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  • Author or Editor: Andrei Zagorski x
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Russia would hardly expect much value to be added by the Kazakhstan Chairmanship of the OSCE in 2010. It would not expect much harm either. This made the overall balance of supporting Nazarbayev's bid positive to Moscow which found it better to honour rather than to deny (or to allow others to deny) it. The Kremlin must have been struck, however, by the manifested readiness of Astana to seek a successful Chairmanship by engaging not only (and not predominantly) with Russia but particularly with the US and the European nations. As a result Astana's approach towards the OSCE sharply contrasted the toughening rhetoric of Russia. However, while having little leverage to either persuade or punish Kazakhstan's policies, the Kremlin has also little choice next year but to avoid spoiling relations with Astana by denying it a successful Chairmanship.

In: Security and Human Rights
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Abstract

Russia and the US have significantly reduced their tactical nuclear weapons over the past twenty years. The remaining weapons have been moved from active service and stored separate from their delivery systems. However, both still keep tactical nuclear weapons available for eventual deployment, and Moscow maintains not only a larger but also a much more diverse stockpile of such weapons than the US. The prospects for designing an arms control regime covering TNW are complicated by a series of factors. Technically, verifying any limitations or reductions of non-deployed weapons is an extremely sensitive and challenging task as it would require opening nuclear depots for inspection. Politically, the two countries differ in the assessment of a future role of nuclear arms. While the US anticipates that further development of its advanced conventional capabilities would lead to diminishing the role of nuclear weapons, it is exactly the weakness of its conventional forces which causes the Russian defence establishment to project a growing role for nuclear weapons. These two distinct trajectories largely explain the differences in the two countries' approaches to the TNW arms control and make any agreement less likely to materialize any time soon. They also explain why Moscow has become increasingly sceptical with regard to including TNW within an arms control regime.

In: Security and Human Rights
In: Security and Human Rights
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The article explores the challenges of the German osce Chairmanship against the background of the current stalemate within the osce and Russian policies. It argues that, despite the current engagement of the osce in Ukraine and its renaissance in Russian politics, the task of revitalizing the osce has not become easier. The German Chairmanship may be considered a success if it manages to unblock political dialogue within the osce and to redefine the agenda for future structured dialogue, which could be accepted as a fair deal in conjunction with the wider debate over a vision for a Wider Europe.

In: Security and Human Rights
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The article tests the wisdom of amending the osce rule of consensus against past experiences of introducing a “consensus minus one” procedure, establishing mandatory cooperative “mechanisms” which can be triggered by a qualified minority of states, or introducing autonomously operating institutions. It argues that amending the consensus rule does not per se lead to a stronger Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe. While the participating states could benefit from more independent osce institutions, decisions leading in that direction would need time to mature, particularly in the current political environment marked by the very low level of mutual trust within the osce.

In: Security and Human Rights