Publikácia: For the People? Donbas between corporative interests and breeze of change

In line with the current Slovak government foreign policy priorities, and building upon the previous efforts and results of the Slovak Republic in the OSCE, as well as on previous expert events on the topic of conflict resolution in Donbas, which SFPA together with FES has continuously organized since 2017, the main aim of the project is to link the next OSCE Chairmanships with Ukrainian, Russian and international experts of the CivilM+ platform in order to provide first-hand information from the Donbas region as well as to formulate recommendations for more effective local and international conflict resolution processes, in particular, in light of the latest local elections in Ukraine.

Through one public and one invitation based expert events, we manage to attract large number of different stakeholders from the OSCE, Poland, Sweden as well as Normandy format countries. The key output of the project is two publications - one more concise and one comprehensive, which deals with the results of local elections in Ukraine and their impact on local government, as well as on international negotiations. The recommendations formulated are devoted to both the OSCE and Ukraine and serve as additional information for the Slovak and German Ministries of Foreign Affairs. One of the key findings is that the cancellation of local elections in part of the localities in Donbas government controlled areas, has a negative impact on the development of democracy in the region: it complicates the process of civil control over the activities of local authorities, limits the opportunities for the emergence of new local political leaders, demotivates active citizens and preserves paternalistic thinking of the region's residents.

The 2019 Slovak OSCE Chairmanship was focusing on the people. The project was a direct continuation of these efforts. Using the Slovak, German and Ukrainian expertise and perspective in the final publication and recommendations formulates, further presented to key stakeholders related to the OSCE and conflict resolution process means a full achievement of the project aims and lays foundations for future efforts in this direction.

The publication was made with support of the Friedrich Ebert Stitung in Bratislava and the international expert network CivilM+

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