, based on interests and norms, and set the agenda. In times of increasing global challenges, both […]

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A great window of opportunity for a progressive agenda in Europe

By Ania Skrzypek / 15 February, 2021

The 2019 European elections finally saw the turnout going slightly up. In parallel, Social Democrats noted an unanticipated positive result. Almost two years into the legislative period, despite the pandemic, the polls consistently show two tendencies. First, Europeans tend to be positive about the EU in numbers comparable to before […]

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Anti-corruption as an electoral strategy in Romania’s 2020 elections

By Valentin Quintus Nicolescu / 19 January, 2021

The number one topic of the Romanian parliamentary elections in December 2020 was not, as one might have thought, the public health issues raised by the raging Covid-19 pandemic, but the fight against corruption. Both the National Liberals and the Save Romania Union (USR), along with the newly formed Alliance […]

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Belarus’ painful path to transition

By Katia Glod / 4 December, 2020

Belarus is in the deepest political crisis in its modern history. Public protests of hundreds of thousands, representing all social layers and groups, have continued for four months, and spread across the whole country. They initially erupted following the largely flawed presidential election on 9 August, in which the incumbent […]

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Turkish president Erdogan on collision course

By Kati Piri / 10 November, 2020

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan seems to be on a collision course with many of his country’s partners, including the European Union and, in particular, Greece, Cyprus and France. He has been pursuing the role of an independent but powerful actor in the Middle East and beyond, but foreign policy […]

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Interview with Aleksander Kwaśniewski

By Ania Skrzypek / 14 March, 2021

The former Polish president Alexander Kwaśniewski (1995-2005) has long been an advocate of regional cooperation in central and eastern Europe. During his presidency, he not only oversaw his country’s accession to the European Union (2004), but just a few months later, when the ‘Orange Revolution’ began in neighbouring Ukraine, he […]

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The deeper causes of Belarusian popular mobilisation

By Ekaterina Pierson-Lyzhina / 4 December, 2020

The mass mobilisation in Belarus in 2020, like Ukraine’s 2004 Orange Revolution, is a form of post-electoral protest. The mobilisation was triggered by state repression against the opposition and blatant falsifications of the 9 August presidential election results. Several factors contributed to the politicisation of Belarusians. The new opposition conducted […]

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Belarus at the crossroad: what role for Europe?

By Liutauras Gudžinskas / 4 December, 2020

President Alexander Lukashenko has lost legitimacy. He is no longer in control of the situation in the country. But the structures of repression are still on his side. They are likely to continue to support him, as the Kremlin successfully discourages the West from intervening more actively in Belarus. Who […]

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Against the EU’s passivity towards Belarus

By Ireneusz Bil / 4 December, 2020

The mass protests in Belarus are unprecedented in the nation’s history. Hundreds of thousands of people went to the streets regularly to protest against the falsification of the election results. Some still do. Not only the scale, but also the duration of the protests is surprising. Despite brutal interventions by […]

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From a symbolic to an effective foreign policy – the EU in Belarus

By Fernando Rejon Sanchez / 4 December, 2020

The EU’s institutional, economic and political channels to exert influence on Belarus are limited. All the contrary to Russia’s multifaceted and well-institutionalised strategy vis-à-it’s small western neighbour. However, a realistic acknowledgement of the EU’s capabilities is no excuse for self-complacency and determinism. The quest of the Belarussian people for democracy […]

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