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Latest Blogs from the Balkans

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05 Sep 14

Montenegrin Energy Deals Leave a Bitter Aftertaste

Nedjeljko Rudovic

Montenegro has paid 345m euro since 2000 to just one energy trader, Energy Financing Team, but although officials say this was good value, how did one firm establish such a formidable position?

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05 Sep 14

Shining a Light on Bosnia’s Energy Sharks

Semir Mujkic

The Balkan region is a honey-pot for electricity traders, with complex regulations, lots of bureaucracy and a slew of greedy politicians jostling for their place at the trough.

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04 Sep 14

Enlargement delayed? A New Commission without an Enlargement Commissioner

Florian Bieber

Back in July, the newly designated President of the EU Commission Jean-Claude Juncker noted that “The EU needs to take a break from enlargement”. Now, he seems to put this understanding of enlargement into practice by dropping the Enlargement portfolio in the Commission (this report is yet unconfirmed).

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27 Aug 14

Croatia, Land of Consumption, not Production

Sven Milekic

The world-famous Swedish furniture retailer IKEA opened its doors in Croatia last Thursday.

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13 Aug 14

Croatia Referendum Ruling Less Clear Than it Seems

Sven Milekic

The Croatian Constitutional Court ruling, vetoing the so-called ‘anti-Cyrillic referendum’, has left room for future conflicts.

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11 Aug 14

Real Lives Offstage at the Hague Tribunal

Tanja Matic

It was more than a decade ago when I first had the impression of a theatre stage at the heart of the tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.

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01 Aug 14

Open Letter to the People of Belgrade

INURA

We are a group of 50 international scholars and experts on urban development and planning, visiting the city of Belgrade for our 24th annual conference. We have expertise on waterfront developments in London, Amsterdam, Hamburg, Barcelona, Boston, New York, Toronto, Vancouver, Hong Kong, Sydney and Melbourne.

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31 Jul 14

Why Constitutional Reform Will Not Solve the Bosnian Blockade

Florian Bieber

At a meeting at the German Foreign Ministry in Berlin on the future of Bosnia with senior international officials and experts, I have had a chance to discuss the benefits and disadvantages of constitutional reform, a perennial topic for Bosnia. Here are some of the considerations I had the chance to present and discuss on why I remain skeptical of the need to prioritise constitutional reform.

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28 Jul 14

Staring at the sea

Marija Knezevic

Ferries are beautiful, I love them. Sometimes all you can see from a ferry is the horizon -- a clear line between shades of blue.

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24 Jul 14

Ratko Mladic Nodded At Me

Cooper Hewell

Watching the trial of the ‘Butcher of Bosnia’ in person, it is hard to reconcile the sight of this ordinary-looking man in a suit with the almost unimaginable crimes for which he is being charged.

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24 Jul 14

A familiar face – and a familiar problem

Marija Mitevska

Walking through narrow streets on the Greek island of Skiathos, I suddenly notice a familiar face. An old high school classmate. It’s so nice to see him again. Twelve years have passed but he looks just the same, although he’s married and has a daughter now.

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13 Jul 14

On the road from the city of roses

Krasimir Yankov

It's the middle of June and Kazanlak in central Bulgaria is gearing up for the annual Festival of Roses. A stage stands on the main plaza. Stalls with rose oil products are ready for customers. The scent of the pink petals of Rosa damascena, the flower everyone is celebrating, fills the air.

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09 Jul 14

Peaceful city with turbulent nightlife

Dragana Peco

“I remember you,” says the woman at the counter in the Novi Sad bus station. She sells me a ticket home to Belgrade.

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07 Jul 14

Starting up, Sofia style

Boryana Dzhambazova

It’s a muggy Friday night in June. The events hall at betahaus, a workspace for freelancers and small firms in the Bulgarian capital Sofia, is packed with people. The excitement is almost as high as the temperatures outside.

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03 Jul 14

Lessons from the Great War

Erwan Fouéré

High up in the hills above the pretty Macedonian town of Valandovo, about 100 km northwest of Thessaloniki , stands a simple Celtic cross honouring the 386 Irish soldiers, part of the Tenth Irish Division fighting on the Salonika front, who fell on the battlefield far away from home in 1915.

Fellowship 2013: Integrity

04 Jul 13

Sporting Chance

15 Jul 13

A New Life

07 Aug 13

Medical Needs

08 Aug 13

Fire from Ice

09 Aug 13

Old Wars and New

13 Aug 13

No Middle Ground

Premium Selection

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19 Sep 14

Hope Rises for Parents of Serbia's Missing Babies

As a government working group readies to publishing its long-awaited report on missing babies, thousands of parents hope to discover what happened to their lost children.