Bosnia and Herzegovina after the Elections – An Opportunity to Set a Course for Brussels?

People’s expectations of the new Government are clear: the political stand-off can only be overcome if they can come to an agreement on the most important reforms. But, some politicians may once again rely on nationalist rhetoric to mobilize their voter base for the council elections in 2012 and make the search for compromises that much more difficult. The international community should therefore remind the political powers in the country of the need to hasten reforms.

By the Grace of Lula – Dilma Rousseff Becomes Brazil’s First Female President

On 31st October 2010 the 62-year-old Dilma Rousseff won 56 per cent of the vote in the second ballot, making her the first woman in Brazil’s history to be elected as president. Many observers think she just got the position to keep Lula’s seat warm until it is possible for him to return in four years time. Rousseff was specifically lined up to carry on Lula’s legacy and ensure continuity.

Coming to Terms with the Past in the Balkans – The Lustration Process in Macedonia

After the fall of the Berlin Wall, many formerly authoritarian countries in Eastern Europe had to face up to the question of how to come to terms with their past. Setting in motion an effective process for facing up to the past and lustration of the intelligence services and governmental elites is necessary for substantial democratization in countries like Macedonia. It faces the challenge of investigating the Yugoslavian chapter of its history in as fair and transparent a way as possible. The public, and especially the families of victims, are pinning their hopes on this process.


The accession of more countries, particularly from the former Yugoslavia, into the European Union is a project which deserves our support. We are also accompanying the reform process in the new member states of Bulgaria and Romania, a process which has not made as much progress as hoped. In future entry criteria need to be fulfilled before becoming a member. The next steps in the expansion of the EU will depend on the speed and effectiveness of ongoing reforms in the countries of South East Europe.

Latvia Reloaded – The Parties are Trying to Revive the Spirit of 1991

In many ways, the elections of 2nd October 2010 were a call for Latvia’s 1.5 Million citizens to decide the future direction of their country. On the one hand the ruling coalition headed by Prime Minister Dombrovskis sought agreement for its austerity policies caused by the crisis; on the other hand the electorate had to vote on whether the business interests of Latvian “oligarchs” should continue to have significant influence on the country’s politics. On top of this, the ethnic Russian minority has been able to strengthen their position in local elections since 2009.

Serbia and Kosovo: Status Disputes and EU Membership – Progress, Obstacles and the Role of Civil Society

The unsettled relationship between Serbia and Kosovo remains one of the major stumbling blocks to their entry into the EU. The advisory opinion given in July 2010 by the International Court of Justice on Kosovo’s declaration of independence stimulated discussions within Serbia and provoked a new, heightened sense of engagement among the international community.

Tanzania after the Parliamentary and Presidential Elections 2010

On 31st October 2010 elections were held in Tanzania for the directly-elected position of Union President and to the National Parliament. The presidential election was won by the incumbent President Jakaya Kikwete. The party of the President, that has ruled the country since its founding in 1964 without a break, had to endure significant losses. With the party for Democracy and Development there is a serious new opponent.

The (Never)Ending Story of Bulgarian and Romanian Judicial Reform

20 years after the fall of the Communist and Socialist regimes in South East Europe there is a growing awareness in the transition countries that substantial and enduring reforms, especially in judicial areas, have not yet been accomplished. The alteration of the judiciary in Bulgaria and Romania has not been successfully finished to this day.

Jahresregister 2010

Sämtliche Artikel der Auslandsinformationen 2010 - geordnet nach Autoren, Ländern und Themenschwerpunkten.

Christians in China – Expansion and Limitation of Churches

Only a decade ago in China any sort of religious activities was viewed with suspicion. Ten years on, churches are now accessible to everybody and Christian Churches appeal to young Chinese in particular. Being a Christian in China is no longer a stigma. Nevertheless, Christian communities still have to bow to restrictions in the People’s Republic, for reasons of historical experiences and a fundamentally different understanding of religious freedom.

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Dr. Gerhard Wahlers



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