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Chapter 14 - EU and Eastern Europe: The case for continued engagement






Eastern Europe / BOOK
Dimitar Bechev

Date: 17/04/2019
Dimitar Bechev’s contribution ‘EU and Eastern Europe: The case for continued engagement’ states that a decade ago, the EU went on a mission to change Eastern Europe in its own image. However, it is on the defensive now. The Russian challenge and the ongoing war in Ukraine shifted the EU’s focus from economic integration to crisis management. Dealing with an assertive Russia overshadows all other objectives, he argues. While the Union has not given up on its role as a champion of reforms in the eastern neighbourhood, its overriding concern is the mounting instability at its doorstep. The challenge the EU faces vis-à-vis both Russia and the Eastern neighbours is striking the right balance between engagement, the assertion of European interests and values and, in the case of Russia, containment.


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