The strained relations with the eastern neighbors and the problematic situations in the southern regions are visible even without additional analysis. However, in recent years, new threats have emerged that pose a threat to order in general and specifically to European interests (Dennison et al., 2015). On the eastern side, the biggest problem is Russia and its foreign policy, including towards its neighboring Ukraine. The Russian Federation’s actions destabilize the region’s situation, threaten peace and represent an ongoing clash of interests.
There are many reasons for this behavior, part of which lies in the country’s current leader, Vladimir Putin, and the corruption of the system. Lack of democracy and justification of actions’ legitimacy by trying to unite people around a non-existent threat create very convenient conditions for exploiting force (Dennison et al., 2015). Besides, this problem has existed for many years since Russia identifies itself as a powerful and great state, thereby being prone to pressure on its neighbors. As a result, this crisis’s resolution is impossible only by changing the government, since the restructuring and rethinking of the entire state system are required. Therefore, the EU should take a supportive position concerning Russia’s neighbors and a restraining role in its relation to the country. Only through combined sanctions, which reduce the room for maneuver, and allies’ support, can this crisis be contained from its further development.
On the southern side, the crisis consists of the clash of interests of several states at once and terrorism developing against the background, especially in the form of ISIS. The result is full-scale conflicts that lead to the parties’ exhaustion and a massive flow of migrants who seek to flee the dangerous region. Terrorism, local conflicts, the movement of migrants – these components are the cause of the current crisis.
However, the EU should not interfere in states’ internal affairs, deploying full-scale actions in the Middle East and North African region. According to Dennison et al. (2015), European states should focus on supporting the peaceful resolution of issues, combined with the de-escalation and ensuring security within European cities to prevent the spread of extremism. Europe will continue to deal with the region’s countries, but support will be minimal until violations of international law stop. In the current situation, this support should be more directed to African states, which want cooperation with Europe to fight terrorism and the impending crisis jointly.
Dennison, S., Godement, F., Gowan, R., Levy, D., Liik, K., Shapiro, J., & Witney, N. (2015). the road back to European power. European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR).