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  • Author: Roberto Aliboni
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: The author examines problems related with the political identity of the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM), its relations with the EMP's Euro- Mediterranean "acquis" and the functioning of its institutions. While the UfM has been designed to give new momentum to the EU's cooperation with Mediterranean countries, results have hardly met ambitions so far. There is a lot the EU can do to increase the UfM profile: revise its institutional settings; create a parallel, but connected, multilateral dimension in the framework of the European Neighbourhood Policy; quickly implement large-scale regional projects; expand cooperation to agriculture; and scale back the ambition that the UfM can promote political solidarity in the short- to mediumterm.
  • Topic: International Relations, Agriculture, International Trade and Finance, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Roberto Aliboni
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: While sharing a number of interests in the Mediterranean and Middle East region, the EU and the Gulf Cooperation Council have pursued different patterns of strategic concerns and relations. Nevertheless, a potential for developing common EUGCC perspectives exists, as the Mediterranean and Middle East region are both part of the EU and the GCC neighbourhood and are a common location for investment. Diplomatic convergence on a number of issues could contribute to improving security and political cooperation as well, despite the fact that this is stymied by divergent views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
  • Topic: Security, International Cooperation, Politics
  • Political Geography: Europe, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arabia
  • Author: Roberto Aliboni
  • Publication Date: 01-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Transatlantic Relations
  • Abstract: The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership (EMP) held their annual meeting in Naples on December 2-3, 2003. The Naples conference was the sixth in the series of such meetings since the founding conference of the partnership, which took place in Barcelona in November 1995. With an annual budget of €1 billion, the EMP is a process of “multi-bilateral” cooperation in the political and security; economic and financial; and social and cultural areas. It involves the European Union (EU), and Cyprus, Israel, Malta, Turkey, as well as seven Mediterranean Arab countries (Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Syria, and Tunisia) and the Palestinian National Authority. In Naples, the Ministers delivered only general declarations regarding contentious issues such as the situation in Iraq, the Israeli-Palestinian road map, and international terrorism. Predictable and incremental as it was, progress was nevertheless achieved on three main “baskets” of the partnership agenda.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Egypt, Cyprus
  • Author: Roberto Aliboni
  • Publication Date: 10-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: This paper deals with the impact of the Iraqi crisis on Mediterranean dynamics. Four such dynamics are taken into consideration, assuming their particular significance: (a) the Israeli- Palestinian conflict and, more broadly, the opposition between Israel and the Arab-Muslim countries; (b) the stability of regional regimes and their transition to democracy; (c) the development of the EU Mediterranean policies and their relevance in the region; (d) Turkey's national and regional interests.
  • Topic: Security
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Turkey, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Roberto Aliboni
  • Publication Date: 11-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: The 11th September events have stirred common concerns among Western allies. At the same time, the evolution of American policy since then has also caused new differences to arise and old ones to resurface. While there is agreement on combating terrorism and the rogue states that support it, there are disagreements on the way to do it as well as priorities.
  • Topic: Security
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Europe, Middle East
  • Author: Roberto Aliboni
  • Publication Date: 11-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: After something more than a year elapsed since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2002, assessments of terrorism and ways and means to respond to it continue to be central in public debates. In this paper two questions are raised with respect to terrorism.
  • Topic: Security, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe
  • Author: Roberto Aliboni
  • Publication Date: 09-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: Today, the Southern approaches to Europe are perhaps the most important source of instability for that continent and the West in general. Instability has increased as a result of the West's failed attempts to curb it in the 1990s and solve the conflicts that nurture it. As a result of this failure, frustration and interdependence - as opposed to integration- have increased regionally and globally so that Southern instability now generates larger and more diffuse spillovers than a decade ago.
  • Topic: Security, NATO
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe
  • Author: Roberto Aliboni
  • Publication Date: 09-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: In the 1990s, the end of the East-West confrontation brought about sweeping changes in the regions beyond the Mediterranean further than in the European East. During the Cold War many Middle Eastern and North African countries had received support from the USSR and sided to varying extent and in different ways with it. Thus, the Mediterranean region had been regarded by NATO as its “southern flank”. In fact, conflict in that area could give way to a “horizontal escalation” and shift the confrontation from regional to global level.
  • Topic: Security
  • Political Geography: Europe, Middle East, North Africa
  • Author: Roberto Aliboni
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: During the Cold War, threats coming from across the Mediterranean Sea to Europe and the Western world in general were strictly related to the East-West confrontation. National security was not endangered by possible attacks from the Mediterranean or Middle Eastern countries as such but by the East-West escalation South-South conflict could be able to give way to. In this sense, the Arab-Israeli conflict was a central threat to Western security. What was frightening was not the military power of the regional countries but their alliance with the Soviet Union and the possibility of what at that time was called horizontal escalation (as opposed to East-West direct vertical escalation).
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Israel, Soviet Union, North Africa
  • Author: Roberto Aliboni
  • Publication Date: 06-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: During the Spanish-Moroccan crisis over the Perejil/Leila islet both the European Union (EU) and the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) have squarely supported Spanish sovereignty. They have completely ignored the special co-operation promoted with the Mediterranean countries from the mid-1990s onwards. This is particularly true with respect to the EU-initiated Euro-Mediterranean Partnership, whose ambitious agenda contemplates an articulated political and security agenda of collective cooperation with the Southern Mediterranean countries, including Morocco. For a number of reasons, the partners have failed to turn their aims into a practical reality. Nonetheless, co-operation is still on the agenda and the parties to the scheme are still apparently committed to it. It is true that one witnessed the same kind of response from the Arab side. The Arab League supported Moroccan claims just as unambiguously as the Western or European side did Spain. How can one explain that precisely at the time when the spirit of Euro-Med co-operation was most necessary it vanished?
  • Topic: Security, International Law
  • Political Geography: Europe, North Atlantic, Spain, North Africa, Morocco