Journal of Liberty and International Affairs <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 /> en-US (Goran Ilik) (Aleksandar Kotevski) Tue, 14 Jun 2022 11:46:48 +0200 OJS 60 UKRAINE AMIDST THE WAR: MAIN IMPLICATIONS <p><em>This paper explores the challenges that Ukraine faces during the Russian invasion, focusing on the political and economic implications of the war. Apart from the humanitarian crisis, the war has produced political, economic, and social tribulations, which must be addressed. The more stubborn the Ukrainian resistance becomes, the more likely Russia will implement more aggressive tactics. Ukraine has already acknowledged its inability to join the transatlantic alliance, and recent peace talks with Russia have become more realistic and plausible for its future. Early planning of post-war recovery gained significance against this backdrop, as it proved to be successful when led by ‘indigenous drivers’. While this approach placed local actors, institutions, and resources at its center, it also recognized the crucial role of external aid. This paper argues that the war is a 'resilience test' for European solidarity and the EU’s crisis management competency. This paper inquires into the challenges of Ukraine’s post-war recovery and concludes that national consolidation, along with Western solidarity, is critical to addressing the ‘Russian problem’ of Ukraine.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Aram Terzyan Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 UKRAINIAN FOREIGN POLICY TOWARD RUSSIA BETWEEN 1991 AND 2004: THE START OF THE CONFLICT <p><em>After the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, Ukraine's foreign policy evolved in the geopolitical sphere of Central and Eastern Europe. As a result, the new Ukrainian interests were built on a sense of national identity. They looked to Russia and Europe to find a sense of national identity. However, Ukraine's Eurasian and Central-European ancestry caused a distinct rift in society about national identity, which influenced the formulation of foreign policy. Those trying to co-exist with Russia find it difficult to develop a Ukrainian identity completely different from Russia, justifying the togetherness through the Pereyaslav agreement. On the contrary, the nationalist-minded Ukrainians, those who want to cultivate an identity distinct from the Russians and, more specifically, look for a Central-European identity, try to influence the course of the foreign policy formation of Ukraine by citing their historicity of Europeanness with the medieval princedom of Kiev and viewing the Pereyaslav memory as disastrous for Ukraine’s independent existence. Thus, national identity is one of the main causes of the Ukrainian-Russian conflict. This study aims to uncover significant events in Ukrainian foreign policy toward Russia that led to modern-day conflict.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Stephen Adi Odey, Samuel Akpan Bassey Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 Cover Page and Table of Contents <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> Journal of Liberty and International Affairs Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 EVALUATING MACROECONOMIC FACTORS AND THEIR INFLUENCE ON ECONOMIC GROWTH: EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE FROM WESTERN BALKAN ECONOMIES <p><em>This research aimed to identify and evaluate the impact of some macroeconomic components on economic growth performance. The data applied in the analysis were secondary data, including six countries from 2005 to 2020. The econometric approach applied was the fixed effect regression approach to economic growth as a dependent variable. The study also applied several diagnostic tests and the Hausman test to select between fixed and random effects. The data provided after the analysis show that inflation and foreign direct investment have a significant positive impact, while public debt has a significant negative impact. Moreover, unemployment and population growth have shown statistically insignificant results. The study from the aspect of the original contribution provides arguments and applies two variables that are very little addressed in the context of economic growth. The study results provide critical information for policymakers, economists, and researchers and provide arguments for a sound and proactive debate on these variables.&nbsp; </em></p> Erëza A. Arifi Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 ASSESSING THE EFFECTS OF TRADE LIBERALIZATION WITH THIRD COUNTRIES: THE CASE OF THE EURASIAN ECONOMIC UNION <p><em>The processes of objectively conditioned integration in the economic, political, legal, and institutional spheres of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) Member States took place step by step, starting from preferential trade agreements, passing to the customs union, the common market and other stages of integration. This process is accompanied by the gradual deepening of trade liberalization with potential partners. The selection of potential partners should be carried out through a comprehensive and detailed analysis of the structure and volumes of foreign trade of the EEU Member States (Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia) with third parties, their markets structure, existing customs regulation, trade barriers, and possible export potential. The research evaluated the EEU's possible enlargement effects on the Member States' economic indicators. The research aimed to assess the possible consequences of&nbsp; EEU expansion and signing free trade agreements, considering Pakistan, Korea, and Malaysia as potential trade partners. Modeling the effect of an FTA assumes horizontal zeroing of tariffs between partners. Then, using the GTAP model, a new state of general equilibrium was calculated corresponding to the changed parameters of customs and tariff regulation. In this case, most variables, such as change in GDP, production output, and export-import volumes, were estimated, manifesting the economic effect of trade liberalization.&nbsp; </em></p> Simon Sngryan Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN PUBLIC SERVICE MOTIVATION, WORK ENJOYMENT, AND TASK PERFORMANCE: A PRELIMINARY STUDY OF HEALTHCARE WORKERS IN VIETNAM <p><em>This study aimed to examine the impact of health workers' public service motivation during their participation in response to the Covid-19 pandemic at a time of the highest number of infections and deaths in Vietnam. This study was conducted through a cross-sectional survey using an intentional sampling technique (n=200). In addition, Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) was applied to illustrate the proposed hypotheses. We found that compassion in the workplace, self-sacrifice, and attraction to policy-making impacted work enjoyment positively and significantly. In particular, there was a positive and significant relationship between work enjoyment and task performance but no evidence of the relationship between Commitment to the public interest and work enjoyment. This study further demonstrates the importance of public service motivation of health workers in pandemic response, as previous studies have found. This finding suggests that the government and policymakers in Vietnam should develop policies to promote health workers' public service motivation during their engagement in response to the health crisis.&nbsp; </em></p> Thanh Nguyen Nghi , Hang Tran Thu , Thao Tran Dinh Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 SWITCHING FROM CASH TO CASHLESS PAYMENTS: CONSUMER BEHAVIOR EVIDENCE FROM KOSOVO <p><em>This paper investigates the readiness of customers to shift toward cashless payment by identifying the main factors that impact that shift. The sample consisted of randomly selected individuals identified as potential users of cashless payment and are considered more likely to continue using the new technology. Five hundred eighty-six questionaries were returned and considered complete for the research. The outcomes were assessed employing CFA for validity and determined using Cronbach’s alpha for the reliability of the research, which was stratified by seven regions throughout the country was applied, by covering all levels of the society. The findings show that the perceived risk is connected to the level of correct and believable information offered to customers. It has been confirmed that the respondents trust cashless payment technology, and at the same time, self-efficacy had a lower impact on usage continuance intention. Consequently, the growth of self-efficacy would strengthen the intention to use cashless technologies. Several segments in the financial market may benefit from the results and develop more appropriate and reliable systems and the proper approach toward customers with needed information and insurance related to the security and benefits they may have by adopting the cashless technology.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Faruk Ahmeti, Nazmi Zeqiri Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 ANALYSIS OF THE INTEGRITY INDEX FOR PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS IN THE ALBANIAN DEVELOPING REPRESENTATIVE DEMOCRACY <p><em>This research aimed to analyze the Albanian parliamentary elections held in 2013, 2017, and 2021 in order to evaluate the process of development of representative democracy in Albania, one of the post-communist countries of the Western Balkans. The analysis was based on assessing the dynamics of the Electoral Integrity Index (PEI) as a quantitative indicator that reflects the level of fulfillment of international standards for democratic elections. The PEI was evaluated using the average perception values for 11 indicators reflecting the election process.&nbsp; Based on the value of the PEI2013 (54.1 scores), PEI2017 (53.3 scores), and PEI2021 (57.7 scores), the parliamentary elections in Albania were considered as processes that do not exceed the ‘moderate’ level. The non-significant difference between 2013, 2017, and 2021 PEI (p&gt;0.05) demonstrated low progress in developing democratic performances in Albanian society.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Andon Kume Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 THE POST-TRUTH PHENOMENON INFILTRATING THE US POLITICAL SYSTEM, MEDIA, AND POPULACE: THE CRITICAL THINKING ANALYSIS ABOUT DONALD TRUMP’S POLITICAL LEADERSHIP <p><em>Donald J. Trump, one of the 2016 US presidential candidates, is thought to have benefited from political fact-doctoring in his attempt to diminish his adversary's reputation using the post-truth phenomena. This research aimed to identify and analyze post-truth phenomena that infiltrated the political system, media, and the American people during Donald J. Trump's leadership. This study used a qualitative approach with a critical thinking analysis method. The findings found that individual rationality's post-truth disrupted and then directed to online information impulses, in which people tended to seek information that supported their own opinions, particularly on issues connected to Donald J. Trump's leadership in all sectors of policy, including irrelevant facts or reality and the use of language increasingly exploited by hyperbole without a clear basis reference.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Aryati Arbay Evi , Santoso Widodo Ari Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 MACEDONIAN ELECTION RULES: CITIZENS VIS-À-VIS POLITICAL PARTIES <p><em>The Macedonian election rules, i.e. the setting of the electoral system, produce a double effect, an effect on the voter, and an effect on the party system. Therefore, each change in the electoral regulations would not only alter the voters’ comportment but also impact the political parties. Considering these effects, the paper aimed to compare the attitudes of the citizens and political parties regarding the electoral legislature (both for the parliamentary and local elections); and produce adequate electoral solutions as a corrective for the detected shortcomings of the current regulations. The paper relied on content analysis of theoretical literature and research, empirical qualitative research based on citizens’ focus groups from each region in Macedonia, questioned political parties, and additional data analysis. The ultimate findings propose a way to promote the equal value of each vote, proportional regional representation, and MPs' accountability at the parliamentary elections. For the local elections, the proposed solution referred to reducing the election cost, the possibility of political bargaining, and preserving the legitimacy of elected mayors.</em></p> Bojana Naumovska, Milka Dimitrovska Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 THE INCLUSION AND EXCLUSION OF CITIZENS IN THE EUROINTEGRATION PROCESS OF ALBANIA <p><em>Albania’s national interest is the integration into the European Union. To fulfill this objective, every state component, public institutions, civil society, the media, and the citizens, play a very important role. The main focus of this paper is the public sphere, the attitudes of Albanian citizens toward the EU membership, and their role in the process. By applying qualitative and quantitative methods, the main theories of the field, global and regional indexes, studies, surveys, interviews, and personal observations, we aim to focus on the citizens' attitudes toward the EU membership process. Our in-depth analyses have shown that the Albanian institutions, CSOs, and media to inform and include the citizens in the Europeanization process have not been effective enough. Thus, there is a knowledge gap between sensitive groups and the other part of society.&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Joana Kosho, Elda Zotaj Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 THE FACTORS INFLUENCING GROSS DOMESTIC PRODUCT GROWTH IN THE POST-PANDEMIC PERIOD: THE CASE OF KOSOVO <p><em>This paper examined the factors that influenced the Gross Domestic Product growth (GDP) in the post-Covid-19 period in Kosovo. This paper explored the impact of consumption, remittances, exports, imports, and inflation on Kosovo's GDP growth using fixed effects regression analysis with data from various secondary sources to analyze their impact from Kosovo's perspective. The results demonstrated that consumption, remittances, and exports had a statistically significant influence on GDP growth during the post-pandemic economic lockdown stage, whereby imports and inflation had a little inverse relation. Further, the Hausman test statistics on the adequacy of the fixed-effect model selection represent a superior performance compared to the random effect model. The paper is the first that extensively explores the impact of these factors that drove GDP growth in the post-pandemic period in Kosovo's economy. The novelty of this paper is that it recognizes the response of governments to the pandemic and accurately identifies the macroeconomic factors that influenced GDP growth.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </em></p> Muhamet J. Spahiu, Betim J. Spahiu Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 SCOPE AND LIMITATIONS OF SOFT POWER DIPLOMACY: A QUANTITATIVE ANALYSIS OF AFGHANS’ PERCEPTIONS ABOUT INDIA <p><em>Before the Taliban came back to power in Afghanistan in August 2021, India and Afghanistan had cordial bilateral relations and were often described as great friends. Since 2002, India had helped build several infrastructure projects as part of its promised development assistance program of over $2 billion (later increased to $3 billion). Considering India’s investments in Afghanistan, the goodwill it enjoyed among common Afghans was understandable. However, it would be wrong to imply that these unique, multifaceted bilateral relations between the two countries were simply due to India's helping hand. This research paper is one of its kind attempt to explain the perceptions Afghans had about India based on the field survey done in Afghanistan in 2019. Using responses of over 321 Afghan participants, the paper attempts to quantitatively analyze the goodwill and positive vibes that India enticed among Afghans. However, many Afghans felt that India did not do enough during the crisis in August 2021. Based on the survey and the general perceptions of Afghans in the aftermath of the return of the Taliban, this paper argues that the soft power investments in Afghanistan helped India in its nation-branding, making it attractive and creating goodwill. However, New Delhi lacked the will to act smartly and hence did not get the desired strategic influences due to ‘soft power behavior’. </em></p> Mohammad Reyaz, Sabir Ahamed Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 TERRORISM AND ABRAHAMIC RELIGIOUS TRADITION: A FOCUS ON BOKO HARAM ISLAMIC FUNDAMENTALISM IN THE NORTH-EASTERN NIGERIA <p><em>This study examines the normative hypothesis explaining the nexus between terrorism and Abrahamic religious tradition, particularly the Boko Haram Islamic fundamentalist sect in North-Eastern Nigeria. It is methodologically structured in quantitative and qualitative methods, where data and information are retrieved from primary and secondary sources. These were presented in a tabular form and analyzed descriptively within the context of the subject matter under investigation. The findings reveal that, beyond the classical arguments usually provided by the Abrahamic religious tradition school, the real reason behind global terrorism is for some overzealous religious bigots to establish a caliphate that will enable them to influence the international system. Based on these findings, the study concluded that the war against global terrorism would be a mirage unless national governments and international organizations fully address these fundamental issues.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </em></p> Theophilus Oyime Adejumo, John A. Adams, Gabriel T. Abumbe Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 IRAN’S NUCLEAR POLICY: NATURE, AMBITION, AND STRATEGY <p><em>Nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons represent the biggest danger to humanity. During the Cold War, the US and USSR provided ‘umbrella protection’ to convince allies not to acquire nuclear weapons. Most ‘newly’ independent nations never had such security during the Cold War since they were not part of a power bloc. During the Iran-Iraq conflict (1980-1988), the Islamic Republic of Iran was attacked with chemical weapons. Since Mujahedin-e-Khalq (MEK), an Iranian exile organization, exposed Iran's hidden nuclear program in 2002, the topic has gained worldwide attention. Iran's nuclear agenda has produced a worldwide catastrophe despite its NPT membership. Iran says its nuclear program is peaceful and respects Islamic values. Most US politicians and academics consider Iran a rough nation with political and strategic concerns, including regional hegemony, human rights, terrorism, WMD proliferation, and military operations beyond the border. This study examines Iran's nuclear policies to demonstrate its essence, goal, and strategy.&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Violet B. Eneyo, Jihad Talib, Frank Mbeh Attah, Eric Etim Offiong Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 CHINA’S GEO-ECONOMIC INTEREST IN AFRICA: A SHORT OVERVIEW <p><em>The article examines China’s geo-economic interest in Africa. China intends to exercise its leverage over both coastal frontiers for trade and defense and its hinterland for rich mineral, metal, and fossil deposits. Furthermore, the debt trap seems to be one of the methods through which China intended to bargain with Africa to bag as much advantage as it could gain. The question that emerges from this critical engagement with China-Africa relations is to look into how the reality of Africa’s narrative of development is projected both from outside and within and the contradiction embodied in that projection. China used the narrative of development to set its feet on African soil. This paper discusses China’s penetration into Africa by offering interest-free loans and its gradual emergence as a neocolonial power through expanding its network. The method used in the study to establish China’s monopoly and interfering streak in African affairs through BRI is the analysis of available data based on which the objectives and the conclusions are drawn.&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Jajati K. Pattnaik, Chandan K. Panda Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 ON JUST, JUSTICE AND DISTRIBUTIVE JUSTICE: A CRITICAL AND COMPARATIVE DISCOURSE <p><em>Despite being endlessly debated, a unanimous impetus on the nature of just, justice, and distributive justice appears entirely untouched to the desirable scientific certainty so far. Aristotle asserts treating’ equals equally and un-equals unequally’ but in proportion to their relevant differences. John Rawls says 'justice as fairness.' To both Aristotle and John Rawls, justice meant for the good and a willingness to act by the laws to ensure the highest good of society. Antecedently, both agree that justice is a master imperative for good human relationships and coexistence. However, despite the universal agreement, they differ in many fundamental respects. Aristotle denies the outbound distribution of an individual's rights as only the head of the family has the right to free speech in the family. But, Rawls distributes each right to the individual level. The paper attempts to discuss the similarities and dissimilarities in Aristotle's and John Rawls'ideas of just, justice and distributive justice. It has been argued that the aim of both philosophers was the same, i.e., to find out a theory of justice through which unity, harmony, virtue, and happiness can be attained to the fullest in a nation.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Sooraj Kumar Maurya Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 TURKEY’S SOFT POWER POLICY TOWARDS THE BALKANS: CHALLENGES AND PERSPECTIVES <p><em>The Balkans is considered a vital area in international relations. It has always attracted and is still attracting the interest of global and regional powers and factors on the international stage, including Turkey. Besides the political, economic, and defense aspects, the soft power of Turkish multidimensional diplomacy represents one of the most important segments of the relations between Turkey and the Balkan countries. Turkish government institutions like the Diyanet (Presidency of Religious Affairs), Yunus Emre, Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB), TIKA, Turkish State Media, Maarif education institutions, and various non-governmental organizations represent some of the most vital segments of the cultural, religious and educational expansion of the Turkish state in the Balkan countries. This paper is mainly based on the following research methods: historical, descriptive, and in-depth analysis. This study aims to answer the main question of this research - Do the above-mentioned soft power policy tools play a vital role in the further development of Turkey-Balkan countries relations? This paper concludes that the Turkish soft power policy in the Balkans faces a series of challenges that affect its expansion's functionality and success.</em></p> Muhamed Ali Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC AND THE TRANSFORMATION OF INTERNATIONAL ORDER: A SHORT OVERVIEW <p><em>The Covid-19 pandemic has affected most of the world, adding health security as a new challenge. Instead of facing these challenges, some states move towards a system of competition and intolerance, which forms new patterns in the international order. This questions the impact of the pandemic on the strategic dynamics of the international order. This article argues that the global pandemic transforms the political system and the way of governing liberal democracy more than any other factor. It took the form of a variable, driver, and accelerator, and the established world order transformed into a new form of order. Using the descriptive-analytical method and the theories of international relations, the current study examined the impact of the pandemic on the strategic dynamics of the international order.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Amer Ababakr Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 THE LEGAL ROLE OF GOVERNMENT IN PROTECTING CULTURAL HERITAGE AND ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITES IN THE WAR-AFFECTED COUNTRIES: THE CASE OF IRAQ AND SYRIA <p><em>Conserving cultural heritage and archaeological sites have become a serious national concern in the Middle East for the war-affected countries, including Iraq and Syria. Because looting and violence have caused massive destruction of cultural heritage and archaeological sites, this study aimed to analyze the legal background concerning the protection of cultural heritage and archaeological sites in the context of Iraq and Syria during 2014 with the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). This study used the content analysis method and cross-country analyses for Iraq and Syria. The study is guided by two main questions: What is the government's legal role in protecting cultural heritage and archaeological sites? Are there any legal authorities in Iraq and Syria to protect cultural heritage and archaeological sites during war and conflict? In the end, this paper suggests that protecting cultural heritage is the legal responsibility of government which is supposed to be enforced in the legal foundation of the state as a national sovereign power.</em><em>&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Rukhsar Ahmad Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 THE UNITED NATIONS AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: UNDP IN THE FIGHT AGAINST POVERTY IN MONTENEGRO <p><em>The paper analyzed the challenges of poverty in Montenegro. It provided an overview of the structure and scope of UN action in Montenegro and general sustainable development policies and their national implementation. The objective was to research the contributions of the UN system to the sustainable development of Montenegro while focusing on the role of the UNDP in eradicating poverty. The methodology consisted of the literature overview and the case scenario analysis of integrated social protection and employment policies. In addition, secondary data analysis has been employed to complement the research findings. The paper has identified the national socio-economic situation and the contributions of the UNDP in eradicating poverty through the design and implementation of integrative policies. The research proved the importance of the UNDP in fighting poverty in Montenegro and the effective role of the UN in achieving sustainable development.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Danilo Djikanovic Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 THE INCREASING INFLUENCE OF EMERGING POWERS IN THE WESTERN BALKANS: A BRIEF ANALYSIS <p><em>Using four emerging powers as a case study (China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey), this paper examined how the current redistribution of power in the contemporary world has affected the Western Balkan region. The objective was to shed light on the ability of the emerging powers to make use of soft power to increase their influence. This paper demonstrated that the growing presence in the Western Balkan region of these emerging powers occurred to the detriment of traditional actors in the region, in particular to the European Union and the United States. While Russia favored political instability in the region to increase its grip, China proposed a new economic project to reach the European market and expand its own norms. As far as Saudi Arabia and Turkey were concerned, both states privileged the use of religious soft power in Muslim-majority countries. The paper concluded that a rapid European response is required today if the EU wants to remain the most influential actor in the Western Balkans.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </em></p> Robert Dopchie Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200 FRENCH IMMIGRATION POLICY DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC <p><em>Following the start of the European refugee crisis in 2015, France had to modify its immigration and asylum policies. However, France faced two main issues resulting from the pandemic: pandemic control and refugee management. This article examined the reform and adjustment of France's immigration and refugee asylum policies before and after the pandemic outbreak. It concluded that the pandemic had aggravated the problems of refugee management in France. At the same time, refugees in France were in a difficult situation. The French government had imposed restrictions on entry and exit, leaving many refugees stranded in France, unable to return home. Moreover, the high sanitary conditions of accommodation due to the pandemic led to the fact that the health of many refugees could not be guaranteed. Therefore, the French government should enhance the guarantee of a healthy environment for refugees, which is also beneficial to the social management of France.&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</em></p> Yao Xuedan Copyright (c) 2022 Tue, 14 Jun 2022 00:00:00 +0200