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  • Future Tense: What Next for Catalonia?

    Catalonia’s controversial independence referendum has left Spain with many unanswered questions and an unclear path forward, according to Carles Castello-Catchot, chief of staff in the Atlantic Council’s Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security.

    On October 1, the regional government of Catalonia in northern Spain went ahead with a referendum that Spain’s constitutional court had deemed illegal. A majority of the 2.3 million people who voted in the referendum favored independence for Catalonia. The Catalan government has announced it will move forward with a declaration of independence forty-eight hours after the election.

    The competing narratives have left the country “in a legal black hole where everything is up for discussion,” Castello-Catchot said in a Facebook Live interview on October 2. 

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  • Merkel’s Re-Election Seen as Good News for Transatlantic Ties

    Germany’s Ambassador to the United States, Peter Wittig, cites ‘stability’

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s re-election to a fourth term on September 24 is good news for the United States, which can continue to rely on Germany to be a “great transatlantic partner,” Germany’s Ambassador to the United States, Peter Wittig, said in an interview.

    “It is good news in terms of continuity, reliability of our country, of its role in Europe, of its role in the world,” Wittig said.

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  • German Election Analysis with Ambassador Wittig


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  • International Effort Needed to Address Crisis in Venezuela

     While US sanctions on Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro present a smart, targeted response, a coordinated international approach is necessary to address the political and humanitarian crises in Venezuela, according to two Atlantic Council analysts.

    “The United States can’t go it alone,” said Jason Marczak, director of the Latin America Economic Growth Initiative in the Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center. However, he added, “the international community, by and large, has not coalesced around this crisis.”

    This constitutes a “failure” on the part of the international community, said Andrea Saldarriaga Jiménez, assistant director of the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center.

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  • After the Vote: What's Next for Venezuela?


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  • The Politics of Russia Sanctions

    The Russia sanctions bill passed overwhelmingly by the US House of Representatives on July 25 is a “strong” piece of legislation that makes it clear that the United States must work jointly with its European allies to impose those sanctions, according to Daniel Fried, a distinguished fellow at the Atlantic Council.

    “[The House bill] locks in the sanctions against Russia because of Ukraine; locks them in because of congressional concerns that the Trump administration is going to unilaterally lift them,” said Fried, who served as the State Department’s coordinator for sanctions policy in the Obama administration.

    Fried spoke in a Facebook Live discussion with Ellen Scholl, an associate director in the Atlantic Council’s Global Energy Center, on July 24. The following day, the House approved the sanctions legislation, which targets Russia, Iran, and North Korea, by a 419-3 vote.

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  • Russia Sanctions Legislation and Energy


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  • Cyberattack in the Gulf


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  • Interview with LTG Ben Hodges


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  • Trump in Europe: What's Next?


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