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  • Author: Oleh Protsyk, Andrei Volentir, Igor Bucătaru
  • Publication Date: 01-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: The Transnistrian conflict continues to be one of the most important issues facing political parties and the expert community in Moldova. Since the start of the post-communist transition period, political parties have routinely felt the necessity to articulate their approaches to solving the conflict. During both electoral and inter-electoral periods, the Transnistrian issue has occupied a special position on the country's political agenda. This has required political parties to take a stance on the issue. Similarly, the country's expert community, which includes academics, political analysts, and media commentators, has struggled with the need to explain and interpret the conflict to their audiences. In presenting such interpretations for the general public, they could not avoid formulating their own positions on potential causes of and solutions to the conflict.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: Moldova, Eastern Europe
  • Author: Abel Kirsch, Tarmo Tuisk, Mait Talts
  • Publication Date: 10-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: The Estonian National Report on Strategies for Social Protection and Social Inclusion 2006-2008 has been prepared within the framework of EU Open Method of Coordination and in accordance with updated aims and principles adopted by the Council of Europe in March 2006.
  • Topic: Ethnic Conflict, Human Rights
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, Estonia
  • Author: Michal VaÅ¡eèka
  • Publication Date: 10-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: The report of the Slovak team is divided into three parts. The first one describes social inclusion policies of Roma in Slovakia in general. The second evaluates inclusion policies of the National Action Plans on social inclusion by analyzing focus groups with experts, and the third one brings analysis of particular inclusion policies. The paper finally brings also rather theoretical input whether Roma have where to integrate and describes structural problems of social inclusion policies.
  • Topic: Ethnic Conflict, Human Rights
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, Slovakia
  • Author: Mitja Žagar, Miran Komac, Mojca Medvešek, Romana Bešter
  • Publication Date: 10-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: The main purpose of this report is to evaluate the cultural policies introduced in the Slovenian National Action Plan (NAP) on Social Inclusion (2004-2006) in terms of their impact on promoting social inclusion of ethnic minorities. Cultural policies are here understood in a broad sense of the word – encompassing all policies that pay regard to any aspect of culture, be it culture in the sense of creative artistic activities (theatres, music, etc.) or in the sense of specific cultural/ethnic identity of the target groups.
  • Topic: Ethnic Conflict, Human Rights
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, Slovenia
  • Author: Tom Trier, Eleonora Sambasile
  • Publication Date: 12-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: With resolution 1415 of January 2005, the Council of Europe encouraged Georgia to keep up with its commitments and obligations following the change of leadership with the 'Rose Revolution', inter alia, by recommending that the Georgian Parliament sign and/or ratify a number of pending European conventions, honouring the obligations made when Georgia joined the Council of Europe in 1999. In the resolution, the Council of Europe urges Georgia to: a. sign and ratify the European Charter for Regional and Minority Languages and the European Outline Convention on Transfrontier Co-operation between Territorial Communities or Authorities, before September 2005; and to b. ratify the revised European Social Charter and the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities, also before September 2005.
  • Topic: International Relations, Government, Human Rights
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe
  • Author: Jonathan Wheatley
  • Publication Date: 02-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: This report is intended to provide an overview of the current social, economic and political situation in five rayons (districts) of Kvemo Kartli province in south-eastern Georgia: Gardabani rayon, Marneuli rayon, Bolnisi rayon, Dmanisi rayon and Tsalka rayon. By identifying and providing information about the current problems impeding the regional integration of those parts of Kvemo Kartli province in which national minorities are concentrated, this working paper will act as a guide for defining priorities and ensuring more informed intervention in the area.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Economics, Politics
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe
  • Author: Tove H. Malloy, Tankut Soykan
  • Publication Date: 03-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: With negotiations on the basis of the Annan Plan, complex power-sharing mechanisms were again on the agenda for the re-unification of Cyprus. Complex power-sharing mechanisms constitute an alternative approach which seeks to go beyond the traditional juxtaposition of consociational or integrative models and provide a more open approach in terms of a matrix of tools. This matrix covers multilevel governance, political representation, autonomy regimes, special rights for communities, moderating conflicts of authority, executive representation and generating equal opportunities. However, complex power-sharing arrangements cannot be achieved, nor will they take root in a society, unless they are understood, supported, and most crucially, developed further by local constituents. Hence, the parties directly involved in an attempted settlement must be enabled to take ownership of their own process and settlement. Putting the Northern Cypriot negotiation teams in this position was the overall aim of the FIRST Technical Expert Seminar on Complex Power-Sharing Mechanisms in Cyprus.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Government
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, Balochistan
  • Author: Jonathan Wheatley
  • Publication Date: 09-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: This working paper is a consolidated and condensed analysis of a longer field report originally carried out as part of ECMI's action-oriented project “Defusing interethnic tension and promoting regional integration – the Javakheti Region of the Republic of Georgia”. Both the original field report, and this resulting analysis aim to provide an insightful overview of current the social, economic and political situation in two rayons (districts) of Georgia; Akhalkalaki rayon and Ninostminda rayon; which together combine to form a geographical area better known as the Javakheti Region in southern Georgia. By identifying and providing information about the current problems impeding the regional integration of Javakheti, this working paper will act as a guide for defining priorities and ensuring more informed intervention in the area.
  • Topic: Economics, Ethnic Conflict, Politics
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, Georgia
  • Author: Valery Perry
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: The post-war reconstruction and state-building process in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) has been complex, with priorities changing as the country gradually normalizes and donor interests evolve. In mid-2002 the international community in BiH began a significant effort to modernize and reform BiH's education system to better prepare the country's youth to play productive social, economic and political roles in the future. Although educational reform gained significant attention in 2002, reforms efforts have been occurring at a variety of levels since 1996.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Development, Education, Reform
  • Political Geography: Bosnia, Herzegovina, Eastern Europe
  • Author: Stefan Wolff
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: Elections are a key element in any political process because of their rule-legitimating function. They are, therefore, frequently used instruments at different levels of the political process (from local government to presidential elections) and in most types of political systems (from democracies to single-party totalitarian systems). In democratic and democratizing systems in particular, elections serve a variety of different purposes in addition to legitimating rule, including providing an institution for the expression of the popular will and providing mechanisms for peaceful change in government.
  • Topic: Democratization, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe
  • Author: Alexander H.E. Morawa
  • Publication Date: 10-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: In its views in the Diergaardt et al. v. Namibia case of 25 July 2000, the United Nations Human Rights Committee addressed a complex set of complaints relating to the rights of a small community of people residing in the Rehoboth Gebiet (area) in the vicinity of the Namibian capital Windhoeck. The case as such concerns a situation, shaped by unique historic events, that is not necessarily comparable to minority issues in Europe, and which was decided at the universal, as opposed to the regional, level of human rights protection. Nevertheless, it raises a number of issues that are of relevance beyond the given context.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Government, Human Rights
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe
  • Author: Natalie Sabanadze
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: The South Caucasus represents one of the most diverse and conflict-ridden regions in the world. It includes the three former Soviet states Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia, as well as numerous ethnic minorities and small nations within these states. The term South Caucasus is relatively new and has been used to replace the older term Transcaucasia. According to Valery Tishkov, there is a strong drive of national elites to separate the region from Russia and dismantle old ties to the point of changing names. "It is noteworthy," wrote Tishkov, "that the historical name of the region Transcaucasus has been questioned by the proponents of new political correctness who wish to create a mantle distance from Russia. Consequently, the region is being renamed the South Caucasus" (Tishkov 1999:4). It is, however, worthy of mention that the earlier name Transcaucasus (Za Kavkazye in Russian) reflected the Russian geographical position and literally meant 'beyond or behind the Caucasus', as the three republics were seen from the northern perspective of Russia. Recently, the term South Caucasus has came into use in order to more accurately describe the region and as Tishkov rightly points out, to de-link it from Russia.
  • Topic: Ethnic Conflict, International Organization, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Russia, Eastern Europe, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia
  • Author: Ulrich Schneckener
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: Throughout the 1990s, the notion of conflict prevention had an impressive career. It reappeared on the international scene when UN Secretary-General Boutros-Ghali coined the term "preventive diplomacy" in this Agenda for Peace (1992). Since then, several international organizations or multilateral institutions, including the UN and its sub-organizations, the OSCE, the OAU, the OECD or the G-8, have published piles of papers and declarations committing themselves to the prevention of violent or armed conflicts, to change their policies accordingly (e.g. in the area of development or financial aid) and to develop new or to reform old tools, ranging from fact-finding or observer missions, special envoys, the use of sanctions, peace-building efforts, institution-building, reconciliation processes to humanitarian aid as well as long-term financial and economic assistance. Until now, however, many celebrated declarations hardly moved from rhetoric to substance, the "culture of prevention", as it has been called by UN Secretary-General Annan, is still to be developed.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Development
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, United Nations
  • Author: Vadim Martynuk
  • Publication Date: 11-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: On 29-30 November 2002, the City of Kaliningrad hosted an international conference "The Role of the Interethnic Factor in the Development of the Kaliningrad Region" organized by the Regional Strategy Foundation and the regional office of Mediasojuz with the financial support of the Council of Europe, the Institute for Peace Research (Kiel, Germany) and the European Centre for Minority Issues, the principal organizer.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, Development, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe
  • Author: Vadim Poleshchuk
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: Different foreign rulers have controlled Estonia and Latvia for 700 years. In 1920, both countries attained independence from Bolshevik Russia. However, the period of the countries' first independence was short: Estonia and Latvia were incorporated into the USSR in 1940.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Development, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Russia, Eastern Europe, Estonia, Latvia
  • Author: Stefan Wolff
  • Publication Date: 11-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: A training session organized by the European Centre for Minority Issues (ECMI) on 29 and 30 November 2002 brought together approximately twenty local experts from Kosovo and three academics from the United Kingdom. The aim of the session was to increase awareness of different dimensions of integration in the EU, discuss the applicability of the EU model for the Western Balkans and explore the implications of current EU approaches to regional integration in this area, especially for Kosovo.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, Development
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, Balkans
  • Author: Sammy Smooha
  • Publication Date: 10-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: The classical model of the liberal-democratic nation-state is on the decline in the West as a result of globalization, regionalization, multiculturalism, the institutionalization of universal minority rights and the rise of minority ethnonationalism. While western countries are decoupling the nation-state and slowly shifting toward multicultural democracy, some other countries are consolidating an alternative form of a democratic state that is identified with and subservient to a single ethnic nation. This type of political regime, "ethnic democracy," combines the extension of civil and political rights for all permanent residents with an institutionalized ethnic ascendancy of the majority group. The core ethnic nation controls the state and uses it to further its national interests and to grant its members a favored status. The non-core groups are accorded individual and collective rights and allowed to conduct a struggle for change, but treated as second-class citizens and placed under control.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, Ethnic Conflict
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe
  • Author: Sammy Smooha, Susan Hannah Farbstein
  • Publication Date: 10-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: The prevalence of collective violence and the agony of mass atrocity may prove to be the twentieth century's most distressing and enduring legacies. From Germany to Uganda, from Cambodia to Sierra Leone, from the Former Yugoslavia to Rwanda, the past hundred years are replete with examples of terrifying violations of human rights and humanitarian law committed against diverse groups of people. Limited attempts to unveil the truth about past horrors, to hold individuals responsible, and to deter future offenses have repeatedly proven inadequate. A dearth of satisfactory moral and legal responses to these crimes often left victims suffering without any sense of reconciliation, while perpetrators routinely enjoyed impunity rather than facing justice.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, Ethnic Conflict, Human Rights, Humanitarian Aid
  • Political Geography: Uganda, Eastern Europe, Yugoslavia, Germany, Cambodia, Sierra Leone, Rwanda
  • Author: Matthias KÖNIG
  • Publication Date: 06-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: On 11 May 2001 the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) acceded to the Council of Europe's FRAMEWORK CONVENTION FOR THE PROTECTION OF NATIONAL MINORITIES (FRAMEWORK CONVENTION hereinafter). The new government in Belgrade, in power since the democratic revolution in October 2000, has thereby declared its political intention to improve the situation of minorities by revising its legislation in accordance with the normative standards of the FRAMEWORK CONVENTION. By identifying general patterns of minority treatment in both legal standard-setting and factual practice in the FRY over the past decade, this study contributes to an analysis of primary concerns to be considered in the implementation of the FRAMEWORK CONVENTION.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Ethnic Conflict, International Law, Nationalism
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, Yugoslavia
  • Author: François Grin
  • Publication Date: 10-2000
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Centre for Minority Issues
  • Abstract: This paper provides background information on Kalmykia, one of the least known constituent republics of the Russian Federation. It then assesses recent developments in the fields of culture and language, and presents the recently adopted (October 1999) Language Act of Kalmykia. The following discussion highlights the key features of the Act, and argues that it reflects a thoroughly modern approach to linguistic diversity, in particular in its handling of the respective position of the Russian and Kalmyk languages.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Education
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe