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  • EU’s Neighborhood & Enlargement Policy: A European Parliament Perspective

    On July 13, 2015, The European Institute held a breakfast discussion with The Honorable Andrej Plenkovic. Chairman of the European Parliament’s Delegation to the EU-Ukraine Parliamentary Association Committee and Vice-Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs.  Mr. Plenkovic previewed the European Union’s revision of its Common Security and Defense Policy; gave his assessment of  changes to the Union’s Neighborhood Policy; offered his perspective on the current situation in Ukraine and how the EU can most effectively reinforce peace initiatives and address rising economic and humanitarian needs; assessed the current situation in Southeastern Europe and managing prospects for EU enlargement, and shared his thoughts on the ongoing Greek debt crisis and the implications for both the Eurozone ad the European Union.

European Affairs

The Journal of the European Institute

European diplomacy and the Iranian nuclear negotiations

- By Garret Martin, European Affairs Editor at Large

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After twenty months of intense negotiations, the P5+1 countries – the United States, France, the United Kingdom, Germany, Russia and China – and Iran reached a landmark accord on 14 July to limit and monitor Teheran’s nuclear program. As part of the so-called Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action [hereafter JCPOA], Iran agreed to a number of concessions, including the following: reducing its number of centrifuges by two thirds; cutting its uranium stockpile by 98% and maintaining the remaining reserves at a low level of enrichment; redesigning the reactor of its heavy-water facility so that it cannot produce weapons-grade plutonium; and allowing the inspectors of the International Atomic Energy Agency to access any sites viewed as suspicious, as well as visiting military sites on request. Taken together, the P5+1 states believe that Iran’s break-out time – or period it would take to build an atomic weapon in the absence of the accord – has increased from two-three months to a year. In exchange for these concessions, Iran is expected to receive $100 billion in frozen assets and to witness the likely lifting of US, United Nations and EU sanctions that have crippled its economy – as long as it continues to stand by the terms of the 14 July deal.

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Financial Markets take Greek Crisis in Stride as Investors Focus on China, Oil Prices, and Political Instability

- By James D. Spellman, Strategic Communications LLC

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Financial markets have climbed and retreated with each twist and turn of the negotiations to address Greece’s debt burden and implement austerity measures, but these fluctuations – volleying between “Grelief rallies” and “Grexit angst” – in bond, stock, and Euro currency values have remained within a narrow band. Investors’ fears of “contagion” and the EU’s implosion are tempered for now.

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Book Review: "Once Upon A Time in Russia, The Rise of the Oligarchs, A True Story of Ambition, Wealth, Betrayal, and Murder" by Ben Mezrich

- By Jerrold Schecter, former Diplomatic Editor of Time Magazine and Time-Life Moscow Bureau Chief

JerroldSchecter‘Once upon a time’ is the way fairy tales begin. Ben Mezrich calls his tale “a dramatic narrative account” that runs from 1994 to 2013, tracing the rise, fall and death of oligarch Boris Berezovsky, interwoven with his partners, friends, and henchmen. They include the dour Georgian fixer-cum-advisor Badri Patarkatsishvili; his brilliant business partner Roman Abramovich; and former KGB and FSB (Federal Security Service) officer Alexander “Sasha” Litvinenko who refused to kill Berezovsky as ordered and fled to London where he was poisoned to death in 2006 by radioactive polonium 210.

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Resounding Oxi (“No”) Vote Means Uncharted Future for Greece and the EU

- By James D. Spellman, Strategic Communications LLC

Spellman 1After a week of shuttered banks and dueling rallies that drew tens of thousands of people, Greece’s voters resoundingly turned down a bailout package the ruling government vociferously opposed.  The landslide “no” vote on Sunday triggered many difficult questions for the country, leaders of EU countries, Brussels, and creditors — from the urgent, practical matters focused on reopening Greek banks Tuesday to the political consequences surrounding Greece’s future within the European Union.

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11th Hour Meeting Signals Optimism as Bailout for Greece Takes Shape

- By James D. Spellman, Strategic Communications LLC

Spellman 1EURO DEPOSIT WITHDRAWALS ESCALATE

As pressure on Greek’s banking system mounted with depositors queuing last week to withdraw €4 billion in savings, and the dire situation reverberating in financial markets, creditors today signaled that Athens’ latest package of reforms was “broadly welcomed” as a “positive step” in securing rescue funds needed to meet a key debt payment due June 30. The next 48 hours are critical in ironing out the details, officials said.

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OUR MUST READS

- Erin Kelly

"Russia--A Different Kind of Threat" by Eugene Rumer examines Russia as a superpower in decline, and how the challenge it poses to the United States is very different from that posed by the Soviet Union.

 
- Natalie Fahey

"EU-US Relations in a Changing World," a speech given in London by His Excellency David O’Sullivan, the European Union's Ambassador to the United States, as a part of Trinity College Dublin's Henry Grattan Lecture series.

 
- Jamie Connolly

Washington Post, June 22—Excellent piece on the roots of the Internet’s vulnerability to hackers, featuring early “grey hat” hacker group, known as “the Lopht” who testified in1998 to a Senate panel that the whole system, network, hardwire and software was riddled with weaknesses that would permit easy intrusion. This is the third of a multi-part series in the Post on security issues with the internet. Recommended by European Affairs.

 

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OUR NEWSROOM

"EU Energy Policy - Challenges & Solutions" with Lithuanian Energy Minister Jaroslav Neverovic in The Lithuanian Tribune: "Energy Minister Neverovic discussed EU Energy Policy in Washington DC" by Virginijus Sinkevicius

The European Institute's event with Julie Brill & Jan Philipp Albrecht on "Data Protection, Privacy & Security" in The Hill: "Overnight Tech: Showdown on Spying" by Kate Tummarello & Brendan Sasso

The European Institute's event on "Data Protection, Privacy & Security: Re-Establishing Trust between Europe & the United States" in POLITICO: "EU to D.C.: Friends 'do not spy on each other'" by Tony Romm & Erin Mershon

The European Institute's event with Natalia Gherman, Foreign Minister of Moldova in Radio Free Europe: "Moldova's Foreign Minister Seeks U.S. Political, Economic Support"   

The Honorable Richard Bruton T.D., Irish Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation at The European Institute in The Irish Times: "Multinationals to advise on tax scheme" by Simon Carswell

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