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    Europe has mixed feelings about Eastern Partnership


    par EUXTV

    23 vues
    Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine.
    These are the 6 ex-Soviet countries hoping to get their European aspirations matched in the so-called Eastern Partnership summit this week in Warsaw.
    Europe's single market and visa liberalisation is what they are after.
    In exchange, Europe wants to see democratic reforms in countries that have traditionally struggled with establishing democracy and the rule of law. Europe also wants good relations with the eastern neighbors in order to help ensure energy security.
    But this week’s no-show of French and British leaders in Warsaw points at the lukewarm interest of European politicians in their eastern neighbors.
    You can also ask if the former Soviet republics really want to get closer to Europe? Ukraine, which was close to signing a trade agreement, recently hurt its relations with Europe by jailing opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko, whose trial has been described by the Union as "politically motivated".
    The situation in Belarus remains bad. Repression and detention of political prisoners has sent relations with Belarus back to square one. Its president Lukashenka, also known as the last dictator in Europe, is banned from traveling to the EU and hasn't been invited to the summit.
    Catherine Ashton, EU's foreign policy chief, repeatedly expresses her concern over the democracy situation in both Belarus and Ukraine.
    Back in 2009, the Kremlin warned the European Union not to turn the Eastern Partnership into a partnership against Russia. Russia’s president Putin even accused the Union of creating new dividing lines within Europe. 
    The Polish Presidency however still applies a "more for more" approach with the eastern neighbors. Poland is still hoping to turn the partnership into a success story. But without the real support from other EU member states, that’s not going to be easy.