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Roundtable with Mr. Ivan Krastev, Chairman of the Centre for Liberal Strategies

Roundtable with
Mr. Ivan Krastev,
Chairman of the Centre for Liberal Strategies
January 9, 2018


On January 9, 2018, GRF organized a roundtable meeting with Mr. Ivan Krastev, Chairman of the Sofia-based Centre for Liberal Strategies, as part of its Task Force on the Future of EU-Turkey Relations.

Mr. Krastev, who is a founding board member of the European Council on Foreign Relations and a member of the board of trustees of the International Crisis Group, shared his assessments on the multiple crises that threatened the unity of the European Union. In his remarks, Mr. Krastev stressed that the most important challenge was posed by the refugee crisis – which he identified as “Europe’s 9/11” in his latest book, “After Europe” – and discussed its implications for the EU’s future.

Mr. Krastev discussed that Brexit and the election of Donald Trump as US President were elements of shock for Brussels. The former brought disintegration into the EU’s agenda whereas the latter professed that Europe is no longer a priority for Washington.

In his speech, Mr. Krastev suggested that the EU endured three major crises over the past few years: the Ukrainian crisis, the Eurozone crisis and the refugee crisis. While arguing that the interplay of these issues destabilized the EU, he stressed that the refugee crisis was unique in changing European attitudes towards “open borders” and hence, drastically changing EU politics.

Following his speech, Mr. Krastev answered the participants’ questions.