Diplomacy

Why Europe Overlooks Trump’s Threat, Increases Russian Gas Imports

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European consumers see no reason for abandoning cheap Russian pipeline gas and substituting it for expensive American super-chilled fuel. While Washington is fuming over the Russian-European energy cooperation, EU member states are increasingly buying Russian… Sputnik Despite US threats and reprimands, Europe remains stuck with Russian gas. Speaking at the Russia Energy Week (REW) forum, President Vladimir Putin highlighted that the country’s gas exports to the EU were about to reach 200 billion cubic meters (bcm) in… Why Europe Overlooks… Read More »

What’s Going on in Brussels?

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Migration is dividing the European Union Preston Huennekens Center for Immigration Studies The European Union began in 1952 as the European Coal and Steel Community. The original six countries — Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, West Germany, and… Negotiations continue with outsiders that could see the group’s total membership rise to over 30 by 2020. Some commentators point to the E.U. as a superpower. Well-intentioned visionaries believed that increased European integration and supranational cooperation would bring prosperity, peace, and progress to ... Read More »

World Court orders U.S. to ensure Iran sanctions don’t hit humanitarian aid

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THE HAGUE (Reuters) – The World Court ordered the United States on Wednesday to ensure that sanctions against Iran, due to be tightened next month, do not affect humanitarian aid or civil aviation safety. Stephanie van den Berg Judges at the International Court Of Justice (ICJ) handed a small victory to Tehran, which had argued that sanctions imposed since May by the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump violate terms of a 1955 Treaty of Amity between the… But U.S. ... Read More »

Pipeline Dreams

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Eastern Mediterranean gas creates new allies—and deepens old enmities John Psaropoulos the weekly Standard Athens On January 30, the deepwater drillship Saipem 12000 sent its drill bit into a cavern beneath one-and-a-quarter miles of water and a mile of rock in the eastern Mediterranean. The Italian oil and gas company Eni, which had contracted the ship, announced a week later that the cavern, called Calypso, was “an extended gas column,” containing an estimated six to eight trillion cubic feet of ... Read More »

Confrontations Shape Identity

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The question is how to get those confrontations right. A strong national identity is good, but a xenophobic backlash is not. Joergen Oerstroem Moeller * The National Interest Human beings need an identity. Together with self-respect, it forms the core of each individual’s life-explaining and shaping behavior. It is found by comparing themselves with people “on the other side of the hill.” Identity is conducive to depict those other people as enemies or opponents. The search for identity thus sows ... Read More »

Romanian PM clashes with Commission over rule of law

Romanian Prime Minister Viorica Dancila looks on during a debate on the rule of law in Romania, during a plenary session at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, eastern France on October 3, 2018. (Photo by FREDERICK FLORIN / AFP)        (Photo credit should read FREDERICK FLORIN/AFP/Getty Images)

In Parliament debate, Bucharest is warned not to follow path of Hungary and Poland. Anca Gurzu Politico Romanian Prime Minister Viorica Dăncilă clashed Wednesday with a senior European commissioner over the rule of law in her country, as Brussels accused Bucharest of “moving backwards” and threatened to take action. In a debate at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, Frans Timmermans, the Commission’s first vice president, cited “growing concerns” about changes to Romania’s justice system and criminal code that could threaten ... Read More »

Cameroon: Divisions Widen Ahead of Presidential Vote

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The risk of violence around the 7 October vote is greatest in Anglophone regions, but other parts of Cameroon could also be affected. ICG The government should take steps to curb divisive rhetoric and declare a ceasefire, even if only temporary, with Anglophone armed groups. What’s new?  Cameroon’s presidential election on 7 October comes at a tense moment. The country is torn between the fight against Boko Haram in the Far North and the Anglophone conflict in the Northwest and ... Read More »

Turkey Airstrikes Target Iraqi Christian Villages; Activists Call for War Crimes Investigation

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The Turkish military launched airstrikes targeting Iraqi Christian villages in northern Iraq, a rights group warned. Samuel Smith The Christian Post Local sources have told International Christian Concern, a U.S.-based persecution watchdog, that seven predominantly Christian villages were targeted by Turkish airstrikes last month. September saw an increase in Turkish airstrikes in the north of Iraq. “Turkey attempts to justify these airstrikes by claiming that these villages support or have a PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) presence,” an ICC report reads. “Turkey is ... Read More »

Ten photos that changed how we see human rights

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Nearly 70 years ago, in December 1948, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Jane Lydon The Conversation At this time, the UN’s cultural arm, UNESCO, sought to harness the “universal language” of photography to communicate the new system of human rights globally, across barriers of race and language. UNESCO curated the ground-breaking “Human Rights Exhibition” in 1949, seeking to create a sense of a universal humanity through photographs. It sent portable photo albums around ... Read More »

Britain’s Constitutional Responsibilities to the Republic of Cyprus: Past, Present and Future

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Thank you for your kind invitation to this inaugural seminar, I am honoured to have been invited to such an important event in relation to the Constitutional role of Britain according to the Constitution of The Republic of Cyprus. Anna Theologou * When I entered politics 2 years ago I promised myself that I will always speak the truth and my mind and adhere to my principles even at the expense of political cost, because I was never font of ... Read More »

Eighty years on: The shame and tragedy of Munich

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Dr Marcus Papadopoulos looks back 80 years to Britain and France’s connivance in the carve-up of Czechoslovakia Morning Star YESTERDAY marked the 80th anniversary of the Munich Agreement, one of the most shameful and tragic chapters in the history of the foreign policies of Britain and France and one that constituted a… This is not to castigate the governments of Neville Chamberlain and Edouard Daladier for wanting to avoid another world… The traumas of the Great War were ingrained in ... Read More »

The Cyprus Treaty of Guarantee 1960 and the Responsibilities of the UK Government

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Britain’s Constitutional Responsibilities to the Republic of Cyprus: Past, Present and Future Introduction. The Basic Documents (a) The Lancaster House Agreements  The Prime Ministers of the UK, the Kingdom of Greece and the Turkish /Republic, Harold Macmillan, C. Karamanlis, A. Menteres, on 19 February 1959 signed a Memorandum in London setting out the Agreed Foundation for the Final Settlement of the Problem of Cyprus. Dr. Christos Clerides * The representatives of the Greek Cypriot community and the Turkish Cypriot community declared that they ... Read More »

“Nobody Wants Us”: The Alienated Civilians of Eastern Ukraine

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With living conditions worsening, and crossfire still claiming casualties, people residing in eastern Ukraine’s conflict zone feel increasingly abandoned by the central government. ICG Reintegrating the area requires Russian withdrawal, but in the meantime Kyiv can and should better protect civilians and meet humanitarian needs. What’s new?  Ukrainians in Donbas, the country’s eastern conflict zone, are in their fifth year of a humanitarian crisis deepened by Russian intervention – and also by Ukrainian government policies. Many complain that their country ... Read More »

Arctic Options: Why America Should Invest in a Future with China

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America needs to increase its engagement in the Arctic’s rapidly-changing geopolitical environment because inaction could lead to Washington losing future opportunities in the area. Alison McFarland The National Interest In August, the Arctic’s oldest and thickest sea ice broke up, releasing water on Greenland’s northern coast that typically remains frozen throughout the year. Occurring for the second time this year, the melting ice not only raises environmental concerns, but also brings the potential for geopolitical change. China presents a driving ... Read More »

Jeremy Hunt to Brussels: Don’t turn EU into ‘prison’

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British foreign secretary says ‘it was the Soviet Union that stopped people leaving.’ Charlie Cooper Politico BIRMINGHAM, England — European leaders risk turning the EU into a “prison” that other countries will want to leave if Brussels punishes the U.K. with an uncompromising Brexit deal, U.K. Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said Sunday, comparing the… In a combative speech at the Conservative party’s annual conference in Birmingham, Hunt, addressing EU leaders directly, said rejecting Theresa May’s so-called Chequers plan for Brexit would ... Read More »

Australia must demand Myanmar war crimes tribunal, says investigator

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The Morrison government should use its regional clout to demand a peacekeeping mission and war crimes tribunal in response to humanitarian crimes in Myanmar, says a top Australian investigator. Nick McKenzie & Nicole Precel The Age Michael Stefanovic, an Australian seconded to the US State Department’s Myanmar inquiry, said he was horrified by the evidence he had gathered. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is grappling whether to use the term genocide to describe the Myanmar military’s attack on members ... Read More »