DGAP in the media archive

  • "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.

  • Merkel heads to Ukraine for support against Russia

    Interview with Stefan Meister | 22/08/2014 | Global Post

    Concerns about Germany’s economy will not derail the dramatic transformation underway in German–Russian relations, says Stefan Meister (DGAP): “We are in the process of a fundamental change in how we see Russia. The policy of the last 20–25 years has failed.” Meister believes even recession is unlikely to reverse the shift in German policy. “I think that everybody now understands that Russia changed the European order,” Meister said, “and we need to show them that it is unacceptable.”

  • Germany Wakes Up – Better Late than Never

    Interview with Stefan Meister | 20/08/2014 | The Day/ Kiev.ua

    For the DGAP expert, the visit symbolizes changes in the German Eastern policy: the recognition that the German foreign policy needs to re-orientate itself toward other Eastern neighbours instead of Russia. Despite clear support for Kiev, Meister does not expect more than symbolic solidarity. He believes German military support is unlikely since rebuilding Ukraine’s army is NATO’s and the EU’s task. Germany is willing to act as a diplomatic broker. Success will depend on the conflict parties.

  • Merkel will “use her visit to Kiev to back Poroshenko.”

    Interview with Stefan Meister | 19/08/2014 | World Bulletin

    Stefan Meister (DGAP) said Merkel would use her visit to Kiev to back Poroshenko, but also to test how flexible Kiev is willing to be to achieve a deal with Moscow. "In order to get a compromise with Russia, you need movement from Ukraine. How prepared are they to do that at a time when they are on the offensive in the east, trying to establish facts on the ground?" said Meister. "I have the feeling Putin may be ready to talk but he can't lose face."

  • Finland has a good reputation as a peace negotiator

    Interview with Stefan Meister | 15/08/2014 | YLE News

    International and Finnish experts are warning people not to expect too much from Niinistö’s meeting with Putin. While there may be benefits to the meeting, it may not bring about concrete results. Niinistö has stressed that he does not see himself as a major peace negotiator. According to German researcher Stefan Meister (DGAP), Finland has a good reputation as a peace negotiator, but that may not be enough because the parties in the Ukraine crisis are unwilling to compromise.

  • Russian attack on Ukraine unlikely

    Interview with Stefan Meister | 07/08/2014 | Bloomberg News

    The government in Kiev has estimated that Russia has deployed 45,000 soldiers, 160 tanks and 192 warplanes among other equipment along its border, including soldiers stationed in Crimea. Even so, Russia may not be willing to enter into a military conflict, according to Stefan Meister, an analyst at the DGAP in Berlin. “I can’t believe Russia would attack Ukraine, which would worsen the situation further and deepen the conflict with the West,” Meister said.

  • Despite anger at Russia Europe avoids sanctions

    Interview with Henning Riecke | 22/07/2014 | The Washington Post

    Some observers were skeptical about whether the Europeans would move rapidly toward the strictest possible sanctions on Russia. Henning Riecke, a DGAP security expert, said “the question of who is responsible for the crash of the Malaysia Airlines plane has not been completely been resolved yet; I don’t think there will be sanctions like the ones imposed by the U.S.” “The price for sanctions targeting entire industries would be too high for Europe and for the Germans,” he said.

  • US struggle to convince allies to accept Guantanamo detainees

    Interview with Henning Riecke | 17/07/2014 | Deutsche Welle

    "Germany was asked by the US administration last year to take in between nine and 12 (ethnic Chinese) Uyghur inmates, mainly because there is an Uyghur exile community in Hamburg, but the Germans refused," explains DGAP’s transatlantic relations expert Henning Riecke. "The German government did not accept because this would overshadow German-Chinese relations. This was a weak response, in my opinion. The Ministry of the Interior also cited a fear of Islamist infiltration in its decision."

dgap in the media

Most Read