Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia

Armenia: Why the European Neighbourhood Policy has failed

By Nelli Babayan (23/02/2011) Policy Brief

The EU has failed to use either the European Neighbourhood Policy or the Eastern Partnership to leverage reform in Armenia. Armenia saw its inclusion in the Eastern Partnership as a path to gaining EU membership and a way of resolving ongoing problems with its neighbours. However the EU is neither actively involved in conflict resolution nor strongly committed to closer political integration with its Eastern partners.

The EU and Belarus after the election

AFP/Getty Images

The post-election crackdown in Belarus was a sign of the regime’s weakness, not of its strength. The EU has an opportunity to regain the initiative in its relationship with the country. It should follow a combination of targeted and ‘smart’ isolation, selective sanctions and engagement.

The EU's Interests in Central Asia: Integrating Energy, Security and Values into Coherent Policy

The European Union and Central Asia are increasingly becoming neighbours. Through the 2007 EU Strategy for Central Asia, Brussels has been stepping up engagement with the region on many policy areas.

The EU and the Western Balkans: preparing for the long-haul

By Judy Batt (02/12/2010) Policy Brief
Getty Images/AFP

Several Western Balkans states have taken steps towards EU integration, but the region will have to work hard for many years before it is ready to join. The upcoming accession of Croatia should serve as an example to speed up the pace of reform. Meanwhile, EU concerns with its huge internal problems could delay enlargement even further.

Elections in Belarus: regime change?

By Balázs Jarábik (24/11/2010) Policy Brief
AFP/Getty Images

Belarus’ presidential elections, on 19 December, come at a difficult moment for the country. Belarusians are ready for change, but Lukashenka is expected to remain in power. With no serious challenger, the biggest threat to his success is the turnout.

Russia's Machiavellian support for democracy


Russia is raising its voice as an avid democracy promoter. Is it a genuine call for freedom or just a masquerade to preserve its power in the region?

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Dear Friends and Colleagues,

FRIDE ceased its think tank activities on 31st December 2015 for economic reasons. The Board of Trustees had to take this difficult decision since, despite many efforts to diversify its funding sources, FRIDE cannot sustain its think tank operations with a view to 2016 and beyond.

Established in 1999, FRIDE has made a major contribution to shape debate on Europe’s external activities in an increasingly challenging international environment. It has covered issues ranging from democracy and human rights to sustainable development, new approaches to multilateral cooperation and security affairs. FRIDE’s long-standing focus on the extended neighbourhood of the European Union proves today all the more relevant given widespread turbulence in the region. FRIDE’s emphasis on the importance of the values framing Europe’s external activities is central to current political debates in Europe and beyond. This shows the need for continued engagement in the pursuit of a common European foreign policy that is both effective and informed by the core values of European integration.

The Board wishes to thank Diego Hidalgo, FRIDE’s founder, for his tireless commitment and very generous support for many years. The Board also wishes to thank FRIDE’s dedicated staff, the members of the Board and the Advisory Committee for their contribution in making FRIDE one of the top foreign policy think tanks in Europe. We are very grateful to all those who have supported FRIDE’s work and projects over the years and we thank the many partners from all parts of the world who have worked with FRIDE on joint initiatives. We hope that FRIDE’s extensive input to the debate on Europe in the world will continue to inform thinking and action at a very critical time for Europe’s future.

The President of the Board

FRIDE cesó sus actividades como think tank el 31 de diciembre de 2015 por razones económicas. El Patronato tuvo que adoptar esta difícil decisión dado que, a pesar de los intensos esfuerzos realizados para diversificar sus fuentes de financiación, FRIDE no puede sostener sus operaciones como think tank a partir de 2016.

Establecido en 1999, FRIDE ha realizado una gran contribución al debate sobre las actividades exteriores de Europa en un ambiente internacional cada vez más complejo. Ha trabajado en temas que van desde la democracia y los derechos humanos al desarrollo sostenible, los nuevos enfoques en la cooperación multilateral y las cuestiones de seguridad. La atención prestada por FRIDE a la vecindad extendida de la Unión Europea durante mucho tiempo prueba ser hoy aún más relevante debido a la turbulencia que azota a la región. El énfasis de FRIDE en la importancia de los valores que enmarcan las actividades exteriores europeas es central en los debates en Europa y más allá. Esto muestra la necesidad de un compromiso continuo con la búsqueda de una política exterior europea común que sea eficaz y esté basada en los principios fundamentales de la integración europea.

El Patronato desea agradecer a Diego Hidalgo, fundador de FRIDE, por su incansable compromiso y muy generoso apoyo a lo largo de tantos años. También quiere expresar su gratitud a la dedicada plantilla, a los propios miembros del Patronato y del Comité Asesor por sus contribuciones para hacer de FRIDE uno de los principales think tanks de Europa en cuestiones de política exterior. Estamos muy agradecidos con todos aquellos que han apoyado el trabajo y los proyectos de FRIDE a través de los años y también damos las gracias a los numerosos socios de todas partes del mundo que han colaborado con FRIDE en iniciativas conjuntas. Esperamos que las extensas aportaciones de FRIDE al debate sobre Europa en el mundo continuará informando el pensamiento y la acción en un momento muy crítico para el futuro de Europa.

El Presidente del Patronato

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