selection

Martin Russell

This tag is associated with 32 posts

The New START Treaty between the US and Russia: The last surviving pillar of nuclear arms control

Under New START, Russia and the US are limited to an equal number of deployed strategic warheads and weapons carrying them, such as intercontinental ballistic missiles. To ensure compliance, there are strict counting rules and transparency requirements, giving each side a reliable picture of the other’s strategic nuclear forces. Continue reading

Myanmar: The return of the junta

On 1 February 2021, the Myanmar armed forces seized power and imprisoned Aung San Suu Kyi, de facto leader of the country since 2016. Continue reading

Navalny vs Kremlin: Latest developments

Alexey Navalny is one of Vladimir Putin’s most outspoken critics. After surviving an assassination attempt and recovering in Germany, he returned to Russia in January 2021 to face arrest and imprisonment. Mass protests over his detention and revelations of high-level corruption show that an increasingly repressive Kremlin has not succeeded in crushing opposition to Putin’s rule. Continue reading

EU human rights sanctions: Towards a European Magnitsky Act [Policy Podcast]

Sanctions are a key part of the EU’s human rights toolbox. The EU adopts restrictive measures – mostly in the form of travel bans and asset freezes – against individuals and organisations responsible for some of the worst human rights violations. Continue reading

The Global HIV/AIDS epidemic

In the middle of the coronavirus pandemic, World Aids Day on 1 December is a timely reminder of the need for continued efforts to tackle other global health problems. Continue reading

Palm oil: Economic and environmental impacts

Economical and versatile, palm oil has become the world’s most widely used vegetable oil. Although palm oil can be produced sustainably, rising consumption increases the risk of tropical rainforests being cut down to make way for plantations. Continue reading

Armenia and Azerbaijan on the brink of war

Armenia and Azerbaijan are bitterly opposed over Nagorno-Karabakh, an Armenian-backed separatist territory that international law recognises as part of Azerbaijan. Continue reading

The EU and Russia: Locked into confrontation [Policy Podcast]

Following the post-Cold War reset of the 1990s, EU-Russia relations have become increasingly tense. Although initially seen as a pro-Western reformer, since the start of his first presidency in 2000 Vladimir Putin has shown increasingly authoritarian tendencies, and his efforts to assert Russian influence over post-Soviet neighbours threaten the sovereignty of those states. Continue reading

Coronavirus in south-east Asia: Health, political and economic impact

Coronavirus has affected the 10 south-east Asian countries in very different ways. Continue reading

World Health Organization: Is it fit for purpose?

The World Health Organization (WHO) declared Covid-19, the disease resulting from the novel coronavirus SARS-COV2, a pandemic on 11 March 2020, putting the United Nations (UN) agency in the global spotlight. Continue reading

Northern Ireland after Brexit

The United Kingdom’s vote to leave the European Union (‘Brexit’), by referendum in June 2016, raised particular concerns in and about Northern Ireland, which had voted by 56 per cent to remain within the European Union. Continue reading

Serbia at risk of authoritarianism?

Among the Western Balkan countries aspiring to EU membership, Serbia is seen as a frontrunner in terms of its democratic institutions, level of economic development and overall readiness for accession. However, in November 2018 opposition politician, Borko Stefanović, was beaten up by thugs, triggering a wave of protests that has spread across the country. Continue reading

Digital technology in elections: Efficiency versus credibility?

Digital technology brings greater efficiency in many walks of life, and elections are no exception. Online databases hugely facilitate the task of creating and managing accurate and up-to-date electoral rolls. In less developed countries, whose citizens often lack reliable identity documents, biometric technology can help to identify voters, thus preventing fraud in the form of multiple voting. Continue reading

EU sanctions, A key foreign and security policy instrument [Policy podcast]

Sanctions have become an increasingly central element of the EU’s common and foreign security policy. At present, the EU has 42 sanctions programmes in place, making it the world’s second-most active user of restrictive measures, after the US. Continue reading

EU sanctions against Russia : What’s next?

Four years after Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea, the issue of sanctions against Moscow is more topical than ever. Relations between Russia and the West have continued to deteriorate to a level not seen since the end of the Cold War, with revelations of the Kremlin’s interference in the United States elections and elsewhere – for example, in the United Kingdom’s EU referendum. Continue reading

Malaysia’s 2018 general election

On 9 May 2018, Malaysians go to the polls to elect federal and state parliaments. Although a financial scandal and rising living costs have dented the popularity of the government, the opposition faces an uphill battle to end the governing Barisan Nasional coalition’s six-decade rule, and it is not widely expected to win. Continue reading

Russia’s 2018 presidential election: Six more years of Putin

On 18 March 2018, Russians will elect the president who will govern their country for the next six years. Incumbent, Vladimir Putin is firmly on track to win, with approval ratings that have stayed above 80 % since Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014. Continue reading

EU-Vietnam trade and investment agreements [International Agreements in Progress]

The European Commission has described the free trade and investment protection agreements (FTA/IPA) signed with Vietnam as the most ambitious deals of their type ever concluded by the EU and a developing country Continue reading

Palm oil: economic and environmental impacts

Economical and versatile, palm oil has become the world’s most widely used vegetable oil. However, its production comes at a heavy environmental cost, especially in Indonesia and Malaysia, the two main producers. Efforts to make its production more sustainable still have a long way to go. Continue reading

Kremlin trolls in the US presidential election

Discussions about Kremlin interference in the 2016 US presidential election initially focused on Russian hackers and leaked e-mails. However, US Congress enquiries have highlighted the important role played by Russian social media activity in influencing public opinion. Continue reading

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