Centre for European Security

Centre for European Security of the Institute of International Relations

The Institute of International Relations has established its new Centre for European Security (CES) to take up the challenge of exploring the new contours of this emerging global security (dis)order from a European – and particularly Central European – perspective. Amidst the proliferation of security research centres in Central Europe, CES is exceptional in that it brings together experts from the fields of Security Studies and European Studies to provide a powerful combination of regional and thematic expertise. The CES is therefore well positioned to provide the necessary insight into security in Europe, the security of Europe and the role of the EU and its member states as security actors. Uniquely in Central Europe, the CES combines these strengths with the distinctively European approaches to security that have emerged in the last twenty years, but which have yet to be fully applied in the region. I am confident that the CES will be a valuable addition to the activities of the Institute of International Relations in Prague and that it will soon establish itself as one of the leading centres for European security in the region and beyond. ... (full introductory word)

Petr Kratochvíl, Director of the Institute of International Relations

Recent Activity

European Security Spotlight

NATO's Eastern Promises? 15. 9. 2015

Ahead of the June 2016 NATO summit in Warsaw, Poland and other new Member States are stepping up calls for the Alliance to expand its presence on their territories. The military logic is straight-forward: permanently stationed NATO troops would dispel any doubts about the credibility of NATO's Article 5, and decrease the likelihood of Russia's provocation or outright aggression. However, in the absence of a broad political agreement on such a sensitive move in the Alliance, the initiative could prove self-defeating, driving a wedge between Western and Eastern member states and undercutting NATO's fragile consensus on Russia...(Michal Šimečka)

Responding to Sousse: Tunisia Needs Sustainable Economic Development Not a Security Crackdown, 7. 8. 2015

While Tunisia was widely praised for the progress it has made since the 2011 revolution, two recent terrorist attacks have reminded the world of the challenges that the country faces. Both the attack in the Bardo museum on 18 March 2015 and the shooting in Sousse on 26 June 2015 were committed by young Tunisians with links to Libyan jihadist groups and targeted mainly foreign tourists. The Tunisian government, led by the secularist party Nidaa Tounes, has responded by cracking down on radical Islamist networks and adopting a new counter-terrorism law that has been criticised by human rights groups as granting too many unchecked powers to the authorities. The nascent Tunisian democracy thus has to navigate an increasingly difficult road marked by internal challenges in the form of economic and demographic pressures, militant Islamist opposition and stalling reforms. Instability in the whole North Africa and the Sahel only exacerbate internal issues. It will be very difficult for the Tunisian government to overcome all these challenges alone and it is time for the EU to help preserve the stability of the country...(Jan Daniel)

EU Response to the Migration Crisis: Too Little, But Not Too Late, 29. 4. 2015

The causes of the migration crisis in the Mediterranean are multiple and complex. Rather than just attempting to alleviate its symptoms, the EU must address them to protect migrants, safeguard the Schengen zone and act as a force for good in the world. Large flows of refugees and economic migrants who are unable to enter the EU through regular routes seek the help of people smugglers to enter the EU. Smugglers have been able to operate with impunity in the wake of Libyan state collapse and operate dangerous routes and dangerous practices of travel. Incoherent EU policies on Schengen solidarity and refugee resettlement have lead to a muddled and ineffective response, which is informed by xenophobic discourse and is an insult to the EU’s history and values. Failure to establish offshore asylum-processing and inadequate Search and Rescue (SAR) efforts have compounded the situation. After a disappointing first response, the EU needs to formulate short, medium and long term plans to address the causes of the crisis...(Benjamin Tallis)

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