In line with an instruction from President Vladimir Putin, in December 2017 the Russian Prosecutor General’s Office, in conjunction with Rosobornadzor [Federal Service for Supervision in Education and Science], presented a report on the voluntary study of national languages in Russian schools. Since September 2017 an inspection had been conducted on “a verification of compliance in 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...

A coin for the U.S.-North Korea summit. May, 2018. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)    South-East Asia: lots of elections, not so much democracy 26 May 2018 The Economist piece emphasizes the lack of democracy in South-East Asia and states while only one state can be categorized as wholly free (East Timor), remaining countries are either partly free or not free at all. The author also states that this...

Two of the most important directions of anti-Western thinking in today Russia are classical Eurasianism that originated outside the Soviet Union, in the 1920s-1930s, and post-Soviet, so-called “neo-Eurasianism.” The latter school of thought is far better known in the West than the former, and often also simply called “Eurasianism.” It has been, from the end of the 1980s, principally...

More than two decades under Lukashenka, Belarus has become a unique state in Europe. It is a hybrid of Soviet past and pro-Russian present. Yet, the authorities emphasize the country`s independence from Russia from time to time. Prof. David R. Marples from the University of Alberta shares his opinion how the current Belarus moves forward in both internal and external dimensions.    Huseynov:...

Third and final part of the interview with Roza Otunbayeva. In this section of the interview with Christian Eccher, the former President of Kyrgyzstan reflects on the future of her country and on Bishkek's relations with the other Central Asian countries. The first part of the interview is available here. The second part is instead available here.   The relations with Kazakhstan have been tense since...

Japan, China and South Korea get together 10 May 2018 This piece analyzes Mr. Abe’s invitation sent to the Chinese prime minister and the South Korean president, to come to Tokyo, and relates this step to Donald Trump’s recent steps towards North Korea. Furthermore, it states that the main push for this action had to do uncertainty over American role in the Pacific, as well as a possible trade...

The revolutionary events in Armenia are approaching their logical end, and unless something totally unexpected happens in the upcoming couple of days, the protest leader Nikol Pashinyan should be elected as the country’s new Prime Minister, de-facto head of state. Unfolding in such an expected and quickly manner, this process was bound to confuse many observers and analysts alike and give way to a...

The term Matryoshka-nationalism comes from the name of a wooden Russian doll called matryoshka which, reveals another, smaller doll inside, with the latter containing an even smaller doll.  The notion of Matryoshka-nationalism as a specific phenomenon of post-Soviet nationalism refers to separatist movements that emerged upon the dissolution of the USSR and implies the existence of a smaller ethnic...

As a part of the DESCnet and Jean Monnet sponsored initiative to enhance the level of European Studies in the Caucasus region, Yeditepe University is glad to host the Summer School: "European Integration and Rivalry between Regional Integration Systems in the South Caucasus" on 9-13 July 2018, Istanbul (Turkey). The school hopes to increase the network of the nine DESCnet member institutions by...

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