At the 162nd Bergedorf Round Table in Moscow, a group of politicians, office-holders, and experts from Russia and Europe were discussing the future of their countries' relations themed “What unites us, what divides us?”.
The conference report is now available. It provides insight into the current relations between Russia and Europe. The crisis has become the new norm, instead of a rapprochement the “escalated alienation” prevails. The Ukraine conflict has reached a deadlock. “De-escalation” is the order of the day.
In their debates, the experts reached the following results:
- The crisis between Europe and Russia has solidified and become the new norm. Hopes of rapprochement were disappointed; instead, relations between Moscow and its European neighbors are developing towards a form of “escalated alienation.”
- Full implementation of the Minsk Agreement is becoming increasingly unlikely. In the short term, all parties could accept a situation in which the conflict in Ukraine froze in its present state. However, in the medium to long term, a further “frozen conflict” would pose a significant risk to European security.
- In light of profound disagreements between Russia and the West, fundamental debate about the European security order is neither purposeful nor opportune at the current time. Rather, tangible steps towards de-escalation are the order of the day.
At the 162nd Bergedorf Round Table, participants shared their hopes and fears regarding Russia and its European neighbors:
Marieluise Beck, Member of the German Parliament (Deutscher Bundestag), Member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and Deputy Chair of the German-Ukrainian Parliamentary Friendship Group at the German Parliament in Berlin
Alexander Gabuev, Senior Associate and Chairman of the program “Russia in the Asia-Pacific” at the Carnegie Moscow Center
Zanda Kalniņa-Lukaševica, Parliamentary State Secretary for the European Affairs of Latvia in Riga
Andrey Kortunov, Director General of the Russian International Affairs Council (RIAC) in Moscow
Michael Georg Link, Director and Head of the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Right (ODIHR) at the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in Warsaw
Fyodor Lukyanov, Editor-in-Chief of “Russia in Global Affairs” in Moscow
Marek Ziółkowski, Deputy Minister and Undersecretary of State in charge of Eastern Policy and Security at the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Warsaw.