I like / I dislike
Week 21 [20230325-20230331]


Every Monday, the Research Trainees of the CERESE assess the news of the previous week. You can read their opinions below:


I like the fact that the people of Israel opposed the return of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the prospect of limiting the country’s judicial powers. Around 60,000 people gathered to demonstrate against this restriction. More specifically, following Netanyahu’s return, major changes were to take place in the judiciary; this would give full control of the committee that appoints judges to the government, and it would ultimately strip the Supreme Court of crucial powers to annul legislation that it considers unconstitutional. On the positive side, citizens have decided to protest and thus open a public discourse on the situation, seeking to protect their constitutional rights.



I like the approval of Finland’s membership to NATO by Türkiye. This was achieved after months of negotiations and objections from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and the Turkish government, who were blocking the joint membership of Finland and Sweden in the military alliance, claiming the countries support “terrorism”. However, after the horrific earthquakes that devastated the country and while the international influence of the Turkish President is diminishing, his power over NATO has decreased, and he can no longer hold it hostage with the threat of never accepting the two Scandinavian countries. The positive vote from Türkiye opens the road of ascension to a new member of the alliance, as well as giving hope for others to join.



I dislike the proposed adoption of a law criminalizing defamation by the Assembly of the Republic of Bosnia & Herzegovina. With 48 votes in favor and 21 against, the law will go through a 60-day public consultation period before its final passing. The Minister of Justice stated that the conviction for defamation would attract fines of 2,550 to 10,220 euros, in a country where the average monthly wage is around 630 euros. Additionally, the amount increases if the act is committed “through print, radio, television or other media of the public or at a public gathering.” The critics of the bill claim that the President of the Republic is aiming to silence the media. The European Union, the United States, and several international rights organizations urged the Parliament to reject the changes.



I dislike the news about the statement by the Chinese leader Xi Jinping that he is preparing China for an eventual war. At the annual meeting of China’s Parliament and its top Political Advisory Body in March, Xi raised the issue of the country’s readiness for war by encouraging his generals to “dare to fight.” His government also announced a 7.2% increase in China’s defense budget, as well as plans to make the country less dependent on foreign grain imports, making it partially independent. Over the recent months, Beijing has set up new air raid shelters, as well as new ‘National Defense Mobilization’ offices across the country. If China finally starts a war, then the balance of the international system will be disrupted once again.



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