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  • Affiliation : Center on Global Interests
  • Position : President
  • Affiliation : Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs
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International Security Index iSi decreased to 2769 points. Zlobin, Duarte comment events of the week

03.06.2014

MOSCOW, JUNE 3, 2014. PIR PRESS – “In my opinion, we will witness a decade of bad relations between Russia and the United States and Russia and the West in general. In the short term there are no factors that could have a positive impact on this relationship. In fact, the deterioration is just beginning, but the depth, sharpness and the scope of the process is not yet known to us. The current US administration is unlikely to work on improving the US-Russian relations, because it is completely unnecessary for them. The next administration in Washington will grandfather the damaged relationships and I think it will have a good chance to continue to worsen them. The same, however, is true for the Russian side”, – President of the Center on global interests, Nikolai Zlobin.

The new weekly International Security Index iSi was published in Kommersant (in Russian).

During the week of May 26 – June 2, 2014, the International Security Index iSi decreased to 2769 points. In eastern Ukraine, military operation with the use of heavy artillery and aviation continued; In Slavyansk militia shot down two helicopters of the Ukrainian armed forces. Russia withdrew some troops from the border with Ukraine. In Abkhazia, anti-government demonstrations broke out; Parliament called for early presidential elections on August 24. In Syria, fighting between the army and the rebels continued in Damascus and Aleppo; militants attacked the OPCW staff. In Turkey, the demonstration on the anniversary of the mass protests in Taksim square escalated into clashes with police. In Egypt former defense minister Abdel Fattah al-Sisi won presidential election. In Libya, militants attacked the residence of the new Prime Minister Ahmed Maytag; outbreak of violence was recorded in Benghazi and Tripoli. In the Central African Republic militants attacked the church; 17 people were killed; demonstrations with demand of the resignation of the transitional government broke out in the country. In Astana Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan signed a treaty on establishing the Eurasian Economic Union.

Comments on the week's events by members of the International Expert Group of the PIR Center

Nikolai Zlobin (USA – Russia), President of the Center on global interests – by phone from Washington: In the USA the level of security remains the same. I do not think that today there are any fundamental events that adversely affect the security of the country. Conflict with Russia influenced the security only indirectly. I would say that perhaps the level of cooperation between Russian and US intelligence agencies, law enforcement bodies and other structures involved in security will be affected. This certainly plays a negative role for both sides.

Generally speaking, the fact that the USA managed to gather some international coalition, not very hard, but quite large, massive, powerful for expressing their negative attitude toward Russian foreign policy is a favorable factor for the Americans. In this way they at least, they can be confident that they can still influence the international public opinion and isolate Russia. We must recognize that they succeeded in doing so.

In my opinion, we will witness a decade of bad relations between Russia and the United States and Russia and the West in general. In the short term there are no factors that could have a positive impact on this relationship. In fact, the deterioration is just beginning, but the depth, sharpness and the scope of the process is not yet known to us. The current US administration is unlikely to work on improving the US-Russian relations, because it is completely unnecessary for them. The next administration in Washington will grandfather the damaged relationships and I think it will have a good chance to continue to worsen them. The same, however, is true for the Russian side.

Sergio Duarte (Brazil), Ambassador (ret.), High Representative to the United Nations for Disarmament Affairs (2007-2012) – by e-mail from Belo Horizonte: The security situation in the world did not change noticeably. The troubles in the Ukraine continue to raise concerns that relations between the two largest nuclear weapon States – the USA and Russia – might deteriorate further. However, both have too much at stake to want such a downturn. 

Negotiations between the P5+1 and Iran continue to inch toward agreement, despite the many pitfalls. It is to be hoped that they will end successfully by this summer. 

Nuclear weapon States missed yet another opportunity to shore up the NPT at the III Prepcom last April-May. Their continuing improvement of their nuclear arsenals and the perceived unwillingness to commit unreservedly to nuclear disarmament is not a good omen for the permanence of the nonproliferation regime in the long run and for the security climate in the short run. 

In Latin America/Caribbean region States continued to abide to their commitments, including non-proliferation and relations in general are constructive. The pursuit of economic and social development in a peaceful and democratic environment continues to be the main driving force in the region, which remains the most peaceful in the world.

Latin American countries see the situation in Venezuela as an internal question that must be solved by the Venezuelans themselves. UNASUR, the South American organization has been trying to help, with the agreement of the Venezuelan government. No major progress has been reached so far.

For all the questions concerning the International Security Index please contact Galiya Ibragimova by e-mail ibragimova at pircenter.org

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