I like / I dislike
Week 26 [20230506-20230512]
Every Monday, the Research Trainees of the CERESE assess the news of the previous week. You can read their opinions below:
I like the news that the European Union will hold peace talks between Armenia and Azerbaijan. The first round of talks will take place in Brussels and then, the EU Council President Charles Michel will receive Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the two South Caucasus countries have been engaged in a conflict over the Nagorno-Karabakh region, which is mainly inhabited by Armenians. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and French President Emmanuel Macron also wish to contribute to the mitigation of the conflict.
I like the fact that the President of Brazil, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, in an astute political maneuver, has declared six new indigenous reserves covering 1,5 million acres, including significant Amazon rainforest tracts. This counters his predecessor, Jair Bolsonaro’s, pro-mining stance, reinstating restrictions on mining and commercial farming, and underscoring Lula’s commitment to indigenous rights and ecological preservation. While appreciating the move, indigenous leaders call for the fulfillment of the initial pledge to recognize 14 new territories. Lula’s policy signifies a critical shift in Brazil’s approach to climate change, amidst escalating Amazon deforestation, casting him as a crucial global actor in this existential fight.
I dislike the news that the Israeli army demolished a Palestinian school near Bethlehem, that had been built with the help of the European Union. This school was demolished for the second time since 2017 before it could be rebuilt. In March, the Jerusalem court accepted the request to demolish the school brought forward by an Israeli right-wing organization that argued that the school was built arbitrarily and was dangerous. The demolition was condemned by the Palestinian side and by the EU, with the latter stating that the demolitions are illegal under International Law. This situation has caused serious reactions, mainly from the EU, which had financed the specific reconstruction.
I dislike the news of Russia’s war celebration. Vladimir Putin, the Russian President, used the annual celebration of Victory Day, a holiday that commemorates the victory of the Soviet Union in World War II, as a platform to denounce the West and make claims about Ukraine, equating the war he began against the latter with the struggle for survival of the Soviet Union against Nazi Germany. Although Putin’s justifications for his invasion previously included echoes of World War II, his rhetoric has shifted from a war of self-defense to drawing direct parallels to the fight against Nazism.