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  • Author: Danielle Piatkiewicz
  • Publication Date: 04-2021
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Europeum Institute for European Policy
  • Abstract: In her policy paper, our research fellow Danielle Piatkiewicz provides an in-depth review of President Biden’s first 100 days in office. Piatkiewicz particularly examines Biden's new transatlantic strategy and how it affects the Central and Eastern Europe region. So far, the US administration’s focus on tackling immediate shared threats has called upon their EU allies to take a stronger role and to continue to invest in its own defense capabilities. This includes not just investing in stronger NATO cooperation, but also the strengthening of economic and security support in CEE region through various avenues. For the CEE region, it will be a true test to see how they adapt towards a Biden administration – the deterioration of democratic processes and rule of law will certainly come to haunt the region, but the question remains to what extent? For Poland and Hungary, whose relations flourished under Trump’s administration, may have to reevaluate their posture to adhere to the pro-democratic policies that the Biden administration will certainly call for, and this can lead to a splintering within the V4 particularly between Slovakia, Czech Republic and Poland and Hungary.
  • Topic: Security, NATO, Economics, Transatlantic Relations, Joe Biden
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, Poland, Hungary, North America, Czech Republic, Central Europe, United States of America
  • Author: Jana Juzová
  • Publication Date: 12-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Europeum Institute for European Policy
  • Abstract: The discussion on the future of EU enlargement was opened again this year. After yet another disappointment for Albania and North Macedonia at the European Council’s session in October, the discussion turned towards a revision of the enlargement methodology. The argument that the enlargement process needs to undergo a reform, put forward by France as a justification of its October veto for Albania and North Macedonia, is based on the fact that the current process is not delivering adequately. That is true especially for the current frontrunners, Montenegro and Serbia, setting a bad example for other candidate countries in the region and giving more reasons to oppose enlargement to some already sceptical EU Member States. Both countries’ progress on the accession path has recently slowed down significantly, with some suggesting that the current low number of chapters that are being opened and closed, and progress only on “technical” rather than substantial matters, is due to the serious problems both countries have in the area of rule of law and democratic standards.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Regional Cooperation, European Union, Negotiation
  • Political Geography: Europe, Eastern Europe, Serbia
  • Author: Gentiola Madhi, Jana Juzová, Tomás Strázay, Adam Balcer, Jelica Minić, Nikolett Garai
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Europeum Institute for European Policy
  • Abstract: Two decades after the last armed conflict in the Western Balkans, the reconciliation process in the region is still in its embryonic phase. Reconciliation is considered both a determinant for the democratization process of these countries and a precondition for them to join the EU at a later stage. Moreover, a satisfactory degree of reconciliation is also seen as an essential “step which would make European integration a long-term success“. Today, the political and social dynamics in the region are characterized by high youth unemployment, lack of trust in the governing elites and gloomy prospects of EU membership in the near future, which have affected citizens’ perceptions and level of confidence that the reconciliation process can overcome the present stalling stage. Moreover, the standstill with the enlargement process has allowed the local elites in power to raise the nationalistic rhetoric in their public speeches for short-term political gains, at the expense of the wider regional rapprochement process.
  • Topic: Democratization, Conflict, Reconciliation
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, Balkans
  • Author: Jana Juzová
  • Publication Date: 11-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Europeum Institute for European Policy
  • Abstract: The result of the Kosovo parliamentary elections this month brought rather unexpected result, casting the ruling parties to opposition and ending 12 years of PDK-led governance in Kosovo, representing thus the first real governmental change since Kosovo’s independence. The winner of the elections, the Vetevendosje (“Self-Determination”) party, has become a part of the government for the very first time, with a very narrow victory over another opposition party, the Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK). So far, the new government seems to be good news for Kosovo, possibly leading to turning things around, especially with regard to the fight against corruption and crime, economic issues and services for citizens. ​ The new political elites inherited from their predecessors plenty of not only internal but also external challenges, most urgently the stalled dialogue with Serbia on normalization of relations between the two countries.​
  • Topic: Corruption, Government, Politics, Elections
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, Kosovo
  • Author: Gentiola Madhi, Jelica Minić
  • Publication Date: 11-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Europeum Institute for European Policy
  • Abstract: The relations between Albania and Serbia have been marked over past decades by the absence of political dialogue and the presence of diplomatic friction. This weakness has been reflected in the relations between respective peoples. Despite being the two major ethnicities in the region, the mutual relations are still far from being considered mature and demand for the presence and intermediation of third parties in order to smooth down long-lasting prejudices, intolerance and distrust. In the aftermath of the Kosovo war, both countries resumed the bilateral relations as of January 2001 through an exchange of diplomatic notes. However, the mutual relations did not break through until November 2014, when Prime Minister Rama visited Belgrade - the first official visit of an Albanian leader in Serbia in 68 years. This symbolic and historical act created a fresh political momentum and imprinted a hopeful beginning of a new cycle of political and societal rapprochement.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Ethnic Conflict, War, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, Serbia, Balkans, Albania