While the armed conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh has subsided, Armenia and Azerbaijan are still far from a political settlement. In this excerpt from the Watch List 2021 – Autumn Update, Crisis Group urges the EU and its member states to press for negotiations between Baku and Yerevan, aid to the affected regions and cooperate with Moscow, which has peacekeepers on the ground and the most leverage over the conflict parties.
The 2020 war over Nagorno-Karabakh left many issues unresolved and the front lines volatile. The parties should establish a formal communication channel to address urgent post-war problems, Russian peacekeepers need a clearer mandate and aid agencies must be granted access to the conflict zone.
In mid-2020, Turkey and Greece put their Mediterranean fleets on high alert, dramatically raising tensions in their long-running dispute over air, water, rock and now seabed gas deposits as well. Talks have been frustrating but remain the best way to contain the risk of conflict.
Thirteen years after Kosovo broke away from Serbia, the two countries remain mired in mutual non-recognition, with deleterious effects on both. The parties need to move past technicalities to tackle the main issues at stake: Pristina’s independence and Belgrade’s influence over Kosovo’s Serbian minority.
Russian mediation succeeded in ending the six-week war in Nagorno-Karabakh but left much unresolved, chiefly the region’s future status. If the cessation of hostilities is to become a sustainable peace, the parties should start by cooperating on humanitarian relief and trade before tackling larger questions.
As elections draw near, increased tension at the line of separation with South Ossetia has helped put the future of normalisation with Russia in doubt. But whoever wins at the polls should not abandon dialogue, but rather build on it to frankly discuss these problems.
Years of conflict have exacerbated the economic woes of Donbas, once an industrial powerhouse. Authorities in Kyiv should take steps now to aid pensioners and encourage small trade while also planning ahead for the region’s eventual reintegration with the rest of the country.
For the Ukrainians, especially in the wake of the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, they want a clear statement of support from the United States.
Ukraine doesn’t have a lot of equal relationships. This is the danger of being a weaker country in the international system.
Turkey can't afford economically or politically to absorb a new wave of refugees [from Syria].
This is exactly what the Kremlin wants. To talk to the US as equals and in such a way that the other side does not demand a change of position as a condition of dialogue.
How do you not lose Turkey while you try to curb Erdogan? Erdogan is trying to find a way forward when they are trying to make sure he does not score political points.
If you want to say you’re going to defend Ukraine, say you’re going to defend Ukraine, [NATO] membership or no membership.
This week on War & Peace, Olga Oliker and Hugh Pope talk to Liz Collett, one of Europe's leading voices on migration, about whether Kabul’s fall could trigger another refugee crisis and how the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change are shaping the future of global mobility.
Every year Crisis Group publishes two additional Watch List updates that complement its annual Watch List for the EU, most recently published in January 2021. These publications identify major crises and conflict situations where the European Union and its member states can generate stronger prospects for peace. The Autumn Update of the Watch List 2021 includes entries on Afghanistan, Burundi, Iran, Nagorno-Karabakh and Nicaragua.
This week on War & Peace, Olga Oliker and Hugh Pope talk to Ivan Safranchuk, Senior Fellow at Moscow’s Institute of International Studies, about the hopes and fears of Russia and Central Asia after the Taliban victory in Afghanistan.
Ankara is strengthening ties with Sahelian capitals, building mosques and hospitals and opening up export markets. Its defence pact with Niamey has led rivals to suspect its intentions. Turkey and other outside powers should do what they can to avoid unnecessary additional competition in the region.
A virtual Crisis Talks event with panellists navigating the topic through three important lenses: Turkey-Greece tensions: views from Ankara and Athens; EU and US roles and interests in the Eastern Mediterranean; and regional dimensions of energy competition and disputes in the Eastern Mediterranean.