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  • Position : President
  • Affiliation : Center on Global Interests
  • Position : Chairman of the Executive Board
  • Affiliation : PIR Center
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International Security Index iSi stands at 2764 points. Zlobin, Buzhinsky comment events of the week

17.06.2014

MOSCOW, JUNE 17, 2014. PIR PRESS “The level of security remains the same in the United States. Americans conducted a thorough analysis of the threats the country faces today. A better understanding of existing threats has appeared; the political establishment has become more aware of the nature of the threats’ operations and structure. In this sense, the security level actually increased, despite the fact that the level and severity of threat remained the same”,President of the Center on Global Interests, Nikolai Zlobin.

During the week of June 9 – 16, 2014, the International Security Index iSi decreased to 2764 points. In eastern Ukraine, the Ukrainian army launched a counteroffensive.  The militiamen shot down a plane with Ukrainian troops under Lugansk. This led to the attack against the Russian Embassy in Kiev. Negotiations involving Russia, the EU and Ukraine on Russian gas supplies ended with no result. In the Baltic States, NATO began large exercises. In Iraq, insurgents of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant captured much of the territory in the north of the country; authorities announced a general mobilization. In Syria, troops recaptured the city of Kesap from Islamists. The Israeli Air Force attacked the Gaza Strip in response to rocket fire into its territory. In Geneva, bilateral talks on Tehran's nuclear program were held between Iran and the U.S. and between Iran and Russia. In Libya, the government led by Ahmed Maytag was declared unconstitutional. In Somalia, 14 people were killed in inter-clan clashes. In Pakistan, insurgents attacked the airport in Karachi; there were victims. In Afghanistan, the country held its second round of presidential elections.  

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: The level of security remains the same in the United States. Americans conducted a thorough analysis of the threats the country faces today. The results are a good sign for the security situation. A better understanding of existing threats has appeared. These threats have not become greater, but the political establishment has become more aware of the nature of the threats’ operations and structure. The United States has begun to more deliberately relate to that with which they are dealing. . In this sense, the security level actually increased, despite the fact that the level and severity of threat remained the same.

There has been some deterioration in relations of the USA with a number of allies, starting with Israel and ending with allies in Europe. One of the reasons for this deterioration was Edward Snowden’s revelations, which led to a cooling of relations between the USA and Germany. Such incidents are not explosive in nature, but they impact the trust between the United States and allies, gradually undermining security and potentially affecting the nature of the threats and preventive measures. From this perspective, the United States today is in a more dangerous situation than it was a few months ago.

Nothing will substantially change in summer of 2014. Fortunately or unfortunately for Ukraine – the country already rejected its nuclear status. Otherwise, the conflict would develop in quite a different scenario. If in the coming months there is not direct military confrontation between Russian and NATO troops in Ukraine or around Ukraine, situation in Europe will remain more or less peaceful. If Sino-Japanese relations do not worsen, and for now they seem to have calmed down, Asia will have a peaceful summer. Other regions will enjoy the same state of both anxiety and calm.

Evgeny Buzhinsky (Russia), PIR Center Senior Vice President, Lieutenant General (Retired)  by phone from Moscow: The level of security in the world and in the Euro-Atlantic region is significantly degraded because of the deepening Ukrainian crisis. The crisis has a direct impact on the development of Russia's relations with the West and especially with the United States, including relations in the security sphere. I think that, taking into account the approach of the new president of the Ukraine Petro Poroshenko towards r Lugansk and Donetsk regions, the situation will only worsen. Clearly, the course of violent suppression of the resistance in the southeast was taken. This will undoubtedly lead to a worsening of the bloodshed as the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the National Guard increasingly use more heavy weapons, including combat aircraft and multiple rocket launchers. In this context, we can hardly expect any normalization of Russian-Ukrainian relations, which ultimately will have a negative impact on the domestic economy and will be devastating to the economy of Ukraine.

Undoubtedly, a positive event of the period was the visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to China, which gave a powerful impetus to the development of bilateral relations in all areas, including military and military-technical cooperation.

The evolution of the Syrian crisis inspires some optimism. The realization of some successes by government forces in their fight against the armed opposition, and the successful conduct of presidential elections with the participation of Bashar Assad give hope that the gradual evolution of the civil war will remain in the scope of routine anti-terrorist operations without the threat of force to change the existing state system.

During summer and autumn of 2014 the state of security will remain challenging with a likely deterioration in the case of a sharp aggravation of the Ukrainian crisis due to the inability of Kiev to reach a compromise solution to problems in south-eastern parts of the country.

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

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