French ambassador to the United States, Gérard Araud, sees ‘a very dark moment’ for his countryFrance, a victim of terrorist attacks for the past nineteen months, is facing its greatest security challenge since World War II, according to Gérard Araud, France’s ambassador to the United States.
“It is a very, very dark moment for my country,” said Araud. “It is obviously the biggest threat that France really has been facing since 1945.”
“It is a threat against our security, but it is also a threat against our values, the social fabric of our country,” he added.
Cooperation among European law enforcement agencies is a ‘big challenge,’ says Atlantic Council’s Fran BurwellA spate of terrorist attacks across Europe over the past nineteen months has shaken confidence in European security, but has had divergent impacts on the popularity of the leaders of France and Germany, according to the Atlantic Council’s Fran Burwell.
While German Chancellor Angela Merkel has seen a rise in support, French President François Hollande has found his already low approval ratings dip further.
“The insecurity has…led to the revival of Mutti Merkel,” said Burwell, vice president, European Union and Special Initiatives, at the Atlantic Council. The chancellor, who is viewed by the German public as a steady pair of hands that would take care of the issues in society, earned the nickname Mutti Merkel—the mother of the German family. Merkel’s warm welcome to migrants fleeing war zones in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan temporarily diminished this admiration as she was seen as having overstepped her bounds by being too generous. Germany registered close to one million asylum seekers in 2015.
It would be easy to dismiss Sheremet’s murder as an outlier. Unfortunately, it’s anything but. His death is merely the most drastic example of the steady deterioration of press freedom in Ukraine in recent months.
One day before Sheremet’s murder, Maria Rydvan, the editor of Forbes Ukraine, was stabbed three times in Kyiv; she had been walking in the park of the Kyiv Polytechnic Institute. Fortunately her injuries were only minor.
On July 25, the head of Business Censor, Sergei Golovnyova, was beaten in the well-to-do Podil section of Kyiv by two men who took nothing from him.
“There will be no EU accession. Whatever the Europeans want to do with regard to post-coup…Europe is subject to the implicit Turkish threat to send large numbers of refugees to Europe. The Turks have Brussels over a barrel on that issue especially given the way that politics are playing themselves out within European capitals,” said Steven Cook, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.
Savchenko is Ukraine’s most trusted politician, but this was her first real intervention into retail politics and she seemed authentically repulsed by the workings of the electoral process in Ukraine. To the delight of the television cameras and gathered journalists, Savchenko denounced the process as irrevocably flawed in a series of characteristically fiery appearances outside of the district election office. She later told me that she expected to write her own election law and that she herself was a “one term MP” with no interest in contesting a second term.
Savchenko would not be the first observer of Ukraine’s elections to conclude that the process requires a drastic dose of professionalization. Indeed, reforming Ukraine’s deeply flawed election system might be a Herculean task that can be accomplished only by a belligerent saint.
In October 2015, the Ukrainian parliament adopted Law No. 731-19; in its initial version, this draft law introduced state financing for political parties that received more than three percent in the 2014 parliamentary elections. This particular threshold would have been to the advantage of smaller parties which did not make it into parliament two years ago; some of these, like Anatoliy Hrytsenko’s Civic Position, are built with no or only a little oligarchic financing.
“There’s no doubt about the fact that this is a negative shock to growth,” Paul Sheard, executive vice president and chief economist at S&P Global, said of the British referendum. “In many ways, it’s worse for the Eurozone than it is for the United Kingdom,” he added.
“In the West, there is this tendency to focus on the purge and how many people have lost their jobs. In Turkey, everybody is still shell-shocked about what happened on [July 15] and are picking up the pieces and trying to reconcile a very traumatic event in their history,” said Stein, a resident senior fellow in the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East.
“The concern in Turkey is that unlike France, in particular, the legacy of strong democratic institutions is just not there,” he added.
The Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) plenary meeting in Seoul ended on June 24 without resolving India’s request to join the group. The final statement issued at the conclusion of the meeting lacked an explicit reference to India’s application to join or an outline for a future course of action. With the exceptional waiver granted by the NSG to India in 2008, membership in the group should have been a relatively straightforward decision. However, larger geopolitical factors contributed to the stalemate.