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What a Turkish President and a French Minister told me encourages posting some ideas that I had so far just discussed with friends. Last week, I spoke at a major French Turkish conference in Istanbul, summmarised in this article. Behind efforts of rapprochement between both countries, and concerns about Turkey’s drifting toward the East, there… » read more

Sir, Regarding ‘EU ponders ‘what to offer’ to Ukraine‘: According to the employee of the Center for Eurasian, Russian, and Eastern European Studies of the University of Georgetown (USA), Mr. J.Kulhanek, and the scientific employee of Association of Foreign Affairs in Prague, Mr. M. Larish, after the first round of elections in Ukraine it became… » read more

EU external unity

The EU has failed its first test of external unity under the Lisbon Treaty. It is normal for governments to address messages of congratulation to heads of government/state after being democratically elected or confirmed. Such messages are usually synchronised in the EU, and this was agreed last week by EU ambassadors in Kiev in the… » read more

I observed one week of post-election commentaries (some more sources here): this is my short ‘net take’. But before attempting to answer this question, let’s get rid of one frequent misconception in Western reporting: that the Presidential elections was a choice between Russia and Europe. Here is a clear quote from an interview by www.EurActiv.sk… » 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

Yanukovich appears to have won, not least because outgoing president Yuschenko played his cards against Tymoschenko. I prefer to call those players by their names, instead of adding ‘tags’ to them. The Western coverage of the Ukraine elections appears rather simplistic, with Tymoshenko portrayed as strongly pro-European and Yanukovich – as a Kremlin puppet. I… » read more

The following article about the Ukranian elections was published by EurActiv on Monday 18th January. Ukraine faces a 7 February run-off vote between opposition leader Viktor Yanukovich and populist Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko after a presidential election produced no outright winner, early official results showed on Monday. The election will define how Ukraine, a former… » read more

Ukraine: Choosing a New Way

“When we get Russian gas, the problem is not the supplier, but the fact that 80 percent of the pipeline is located in the Ukraine. We should look for independence not from Russia, but from such transit schemes,” (Gerhard Schroeder) Just after 2004 Orange Revolution Ukraine took course towards Nato and EU, the new leadership… » read more

Next month, Ukrainians will be called to the polls to select their next president. As the 2004 Orange revolution has backfired against its initiators, the presidential election is a two-horse race between pro-Russian candidate Viktor Yanukovich and the current prime minister, Ms Yulia Tymoshenko. Beset by serious economic woes, Ukraine is also striving to find… » read more

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 […]

Latest developments during last weeks related the EU’s policy of diversifying Europes’s energy supplies give a clear indication that EU’s pipedream – Nabucco – is vanishing while the rival Russia’s South Stream gets a boost both on the ground and updated aims. European Commission has tried enhance Nabucco already some nine year with modest or… » 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

After years of deadlock year 2008 showed some promising signs of progress with dispute between Moldova and Transdnistria/Pridnestrovie – its separatist region or independent state depending of viewpoint. After a 7-year long pause the leaders of Moldova and Transdnistria met on April 2008, conflict in Georgia launched new process while Russia took a stronger role… » read more

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