EU and the MIDDLE EAST Whither Europe? From interests to Foreign Policy

No. 78 – April 201678. Ruggiu_cover

Author: Valeria Ruggiu
Language: English
Middle East
Migrant crisis
EU Foreign Policy
Strategic View
Mediterranean basin
Payer not Player

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Foreign policy implies strategic areas and interests to be protected and implemented. EU needs to set down its priorities first, then use its leverage tools in order to promote long-term interests in order to move from being a Payer to act as a Player. EU having the leverage tools to be a Player. Notwithstanding a constant engagement from the Seventies towards the Middle East, and the Arab-Israeli conflicts in particular, the EU has not been able to maintain a coherent approach and political stance. It has been constantly strangled both by its members’ foreign policy and by the US dominant role in the Middle East. Europe has strong historical ties with the region at different levels: political, economical, cultural and religious. They do differ from US interests in the region especially for the immediate setback Europe receives from Middle Eastern crisis due to its geographical proximity. The Mediterranean basin is definitely one of EU main strategic aim even if it could be less obvious looking at its hesitant foreign policy towards it.