Don’t forget the Balkans

Brexit must not distract the EU and Nato from region’s rumbling crises, warns Stephen Blank

The World Today
Published 28 September 2016 Updated 26 November 2020 2 minute READ

Stephen Blank

Senior Fellow, American Foreign Policy Council

The arrival of millions of refugees from the Middle East into the troubled Balkan states has exacerbated tensions within them.

Ethnic animosities pre-dated the wars in the 1990s that led to the break-up of Yugoslavia, and they have not been completely surmounted. Those states are renowned for their difficulties in establishing transparent, honest government and flourishing economies. The Greek crisis of 2015 is only the best known example but, in fact, throughout the Balkans, corruption has been and remains pervasive. Now the Balkan states face a security challenge from without.

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