In the 2018 Saeima elections in Latvia, the Social Democratic Party Harmony emerged victorious, although its total seats in the parliament decreased. Harmony must however share the power with new parties which are going to replace the traditional ones in Latvian Parliament. Riga-based political analyst Toms Rātfelders provides insight into post-election Latvian politics.      Abbas...

A safari for Wagner (by Andrey Kamakin) 13 July 2018 This piece, first published in June 2018, has been republished following the tragic death of   three Russian journalists of the highest caliber in Central African Republic. The author discusses the role of so-called “Wagner”, a private military unit now ubiquitously claimed to be on the forefront of Russian geopolitical affairs but...

Macron Has Changed France’s Political DNA (by James Traub) 5 June 2018 James Traub, contemplating about the major outcomes of the first year of Emmanuel Macron’s presidency in France, claims that he has managed to bring a substantially new approach to the country’ politics. Being rightly seen as technocratic and a supporter of top-down governance, Macron, in order to overcome the...

The plan for a UN peacekeeping mission in the Donbas and stakes of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict Whatever its eventual outcomes, the 2018-2019 electoral seasons in Russia and Ukraine are and will be changing Eastern Europe’s political landscape. The Russian presidential elections of March this year and their current and future reverberations in Moscow’s power corridors as well as the...

There are some questions how Russia would look after Putin`s expected re-election in March 2018. Whether Russia can attempt some changes internally and how West-Russia confrontation will develop interest almost everyone. Professor Andrey Makarychev from the University of Tartu shares his opinion on in a number of issues, including Russia`s external and internal policy, Russian world.   ...

On 8 April 2018, parliamentary election is to take place in Hungary. Though the victory of the ruling Fidesz led by Prime Minister Victor Orban is all but sealed, probably the most important thing about this election is the rise of Jobbik as a key opposition force in Hungary and a broader story about these two parties that may have big implications for many European countries that are now facing an...

Trump Is the Peacemaker Korea Has Always Needed (by Patrick M. Cronin) 9 March 2018 In this piece by Patrick M.Cronin on Foreign Policy, the author reflects his belief that Donald Trump will play decisive role in building peace between North and South Korea, thanks to his announcement to be the first sitting president to meet the North Korean supreme leader. Cronin states that the relationship between the...

France’s secular ayatollahs (by Paul Taylor) 5 March 2018 In our previous edition, we have touched upon the French problem of integrating Muslims in the French society and President Macron’s attempts to handle this problem. At Politico, Paul Taylor contemplates about the different aspect of the problem: the phenomenon of French militant secularists allergic to any hint of religious presence in...

Iran may pull out of the nuclear deal before the US (by Massoumeh Torfeh)  1 March 2018 In the opinion piece by Massoumeh Torfeh, she claims that Iran will leave a nuclear deal (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)) if it cannot gain economic benefits from it. Meanwhile, the author talks about Trump’s desire to increase sanctions against Iran and his violation of deal through creating...

Sixty-four candidates have applied for registration to the March 2018 presidential elections in the Russian Federation. Many names are familiar, such as Liberal Democratic leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky (now 71) and Yabloko leader Grigory Yavlinsky (65), but others are new, including the nominee of the official Communist Party, Pavel Grudinin and socialite Ksenia Sobchak, well known as a TV star and the...

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