A direct route to engagement

Mitchell, Lincoln A.

The Russian—Georgian war in August 2008 and Russia's decision to recognise the independence of the Georgian breakaway territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia have fundamentally altered the political balance of what were previously referred to as 'frozen' conflicts. After years of pursuing policies that isolated Abkhazia and South Ossetia, the European Union and the government of Georgia have both announced new strategies towards these regions. Despite certain similarities between the two strategies, however, aligning their instruments and goals will prove difficult given the different political priorities of Brussels and Tbilisi. The EU must prepare to pursue its own engagement strategy regardless of how the Georgian approach is crafted or implemented.


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International Institute for Strategic Studies
International Institute for Strategic Studies

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Harriman Institute
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September 26, 2011