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  • Author: Józef Lang
  • Publication Date: 02-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Abstract: Russia's current and foreseeable policy towards Afghanistan is multi-vectored, complex and shows, at times, signs of incoherence. Russia views developments in Afghanistan as a strategic challenge and is expressing growing concern over the country's prospects for stability after the withdrawal of ISAF forces by the end of 2014. Russian decision-makers fear that a security vacuum emerging after the withdrawal could destabilise Central Asia and have a negative impact on Russia itself. At the same time, Moscow is concerned with Western military presence in the region, which it regards as interference in its neighbourhood. At tactical level, Russia also sees the situation in Afghanistan as an opportunity to secure its interests both regionally (consolidating its influence in Central Asia) and more widely (in terms of its relations with NATO).
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Foreign Policy, Regional Cooperation, War, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Russia, Central Asia
  • Author: Gerald Stang
  • Publication Date: 02-2014
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Abstract: Russia is often seen as a land of extremes – and the narratives for this month's Winter Olympics in Sochi reflect that view. From the record-length 65,000 km Olympic torch run (which included trips to outer space, the north pole and the bottom of the world's deepest lake) to the incredible $51 billion price tag and the Ian Flemingesque threat of attacks from black widow terrorists, the Sochi games have a distinctly Russian flavour. The Kremlin appears to have envisioned the games as a national triumph, not unlike the 2008 Beijing Olympics, with organisational, architectural and sporting successes that could unite the country. However, with global headlines dominated by stories of corruption, human rights abuses, anti-gay laws and the very real threat of terrorist attacks, one might be forgiven for wondering whether the Russian government regrets its decision to bid for the games.
  • Topic: Conflict Prevention, Security, Political Violence, Islam, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Radha Kumar, Álvaro de Vasconcelos, Andrei Zagorski, Paulo Wrobel, Feng Zhongping, Robert Hutchings, Elizabeth Sidiropoulos, Luis Peral
  • Publication Date: 10-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Abstract: This is the second Chaillot Paper in a series exploring the various strands of a global topic: multilateralising multipolarity. Through the essays collected in the first study, we set out to assess the scope of change in the international system and how EU action could best be suited to bringing about a multilateral order. After the fall of the Berlin Wall brought about the end of bipolarity, the world has changed no less dramatically since the 1990s witnessed the Balkan wars and the first EU military crisis-management operations. Basically, the post-Cold War 'unipolar' world turned 'multipolar', and as a result the West can no longer tackle global issues – made more pressing indeed due to this very transformation – on its own any more than it can deal single- handedly with regional crises. The comparative analysis of the strategic vision of Brazil, Russia, India, and China, the so-called BRICs, showed that the best policy mindset for the European Union, contrary to some suggestions, was not to try to become a normal hard-power player. It further concluded that, in a multi- polar world, this was simply not a viable option. For the European Union to survive and to influence the outcome of the international order, it must succeed in giving a multilateral dimension to the current multipolarity; in other words, Europe must be able to define together with other world and regional powers the norms and rules that are needed to drive concerted efforts to stay clear of some future clash of competing unilateralisms.
  • Topic: Security, Globalization, Intelligence, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Russia, China, Europe, India, Brazil
  • Author: Heiner Hänggi, Fred Tanner
  • Publication Date: 07-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Abstract: With the European Union's enlargement eastwards and southwards, its neighbourhood now stretches from the Balkans to the south Caucasus, and from Russia to the southern Mediterranean. The EU's eastern and southern neighbourhood is composed of areas which, to a greater or lesser extent, have serious deficits in security, development and democracy. There are many types of security problems, ranging from weak states and rampant international crime to spoilers in post-conflict reconstruction and unpredictable authoritarian leaders who pursue regime security often at the expense of national or regional security. In terms of socio-economic development, most of the countries in the EU's neighbourhood are fragile, often struggling with the effects of black market economies and cronyism, and burdened by bloated defence and security sectors that escape any accountability. As regards political systems, the EU's neighbourhood is composed of regime types ranging from new but weak democracies to regimes with authoritarian features and limited political participation.
  • Topic: Security, Development, Government
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Caucasus, Balkans
  • Author: Dov Lynch, Dmitri V. Trenin, Dmitry A. Danilov, Sergei Karaganov, Alexey K. Pushkov, Andrei Zagorski
  • Publication Date: 01-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Abstract: The Cold War is finally ending in Europe and the shape of a new order is visible. Certainly, its institutional structure is different from that of the bipolar era or even the transition years of the 1990s. The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) is assuming a more global profile and less direct responsibility in Europe itself. The Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) has entered a deep crisis, in which major participating states are challenging its enduring utility. Meanwhile, a new organisation is emerging as the continent's security provider – the European Union (EU). With enlargement in 2004, a new Europe has been born, founded around the ambitions and values of the EU. So much is clear.
  • Topic: Security, NATO, Cold War
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe
  • Author: Dov Lynch
  • Publication Date: 07-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Abstract: EU-Russian security cooperation remains nascent, but some important ground has been cleared since 2000. Yet, the dialogue is neither without ambiguity or problems. It is replete with both. This Occasional Paper examines three facets of EU-Russia security relations. The first chapter, by Hiski Haukkala, compares EU and Russian perceptions of the other in security terms. Haukkala traces the evolution of EU thinking on Russia throughout the 1990s, highlighting the obstacles that held up the development of a strategic vision of the 'partnership'. Following an analysis of how Russia views the EU, he concludes that both have different visions of the other which lie at the source of problems of perception and expectation. In the second chapter, Thomas Gomart concentrates on a single aspect of the EU's Common Strategy on Russia (1999), that of preventive diplomacy, examined through the cases of Belarus and Macedonia. Gomart notes the absence of coordination between the EU and Russia in the former Soviet Union and the Balkans, and stresses the need for greater effort. Gomart notes also the danger of blurring the lines between the 'preventive' and the 'pre-emptive', particularly with regard to counter-terrorism. Anaïs Marin concludes this Occasional Paper with an examination of the Northern Dimension. Marin notes the unique utility of the 'dimensionalist' approach to EU- Russian relations, which takes in a wide range of subjects and different types of actors within a flexible framework. In conclusion, she rejects calls for a greater institutionalisation of the Northern Dimension, arguing that flexibility and 'lightness' are its strength.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Politics
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe
  • Author: Dov Lynch
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Abstract: The South Caucasus contains three states that emerged after the collapse of the Soviet Union: Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan. Geographically, the region is populated by some fifteen million people, links the Caspian Sea basin to the Black Sea on an east-to-west axis, and is the juncture between the greater Middle East, Turkey and Iran, and the Russian Federation. This chapter will introduce a number of themes that run through this Chaillot Paper. The first part examines the nature of the 'transition' that the three South Caucasian states have undergone with a view to understanding the scale of their transformation. A second part discusses dimensions of state weakness across the region. Next, the chapter considers the impact of third parties on regional security/insecurity, and finally it outlines the structure of the volume.
  • Topic: Security, International Organization
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Iran, Central Asia, Turkey, Caucasus, Middle East, Soviet Union, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia
  • Author: Dov Lynch
  • Publication Date: 05-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Abstract: The crisis on Iraq has challenged key features of international relations. The United States and Britain intervened in Iraq without the specific support of the United Nations, avoiding a second resolution in February 2003 precisely because they feared coercive action would be vetoed. The UN has taken a serious blow and the parameters of international law on self-defence and the use of force are being redefined by US and British actions. The crisis has also left the transatlantic relationship in tatters, with the appearance of serious divisions in Europe and inside the European Union. France, Germany and Russia coordinated their positions against coercive actions within the UN Security Council, adopting a number of joint declarations in 2003 on how to strengthen the inspection regime. With all this, the very notion of the West as it existed in the Cold War seems under question.
  • Topic: Security, International Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Russia, America, Europe, France, Kosovo, Germany, United Nations, Syria