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Latest Analysis from the Balkans

26 Sep 16

UN Court Clashes with Serbia over Witness Intimidation

The UN-backed Yugoslav war crimes tribunal has tried hard to protect witnesses and has prosecuted several people for intimidation, but its latest attempt has provoked a bitter dispute with Serbia.

26 Sep 16

Opposition Mulls Joining Forces in Belgrade Elections

A proposal to run a joint candidate for Belgrade mayor in the next city elections could be the best chance for the embattled opposition to challenge the dominance of the ruling party, experts believe.

23 Sep 16

Bosnian Serbs Rush to Finalise Disputed Referendum

Officials in Bosnia’s Serb-dominated entity Republika Srpska are finalising preparations to hold their controversial referendum but the apparent haste has been causing confusion, while a boycott by Bosniaks seems certain.

23 Sep 16

EU Embracing Bosnia to ‘Weaken Nationalists’, Experts Say

As anxiety mounts in Bosnia over the referendum set for Sunday, the EU decision to accept its candidacy is designed to resolve issues about its stability, say analysts.

23 Sep 16

Opposition Grows to Turkey’s Relentless Crackdown

While purges continue and even intensify, activists and opposition leaders are increasingly protesting, claiming the process violates basic justice and the constitution.

23 Sep 16

War Talk Grips Balkans Ahead of Bosnia Vote

The controversial referendum in Bosnia's Serb-dominated entity has unleashed passions and language of a kind not seen since the 1990s - with the media in some countries fanning the flames.

22 Sep 16

Suspicion Shadows ‘Albanian Terror’ Trial in Macedonia

The trial of 37 alleged members and accomplices of an ethnic Albanian terror group that battled Macedonian police in Kumanovo last year has been marred by allegations about false witnesses and police brutality.

22 Sep 16

Putin Hosts Dodik Ahead of Bosnia Serb Vote

Russian President Vladimir Putin is meeting the Bosnian Serb leader Milorad Dodik in Moscow in what appears a clear sign of Kremlin support for the controversial referendum.

16 Sep 16

NATO Faces New Challenges on Eastern, Southern Flanks

NATO’s Deputy Secretary General tells BIRN that the alliance is facing up to new challenges, as the crackdown on government opponents in Turkey and tensions between the West and Russia continue.

15 Sep 16

Privatisation Decimates Serbia’s Local Media

The ongoing privatisation of media organisations in Serbia has forced many local, independent outlets to close - or become the tools of political parties.

14 Sep 16

Serbian ‘Bad Cops’ Bolster PM’s Image as Moderate

Serbian ministers use hardline rhetoric that contradicts the government’s pro-European stance in order to portray Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic as a reliable moderate, experts claim.

13 Sep 16

Austerity Not Over for Serbia Despite Recovery

Positive economic trends and IMF support leave no room for complacency, as budget-tightening and unpopular reforms are not over for Serbia, experts warn.

12 Sep 16

Bosnian Serbs Seek to Limit Referendum Damage

Under pressure from the West and Serbia, Bosnian Serb leaders are pondering last-minute options to avert the damage that would be caused by a disputed referendum, without losing credibility before local elections.

07 Sep 16

Turkish Economy Pays Price for Instability Fears

Turkey's robust economy may recover from the initial shock of the failed coup - but its long-term prospects look less bright.

07 Sep 16

Macedonia Electoral Roll Check-up Yields Few Results

Although the check-up that was supposed to remove any doubts about the real number of voters in Macedonia has been criticised, the main parties appear to be satisfied with the outcome.