Journal of Liberty and International Affairs 2022-12-10T11:17:26+01:00 Goran Ilik Open Journal Systems <p><span class="text14_333"><span class="blue16"><em>Journal of Liberty and International Affairs </em>is a triannual (3 regular issues per year), international, open-access, and peer-reviewed journal published by the<em> Institute for Research and European Studies. </em>The journal also encourages the publication of occasional Special Issues. The journal aims to provide an active international forum for analysis, research, and debate in a broad range of fields. <em>Journal of Liberty and International Affairs</em> welcomes submissions from political sciences, international relations, international law, and related fields. The journal embraces multi- and interdisciplinary scholarship and comparative approaches. </span></span><strong>The journal is <a href="">indexed</a> in SCOPUS, EBSCO, DOAJ, CEEOL, SSOAR, ERIHPLUS, HeinOnline, ANVUR, Columbia International Affairs Online, ProQuest, UGC-CARE List Group II, etc.</strong></p> <hr /> <p>ISSN: <span class="grey121">1857-9760</span> (online)</p> <p><strong>Submit Paper by Email: </strong><strong><br /></strong></p> <p><a href=""><strong>Author Guidelines</strong></a></p> <hr /> Cover Page and Table of Contents 2022-12-02T08:31:41+01:00 Journal of Liberty and International Affairs <p><em>Journal of Liberty and International Affairs</em> is a triannual (3 issues per year), international, open-access, and peer-reviewed journal published by the <em>Institute for Research and European Studies</em>. It welcomes submissions from political sciences, international relations, international law, and related fields. The journal embraces multi- and interdisciplinary scholarship and comparative approaches. The journal is <a href="">indexed</a> in SCOPUS, EBSCO, DOAJ, CEEOL, SSOAR, ERIHPLUS, HeinOnline, ANVUR, Columbia International Affairs Online, ProQuest, UGC-CARE List Group II, etc.</p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 THE EFFICIENCY OF ENSURING THE FINANCIAL SECURITY OF ARMENIA: NEW APPROACHES 2022-12-02T10:15:17+01:00 Gayane Salnazaryan Albert Hayrapetyan Marine Avetisyan Lilit Avetisyan <p><em>Financial security is considered a subsystem of the economic security system. The financial security of the Republic of Armenia is one of the most urgent issues of study and analysis. Covid-19 and the 2020 war in Armenia harmed all sectors of the Armenian economy, especially economic and financial security. At this moment, the research of the chosen topic becomes more than necessary and urgent. In the current post-crisis period, financial security is more than possible in Armenia. In this article, we tried to define and analyze the elements affecting the security of the Armenian financial system and evaluate the current effectiveness of financial security. For that purpose, we have formulated the following research questions: How are countries’ financial security assessed? What elements ensure financial security in Armenia? Is the current system of financial security effective in Armenia? The applied methodologies are quantitative and qualitative. In particular, we used index analysis, graphical analysis, comparison, and expert evaluation analysis to answer the research questions. The analysis results showed that the change of isolated factors significantly impacts indicators of the country’s economy, particularly the financial system; moreover, the factors indirectly impact the country's social, political, and public life.&nbsp; </em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 DEMOCRACY STATE AND AUTOCRATIZATION FEATURES IN THE REPUBLIC OF ALBANIA 2022-12-02T08:45:28+01:00 Dorina Bërdufi Afrim Krasniqi <p><em>This article examines the Albanian political regime, as a single case study, for the period 2013-2021, as part of the Western Balkans' experience of democratic backsliding, by investigating the framework of factors linked with the formidable challenge posed by the emergence of a hybrid regime of Albania in these years. For the first time in Albania’s post-communist history, the incumbent Socialist Party of Albania won for the third time in a row the parliamentary elections of April 2021, thus making the bid for the power of the leading opposition parties much harder. This paper uses country-expert statistical data from V-Dem and qualitative data analyses. The study reveals that the over-reliance on strong leaders, the growing government control over public life, fragmentation of the opposition, its lack of appeal, organization, and mobilization, the boycott of the parliamentary mandates, combined with the weakening role of media and distrust of the citizens in democratic institutions, led to the resurgence of the authoritarian mechanisms, making the liberal democratic transformation in Albania an increasingly challenging task.</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 DEMOCRACY AND THE RIGHTS OF NON-MAJORITY COMMUNITIES AT THE LOCAL LEVEL IN KOSOVO 2022-12-02T09:47:01+01:00 Besim Myrtezani Ferdi Kamberi <p><em>Democratic governance has to do with the majority's will, respecting the rights of communities and all citizens' well-being. In Kosovo, the rights of communities are regulated by the constitution and legislation, which guarantee the special rights of minority communities. One of the fundamental policies of governmental institutions was about decentralizing local self-government, designed to facilitate the creation of new municipalities of communities and their integration into the local institutions. Our purpose was to search and analyze the level of representation of communities in the local institutions, legal mechanisms that guarantee their rights, challenges in putting the rights of communities into practice, and the political steps that must be taken to achieve so. The methodology is based on quantitative research with 500 (five hundred) respondents in three municipalities: Pristina, Gracanica, and Dragash, where 59% of respondents are male and 41% are female. The results show that about 55% of the communities are somewhat satisfied with the constitutional guarantees, and 38% are represented in the institutional life of Kosovo. Implementing legal mechanisms has allowed the communities to have higher representation at institutional levels and be part of Kosovo society’s integrative processes.&nbsp; </em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 DOES COLLECTIVE ACTION INSTITUTIONALIZE RATIONAL CHOICE? CANDIDATE SELECTION IN INDONESIAN POLITICAL PARTIES 2022-12-02T10:25:14+01:00 Andi Luhur Prianto Achmad Nurmandi Zuly Qodir Hasse Jubba <p><em>The selection process for local head candidates in the electoral democracy in Indonesia is still closed and confidential. Recruitment regulations are insufficient to control the informal actions of the candidate selection process, which is based on political pragmatism. This paper examines the dynamics of local head candidate selection from the rational choice institutionalism approach, with the collective action perspective. The research method uses content analysis, with analyzed interpretively using the NVivo 12 plus application. Research findings show that candidate selection in political parties is not entirely based on supply and demand but as a rational choice formed from the collective actions of party elites. In deciding the mayoral candidate in Makassar City in Indonesia 2020, political parties are influenced by collective mentality, individual quality, group size and resources in political parties. The conclusion is that the rational choice institutionalism approach through the practices of principal-agent, game-theory and rule-based models occurs in the selection of local head candidates. This rational choice institutionalism approach explains the tension between political actors to maximize personal and group interests in political party institutions.</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 EVALUATING THE ROLE OF TOURISM IN THE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF ARMENIA AND OTHER MEMBER STATES OF THE EURASIAN ECONOMIC UNION 2022-12-02T10:37:43+01:00 Gayane Tovmasyan <p><em>Tourism has a significant role in the economies of many countries. It creates jobs, brings money, promotes investments, decreases poverty, develops infrastructures, etc. Many research works try to evaluate the role of tourism development on the economy. The article evaluates the role of tourism development in the economy of Armenia and checks the Tourism-Led Growth Hypothesis (TLGH). With the help of statistical methods, the article evaluates the connections between tourism total expenses (visitor exports, domestic spending, government spending, and capital investment), the number of tourists and tourism total contribution to GDP, employment and other indicators. Besides, the correlation analysis between these indicators was done for the Member States of the Eurasian Economic Union. The results show that the increase in tourism expenses and the number of tourists will increase GDP and employment. However, the change in tourism contribution to employment is not so high, which was explained by different reasons. The same is the case for other countries of the Eurasian Economic Union. The article results may be helpful for future studies, as well as for government agencies for evaluating tourism contribution to economic development and for elaborating tourism development policies.&nbsp; </em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 EMERGING POWER IN INDUSTRIALIZATION: EMPOWERING INDIA THROUGH ENTREPRENEURSHIP 2022-12-02T10:49:32+01:00 Sayak Pal N. Thilaka Sharmila Kayal <p><em>The ‘soft power’ can be brought forward and achieved for any developing country through softer means. Advertising (both direct and indirect approach) is a powerful tool for disseminating information to various stakeholders concerning the MSME sector. To introspect the potentiality of India’s MSME’s emerging power, the researchers attempted to answer the different components that shaped Indian industrialization over the years and also analyzed the direct and indirect audio-visual advertisements created on MSMEs to encourage entrepreneurial activities throughout the nation. The observation indicates that direct and indirect advertisements that promote and encourage the growth of entrepreneurship have their advantages and disadvantages; however, direct advertisements are proven to be preferred over indirect advertisements, while the reason behind it can be the dilution of concept or the prominence of commercialization.&nbsp; </em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 THE ROLE OF INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY IN FIGHTING CORRUPTION IN THE JUDICIARY SYSTEM: THE CASE OF 2016 JUDICIAL REFORM IN ALBANIA 2022-12-02T11:00:04+01:00 Bojana Hajdini Gentjan Skara <p><em>Corruption in the judiciary system has been considered by Albanian citizens and international organizations as deeply corrupt. In 2016 Albanian Parliament, supported by the EU and USA, adopted a judiciary reform to increase transparency, accountability, impartiality and citizens’ access to information. One way of preventing corruption and increasing citizens’ access to justice is by using information technology. This paper analyses the role of information and communication technology in preventing corruption in the Albanian judiciary system. The main research question is how and to what extent digitizing the judiciary contributes to preventing corruption in the judiciary system. The paper argues that the use of ICT in the judiciary system has been limited due to several factors, such as lack of legislation on the use of ICT in the judiciary system, absence of a unified automated case management system, lack of appropriate education or training of judiciary staff to use ICT and lack of reinvestments on ICT equipment in courts. The 2016 judicial reform, for the first time, emphasized the importance of digitizing the judiciary system in Albania. The paper concludes that digitizing the judiciary will increase integrity and prevent corruption in the judicial system.&nbsp; </em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 MANAGEMENT’S PERCEPTION OF THE DETERMINANTS THAT INFLUENCE SMEs PERFORMANCE: EVIDENCE FROM KOSOVO 2022-12-03T11:18:41+01:00 Sokol Krasniqi Arta Jashari Goga Ismail Mehmeti <p><em>Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are now unquestionable contributors to economic development on the one side and employment creation on the other. To promote sustained growth, SMEs must meet specific prerequisites, particularly the leadership structures of this segment. Therefore, this research aims to investigate and identify the determinants that affect SMEs performance. The research employs a qualitative technique, using questionnaires containing 52 questions. The study surveyed 336 SMEs owners or managers from March to April 2022. The Multinomial Logistic Regression (MLR) empirical technique explored the influence of education level, previous experience, training attendance, business plan, consultation services, and employees' insufficient competency in SMEs performance. The research has revealed that the level of education and consultancy services positively impact SMEs performance. In contrast, neglect of training and employees' insufficient competence harm SMEs performance. The study encourages SMEs owners and managers to take advantage of professional training opportunities and to invest in existing personnel through training to acquire acceptable competence, which will be reflected in management performance. From the perspective of the contribution, it provides the most recent evidence in the context of Kosovo's economy, employing the logistic regression analysis.&nbsp; </em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 THE IMPACT OF ISIS ON IRAQ’S NATIONAL SECURITY: REVIEW OF THE PERIOD FROM 2014 TO 2017 2022-12-03T11:25:52+01:00 Araz Ramazan Ahmad Gardwn Tahir Othman <p><em>In the post-Ba’athist era, stability and national security remain the two key goals. Iraq has suffered from many extremist terrorist groups on several separate stages from 2003 to 2017. The most threatening terrorist group was ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant), which has enormous impacts on Iraqi society, given the vast geographical areas that it controlled, and the dangers, crimes and violations suffered by the Iraqi people with all its components. The main aim of this study is to determine the impacts of ISIS on Iraqi national security. The study relied on Content Analysis Method to analyze the collected data and achieve its aims. Also, the primary research question is about the impact of ISIS on Iraq’s national security from 2014 to 2017. Correspondingly, an international coalition of more than a hundred countries was formed to stop the rapid expansion of ISIS. The number of victims who lost their lives and were affected at the psychological and humanitarian levels was explained in this study. According to the research results, ISIS was seeking long-term goals. The most important was the preparation for disseminating this new extremist ideology. The intelligence and the exploitation of poverty, ignorance, and political conflicts that ISIS used aimed to implant the extremist mentality in the most significant number of attention.&nbsp; </em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 ECONOMETRIC EVALUATION OF PUBLIC DEBT ON INFLATION: EVIDENCE FROM KOSOVO AND NORTH MACEDONIA 2022-12-03T11:32:56+01:00 Ismail Mehmeti Gazmend Deda <p><em>The nexus between public debt and inflation has been continuously investigated, but after the pandemic, it has returned to the center of researchers' courtesy. Consequently, this research examines the influences of public debt, interest rates, trade openness, GDP growth, and foreign direct investments on inflation. The study employs secondary data from 2008 to 2021 and incorporates a mixed econometric technique such as the Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) and Arrellano-Bover/Blundell-Bond approach. The study's findings argue that public debt, interest rates, and trade openness significantly influence inflation, whereas GDP growth has a significantly negative impact. Because of the limited number of observations in the context of the research, we have not been able to evaluate the impact in the long term. The uniqueness and relevance of this research stem from its use of a combined approach, and in recent months, a continuous increase in inflation has been recorded throughout the world. The current findings and arguments inspire a productive discourse among academics, scholars, and policy-making entities. &nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 ACTUAL CHALLENGE IN INTERNATIONAL CORPORATE TAXATION: SHIFTING THE OBLIGATION OF CONDUCT INTO OBLIGATION OF RESULT 2022-12-03T11:38:14+01:00 Mihaela Tofan <p><em>The research answered whether cooperation in ruling corporate taxation, a traditional obligation of conduct of sovereign states, was undergoing profound transformation into the obligation of result. The analyzed topic was not whether the tax authorities want or should cooperate (which is answered per se), but rather how to appropriately respond to the international taxation requirements for strengthening the multilateral agreements. Tax authorities worldwide have expressed concerns about identifying efficient regulation, and the development of multilateral agreements to combat tax evasion was under long and often unproductive negotiation. The empirical analyses of relevant literature and jurisprudence helped formulate an opinion on the regulation’s efficiency in strengthening multilateral taxation. The need to change the nature of the state’s obligation to negotiate fiscal regulation was not mentioned explicitly in hard law. Still, it was indirectly supported by soft law instruments, such as state representatives’ continuous yet divergent dialogue and the approaches presented in the international courts’ jurisprudence. The consistent influence on the obligation to support developments in international law in corporate taxation was justified, given the limit when considering its conduct nature, compared to potential benefits generated by the obligation of result. &nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 THE MIGRATION STRATEGIES AND POSITIONS ON THE EU MIGRATION AND ASYLUM AGENDA: EVIDENCE FROM THE VISEGRAD GROUP COUNTRIES 2022-12-03T11:42:28+01:00 Tomáš Kajánek <p><em>At the time of the outbreak of the migration crisis in Europe, the Visegrad Group gained the status of the EU troublemaker due to its opposition to the solidarity and cohesion mechanisms adopted on the European level. The migration strategies (not only) of the individual states of the grouping proved insufficient and unfeasible in times of crisis. However, in the case of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and the Slovak Republic, the absence of national mechanisms and solutions was partially replaced after 2015 by joint declarations and statements rejecting active cooperation in resolving migration and asylum pressures within the EU Single Market. Despite failing to manage migratory pressures since 2015, four Central European countries have not learned their lessons and will face unprecedented crises in 2022 again. This time, however, Visegrad countries became the first-line countries affected by the refugee crisis. The migration and asylum agenda is thus becoming an extremely complex problem within the Visegrad Group region due to the initially intense politicization of the topic by the government elites in individual states. The paper analyses the migration strategies of individual states and the migration and asylum management-related positions after the migration crisis in 2015 and the sequence of events associated with the outbreak of armed conflict in Ukraine in early 2022. &nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 THE CHALLENGES TO WOMEN’S ENTREPRENEURIAL INVOLVEMENT IN THE HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY 2022-12-03T11:47:49+01:00 Rimsha Khalid Mohsin Raza Anusara Sawangchai Hassan Raza <p><em>Entrepreneurship is one of the growing trends, and studies are focusing on it generally. However, this study is mainly focused on women’s entrepreneurship. This study intends to measure the impact of work-family interference, socio-cultural support, access to finance entrepreneurial skills, and legal constraints on women’s entrepreneurial involvement through the mediation of self-leadership in the hospitality and tourism sector. This study has chosen a quantitative approach, collecting data through surveys. The snowball sampling method was used for data collection from women of Pakistan, and data was analyzed through the PLS-SEM method. The result of the present study affirms that work-family interference, social and cultural support, and entrepreneurial skills are significantly associated with women’s entrepreneurial involvement other than access to finance and legal constraints. Moreover, self-leadership significantly mediates between (work-family interference, socio-cultural support, and access to finance) and women’s entrepreneurial involvement except for entrepreneurial skills and legal constraints. The present study’s findings affirm that formal or informal institutions influence women’s entrepreneurial involvement. This study may help women entrepreneurs understand the factors and policymakers to make policies for women entrepreneurs in the hospitality sector. &nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 THE DYNAMICS OF DEMOCRATIZATION AND THE IMPLICATIONS ON THAILAND’S FOREIGN POLICY 2022-12-03T11:54:00+01:00 Ornthicha Duangratana <p><em>As Thailand undergoes a long democratization process, significant barriers to the country’s consolidation of democracy include reserved domains and tutelary powers. While states are usually treated as homogenous units in understanding their behaviors in the international arena, the internal processes are important determinants of states’ actions. Therefore, the swings in the embeddedness of Thai reserved domains and tutelary powers can shape the domestic constraints that governmental actors face in foreign policy formulations. In this paper, the Thai democratization trajectory was investigated in a comparative study to trace the changes in the prevalence of reserved domains and tutelary powers in different periods. Then, through an exploration into Thailand’s foreign policy decisions that the country enacted towards the major powers and the neighboring countries in the Cold War and the post-Cold War periods, these foreign policy actions were scrutinized in connection to the dynamic of the decision-making apparatus of the time. The information was compiled through official papers, government statements, newspapers, and scholarly literature. The paper demonstrates that when tutelary powers and reserved domains are highly embedded in the policy-making structure, and conflicting standpoints on a foreign policy decision are presented, the outcomes of the policy-making process will lean towards the camp advocated by the non-democratic actors. &nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 RUSSIA’S COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES ABOUT CRIMEA IN SPANISH-LANGUAGE SPUTNIK AND RUSSIA TIMES (2014-2018) 2022-12-03T11:56:43+01:00 Ludmila Gonzalez Cerulli Sybil Rhodes <p><em>We analyze Russia’s communication strategies in the period leading up to and following the seizure (2014-2018) of the Crimean Peninsula in the Spanish editions of its digital platforms, Sputnik and </em><em>Russia Times</em><em>. Drawing from theories of political communication, we show how Russia used storytelling and framing to build an international image and political brand consistent with, and try to justify, its foreign policy actions. Specifically, Russian messages transmit no room for doubt about the legality of any of its strategies in Crimea. We argue that this communication strategy is consistent with the concept of ‘sharp power’ to describe Russian projection in the world. Cultural and emotional appeals designed to generate positive emotions about Russia, i.e., ‘soft power’, were far less common. In recent years, Russian projection of sharp power appears to have increased in the Spanish-speaking world, particularly in South America. In addition to helping explain Russian foreign policy, our findings contribute to broader debates about political branding and truth in a ‘post-truth’, multipolar world.</em><em>&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 THE APPLIED STATE OF VIOLATION OF WOMEN'S RIGHTS IN ARMED CONFLICTS: YAZIDI WOMEN DURING THE ISIS WAR IN IRAQ 2022-12-03T12:01:30+01:00 Roza Omer Hamadamin Nor Anita Abdullah Mohd Zakhiri Md. Nor <p><em>On 3 August 2014, fighters from the Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) attacked the Yazidi minority of Sinjar in Kurdistan-Iraq. The Yazidi community was the main target of ISIS fighters, including Yazidi women. The ISIS group has committed violence against Yazidi women in several ways. This study aims to show the crimes committed by the group ISIS against Yazidi women and to highlight the problem of violence against women in war through recent living examples, such as women in the ISIS war between 2014-2017. The second part of this study identifies the legal deficiencies related to the regulations that guarantee the protection of women's rights in Iraq. Through a content analysis approach, qualitative methodologies are used. Also, based on a thematic analysis of semi-structured interviews, this paper found that the Yazidi women and girls have been subjected to the most heinous crimes involving international crimes. Furthermore, despite various legal provisions in Iraqi laws and the constitution relating to protecting women's rights, these laws have several legal deficiencies. The Iraqi legal authority has not attempted to guarantee sufficient protection for women's rights in armed conflicts.</em><em>&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 KAZAKHSTAN AMID UNREST AND INSTABILITY: MAIN IMPLICATIONS 2022-12-03T12:12:26+01:00 Aram Terzyan <p><em>This paper explores the reasoning and implications of the unrest in Kazakhstan unleashed in January of 2022. This crisis was the most severe form of violence that Kazakhstan has endured since gaining independence. It distorted Kazakhstan’s image as a stable country. While the crisis was limited to the territory of Kazakhstan and developed mainly from domestic problems, it undeniably acquired an important international element. Kazakhstan’s appeal to the CSTO presented a drastic change in Kazakhstan’s foreign policy and ensued in the shift in the balance of power in the greater Eurasian region. Although Russia played a relatively subtle role on the ground, Russia’s involvement was set to link the political future of Kazakhstan to Russia for an unspecified amount of time. The study concludes that Kazakhstan is faced with the challenges of undertaking significant reforms to lower the possibility of further instabilities while remaining true to its multi-vector foreign policy agenda amid Russian intrusion.</em><em> </em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 INDIA-CHINA STRATEGIC COMPETITION IN THE INDIAN OCEAN 2022-12-03T12:24:10+01:00 Chuong Nguyen Binh Nguyen Hiep Tran Mi Le <p><em>The</em> <em>XXI is considered by major countries in the Asia-Pacific region as ‘the century of sea and ocean’ and is accompanied by fierce competition among the nations to gain interest in the sea regions. On the basis that previously only considered the competition for military objectives, geostrategic bases and traffic channels through the straits, nowadays, countries worldwide have stepped up the competition for economic interests and marine resources. The development of military power and the competitive activities for resources at sea show clear the tendency to use the sea to contain the continent. In that context, the Indian Ocean, as the world’s third largest ocean, has an important geographic location and rich and diverse natural resources; the arterial sea route is gradually becoming the center of new world geopolitics and an important area in the strategic competition between two ‘Asian giants’ - India and China. The competition between these countries in the Indian Ocean is growing and profoundly impacts the region’s stability and security. This article focuses on the position and important role of the Indian Ocean in the policies of India and China, the fierce competition between the two countries in nearly two decades of the XXI century.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 SOVEREIGN ACTORS IN AFGHANISTAN: THE STRATEGIC CALCULUS 2001-2021 2022-12-03T12:34:30+01:00 Timor Shah Bushar <p><em>Afghanistan is considered the entry point for interventions and an important basis for the strategic objectives of sovereign actors. Due to the lack of national sovereignty, the inefficient political system and its fragile legal system regarding ethnic-tribal crises have created strategic depths for global and regional actors, which they can pursue and implement their objectives. While Afghanistan is a focal point in expanding political, military, and economic exchanges and transactions in its peripheral areas, it has suffered from deep ethnic divisions to the same extent. This major weakness is the basis for interventions by regional actors. This article does not deal with Afghanistan's internal weaknesses and problems but focuses on the strategic goals of sovereign actors in Afghanistan. War on terror, invasion, and creation of military bases in Afghanistan by the US and NATO to control and monitor China, Russia, Iran, and Central Asian countries, have been pursued during the past 20 years. It shows the importance of Afghanistan’s geo-strategic position in western policies, especially for the United States of America.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 INTERROGATING ERDOGAN’S NEO-OTTOMAN GEOPOLITICAL IMAGINATION 2022-12-03T13:24:06+01:00 Jajati K. Pattnaik Chandan K. Panda <p><em>This paper examines the possible emergence of the neo-Ottoman geopolitical order with the Republic of Turkey at its helm under the leadership of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The blueprint for this ambitious order is taken from its Ottoman antiquity. Neo-Ottomanism attempts to secure continuity with its Ottoman past by foregrounding Islam as the core theo-cultural framework to achieve the political end of constituting Islamic nations to come under one particular order. To achieve this desired end, Erdogan intensifies his endeavor and employs his tact to forge alliances with Islamic nations and promises them solidarity and mutual prosperity keeping his leadership role intact. To pursue this ambition, he expressed his belligerence against the neighboring nations such as Armenia, Greece, Cyprus, Georgia, Bulgaria, etc., which were once the constituents of the Ottoman empire and preferred interventionist policy to diplomatic cooperation. The symptoms of neo-Ottoman pre-eminence are evident in the nautical territories in the Aegean Sea, the Black Sea, the Sea of Marmara and the Mediterranean Sea. The study employs methods of analysis and scrutiny of the existing literature in the field and the related areas to achieve the objective of what constitutes Erdogan’s neo-Ottoman geopolitical imagination and to conclude as to what are the geopolitical symptoms that validate the possible emergence of the neo-Ottoman political process, and limitations that underpin the process.</em><em>&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 THE ROLE OF TURKIYE IN THE BLACK SEA AND THE RUSSO-UKRAINIAN WAR: A SHORT OVERVIEW 2022-12-03T18:35:43+01:00 Muhamed Ali <p><em>After the end of the Cold War, the new conjuncture that appeared in the region of the Black Sea turned into an important place on the international scene. During the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022, Turkish diplomacy played a significant role in this region and international relations based on its new ‘active neutrality’ strategy. Turkiye's extensive efforts at a ceasefire through implementing the mediatory role between Russia and Ukraine were its more significant diplomatic endeavors throughout the war. Simultaneously, one of the more critical segments that marked the Ukrainian resistance against invasion is the success of the Turkish armed drone Bayraktar TB2. Turkiye plays a vital role in the so-called ‘grain corridor’ function with the aim of activization of Ukrainian export of grain and mitigating the world’s grain crises.</em><em> &nbsp;</em><em>&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Muhamed Ali SPECIFIC PROJECTION OF CHINA’S SOFT POWER IN AFRICA: A NEW SECURITY PARADIGM 2022-12-04T00:15:45+01:00 Dusko Tomic Eldar Saljic Mohamed Badine El Yattioui <p><em>According to the International Monetary Fund, the People’s Republic of China is nowadays the largest economic power in the world. Therefore, it is unsurprising that China was represented in nearly every global market. Contrary to the belief that Chinese investments in underdeveloped countries should lead to their development and improvements in standards, Peking was accused of using the countries in development to strengthen its economy and to increase its political influence. The modus operandi was allegedly a striking example of projecting soft power in the expansion of hard power in many regions worldwide. The combination of economy, trade, investments and security questions was clear. This phenomenon was evident in Africa because China had a special and robust economic and geostrategic interest in this region. This research critically analyzed how this strategy can be considered a new security paradigm. In addition, there was a straightforward project from the Chinese government to extend this model to other regions to obtain global leadership.</em><em>&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 SMALL ARMS AND LIGHT WEAPONS SMUGGLING AND BOKO HARAM CHALLENGE TO NIGERIAN SECURITY: A CASE STUDY OF THE BENIN-NIGERIAN POROUS BORDER 2022-12-04T00:24:03+01:00 Stephen Odey Samuel Bassey Afiful Ikhwan Ayu Santyaningtyas <p><em>Porous borders continue to be the principal source and conduit for small arms and light weapons (SALWs) throughout Africa, particularly Nigeria. Presently, Nigeria’s security environment is severely endangered by the operations of the Boko Haram insurgent group, which often uses smuggled firearms and ammunition. Scholars have paid little attention to analyzing the smuggling problem in SALWs and their threat to Nigeria’s internal security amid the Boko Haram menace. This study addresses the SALWs smuggling, and Boko Haram challenges to Nigerian security by using the Benin-Nigerian Porous Border as a case study. This paper discovers that the porous Nigeria-Benin border and the lackadaisical attitude of both governments have enabled transnational crime of the Boko-Haram sect. The paper recommends adequate coordination between security services and residents to battle the scourge of cross-border proliferation of small guns and light weapons between Benin and Nigeria. This study recommends a West African regional security network structure to regulate borders and coordinate security to curb SALWs and other criminal activities.</em><em>&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 CHINA’S UNILATERAL CLAIM IN THE SOUTH CHINA AND EAST CHINA SEA: AN ANALYTICAL STUDY 2022-12-04T00:32:44+01:00 Baidyanath Mukherjee <p><em>The increased territorial conflicts in the center of the maritime South and East China Seas have ramifications for Asian regional stability. The area is resource-rich, strategically placed along waterways, and has indisputable oil and natural gas reserves. There had also been a perceived change in the international system built by the United States during World War II, with China attempting to replace it as the regional power. China's behavior toward the remaining claimants, as well as to some extent toward other foreign parties in the conflicts, is examined using ideas from International Relations and case studies from International Law. Employing a qualitative research design, the author attempted to analyze the territorial dispute in the East China Sea and the South China Sea. This paper explains how the islands are strategically located near commercial fishing grounds, major shipping channels, and undiscovered oil and gas potential and how the issue is linked to China's preservation of national sovereignty, while the remaining claimant states perceive it as an incursion by the approaching menace of China. Whoever gains control of the islands eventually gains control of a major portion of East China and South China Seas' economic resources.</em><em>&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 MIGRATION AND RELIGIOUS SOCIALIZATION IN NIGERIA: THE FULANIZATION DILEMMA 2022-12-04T13:58:55+01:00 Peter O. O. Ottuh Onos G. Idjakpo <p><em>Migration has remarkably influenced the development of civilization and the establishment of cultural borders throughout history. In the case of Nigeria, one of the negative impacts of migration has been the violent seizure of ancestral lands by the Fulani as part of a strategy to 'fulanize' and 'Islamize' the Nigerian nation. This study investigates the links between human migration and religious socialization in Africa, particularly Nigeria. The paper employs the descriptive and phenomenological approaches and bases its arguments on the theoretical foundations of Durkheimian and Weberian theories. The paper argues that regional mobility, with its religious socializing effects, affects national politics, government, the economy, and other national domains. It concludes that African countries should include international migration in their plans and national development goals to make their countries safer.</em><em>&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 THE ROLE OF EUROPEAN UNION POLICIES TO COUNTER ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION IN NORTH AFRICA 2022-12-04T14:08:10+01:00 Mahmoud Khalifa <p><em>The issue of illegal immigration from North Africa to Europe is one of the most prominent phenomena that have preoccupied analysts, researchers, and decision-makers, considering that it affects the security of countries and societies alike in North Africa, especially after the wave of protests in 2011. The proposed study focuses on two main questions: What are the repercussions of illegal immigration on the European Union? What are the most important European Union policies to address illegal immigration from North Africa? The methodology of the study employs the qualitative method since it helps provide a substantial and rich description of this complex phenomenon, tracking unique or unexpected events by analyzing the following policies: the Barcelona Process, the Schengen Agreement, the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership, the 5+5 Dialogue, the European Neighbourhood Policy, and the Union for the Mediterranean. This article presents an analytical study of European policies to confront illegal immigration from North African countries. Finally, it is concluded the need to adopt a preventive strategy to confront illegal immigration in the Mediterranean region by addressing its causes, especially in the southern Mediterranean countries, which are considered source countries, for improving economic and social conditions.</em><em> &nbsp; </em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 THE POLITICS UNDERPINNING THE BRICS EXPANSION 2022-12-04T14:11:36+01:00 K Thangjalen Kipgen Sukalpa Chakrabarti <p><em>The cooperation of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, or BRICS, is a vital organization founded in 2009. In the politics of the modern world, there is no denying the significance of this international institution. Throughout its history, the organization has been a strong supporter of developing nations and has earned the reputation of being a guardian. The announcement that BRICS leaders had agreed to expand their organization during the fourteenth BRICS summit, which was held in Beijing, China, in 2022, garnered a great deal of attention from many different regions of the world. This article examines the reasons behind the BRICS’ considerable involvement in global politics, the expansion policy, and how the BRICS outreach and the BRICS Plus summit or meeting play a role in this sector.</em><em>&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> <p><em>&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 THE ROMANIAN PRESIDENCY OF THE COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION. GREAT EXPECTATIONS? 2022-12-04T14:19:19+01:00 Natalia Cuglesan Goran Ilik <p><em>The post-accession evolution of the new Member States to the European Union benefits from limited attention in the EU studies literature. More scholarly works are needed to map the performance of Romania and Bulgaria. Therefore, this paper investigates Romania's performance during the six-month Council Presidency to the European Union in the first half of 2019. Building on the framework of analysis of Karolewski et al., the paper makes an empirical contribution. It seeks to analyze if Romania lived up to the challenges of the office and managed to consolidate its reputation and show its political maturity during this crucial political moment, which countries only get to play every twelve years. The paper argues that the Romanian government aimed to project the image of an active, dynamic, and efficient actor, consensus orientated but without significant policy ambitions. It was a test it wanted to pass to confirm that Romania no longer represents an exceptional case in terms of its laggardness.</em><em>&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> 2022-12-10T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022