Diplomacy

Thousands in London march for vote on Brexit terms

Organizers claimed 700,000 turned out in London, calling for a vote on the terms of the Brexit deal. Prime Minister Theresa May has repeatedly ruled out another referendum. DW Thousands of people marched through central London on Saturday to call for a second Brexit referendum. Organizers and participants in the People’s Vote March have expressed concerns that the UK’s exit from the European Union looks nothing like the Brexit outlined ahead of the first vote in 2016. The 2016 referendum ... Read More »

European court orders Poland to freeze judicial changes

Ruling comes just two days before local elections seen as key test for ruling party. Jan Cienski Politico WARSAW — The Polish government was ordered to “immediately” suspend changes to the country’s Supreme Court by the European Court of Justice on Friday. The ruling — issued just two days before local elections — comes in reaction to a series of recent laws revamping the functioning of the Polish court and lowering the retirement age of judges that critics said violated the constitution and undermined the… The ... Read More »

Dozens of casualties as multiple blasts rock Kabul polling centres amid Afghan elections

Multiple explosions rocked polling centres across Kabul on Saturday, causing dozens of casualties, amid growing anger among voters as they waited hours to cast their ballots in long-delayed legislative… Hurriyet KABUL – AFP At least 30 people have been taken to a trauma hospital run by the Italian NGO Emergency, including a dead child, the organisation said on Twitter, hours after the Taliban warned voters to boycott the ballot “to… Afghan officials confirmed there have been casualties but would not ... Read More »

Brexit spurs refugees’ descendants to seek German passports

Britons whose families fled Nazi persecution of Jews look to maintain EU links Tobias Buck Financial Times Brexit has prompted a surge in German citizenship applications by British descendants of Jewish refugees from the Nazis, as part of a broader rush by UK nationals for EU passports. According to official data, such applications have risen almost 40-fold since Britain voted to leave the EU, from just 43 in 2015 to 1,667 last year. In 2016, descendants of refugees made 684 ... Read More »

Pakistan’s Pivot to Asia

Imran Khan is addressing his nation’s challenges by choosing liberally from a menu of Western and Asian futures. Ben Judah The Atlantic Just a few years ago, the news out of Pakistan would have sent official Washington into a tailspin. But with cable TV broadcasting Trump nonstop, few bothered to even note that a champion cricketer turned populist firebrand, Imran Khan, won the election as prime minister this summer. Nor did many pause over the fact that Khan won that ... Read More »

Kandahar Assassinations Show Rising Taliban Strength in Afghanistan

The Taliban have claimed the assassination of an influential Afghan police chief and another official in an attack that narrowly missed the head of U.S. forces. ICG Senior Analyst Borhan Osman and Consultant Graeme Smith explain the repercussions for political stability in southern Afghanistan. What happened? At least one gunman attacked a gathering of Afghan and U.S. officials inside the Kandahar governor’s compound on the afternoon of 18 October. The shooter, believed to be one of the governor’s guards, killed the most powerful ... Read More »

The Trade War Has Claimed Its First Victim

Tariffs from the United States, Canada, China, Mexico, and the EU may have damaged the WTO beyond repair. Arvind Panagariya * FP The World Trade Organization (WTO) might be the first victim of the trade war between China, the United States, and the European Union. Today, each is in flagrant violation of its rules, and the institution’s credibility as the protector of a rules-based trading system is in serious doubt. U.S. President Donald Trump initiated the trade war in March when he ... Read More »

Why the West Should Care About the Turmoil in Armenia

Human rights and stability in Yerevan impact the whole region. Wes Martin The National Interest National Security Advisor John Bolton is planning to visit the South Caucasus, a strategic mountainous region sandwiched between Russia, Turkey and Iran, which changed hands repeatedly between these imperial masters for the last one thousand years. In Georgia, he will deal with a pro-western country still reeling from the war with Russia ten years ago. But a real challenge awaits Bolton in Armenia—a small mountainous country with ... Read More »

Who’s Really Afraid of Nationalism?

Yoram Hazony has written a polemic against what he perceives as the conventional wisdom—a refutation of the “paradigm of the European liberals” for whom the European Union is the highest stage of political excellence. Michael Kimmage The National Interest Yoram Hazony, The Virtue of Nationalism, (New York: Basic Books, 2018), 273 pp., $26.99. It was the best of times in Europe, in the 1990s, and it was the worst of times in Russia. The Soviet Union had ignominiously collapsed in ... Read More »

There’s a solution to the refugee crisis – but no one will like it

The Pacific Solution is septicaemic and threatening the political life of the Coalition Legitimate refugees and failed asylum seekers languish on Manus and Nauru desperately waiting for resettlement. Roman Quaedvlieg Brisbane Times The much-vaunted US deal is turning slowly with the anticipated uplift of 1250 refugees failing to reach even half of that target. The level of mental ill-health among both refugees and asylum seekers has reached an appalling state. It’s time to get them off Manus and Nauru. There ... Read More »

Italian Minister Says Rome Will Oppose Extension Of EU Sanctions On Russia

Italy’s deputy prime minister says his country will oppose a renewal of European Union sanctions against Russia, but he suggested Rome is not ready to break with the rest of the EU and veto a rollover of the sanctions. Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty “I come here because I am convinced that sanctions are economic, social, and cultural madness,” Matteo Salvini said on a visit to Moscow on October 17. Salvini leads Italy’s far-right League party and is also Italy’s interior ... Read More »

U.S.-Turkey Relations in a Time of Turmoil

The strong personalities of Donald Trump and Recep Tayyip Erdogan have contributed to fractious relations between Washington and Ankara. John S. Van Oudenaren The National Interest President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s “control over the state apparatus is so complete now, he probably decides what kind of toilet paper gets bought in the universities” quipped Henri Barkey, an adjunct senior fellow for Middle East studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and the Bernard L. and Bertha F. Cohen Chair in… This ... Read More »

A Glimpse Into the Next Decade of Erdogan’s ‘New Turkey’

Upon winning his second term as president in June, and assuming the strong executive powers that had been approved by voters in a 2017 referendum, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan cemented what he had long been seeking: the creation of a… Sinan Ciddi Stratfor The “new Turkey,” as Erdogan calls it, is a country fast becoming insular and inward-looking. From Erdogan’s perspective, Turkey’s founding elite of the 1920s created a state, society and culture fashioned according to the preferences of ... Read More »

How Turkey and Saudi Arabia became frenemies – and why the Khashoggi case could change that

The Oct. 2 disappearance of Saudi Arabian journalist Jamal Khashoggi at his country’s consulate in Istanbul has put a spotlight on the deteriorating relations between Turkey and the Persian Gulf kingdom. Nader Habibi The Conversation Articles based on anonymous accounts from Turkish officials report that Turkey has video and audio proof that Saudi Arabian agents detained, murdered and dismembered Khashoggi, a sharp critic of his government who lived in Washington, D.C. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan raised the stakes even ... Read More »

Turkey: Enabling Mass Illegal Migration into Greece

Greece is currently facing a serious surge in undocumented migrant arrivals in the Evros region, an entry point for migrants illegally trying to enter the country from Turkey. Arrivals have roughly doubled since 2017, and… Uzay Bulut Gatestone Institute The influx from places such as Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria, Iraq, Bangladesh and African countries into Turkey reportedly has been on the rise in recent months, with 1.5 million people from Muslim countries… This has sparked fears in Athens that they could ... Read More »

Tusk compares backstop to the Gordian Knot unravelled by Alexander the Great

Analysis: May insists a deal is achievable; Barnier says negotiations need more time Denis Staunton The Irish Times As Theresa May prepares to address EU leaders before dinner at Wednesday’s summit in Brussels, both sides are determined that there should be no repeat of the rancorous displays at Salzburg last month. Michel Barnier said on Tuesday that the Brexit negotiations needed more time while May told her cabinet that negotiators had made significant progress and that a deal was achievable. Still unresolved, however, is the ... Read More »