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In my earlier article – Bosnia on the road to the EU, sorry to Dissolution – I described a bit the background and made some small forecast about outcome which seems to be not so far away from reality. Now elections are held and most votes counted. Turnout in the vote — the sixth general… » read more

Note: My article was originally published on August 30, 2010 as OP-ED in a collaborative project to create recommendations for NATO’s new Strategic Concept by Atlantic-Community.Org (open think tank). Ari RUSILA: Rather than providing for collective defense, today’s Alliance is invited to join American wars. Instead of scribbling a new Strategic Concept for NATO that… » read more

“We can say goodbye to our democracy, our independence and our sovereignty” (outgoing President Yushchenko predicts a future with either Ms Tymoshenko or Mr Yanukovych as President) “I’m quite happy because whoever is chosen today will be hated tomorrow by the majority of the country.” (Andrey Kurkov) Ukraine’s Russian-leaning opposition leader, Viktor Yanukovych is on… » read more

Free movement is one fundamental human rights not only in one’s own country but also abroad. While speaking about Balkans I earlier have highlighted (e.g. “Forgotten Refugees – West Balkans“) the situation of Serb refugees or IDPs (Internally Displaced Persons) who can not return to their original homes in Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina or Korsovo. […]

The race between the two EU’s eastern gas pipelines is going on while next winter can again show some supply problems via Ukraine. South Stream got latest boost on 11th November 2009 as Russia’s Energy Minister Sergei Shmatko and Slovenian Economy Minister Matej Lahovnik signed an agreement on the passage of the South […]

The refugee question is of paramount importance in Balkans – still. Beginning 1991, political upheavals – such as the breakup of Yugoslavia – displaced millions of people. Officially one part of these people are refugees meaning that they have escaped to other country, one part is “internally displaced persons” (IDPs) meaning that they have escaped… » read more

As Lisbon Treaty seems to come into force also the enlargement process in the Western Balkans got new boost. On 14 October 2009 the Commission adopted its annual strategy document explaining its policy on EU enlargement.The document includes also a summary of the progress made over the last twelve months by each candidate and potential… » read more

Each year since 1990 the Human Development Report by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has published the human development index (HDI) which looks beyond GDP to a broader definition of well-being. The index is not in any sense a comprehensive measure of human development, however HDI gives some valuable information about some dimensions of global… » read more

Promoting a culture of coexistence, a multi-ethnic society or at least ethnic tolerance is not an easy task, not even in Europe, not even with help of billions of aid or with “best” western practice. This can be seen especially in Balkans where regions supervised by foreign “expertise” have worst record while regions without these… » read more

The “European perspective” is key concept for integrating western Balkans into EU. The main carrot for ordinary people during this millennium has been visa-free travel after some 17 years of isolation. On 15th July 2009, the European Commission submitted its proposal on visa-free travel for citizens of Western Balkans countries. After a non-binding opinion of… » read more

Two new proposals related to European security and energy cooperation was made last week by Russia. During official state visit in Finland Russia’s President Dimitry Medvedev gave a key note speech in Helsinki on April 20th outlining a “new European security structure”. Same day Russia made public goals and principles of new framework for energy… » read more

Twitter revolution did not change government in Moldova but created big drama instead including a couple of conspiracy theories and “fast-track” mini enlargement of EU with one million new EU citizens while same time Moldova possibly losing a quarter its citizens. So a relatively small improvised demonstration can lead its (mis)use for possible purposeful utilization… » read more

Last week-end Moldova had parliamentary elections. The ruling Party of Communists won so no big change in politics is expected. Elections in EU’s border have however some significance as the new leadership will be the counterpart during period after EP elections influencing e.g. enlargement, partnership and security questions. Before Moldova (FYRO) Macedonia already had their… » read more

While my special interests are laying in Balkans I keep an eye on Northern Black Sea – Caucasus, Ukraine and Bessarabia. Events there sure have their impact also in Balkans – if not direct so at least through their geopolitical, security or economical consequences. Today’s Caucasus with its surrounding regions is a frontline of power… » read more

This post was first published in TH!NK ABOUT IT site 9th February 2009. A lot of interesting marches of progress will take or not take place in West Balkans during 2009. I try to keep my finger on the pulse of developments at least in Bosnia, Croatia and Serbia (including Kosovo) where the most interesting… » read more

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