Nieuws over politieke trainingen en ontwikkelingen in Oost- en Zuidoost Europa, de Kaukasus, Afrika en het Midden Oosten
On Saturday 31 May the Foundation for European Progressive Studies (FEPS) and the European Forum for Democracy and Solidarity held an expert meeting about the legitimacy of the EU and increasing civil engagement in order to revitalize the EU enlargement process. Researchers, academics and political foundations met in the Serbian capital of Belgrade to discuss these topics as part of the research program ‘Enhancing democracy pre and post EU accession - Citizens’ Europe’.
Het bezoek van de Amerikaanse vicepresident Biden beheerste de afgelopen week de kranten en nieuwssites, met voorbeschouwingen en exegese van Biden’s toespraken. De Roemeense campagne voor de Europese parlementsverkiezingen lijkt uitsluitend een aanloop te zijn naar de presidentsverkiezingen dit najaar.
With a majority of the votes counted, presidential candidate Petro Poroshenko seems to be the new president of Ukraine. Early presidential elections were held in Ukraine on Sunday 25 May as former president Yanukovych was ousted by the EuroMaidan revolution on 22 February. Poroshenko is expected to become president of a country in chaos. Two eastern regions declared independence and are plagued by violence as the country faces bankruptcy. The new president of Ukraine will be tasked with restoring peace and order in the country.
For the second night in a row, hundreds of Ethnic Macedonians, predominantly youth, clashed with police on the streets of the Macedonian capital Skopje. On the night of 20-21 six police officers were injured and 27 people got arrested. The riots broke out after the alleged murder of an ethnic 19-year-old Macedonian student by an ethnic Albanian on 19 May.
On Tuesday 20 May a court jury in Moscow convicted five men for the murder of rights activist and investigative journalist Anna Politkovskaya in 2006. Three of the defendants had previously been acquitted of any involvement in the murder. The defendants all face life imprisonment and announced they will appeal.
On 17 May a lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights march took place in Moldovan capital Chisinau. Around one hundred people participated. Next to this group, the same amount of people hold a protest against gay rights. This happened in Georgia as well on the same day, due to a newly adopted anti-discrimination law.
Armed forces stormed the Libyan parliament, the General National Congress (GNC) on 18 May, and demanded its suspension. Officials said the attackers killed two and wounded 55 people, while keeping at least 20 people hostage. The identity of the chaotic attackers was unclear, but loyalists of renegade general Khalifa Hafter claimed responsibility. By attacking the GNC, the gunmen directly challenged the legitimacy of the country’s central government which already struggles to gain authority over the country.
Meer dan 20 jaar na de Koude Oorlog en bijna 70 jaar na de Tweede Wereldoorlog leiden Europeanen een bestaan in vrede en veiligheid. De Europese Unie is een gemeenschap waarin de waarde van democratie en verdraagzaamheid vanzelfsprekend is geworden voor veel mensen. Toch is er de laatste tijd veel gebeurd waardoor de rust is verstoord.
On Tuesday 13 May the Secretary-General of the United Nation, Ban Ki-moon, announced that the Special Envoy to Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, will step down by the end of May. Brahimi expressed his regret for his inability to forge an international response to the violence in Syria. The 80-year-old Brahimi threatened to resign almost from the start of his mission in 2012. He succeeded Kofi Annan, who quit after six months and slammed the UN Security Council for failing to unite behind his efforts.
On 27 April dual elections took place in Macedonia. The opposition does not accept the results and refuses to take seat in parliament. These parties further boycotted the inauguration of president Gjorge Ivanov on 12 May and were absent at the ceremonial handing of Members of Parliament certificates on 7 May.