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Issue 3/2024: South Caucasus out of balance

How the region struggles to break free from the shadow of conflict. Issue 3/2024 is now available for purchase and download!

April 11, 2024 - New Eastern Europe - Issue 3 2024Magazine

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Throughout history the region of the South Caucasus, which is made up of the countries of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia, has found itself at the crossroads of geopolitics. This observation is definitely relevant today. The region is surrounded by neighbouring powers such as Russia, Iran, Turkey and the European Union, all of which have a significant impact on the region’s present and future trajectory. In this issue, our authors explore how conflict has overshadowed this region and remains the greater barrier to long-term development and a democratic future. 
In particular, the role of Russia since the fall of the Soviet Union has negatively affected the balance of the region and continues to do so till this day. Twenty per cent of Georgian territory remains occupied by Russia or pro-Russian forces, which led to huge challenges for the country internally. The arrival of Russians en masse to Georgia following the invasion of Ukraine only further complicates the situation locally. Nevertheless, ahead of this year’s elections, the ruling Georgian Dream party feels emboldened to maintain its power, but will it be at the cost of its path towards Euro-Atlantic integration? 
Similarly, the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict has seemingly come to an end as a result of the Septembter 2023 Azerbaijani offensive to take the territory. This was achieved also as a result of Russia not carrying out its promise to maintain the peace as agreed in 2020 following the 44-day war between Armenia and Azerbaijan. In the wake of the 2023 offensive, more than 120,000 ethnic Armenians have fled their homes, without any prospect to return, raising questions about the region’s ability to achieve stability and prosperity. 
Thus, understanding the dynamics of the South Caucasus is crucial for comprehending the broader geopolitical shifts. The repercussions of Russia’s actions in Ukraine underscore the interconnectedness of stability, security and regional dynamics, emphasizing the urgency of addressing other related conflicts such as those in the South Caucasus.
Through the analyses, perspectives and stories presented in this issue, we aim to shed light on the complexities of this region and explore pathways towards a more peaceful and prosperous future. 

South Caucasus out of Balance

The legacy of the displaced in the South Caucasus. From yesterday till today Jennifer S. Wistrand
Is peace possible between Armenia and Azerbaijan? Ahmad Alili
Navigating the new reality. Armenians seeking adjustment after leaving Nagorno-Karabakh Razmik Martirosyan
“In these difficult times the EU and Armenia stand shoulder to shoulder” Valentina Gevorgyan
Ivanishvili’s third coming. Georgian democracy ahead of elections Nino Chanadiri
Is Abkhazia being absorbed by Russia? Mamuka Komakhia
Occupiers declare war against Georgian language in Abkhazia Tamuna Shonia
Constant escape. How women live in Khurcha, near the occupation line Manana Kveliashvili

Essays and analysis

It is time to take the improvement of the Ukraine-EU border seriously Lesia Dubenko
Defence diplomacy. Ukraine and the Global South Omar Ashour
Henry Kissinger’s legacy and European geopolitics Erekle Iantbelidze
Another Russia is possible Jesse Sokolov
A super elections year. Romania’s 2024 political landscape Eugen Stancu
The double murder that traumatized North Macedonia Jovan Gjorgovski 
The rise of the pro-Putin Revival party in Bulgaria Radosveta Vassileva
Empire or democracy Tomasz Kamusella


The Orthodox churches still think in imperial terms An interview with Cyril Hovorun

Stories and ideas

“Winter is a constant struggle for survival.” On the Avdiivka front, the challenges faced by Ukrainian paramedics in the cold Joseph Roche
Who are the Russians fighting on the side of Ukraine Agnieszka Pikulicka-Wilczewska
Minority communities and their future in Ukraine. The case of Roma Stephan Müller, Natali Tomenko and Volodomyr Yakovenko

Art, culture and society

Murivat Beknazarov’s art as memory Karolina Kluczewska
Serbian director finds way to confront dark past JP O’Malley
Through empathy you also become a witness An interview with Marianna Kiyanovska

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