The harsh foreign sanctions that have been damaging Iran`s economy are dragging the regime to one of the hardest tests ever. Domestic protests and the government`s assertive reaction are complicating the situation day by day, with outside forces observing how it will further develop. We talked to Dr. Theodore Karasik, Senior Advisor, Gulf State Analytics and Ali Hajizade, Founder and Editor,...

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...

The election of Donald Trump was an extraordinary moment in American history. It surprised pundits, analysts and almost everybody who was observing the presidential primaries and campaigns in the 2016 election. At the forefront of Trump’s rhetoric was the slogan: “Make America Great Again”, which mobilized a large group of Americans who felt left out of the positive impact of economic...

  The 2014 annexation of Crimea by Russia influenced not only geopolitics and international law, but also the lives of local people, most of all, the Crimean Tatars, the indigenous population of the peninsula. To discuss the post-2014 situation of the Crimean Tatars, The Topchubashov Center interviews Prof. Natalya Belitser whose area of expertise includes issues of interethnic relations, minorities...

The Topchubashov Center is delighted to present you an interview with Murad Gassanly (PhD), an energy politics researcher and the first ever person from Azerbaijan to be elected to the municipality council in the United Kingdom. Currently, he represents the Conservative Party and serves for his second term as the Westminster City Councillor. The interview covers both the pressing issues of British domestic...

Although a number of surveys and studies about migration in the South Caucasus have been conducted, empirical researches about brain drain from the region is limited, especially after 2015, which is a breakpoint for regional states due to the falling oil prices and slowdown of Russian economy. In this regard, the aim of this study is to discuss the brain drain in the region, analyse the stimulating factors...

  Good Oligarch, Bad Oligarch (by Vladislav Inozemtsev) 31 July 2018   Vladislav Inozemtsev argues that the policy of marginalizing and stifling virtually all of the so-called Russian oligarchs is counter-productive and will only bring them into Putin’s warm embrace. Instead, he proposes to distinguish between those billionaires who actively endorse and finance the Russian...

Greece exits its bail-out programme, but its marathon has further to go 2 August 2018 The Economist discusses the current state of Greek economy which has recently been emboldened by two years of GDP growth and the official termination of the third, last round of the IMF bailout pending this August. However, long-term structural problems- low productivity, weak economic dynamic, not particularly...

The BDM Poll Ukrainians love opinion polls and survey organizations proliferate faster than political parties. As both presidential and parliamentary elections approach in 2019, and in that order, it is perhaps not surprising that virtually every month sees a new poll, offering prognoses on the next president or the parties that will acquire seats in the Narodna Rada. From 12 to 25 July, the Mykolaiv-based...

Uncertain territory. The strange life and curious sustainability of de facto states (by Thomas de Waal) 26 April 2018 In his new essay, Thomas de Waal raises a challenging question about the unexpected persistence of unrecognized post-Soviet states, as well as Northern Cyprus, which managed to establish regular civil life despite being more or less de-jure cut off from the world. He mentions that none of...

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