European Union

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Ukraine’s Path to EU Membership: How to Turn a Geopolitical Necessity into a Viable Process

Ukraine is applying for EU membership at a time when Russia has attacked it in a war of choice. The European Commission is expected to present its opinion on Ukraine’s application in mid-June, to be followed by a decision of the European Council on 23–24 June. While public opinion across the EU has turned largely supportive of membership for Ukraine, official positions remain divided between strong support, mainly in the Eastern member states, and a more reserved position elsewhere.

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Geopolitics of Europe’s Hydrogen Aspirations: Creating Sustainable Equilibrium or a Combustible Mix?

Discussions about hydrogen’s role in the transition to carbon-neutral economies and the EU’s Green Deal seldom include consideration of geopolitical aspects and/or national security imperatives. However, given the importance of energy as a factor in global and regional geopolitical trends and national security, hydrogen development will reshape not only energy relations between countries but will also alter the broader geopolitical picture.

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The Contours of a New Western Russia Strategy

In this Brief, Kristi Raik explores the profound changes in the EU’s and NATO’s Russia strategy following the invasion of Ukraine. Russia is now approached as an adversary and existential threat not just to Ukraine, but to European and international rules-based security order. She highlights two major factors – enhancing Ukraine’s and NATO’s defence vis à vis Russia and isolating the Russian economy from the West – as key elements of an emerging new Western strategy.

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From Rome to Kyiv, Passing Through Moscow: Russian Strategic Narratives in the Italian Public Discourse on Ukraine

The current Italian government strongly supports Ukraine’s efforts to defend itself against Russia’s invasion. This support, mobilised under the leadership of Prime Minister Mario Draghi, is quite remarkable given the widespread perceptions of Russia and Ukraine that have been circulating in the Italian society. For years, the Italian public discourse has been influenced by the strategic narratives favourable to the Kremlin’s interests and damaging those of Ukraine.

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French President Emmanuel Macron and Russian President Vladimir Putin attend a joint press conference, in Moscow, Russia on February 7, 2022.

What Went Wrong with Macron’s Diplomacy vis à vis Russia?

In recent weeks, French President Emmanuel Macron has taken a leading role in European diplomatic efforts to get the Russia-Ukraine conflict back from the brink of a major war. He deserves credit for his efforts to de-escalate tensions and strengthen Europe’s role in discussions over European security. However, his activity has met with a considerable degree of suspicion especially in Central and Eastern European countries, at least partly for legitimate reasons. This analysis examines three sets of explanations for this suspicion.

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