Civil society

SOS: Dispatches from Azerbaijan

08/10/2014 -  Arzu Geybullayeva

The Caviar diplomacy continues to be successful. The alarm messages arriving form Azerbaijan on systematic violations of human rights in the country are constantly dropping into the void

Kosovo wants to play

19/09/2014 -  Violeta Hyseni Kelmendi Pristina

A Pristina magazine has started a campaign to end Kosovo's international isolation in sports. The shining judo star Majlinda Kelmendi has joined in

Bosnia and Herzegovina: the Plenums legacy

08/09/2014 -  Andrea De Noni

Seven months after the February protests, a political alternative to the forthcoming general elections is not in sight. However, activists believe the movement is sowing seeds

Crackdown on human rights in Azerbaijan

18/08/2014 -  Arzu Geybullayeva

Since the beginning of its presidency of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, the continent's leading human rights organisation, Azerbaijan has been placing more and more people behind bars. A jarring contrast no one seems to notice

Aleksandar Vučić: from deck hand to captain of media control in Serbia

14/07/2014 -  Hrvoje Šimičević

Svetlana Lukić, editor of "Peščanik": the long rule of the Democratic Party, Boris Tadić, and his court set up a mechanism of media control. Vučić - once Milošević's minister of Information- inherited it and added his own, Šešelj-style, "charm"

Serbia: the Internet under censorship attack

06/06/2014 -  Dragan Janjić Belgrade

The Serbian government is facing increasingly frequent accusations of web censorship. The interventions by the OSCE and the European Commission, the reactions of prime minister Vučić

Concerns Linger About Sexual Minority Rights in Georgia

30/05/2014 -  Onnik Krikorian Tbilisi

Following last year’s rampage by conservatives targeting LGBT activists intent on marking 17 May as the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHOT), the Georgian Orthodox Church this year instead declared the day as one celebrating family unity. And while civil society did not take the attempt to hijack IDAHOT lying down, some are concerned that this is just the start

Armenia: New Hopes and New Fears

16/05/2014 -  Mikayel Zolyan Yerevan

The 99th Anniversary Commemoration of the Armenian Genocide and the 20th anniversary of the Nagorno Karabakh ceasefire have recently interweaved marking the two main external challenges for today's Armenia

Arrest spree in Azerbaijan

08/05/2014 -  Arzu Geybullayeva

Baku is heading to chair the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, the continent’s leading human rights organisation, with an embarrassing record of prisoners of conscience

Romania: Social Capital

30/04/2014 -  Daniela Mogavero

The youth of Romania took to the streets in order to defend the environment against multinational corporations and local politicians. A new generation is the protagonist of Romania’s first social movement since the collapse of communism. An interview with the scholar, Chiara Milan

Is an Armenian “Maidan” possible?

03/03/2014 -  Mikayel Zolyan Yerevan

The Armenian political elite and the general public are divided on the account of the Kiev events. The main question, however, is whether the Ukrainian revolution may spill out to Armenia

The undeluded going astray in Bosnia

27/02/2014 -  Wolfgang Petritsch*Christophe Solioz*

The process of integration into the European Union, which has been stagnant for a decade now, has exposed the sad reality of a total lack of political will on the part of Europe. An analysis of the current crisis in Bosnia Herzegovina

Open Georgia

24/02/2014 -  Cristina Maza Tbilisi

Georgia has embraced the idea of open data as a vital component of open government. Critics, however, say data usability is still out of reach. A vital civil society sector could make the difference

Bosnian systemic crisis

11/02/2014 -  Andrea Oskari Rossini

Protests are continuing after Friday's uprising, but media hype and national issues are looming upon the demonstrators. The European maze

Tirana Ekspress: destination – future

07/01/2014 -  Nicola Pedrazzi Tirana

Since the summer of 2011, the Tirana Ekspress has been the go-to place for young Albanians tired of mainstream musical hegemony in the bllok, the neighbourhood that once housed the communist nomenklatura

A swinging Russian mood in Yerevan

10/12/2013 -  Mikayel Zolyan Yerevan

“To the barricades!”: protests in the Armenian capital against the visit of the Russian President as Armenians are divided over joining the Customs Union with Moscow

The Vilnius puzzler

05/12/2013 -  Giorgio Comai

The Association Agreements initialled by Moldova and Georgia in Vilnius are not identical. There may be very good reasons for the differences, but some are more difficult to explain than other

Sarajevo, twenty years later: the story of a photo

02/10/2013 -  Mario Boccia

The girl that runs. It is the title of a famous photo by Mario Boccia, Italian photojournalist, snapped on September 30th, 1993. A day like any other in Sarajevo, under siege for 17 months, between bombings and snipers. Twenty years later, Mario tells the story

Between Moscow and Brussels: Armenia’s foreign policy dilemma

26/09/2013 -  Mikayel Zolyan Yerevan

A Customs Union with Russia, Belorus and Kazakhstan turns Yerevan away from signing an Association Agreement with Brussels. While the Armenian public opinion is divided, civil society activists have been intimdated

Azerbaijan: let the election season begin

25/09/2013 -  Arzu Geybullayeva

The Presidential elections in Azerbaijan will take place on October 9th. Nine candidates will challenge the current President, Ilham Aliyev. Polls show a will for change, but few believe it will be possible

Balkan history: testing imagination

23/09/2013 -  Federico Sicurella Belgrade

Is it possible to build a shared narrative of the Balkans, overcoming the conflicts between national historiographies? The travelling exhibition "Imagining the Balkans", these days in Belgrade, tries to do so

A lesson in queer

05/09/2013 -  Federico Sicurella Belgrade

In Belgrade the second edition of the queer studies course just ended. It discussed unconventional perspectives, marginal identities, and emancipatory practices. Osservatorio met with philosopher and activist Dušan Maljkovic, coordinator of the course

Armenian homophobia

14/08/2013 -  Onnik Krikorian Yerevan

Proposed anti-gay propaganda legislation raises human rights concerns in Armenia, where violence against sexual minorities is supported by representatives of the institutions

Mir Sada, twenty years ago

13/08/2013 -  Nicole Corritore

Marching to Sarajevo to contribute to peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina and promote popular diplomacy and non-violent interposition. This was the goal of over two thousand Italian and foreign pacifists who took part in "Mir Sada - Peace Now" in August 1993. One of our journalists participated

Sejdić-Finci, a judgment ignored

19/07/2013 -  Andrea Oskari Rossini

Jakob Finci, president of the Jewish community of Sarajevo, has been expecting for four years for the application of the judgment by the European Court of Human Rights that bears his name. An interview

Bebolucija: spring delayed

16/07/2013 -  Rodolfo Toè

A month after the beginning of the protests, the 'bebolucija' already seems to have betrayed its original intentions. Low interest of citizenship, confusion of the protesters, weaknesses of the organization: the Bosnian spring is postponed to a date to be determined

Croatia, the new, "EU-indifferent" member

24/06/2013 -  Francesco Martino Sofia

On July 1st, Croatia becomes the 28th member of the EU. According to Professor Dejan Jović, adviser to president Ivo Josipović, while the country's political and economic elite celebrates, the public opinion shows indifference and does not hide some fear

Turkey-Azerbaijan: from #occupygezi to #occupyfountainsquare?

11/06/2013 -  Arzu Geybullayeva

What impact have the protests in Turkey on neighboring countries? Azerbaijan certainly can not give lessons in democracy, and yet ...

A Memorial on the Diamond Road

27/05/2013 -  Andrea Oskari Rossini Gornji Vakuf

Friends and family members have placed a memorial stone on the site where three Italian pacifists, Guido Puletti, Sergio Lana and Fabio Moreni, were murdered on May 29 twenty years ago while carrying aid to the Bosnian population

Elva, crowd-sourcing conflict in the South Caucasus

15/05/2013 -  Onnik Krikorian Tbilisi

Elva is a platform developed in Georgia that allows to easily receive feedback from local communities via SMS. Successfully used to map local needs along the ABL with South Ossetia, it could soon be used elsewhere