Donnerstag, 10. September 2009

TWENTY YEARS AFTER: POST-COMMUNIST COUNTRIES AND EUROPEAN INTEGRATION

PUBLICATION LAUNCH

Datum, Uhrzeit
Donnerstag, 10. September 2009, 12.30 Uhr
Twenty years after the end of communism in Europe, the European Union includes ten post-communist member states, eleven, if one takes the former GDR into account. This, however, does not mean that the „reunification of Europe“ has been successfully concluded. Many post-communist states are still struggling with their new identities, the countries of ex-Yugoslavia have, with the exception of Slovenia, not yet found their way into the European Union and have not arrived at a sustainable reconciliation. Ukraine and the countries of the Southern Caucasus have not yet turned into stable democracies and their perspectives for EU-membership are practically non-existent. Belarus has remained more or less untouched by changes in neighbouring countries and Russia, finally, has not made the much hoped-for progress on the road towards democracy and has developed an often problematic relationship with the European Union and other neighbours.
Where do the post-communist countries of central and eastern Europe as well as those of the Western Balkans now stand in Europe? What role has the example of the European Union played in the last twenty years? In what way has the accession of the post-communist countries influenced the European Union and its policies? How do the post-communist countries see themselves in twenty years time? And, finally, on what goals and values should Europe’s future be based?

With the authors:
Ilana Bet-El, writer, historian and political analyst, Brussels
Juri Durkot, free-lance journalist, publicist, translator and producer, Ukraine
Tihomir Ponos, political journalist of the Croatian daily Novi list
Veiko Spolitis, head of the European Studies and International Relations Programme at the Riga Stradins University
Nicholas Whyte, head of Independent Diplomat’s  Brussels office

Chair:
Marianne Ebertowski, director CFSP Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung European Union