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The EU Response to the Ukranian Crisis: Security Dimensions

Maryna Rabinovych

Apart from constituting a major threat to unity and sovereignty of Ukraine, the Ukrainian crisis represents an important challenge for Versailles system of international relations and, consequently, the security of the EU. In view of the above, the paper aims to examine the security dimension of the EU response to Ukrainian crisis and an extent to which the EU has managed to contribute to crisis mitigation. The theoretical foundations of the paper are constituted by the concepts of operational and structural peace-building, as well as the one of "frozen conflict". The goals of the paper determine the following structure of the argument.Firstly, the crisis' roots and dynamics are discussed. In this regard, special attention is paid to the wider geopolitical context that represents a crucial factor, conditioning the crisis' development. Then, the EU efforts to restore peace in Ukraine are addressed in two major domains. Firstly, the EU operational efforts are discussed. They include the use of soft diplomatic instruments, sanctions policy, as well as the EU participation in Minsk peace process and further support for the implementation of Minsk agreement. Secondly, the study focuses on the EU structural peacebuilding in Ukraine. In this regard, the central role is played by the EU CDSP mission that aims to support police and civilian security sector reform in Ukraine. Furthermore, the EU supports "National Unity Dialogue", local (grassroots) dialogues, as well as demobilization and social integration of combatants. The final part of the paper deals with assessing an extent to which the EU peace-building activities contributed to mitigating the crisis in Ukraine and discussing whether or not current situation in Donbas can be viewed as another European "frozen conflict".

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