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  • Author: Steven Blockmans
  • Publication Date: 07-2014
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: The downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine has unleashed a storm of grief and anger in the EU and around the world. Heads of state and government have joined the public outcry and called for tough action against those directly and indirectly responsible for this heinous crime. The EU's reaction, however, has been lame so far by comparison.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Territorial Disputes, Sanctions
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Ukraine
  • Author: Hrant Kostanyan, Bruno Vandecasteele
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Besides the Eastern Partnership's (EaP) bilateral and multilateral framework and the Civil Society Forum, the European Union (EU) engages with the EaP countries – Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan – through multilateral parliamentary cooperation, namely within the EuroNest Parliamentary Assembly (EuroNest PA).
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Economics, International Trade and Finance, Politics, Treaties and Agreements
  • Political Geography: Europe, Ukraine, Armenia, Belarus
  • Author: Anne Wetzel, Jan Orbie
  • Publication Date: 08-2012
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: While the EU has recently upgraded its external democracy promotion policies through a set of initiatives such as the “Partnership for Democracy and Shared Prosperity with the Southern Mediterranean”, the proposal for a “European Endowment of Democracy”, and the “Strategic Framework and Action Plan on Human Rights and Democracy”, there is one challenge that it has not yet addressed: what exactly does it aim to support?
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Civil Society, Democratization, Economics, Sociology
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Andrei Makarychev, Alexander Sergunin
  • Publication Date: 06-2011
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: This policy brief analyses the state of EU–Russian relations as seen from the vantage point of the summit held on June 9-10 in Nizhny Novgorod. We describe the political context in which the summit was embedded, the anticipations it evoked from the both sides, its outcomes and some perspectives for the nearest future.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe
  • Author: Piotr Maciej Kaczyński, Peadar ó Broin
  • Publication Date: 11-2009
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: The first permanent European Council President and second High Representative for EU foreign policy have been chosen. After weeks of speculation, the question of who will occupy the roles has now been answered: Herman Van Rompuy will take office as European Council President on 1 January 2010; and Catherine Ashton will be appointed the EU's foreign affairs chief on 1 December 2009. The presidency of the European Council has until now been performed by the head of State or government of the member state holding the rotating presidency, but the Lisbon Treaty clearly stipulates that from its entry into force, the President of the European Council may not hold national office. The position of a High Representative had previously existed, but the function has been significantly re-written by the Lisbon Treaty. So, in addition to new faces, there are also new unknowns. The question of precisely what powers the President and High Representative will exercise remains largely unknown, as it is not yet clear how they will perform as individuals and in tandem. Nevertheless, the Treaties give at least a general indication of the powers these two leaders will wield.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Nargis Kassenova
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: The German Presidency of the EU in the first half of 2007 inspired great hopes regarding the development of relations between the European Union and the states of Central Asia. In Brussels and other European capitals, it was expected that Germany, as an EU political and economic heavyweight and one of the key promoters of the Common Foreign and Security Policy, would be able to foster a coordinated Central Asian policy giving direction and coherence to European engagement in the region. It was widely hoped – within both the governments of Central Asia and the societies of the region – that Germany, which has traditionally been the most pro-active European country in the region, would elevate the relations between the EU and Central Asian states to a higher level.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, International Cooperation, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Europe, Central Asia, Asia, Germany
  • Author: George Dura
  • Publication Date: 02-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Relations between the European Union and Belarus have seen little change since President Alexander Lukashenko came to power in 1994. Belarus has languished in a state of selfimposed political isolation despite the subsequent waves of enlargement – most notably, the 2004 enlargement which made Belarus a direct neighbour of the EU – and the formulation in 2004 of the European Union's Neighbourhood Policy (ENP). The EU's dual-track approach of imposing sanctions and trade restrictions whilst promoting democratisation in Belarus have so far yielded minimal results.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Belarus
  • Author: Michael Emerson
  • Publication Date: 03-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: resident Sarkozy's proposed Union for the Mediterranean (or UMed) has so far been poorly conceived and, to say the least, awkwardly presented politically. However this does not mean that nothing good can come of it. The Barcelona process and its confusing combination with the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) have neither been a disaster nor a brilliant success. There is a case for streamlining a single European Mediterranean policy, rationalising and properly integrating Barcelona, the ENP and new ideas that the UMed initiative may produce. Both Italy and Spain as well as the South Mediterranean states themselves appear concerned not to undermine the existing structures (Barcelona and ENP). Steps could be made to lighten the overweight participation of the EU and all its 27 member states in too many meetings with too many participants and too few results, drawing on models that have emerged in the EU's Northern maritime regions. However, the EU as a whole will not agree to delegate the essential initiative on strategic matters to just its Southern coastal states – as has been made clear in recent exchanges between President Sarkozy and Chancellor Merkel. In addition the EU will also want to maintain a balance between its Northern and Southern priorities, and if the UMed becomes a new impetus for the South, an equivalent but different policy move can be contemplated for the EU's East European neighbours
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Foreign Policy, International Political Economy, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Europe, Spain, Italy, Barcelona
  • Author: Michael Emerson
  • Publication Date: 05-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: The recent past has been a miserable time for political relations between Russia and both the EU and the US. While business has been booming on the back of Russia's huge gains from the skyrocketing price of oil and gas, the foreign policy scene has been desolate.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe
  • Author: Neil J. Melvin
  • Publication Date: 03-2007
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: For the first time since the collapse of communism, the EU is facing a strategic challenge in its external policies. The rise of Russia and China as international actors – with India close behind – and the growing confidence of some leading regional powers, such as Iran, are creating a serious threat to the EU's ambition to apply external policies that reflect European values. Against this background, the employment of the democracy – promotion agenda developed during the 1990s is unlikely to be effective and may even serve to weaken the position of the EU in key regions. This situation demands an urgent and far-reaching rethink of the approach the Union takes to external relations. If the EU is to remain a serious global actor, it will have to find ways to reconcile the imperative of engaging in difficult regions beyond the immediate European neighbourhood while also remaining true to the values of the Union.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Russia, China, Europe, Central Asia