Europe

Brexit, the Republic of Cyprus and the Sovereign Base Areas

An Open Letter addressed to the President of the Republic of Cyprus and the President of the European Commission Klearchos A. Kyriakides Assistant Professor, Cyprus Campus, University of Central Lancashire (UCLan Cyprus) 2 April 2019 Brexit, the Republic of Cyprus and the Sovereign Base Areas Published by Agora Dialogue on 2 April 2019 Read More »

Germany to prioritize women during UN Security Council presidency

During its month at the helm of the UN Security Council, Germany will focus on the needs of women in conflicts and arms control. “We are aware of the responsibility this presidency entails,” Germany’s Heiko Maas said. Deutsche Welle Germany plans on putting its own issues on the agenda of the United Nations Security Council during its month-long presidency, Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said on Monday. Germany, currently a non-permanent Security Council member, is taking over the chair in April as part ... Read More »

The Brexit Plan B Options Parliament Will Vote on: A Guide

British members of Parliament will once again take control of the Brexit process on Monday, voting on a platter of alternatives to Prime Minister Theresa May’s thrice-defeated deal. Jess Shankleman Bloomberg After an initial round of voting last week failed to reveal a majority for any Brexit outcome, MPs will have another opportunity to try to break the impasse. The result isn’t binding on the government, but the House of Commons could try to make it so. Eight motions have ... Read More »

Brexit’s Endgame

The next ten days will bring to a head the Brexit drama. It has strained the UK’s constitution, threatened its social cohesion, terrified its businesses, appalled its friends, and delighted its enemies. Peter Kellner Carnegie Europe Each morning, the editors of the Oxford English Dictionary email a word of the day to their subscribers. It is often a little-known word with topical relevance. On Saturday, March 30—the day when the UK was scheduled to wake up for the first time ... Read More »

Erdogan tried to make local Turkish elections about national security, but it didn’t work

Votes are still being counted in local elections that took place across Turkey on Sunday, but so far it appears that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s party has lost key cities and towns. Authors: The Conversation That includes the Turkish capital Ankara, which has been run by Islamist mayors for the last 25 years. When Erdoğan won Turkey’s presidential election in June last year, he effectively became an autocrat with few checks and balances. Since then, parliament has lost its significance ... Read More »

Kastelorizo Updates

I predicted at “Kastelorizo – Mediterranean Flashpoint?” that the issue of a Greek exclusive economic zone would turn the tiny island of the Anatolian coast into a crisis point. Daniel Pipes This blog notes some developments on the EEZ topic that bear on that issue. For starters, the Hellas Frappe blog reports on a indirect Greek proclamation of its EEZ, at the behest of Foreign Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos. This was done via a verbal statement of its continental shelf coordinates ... Read More »

Switzerland to sue Nigeria over seized oil tanker

Authorities in Bern are considering legal proceedings after failed diplomatic efforts to secure the release of a Swiss-flag-carrying oil tanker, blocked in the bay of Biafra for over a year. SWI The San Padre Pio oil tanker, registered with canton Vaud shipping company ABC Maritime, was seized by Nigerian authorities in January 2018, who accused the ship and its crew of violating territorial waters and diesel smuggling. Over a year later, with diplomatic efforts to release the ship proven futile, ... Read More »

The Critical Role of the Exclusive Economic Zone in the Greek-Turkish Dispute

The legal regime for the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) is enshrined in the Unites Nations Law Convention of the Law of the Sea (UNLOS) on December 10, 1982. Theodore C. Kariotis Part V of that Convention (more precisely, articles 55 to 75) provides for an EEZ “extending 200 nautical miles seaward from the coast.” If all coastal states thus exercised their jurisdiction over their own EEZs, some 38 million square nautical miles would become their “economic patrimony.” The oceans represent ... Read More »

Germany’s Manfred Weber warns of China ‘shopping spree’

European Union politician Manfred Weber says the bloc should stop Chinese companies from gaining too much power in key sectors. He also warned of the political implications of China’s Belt and Road project. Chase Winter Deutsche Welle The European Union should prevent Chinese firms from going on a “shopping spree,” buying up strategic assets, a top contender for the European Commission presidency said Saturday. Manfred Weber, the leader of the conservative European People’s Party (EPP), warned that the EU should ... Read More »

Government faces tense week over Brexit border plans

Cliff Taylor: Government would support long UK extension to avoid a no-deal nightmare The Irish Times The United Kingdom was meant to have left the European Union at 11pm last night. Now you can take your pick on Brexit day. April 12th. Later in April or early May. May 22nd. The end of the year. Some time in 2020. Another date of your choosing. Never. As this all develops over the next 10 days, there are tricky times ahead for the Irish ... Read More »

UK Parliament rejects Theresa May’s Brexit plan for the third time

London: UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit plan has been voted down again, in another heavy blow to both her premiership and her strategy for taking the UK out of the European Union. Nick Miller The Age The UK is now set for an April 12 Brexit deadline, when it will either crash out of the EU without a deal or have to come up with an alternative way forward and plead with the EU for another delay in order to ... Read More »

1100 mutilated dolphins found washed up on beaches in France

A record number of dolphins’ bodies have been found horribly mutilated on the French Atlantic coast. 9news AP What has shocked French marine researchers wasn’t just the brutality of the deaths of these highly intelligent mammals, but the numbers involved – a record 1,100 have landed on France’s beaches since January. The mass deaths, widely blamed on industrial fishing, have alarmed animal welfare groups and prompted France’s ecology minister to launch a national plan to protect them. “There’s never been ... Read More »

Brexit was designed to fail

Too big to fail? Please. The 2016 referendum on the United Kingdom’s membership in the European Union involved a constitutional question so large it was too big to succeed. The Week This is the only reason the national vote on Brexit was ever allowed to take place. Like Ted Heath and John Major before him, former British Prime Minister David Cameron found himself faced with the impossible task of placating the Tory Party’s right wing. His exceedingly clever answer was ... Read More »

Spain and Mexico’s centuries-old blame game

Mexican demand for apology for conquest has the potential to damage Pedro Sánchez’s electoral prospects. Diego Torres Politico MADRID — The latest diplomatic spat in Spain has been 500 years in the making. Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s demand that the king of Spain apologize for the abuses committed during the conquest has put pressure on Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez ahead of a national election and sparked debate on the issue of historic apologies. It has also raised questions ... Read More »

The Fall and Troubled Rise of a Ukrainian Populist

The country’s former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko is running to be president, but Ukraine’s allies worry she may endanger the country’s only plan for peace. Ian Bateson The Atlantic SLOVIANSK, Ukraine—Yulia Tymoshenko is nothing if not a crowd-pleaser. Running to be Ukraine’s next president, she has promised to triple pension payouts and halve heating-fuel charges; pushed to impeach the incumbent president, Petro Poroshenko, weeks before the presidential election; and said that immediately after being elected, she will close the country’s ... Read More »

The Eurozone’s Real Weakness

A new eurozone crisis would most likely have a less uneven effect than in 2008 or 2011, not least because its largest economies are currently weak. Lucrezia Reichlin Project Syndicate But if a recession hits, policymakers will find it hard to mount an effective response. LONDON – The 20th anniversary of the euro this year is a good time to reflect on the robustness of Europe’s monetary union. The memory of the last crisis, which began in the United States ... Read More »