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More than two decades after the United Nations General Assembly adopted its Declaration on Human Rights Defenders (HRDs) to enhance recognition of their role and encourage states to create a more protective environment, many human rights defenders face an increasingly hostile environment, with both repressive governments and some non-state actors, such as economic interest or criminal groups, opposing their work and posing a serious threat. Support for human rights defenders is a long established ...

Recent Studies on Artificial Intelligence

Ve stručnosti 22-02-2022

DG IPOL Policy Department for Economic, Scientific and Quality of Life Policies published the following documents to assist the Special Committee on Artificial Intelligence in a Digital Age (AIDA) in its parliamentary work.

Russia continues to strengthen its military presence around the Ukrainian border, despite intensive diplomatic activity to ward off a feared armed conflict between the countries. Russia has amassed more than 100 000 troops, as well as ships, aircraft, rocket launchers and other heavy weaponry near Ukraine, prompting some politicians and analysts to say that war may be imminent. Others believe Russian President Vladimir Putin is still playing a diplomatic game, aimed, among other goals, at bringing ...

The crisis of democracy and the rise of authoritarianism across the globe, compounded by the coronavirus pandemic, highlight the importance of taking a more strategic and autonomous approach to supporting democracy worldwide – an objective often balanced against other external policy aims until now. Since the start of the current parliamentary term, the EU has reviewed its political guidance on democracy and human rights. It has adopted or is about to adopt important measures to strengthen support ...

Religion has been emerging as a new dimension in the EU's external policies. This paper provides an overview of the principles, institutional set-up and policies underpinning the EU's approach to religious issues in third countries. Nine case studies meanwhile serve to illustrate the important role played by religion in the foreign policies of a number of different countries worldwide.

Ukraine: Navigating multiple challenges

Ve stručnosti 07-10-2019

Five years after the 'revolution of dignity', in which Ukrainians demanded a functioning democracy and an end to kleptocracy, the country elected a new President in April 2019 and a new Parliament in July. The new leaders in Kyiv are facing a wide range of persistent challenges. Russia's ongoing hybrid war against the country, including the illegal occupation of Crimea and the war in eastern Ukraine, as well as the continued reform process dominate the agenda. The High Representative of the Union ...

For the past 40 years, Members of the European Parliament have been working at boosting Parliament's role in EU foreign policy. These efforts have continued to be stepped up since the launch of the common foreign and security policy (CFSP) in 1993. Over recent decades, the European Parliament has significantly raised its profile as a credible moral force with strong focus on strengthening human rights, supporting democracy and enhancing the rule of law worldwide. Perhaps less visible than the European ...

Members of the European Parliament form official groups – delegations – with ties to regions and organisations, as well as parliaments, in non-EU countries. Parliament has expanded its impact EU in foreign policy in recent decades, and its delegations are a key component of its diplomatic work.

Venezuela: An unexpected turn of events

Ve stručnosti 07-02-2019

The election of Juan Guaidó as president of the National Assembly and his subsequent self-proclamation as interim President of Venezuela has brought an unexpected turn to political events in the country and revived hopes for change both at home and abroad. Not only has Guaidó rallied massive popular support among Venezuelans, he has also obtained official recognition from the USA and most countries in the region. The European Parliament and 19 EU Member States have also recognised Guaidó as the legitimate ...

Central Asia is an often overlooked region, but one that is gradually becoming more important for the European Union. Although the Central Asian countries are less of a priority than those of the Eastern Neighbourhood, the EU has steadily intensified diplomatic relations with the region, at the same time as ramping up development aid. European trade and investment, above all in Kazakhstan, have made the EU the main economic player in Central Asia, ahead of Russia and China. However, former overlord ...