Europe & Russia

  • Case study: Putin’s Crimean ambitions

    September 12, 2017

    President Vladimir Putin is championing a bridge connecting Russia’s mainland to the Crimean Peninsula, de jure a part of Ukraine but de facto a separatist territory now controlled by Moscow. The bridge is not only a highly ambitious feat of engineering that could disrupt shipping, but also demonstrates that Russia will not relinquish its claim to the peninsula in the foreseeable future. 

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  • CZECH REPUBLIC: ‘Czech Donald Trump’ remains popular despite scandals

    September 12, 2017

    On 6 September, the Czech parliament voted to strip Andrej Babiš, the Slovak-born billionaire businessman and former finance minister, of his parliamentary immunity in order for police to charge him with fraud.

    Babiš is the founder of the centrist ANO party, the junior coalition party, and he is the country’s second wealthiest man. He stands accused of fraudulently taking E.U. funds ...

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  • Between Russia and a hard place: The effect of sanctions on Europe

    August 16, 2017

    On 2 August, U.S. President Donald J. Trump signed legislation imposing further sanctions on Russia in retaliation for its alleged interference in the U.S. elections, as well as its activities in Ukraine. The European Union (E.U.) institutions oppose the new sanctions and fear for Europe’s energy security.

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  • Case Study: Illiberal democracy versus open society in Hungary

    July 20, 2017

    The saga of the Central European University in Hungary will have a lasting impact on domestic politics.

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  • SPAIN: Catalan independence calls unlikely to materialise but could increase security risk

    June 23, 2017

    Catalonian independence calls intensified in early June. This came after Carles Puigdemont, the president of the Generalitat – the regional government of the north-eastern autonomous community of Catalonia – unilaterally called on the Catalan electorate to vote in an independence referendum on 1 October, making good on his election promise from last year.

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