China's Increasing Security Buffer on Its Western Frontier

An increasingly important component of Beijing's Belt and Road Initiative can be found in the Central Asian corridor that connects China and Afghanistan. China has been expanding its economic and security cooperation in Central Asia in recent years. Reports this week that China plans to build a military base for Afghanistan's armed forces in the northeastern province of Badakhshan suggest that the strategic yet perennially unstable country is quickly following through on the plan.

Preparations for July Summit NATO


NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg welcomed President Borut Pahor of Slovenia to NATO Headquarters for discussions about the Alliance’s adaptation and preparations for the NATO Summit in July. Mr. Stoltenberg thanked Slovenia for important contributions to NATO, including troops to the KFOR mission, contributions to the Alliance’s mission in Afghanistan and to a NATO multinational battlegroup in Latvia.

Snowmeeting 2018

On 11-12 January, ICDS Head of Studies and Research Fellow Tomas Jermalavičius participated in a traditional Snowmeeting—a high level foreign and security policy conference organised by the Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

NATO Secretary General welcomes deepening cooperation with Sweden


NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg welcomed Sweden’s important contributions to the Alliance at the Folk och Försvar Security Conference in Sälen on Sunday (14 January 2018). In a keynote speech, the Secretary General outlined NATO’s adaptation to a challenging security environment. He stressed the importance of the close cooperation with Nordic partners like Sweden helps to strengthen security in the region.

Germany’s Coalition that Couldn’t, and the Mess It Leaves

By Thomas Kleine-Brockhoff

Sunday a political earthquake hit Germany.  The Liberals — one of four parties in talks to form the new government following September’s election – withdrew from the talks, removing Merkel’s only remaining coalition option. Thus for the first time since 1949, there is no majority grouping willing to form a government. The stable colossus in the middle of Europe is suddenly unstable. This will have severe consequences. Some of the ripple effects are unknowable at this point, put even the likely consequences are remarkable.

NATO successfully finishes clearing unexploded ordnance at site in Georgia

NATO has successfully completed a three-year project to clear unexploded ordnance from an ammunition depot in central Georgia. A closing ceremony for the Georgia IV NATO Trust Fund project was held on 7 November 2017 in Tbilisi,   attended by more than 70 guests including NATO and partner nations’ Ambassadors and Defence Attaches, as well as senior NATO and Georgian Government representatives.