The latest EESC policy paper – “Lithuania’s interests in the western Balkans and EU enlargement perspective”
Due to geographic proximity and strategic position, the stability of the Western Balkans is crucial for the Euro-Atlantic area. However, the recent decline of de- mocracy, mounting social and ethnic tensions, as well as the potentially destructive activities of external ac- tors (mainly Russia and China, but also Turkey, and the UAE) are becoming more and more alarming. Not surprisingly, the recent EU discourse calls for renewed engagement in the Western Balkans and stresses the joint security challenges that need to be urgently ad- dressed. For Lithuania, this region is particularly im- portant because of significant political involvement of actors that are key to its foreign policy (e.g., Rus- sia and the USA). Moreover, instability in the Balkans would inevitably weaken the EU and NATO, and result in less energy and attention to the Eastern Partner- ship countries prioritized by Lithuania.
Dr. Lina Strupinskienė – In 2008, Lina graduated from VU IIRPS with a bachelor’s degree in Political Sci- ence, and in 2009, she received a master’s degree in Conflict Studies and Human Rights from Utrecht University. In 2010 she interned at the International Criminal Tribunal for Former Yugoslavia (Office of theProsecutor), where she worked on the case of the Bosnian Serb pres- ident Radovan Karadžić. In 2015, Lina defended her doctoral disserta- tion “The Impact of the International Criminal Tribunal for Former Yugo- slavia on Reconciliation in Bosnia and Herzegovina” at the VU IIRPS.