Between Two Strategies: More or Less Role for the EU in the Eastern Neighborhood

Ukraine, Georgia, ESGA

In December 2016, the EU has launched ‘Eastern Partnership – 20 Deliverables for 2020’, establishing a set of key priorities for the future of the EaP. This document, revised in June 2017, is aiming ‘to act as a work plan guiding the actions in the next phase of the EaP until 2020’, with tangible objectives for all the four platforms on the multilateral track. In terms of security, the EU 20 deliverables for the six Eastern neighbors are mainly looking to respond to the possible threats for its internal security, without addressing the negotiations for the resolution of the separatist conflicts in the East. While the explanations for the lack of deliverables in this area are both domestic and external, the EU member states seem to neglect the prospect of enhancing the EU involvement in the discussion format for the post-Soviet regional conflicts.

This policy paper looks to analyze the EU participation in the conflict management across the EaP in the time framework between the two security strategies – European Security Strategy (2003) and European Global Strategy (2016). By underling the differences between the EU strategic discourse emphasized in ESS and EUGS on the one hand and the EU behavior in the case of the Georgian war (2008) and the Ukrainian crisis on the other hand, our aim is to highlight the positive and negative aspects of the its modus operandi in this region. Furthermore, this study concludes with recommendations for improving the EaP security agenda and extending EU influence in the Eastern Neighbourhood and the ‘frozen’ conflict regions in the context of 2020 deliverables.

Policy Paper PDF (2017)

Authors: Mihai Mogildea, Tinatin Tsereteli

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