September 16, 2019

EU-Russia relations and security in the Baltic Sea region: EUREN Brief by Kristi Raik

The EU-Russia Experts Network on Foreign Policy (EUREN) has published a Brief by Kristi Raik titled “EU-Russia relations and security in the Baltic Sea region: relative stability in the shadow of deep-rooted divisions”.

As described in the paper, although not free from tensions, the Baltic Sea region is a relatively stable subregion in the broader European security landscape. There are no unresolved conflicts in the region, and the likelihood of a military conflict is broadly regarded as low. Yet, the turning point of EU-Russian, and more broadly Western-Russian relations that followed Russia’s aggression against Ukraine in 2014, has weakened the security environment in the Baltic Sea region in many ways. In the current context, the deeper sources of EU-Russian tensions – most notably the lack of a shared understanding about the European security order – are unlikely to be dissolved any time soon. The EU has to downscale its expectations vis à vis Russia, since Russia’s actions have proved that while economic losses have contained military escalation, they have not stopped Russia from pursuing its geopolitical interests, and (more fundamentally) have not made it redefine its interests, argues the paper.

EUREN was initiated by the EU Delegation to Russia and the Russian International Affairs Council in 2016 as a new platform for interaction between EU and Russian foreign policy experts and think tanks.

Read the full paper here:

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