A special EU summit of heads of state and government will take place on 23 September. After years of neglect, however, a solidary EU refugee policy cannot be elaborated in summary proceedings and under pressure. A commentary by Eva van de Rakt.
For Europe, the current refugee crisis presents a two-fold challenge: Will we uphold our humanitarian values, that is, do we view the refugees as people in need and with a right to a safe haven? And will the EU act as one – or will national selfishness erode European togetherness?
After images of Budapest’s Keleti train station illustrating the need for a fast EU assistance programme for refugees: the governments of Hungary, Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia reaffirmed their vehement “no” to refugee quotas.
After Danish Jews fled to their neutral neighbours in 1943 and Sweden agreed to offer temporary refuge to some thirty thousand survivors of the Nazi concentration camps, a country deeply averse to foreigners transformed. So can Europe today. An article of the "Berlin Anthology".
From my hotel room in Budapest at the weekend, I followed the images of Germany’s Willkommenskultur, the country’s policy and manner of welcoming refugees and migrants. They have now been granted permission to travel via Austria to Germany.
In the heated climate of the negotiations between the Eurogroup and Greece, it is not enough to be right or win the argument. The German government in particular should take seriously the inflammatory resurgence of resentment it faces.
Nationals of many Western and non-Western countries are joining the IS. Those that survive the fight will bring home extensive battle experience and new ideas about social and political life. The danger to peace and civic order, and the growing influence of this quasi-religious military movement casts shadow over the South Caucasus.
The emergence of the Islamic State implies significant political and geographic transformation. Georgia as a territory is not in the spotlight of these changes unless appropriate conditions take shape, in particular, if they win a big number of supporters.
At the southern border of “Fortress Europe”, the Mediterranean has turned into a graveyard. The current migrant crisis in Europe is about more than a risk to the EU’s reputation. It strikes at the core of the EU’s founding values. A continuation of its half-hearted response to the migration crisis is out of question.
The transit potential of the Caspian energy resources is facing challenges: Joining the European Energy Community would be a significant step for the transit countries of South Caucasus to ensure their stability and democratic development.
A sad anniversary is upon us. The 29th of June marks exactly one year since the declaration of the global Caliphate - the Islamic State (previously the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS). This anniversary is an occasion to reflect on the impact that the various radical Islamic movements and groups have on Salafis (adherents to a strain of Sunni fundamentalism) in Azerbaijan and just how active Azerbaijani Salafis may be in transnational networks and organizations of Islamic radicals.
Reflections on the Morning After the British General Election of 2015. Will the general election in the UK mark the beginning of the end of the United Kingdom? Read Alex Brianson's reflections on the morning after.