DGAP in the media archive

  • The EP Summit in Riga

    Op-Ed by Stefan Meister | 26/06/2015 | PISM

    Stefan Meister comments on the website of the Polish Institute of International Affairs: The EU Summit on the Eastern Partnership on 21-22 May in Riga stood in the shadow of the conflict with Russia over Ukraine. Even if Russia had not been mentioned in the summit resolution and everything deleted from the document that could provoke Russia and undermine the implementation of the Minsk II agreement, the relations with Moscow were a guideline for the summit.

  • Greece’s Alliances Fade in European Debate About its Debt Crisis

    Interview with Julian Rappold | 02/06/2015 | New York Times

    Monday’s emergency summit meeting in Berlin spurred speculation that a deal could be near. By Tuesday, the Berlin group of creditors was reportedly completing a proposal to present to Athens, possibly offering some budgetary flexibility. “We are really running out of time,” said Julian Rappold, a program officer at DGAP. “This is one of the very last attempts to reconcile between sides and reach an agreement. I think European leaders have pretty much lost their patience.”

  • All roads lead to Berlin

    Interview with Julian Rappold | 29/05/2015 | Handelsblatt Global Edition

    On his tour of European capitals, David Cameron tries to receive support for his reform proposals to keep the U.K. in the EU. While Angela Merkel will likely lend him a sympathetic ear, it's not certain how much she can offer him. “In quite a lot of aspects, Britain and Germany have a similar agenda, with regards to free trade, with regards to pushing competitiveness and in general, of course with regards to security issues, Britain is a vital partner,” says Julian Rappold, analyst at the DGAP.

  • Tory election victory focuses EU minds on British membership

    Interview with Julian Rappold | 08/05/2015 | The Guardian

    After the Conservative triumph Cameron needs to stage his epochal in/out referendum on the EU by 2017, the same year Germany elects a new chancellor and France a new president. “There’s some leeway still to grant some minor concessions, but I think the German government has made quite clear what the red lines are and to what extent they will concede to the UK,” said Julian Rappold of the German Council on Foreign Relations. “Merkel has clear limits about what she is willing to put on the table.”

  • German interior minister to face committee over espionage claims

    Interview mit Sylke Tempel | 04/05/2015 | Deutsche Welle

    In the latest intelligence service scandal, the media draws a ring around one person in particular: Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière. The issue stirs emotions. Perhaps too much so, says Sylke Tempel, editor-in-chief of the magazine “Internationale Politik”. She sees the latest round of claims as a media storm over an affair in which the contours are not yet known. "I wish we could get more sense into this debate before we start asking people to resign," she told DW.

  • Europe's dismay grows over threat of Brexit after referendum

    Interview with Julian Rappold | 30/04/2015 | Newsweek

    A “Brexit” would damage the integrity and credibility of the EU when Europe faces unprecedented threats and challenges, says the German Council on Foreign Relations' EU expert Julian Rappold. However, there is also a growing exasperation with British politicians' incessant – and unrealistic – demands for change in the way the EU works. "London might need to face a fundamental choice about its EU membership, for the sake of the future EU integration process," says Rappold.

  • The ashes of Zhao Ziyang finally being laid to rest

    Citation of Eberhard Sandschneider | 10/04/2015 | Quartz

    Former Chinese general secretary Zhao Ziyang, who died in 2005, will finally being laid to rest next to his wife. Zhao has been largely overlooked in his crucial role in crafting many of the most important economic and market reforms that are now credited to Deng Xiaoping. “We can’t talk about the reforms and their impact on China, and also its rise as an economic power, without mentioning Zhao,” said Eberhard Sandschneider, a China specialist and director at DGAP, earlier this year.

  • "Not in a positive way"

    Kommentar von Stefan Meister | 04/03/2015 | Carnegie Europe

    Can Nemtsov’s Murder Change Russia? "Not in a positive way," says Stefan Meister, Head of the Program on Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia at the German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP).

  • Anti-Putin Opposition Looks to Russian Spring for Revival

    Interview with Stefan Meister | 26/02/2015 | Bloomberg

    Squeezed by government persecution and Putin’s near-record approval rating, Russia’s opposition is betting that an unfolding economic crisis will spark a spring revolt . However, the opposition “hasn’t been this weak for many years,” Stefan Meister, an analyst at the German Council of Foreign Relations in Berlin, said by phone. “Even when we have a growing economic crisis in Russia, there’s still high support for Putin.”

  • Munich Security Conference: Leading from the center

    Interview with Sylke Tempel | 09/02/2015 | Deutsche Welle

    "Leading from the center" - that's how German Defense Minister von der Leyen described Germany's role in international politics at the Munich Security Conference. The minister had talked about Germany's willingness to solve international conflicts together with other countries - this, she claimed, was "leading from the center." "In Europe, Germany is always at the center and acting from the center, you don't have to go to great lengths to emphasize this," Sylke Tempel said.

  • USA and Germany: The alliance stands firm

    Interviews with Henning Riecke | 09/02/2015 | Deutsche Welle, n-TV, RTL

    Obama and Merkel want to act jointly. Henning Riecke, head of the USA program, commented the Chancellor's trip to Washington in several interviews for RTL, n-TV and Deutsche Welle. Merkel tries to win US decision makers for the priority for peace talks and to dissuade them from delivering lethal weapons to Ukraine, Riecke explained.

  • Merkel visits Hungary at time of huge political challenges

    Interview with Daniel Hegedüs | 04/02/2015 |

    Two weeks after Merkel's visit to Budapest, Putin will visit the Hungarian capital. "The nearness of the two visits creates the impression that German and Russian influence are competing with each other in Hungary," said Daniel Hegedus, analyst at the German Council on Foreign Relations. "It is unlikely that Hungary would decide not to follow the German line, but there is uncertainty about it." Hegedus said Merkel will want to ensure that Hungary will support Germany and the European consensus.

  • Tsipras declares end to 'vicious cycle of austerity' after Syriza wins Greek election

    Interview with Julian Rappold | 25/01/2015 | The Guardian, Handelsblatt Global, AFP

    After the landslide victory of Syriza, Julian Rappold comments on how this vote will effect the political relations between Berlin and Athens. “A haircut is non-negotiable from the German side, first and foremost because of the strong public opinion against the haircut” he said and added that both sides would have to work quickly to establish communication channels. “A poker game is starting where both sides will try to figure out where the common ground is and which demands each can hope for.”

  • Future of peace talks in question as Ukraine cease-fire gives way

    Interview with Stefan Meister | 22/01/2015 | AlJazeera America

    The very real prospect of a return to full-scale war in Eastern Ukraine could throw the tentative diplomatic progress into jeopardy. "War is coming back in a much more serious way", explains Stefan Meister, an expert on Russia and Eastern Europe at the German Council on Foreign Relations. Western leaders wrangling for a solution to Ukraine's separatist crisis are in denial, “because they have nothing else,” Meister said. “The Minsk agreement is the only chance they have to stop the violence.”

  • Immigration and Europe

    Interview with Almut Möller | 06/12/2014 | The Economist

    On November 28th, David Cameron announced that he would make immigrants from other parts of the EU wait four years until they could claim in-work benefits. After much wrangling among cabinet ministers, Cameron however killed the idea when he realised how strongly his European allies opposed it. But damage had been done. By flirting with a measure considered unacceptable in Berlin, the British had alienated many potential allies there, says Almut Möller of the German Council on Foreign Relations.

  • Putin's Reach: Merkel Concerned about Russian Influence in the Balkans

    Interview with Stefan Meister | 17/11/2014 | Spiegel Online

    From the perspective of Berlin, Russia has gone from being a difficult partner to being an adversary within just one year. Cold War recipes are coming back into fashion. It is time to begin thinking about a new "containment strategy," says one high-ranking diplomat. Stefan Meister, a Russia expert at the German Council on Foreign Relations, agrees, saying that the West needs to focus on self-defense to a greater degree than it has thus far.

  • Ukraine Fighting Flares After Gas Deal as Winter Nears

    Interview with Stefan Meister | 01/11/2014 | Bloomberg

    British pilots intercepted a Russian Tupolev Tu-95 aircraft approaching U.K. airspace yesterday, the second such indident in three days, the Press Association reported. “The airspace interceptions around Europe in the past few days show that Russia is willing to challenge NATO and has no interest in de-escalation,” Stefan Meister, an analyst at the German Council of Foreign Relations in Berlin, said by phone. “I don’t see this gas deal as a step forward.”

  • Resources: Oil, power and conspiracy

    Interview with Stefan Meister | 21/10/2014 | Deutsche Welle

    At least 45 percent of Russia's budget is financed from energy export revenues. There, gas prices are linked to oil. According to Deutsche Banks figures, Russia needs an oil price of around $100 per barrel to balance its budget. Yet the price right now is far lower, at around $85 per barrel. This has dire consequences for Russia, according to DGAP’s Stefan Meister: "Russia's budget is underfunded. And that is particularly serious in view of the sanctions from the West and zero growth in Russia."

  • Germany Will Play Decisive Role in Ukraine

    Op-ed artilce by Stefan Meister | 29/09/2014 | Mo

    The German government's negotiating role in Ukraine comes at a time when Germany's political elite is actively formulating a more proactive, responsible foreign policy role for itself. Moreover, the call for Germany to take on a key role in managing the Ukraine conflict and talking to Moscow has been strong in the U.S. as well as among many European allies, and within the Ukrainian leadership. And so Berlin has become a key negotiator, argues Stefan Meister.

  • A Scottish Yes to independence will mean exit from EU & NATO

    Interview with Almut Möller | 15/09/2014 | Associated Press

    Loss of Scotland would weaken the influence of Britain inside the European Union. That would mean fewer British members of the European Parliament as well as a reduced say in the EU’s executive. “In the European Union, size matters,” said Almut Moeller, an EU expert at DGAP. “It will be a rump United Kingdom.” This would have major policy implications. A whittled-down Britain would have a weaker hand in pressing for the kind of EU it favours: more of a free market, and less of a political union.

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