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Testing Europe's Unity

The Atlantic Council kicked off the second day of the conference “Toward a Europe Whole and Free” with a keynote conversation featuring José Manuel Durão Barroso, president of the European Commission. With the crisis in Ukraine unfolding, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations on the agenda, and the European Parliament elections quickly approaching, President Barroso outlined how these developments pose both opportunities and challenges for Europe’s unity.

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The Hill cites the Atlantic Council for honoring Ukrainian singer and activist Ruslana Lyzhychko at its annual Distinguished Leadership Awards dinner:

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Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center Deputy Director Jason Marczak is quoted by the Latin Business Chronicle on whether business travelers should be concerned by the safety situation in Mexico border cities:

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Highlights from the Atlantic Council’s “Europe Whole and Free” Conference


WASHINGTON – US Secretary of State John Kerry today advised Russia to “leave Ukraine in peace.” Kerry restated US support for NATO allies and Ukraine in the face of Russian-backed attacks in eastern Ukrainian cities.

Kerry spoke at a two-day conference on the future of Europe sponsored by the Atlantic Council. In front of government ministers from countries in eastern and southeastern Europe, he condemned the Kremlin for what he called its “zero” in implementing this month’s Geneva agreement meant to de-escalate the crisis. Russia has taken “not one single step” to fulfill the agreement, he said, adding that the conflict is a “wakeup call for us” in the NATO alliance.

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Heads of state and government from all 28 NATO nations will convene at the 2014 NATO Summit in Wales this September to reaffirm the importance of the Trans-Atlantic bond and build a strong foundation for its future. To help Alliance leaders accomplish this task, NATO has commissioned a working group of emerging leaders from member countries to provide concrete ideas and proposals that support a renewed Trans-Atlantic bond and has asked the Atlantic Council to facilitate this process. The Council selected a representative group of fifteen exceptional emerging leaders to participate in the working group.

At the Atlantic Council's Toward a Europe Whole and Free conference in Washington, DC on April 29-30, 2014, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, NATO Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy, and James L. Jones, chairman of the Council's Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security and former national security advisor, introduced the initiative and the fifteen emerging leaders. Peter Westmacott, British ambassador to the United States, provided concluding remarks.

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A panel discussion on the Origins of a Europe Whole and Free stepped back from the current issues facing the transatlantic community to reconsider the decisive moment of European history in 1989-1990, when the Berlin Wall was toppled and, within months, the entire edifice of Eastern Europe’s communist rule. The former national security advisors of the United States and Germany, Brent Scowcroft and Horst Teltschik, joined Dutch Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans and moderator Jim Hoagland of the Washington Post in the conversation, in which this history became a lens for viewing the recent months’ crisis in Ukraine.

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This special panel on Defining a Strategy for Europe's East included national leaders from Lithuania, which hosted the last EU summit on the Eastern Partnership, and from Latvia, which will host the next Eastern Partnership summit in 2015.

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Toward a Europe Whole and Free Panel Explores Growth of Southern Europe

After an eventful start to the two-day conference “Toward a Europe Whole and Free,” and immediately following keynote remarks by US Secretary of State John Kerry, the Atlantic Council held a moderated panel discussion on “Consolidating Europe’s South” with four ministers from the region.

H.E. Ditmir Bushati, minister of foreign affairs of Albania; H.E. Igor Luksic, deputy prime minister and minister of foreign affairs and integration of Montenegro; H.E. Nikola Poposki, minister of foreign affairs of Macedonia; and H.E. Kristian Vigenin, minister of foreign affairs of Bulgaria all featured on the panel. Atlantic Council Senior Fellow Ian Brzezinski moderated the discussion.

At a time when events in Ukraine have dominated recent international news, the panel on Europe’s South considered the growth of a region that has itself experienced significant periods of conflict.  

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Cyber Statecraft Initiative Director Jason Healey co-writes for the Denver Post on how managing Internet risks can help prevent future cyber catastrophes:

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VP and Transatlantic Relations Program Frances G. Burwell is quoted by Agence France-Presse on what the Ukraine crisis means for concerns regarding the NSA ahead of talks between President Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel:

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