Posts by Pavel Baev

Pavel Baev 09-04-2019
(EDM) The end of summer 2019 found Russian President Vladimir Putin busy with high international politics. He is no longer riding with aging bikers in Crimea or making pilgrimage to the Valaammonastery together with Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka. Instead, he traveled to France and Finland as well as met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, while preparing to greet prominent Asian guests at the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok...
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Pavel Baev 08-06-2019
(EDM) Last Wednesday’s (July 31) phone call from United States President Donald Trump probably offered little respite to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Since the start of this year’s unusually cold summer, every promising opportunity in foreign affairs was spoiled for the Russian leader with some domestic disturbance. The glitzy St. Petersburg Economic Forum in early June was ruined by international indignation over the arrest of investigative...
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Pavel Baev 07-23-2019
(EDM) The United States and Russia have entered the final fortnight before time runs out on their pro formacommitment to the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty (1988)—one of the major achievements of then–Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev’s “new political thinking.” Last October, US President Donald Trump announced his government’s intention to withdraw from this treaty, but in early February he granted Russia a six-month pause to return to...
Pavel Baev 07-17-2019
(EDM) Since July 12, Russian transport planes have been landing at the Murted Air Base near Ankara, delivering elements of the S-400 surface-to-air missile (SAM) system, which Turkey purchased despite strong objections from the United States and expressions of concern from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). Moscow proposed the deal three years ago, shortly after the attempted military coup in Turkey, and the two sides finalized it in December...
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Pavel Baev 06-19-2019
(EDM) Something quite extraordinary happened in Russia last week: a loud public outcry forced the authorities to set free Ivan Golunov, an investigative journalist crudely framed by the police for drug possession. Neither the motley crowd of activists who joined ranks in protest against this selective punishment, nor the legion of propagandists, always ready to approve any repression, had expected such a swift resolution. Without a doubt, the decision was...
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Pavel Baev 06-04-2019
(EDM) Russian diplomacy is well known for its apparent readiness to engage with all parties to the multiple conflicts in the Middle East, and this characteristic has recently produced another awkward tangle of opportunistic intrigues. President Vladimir Putin fancies himself a master of communicating with difficult counterparts, but he is by no means a grandmaster capable of playing chess on several boards at once. He simultaneously wants to be seen as an...
Pavel Baev 05-30-2019
(EDM) In key global debates, Russia’s voice has been uncharacteristically timid lately, and various Russian domestic controversies are developing without the usual heavy-handed interference from the Kremlin—almost as if President Vladimir Putin has lost interest in the affairs of state. Such local disturbances as protests in Arkhangelsk against the construction of a waste-processing plant for treating garbage from Moscow may, indeed, not quite rise to the...
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Pavel Baev 05-15-2019
(EDM) Russia tries to maintain a finger in every conflict in the Middle East, and President Vladimir Putin seeks to cultivate connections with various parties in multiple quarrels. Presently, however, the Kremlin’s access is being curtailed: Moscow, for instance, cannot find an entry point into the exploding crisis in Gaza. Furthermore, Putin clearly disapproves of the removal of President Abdelaziz Bouteflika in Algeria under pressure from street...
Pavel Baev 04-24-2019
(EDM) The second round of the presidential elections in Ukraine, held last Sunday (April 21), was a rather unconventional democratic exercise. And for millions of keen followers in Russia, who looked at it through the distorting lens of their mainstream media, it was oddly disconcerting. For one thing, the incumbent, Petro Poroshenko, who was elected amidst the severe war crisis in 2014 and performed better than expected, was convincingly defeated. For...
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Pavel Baev 04-16-2019
(EDM) The fifth Russia-sponsored international forum “The Arctic: Territory of Dialogue” was staged last week (April 9–10), in St. Petersburg, and President Vladimir Putin used the occasion to demonstrate his particular interest in the international issues affecting this extreme region. He was joined on the panel by the prime ministers of four northern European states—Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden—who sought to collectively ensure that the tensions...
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About the author

Research Professor
Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO)