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The Law and Politics of Neutrality: A Comparative Analysis Amidst Resurging Russian Revanchism

Date & Time

Dec. 13, 2022
10:00am – 11:00am ET


6th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center


NOTE: This event will take place in-person only

The Russian aggression against Ukraine has propelled alliance-building in Europe and heightened the relevance of NATO. At the same time, the war has drawn the attention of scholars as well as policymakers to a concept that may be seen as a counterpart to military alignment – the legal and political notion of state neutrality. The meaning of this concept has become especially pertinent in the European Union, which entails a number of neutral Member States.

In his presentation, Benedikt Harzl will look into the evolving meaning and place of neutrality in light of international law and international relations in the transatlantic realm. Looking for the structural and systemic factors informing these differences, the talk will explore three different concepts – Austria, Belarus, the past and present situation of Finland – and will highlight the modern facets of neutrality and non-alignment, not least to discuss some possible conclusions for the case of Ukraine.

Hosted By

Global Europe Program

The Global Europe Program addresses vital issues affecting the European continent, U.S.-European relations, and Europe’s ties with the rest of the world. We investigate European approaches to critical global issues: digital transformation, climate, migration, global governance. We also examine Europe’s relations with Russia and Eurasia, China and the Indo-Pacific, the Middle East and Africa. Our program activities cover a wide range of topics, from the role of NATO, the European Union and the OSCE to European energy security, trade disputes, challenges to democracy, and counter-terrorism. The Global Europe Program’s staff, scholars-in-residence, and Global Fellows participate in seminars, policy study groups, and international conferences to provide analytical recommendations to policy makers and the media.  Read more

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