Russia and Bulgaria have established a framework of agreements regarding the Bulgarian section of the South Stream gas pipeline and new gas contracts. But the negotiation process is still far from over, write Ewa Paszyc and Tomasz Dąborowski for Polish think-tank the Centre for Eastern Studies (OSW) in a July commentary.
Germany reiterated its position on Wednesday that it wants Turkey to be bound to Europe but added that it is not yet ready for EU membership. “Turkey's direction is Europe. We place great importance on deepening mutual ties and binding Turkey to Europe,” German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle told a joint news conference after breakfast with his Turkish counterpart, Ahmet Davutoğlu, in İstanbul.
The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) has agreed to "deploy without delay" a police advisory group to southern Kyrgyzstan.
The US Ambassador to Tajikistan, Ken Gross, announced on June 25 that the US plans to open a military training center in Tajikistan pending the signing of related agreements with the Tajik side. The proposed center, to be located 45 kilometers (km) from the capital, Dushanbe, would provide Tajik armed forces with counternarcotics and antiterrorist training. Gross emphasized that the center, with a price tag of $10 million, did not seek to establish a US military presence in Tajikistan.
Sikorski tour to Caucasus
Having already been pummeled by rising fuel prices and political instability in recent months, the creation of a Customs Union among Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia threatens to deal yet another economic blow to Kyrgyzstan, and is exerting pressure on Bishkek to decide whether to cast its lot with Moscow or the West.
The EU also approved a new list of sanctions against Iran.
The European Union is just months away from launching a new unified diplomatic service. But any hopes that the new structure will bring greater focus and effectiveness to the bloc's foreign policy are probably premature, analysts say.
Lithuania’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Audronius Ažubalis attended the European Union’s Foreign Affairs Council meeting, during which issues of Sudan and Iran, the Middle East peace process, the situation in the Western Balkans and Central Asia, and relations with the EU's strategic partners - India and Brazil – were discussed.
A six-year archive of classified military documents made public on Sunday offers an unvarnished, ground-level picture of the war in Afghanistan that is in many respects more grim than the official portrayal.
The political season from fall 2009 to summer 2010 was rich in landmark events. I have listed my top 10 events that shaped Russia’s foreign policy during that time and will have a strong impact on further developments.
On June 29-30, Astana hosted the High-Level OSCE Conference on Tolerance and Non-Discrimination, aimed to help in coping with obligations and promoting the OSCE values related to tolerance, non-discrimination and intercultural dialogue – the key priorities of Kazakhstan's chairmanship in 2010. Over 600 politicians and public figures from dozens of countries have discussed the value of legislative processes, law enforcement bodies, national education systems and mass media in combating public manifestations of intolerance and promoting the idea of mutual understanding through dialogue.
Amid the ongoing instability in southern Kyrgyzstan, and the possibility of renewed violence as the October 10 parliamentary elections approach, the country’s hydro-energy sector shows signs of gradual recovery. The interim government might be able to supply electricity throughout the upcoming cold season and avoid sharp increases in tariffs. Although electricity tariffs will need to be raised eventually, in order to sustain the sector and invest in new hydro-energy projects, the increases could be gradual.
Iran has expressed willingness to have talks with the European Union on its nuclear programme after the month of Ramadan ends in early September, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on Sunday.
While they will be celebrating in Pristina, and there is no doubt that in a broad sense this is a victory for Kosovo, yesterday's ruling opinion is far more complex.