It Was Twenty Years Ago Today…
Well, not really today, but it was about twenty years ago that what we now call (incorrectly, at times) the “frozen conflicts”– the separatist conflicts in Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Moldova– weren’t frozen but were actually brushfire wars before settling into stalemates. Long-time readers of this blog may remember my interest in these conflicts, starting with the ongoing conflict in Moldova over the separatist region Transnistria and moving on to include the other conflicts, including the fight over South Ossetia.
This Friday, Columbia University’s Harriman Institute for Russian, Eurasian and East European Studies will host a conference called “Frozen Conflicts Twenty Years After the Fall of the Soviet Union.” Here’s the short description:
Two decades after the collapse of the Soviet Union the conflicts in Abkhazia, Nagorno Karabakh, South Ossetia and Transnistria remain unresolved and their dynamics continue to impact political stability, state-building and great power competition in the former Soviet Union. Over the last years, the international community’s strategy for addressing them has varied significantly. By bringing together leading scholars, policy analysts, and NGO representatives from Europe, the United States and Eurasia to discuss these issues we hope to provide an opportunity to reflect on the last twenty years and to think about possible steps forward.
The conference program is available as a pdf here. I’ll be one of the panelists on the 11:15 panel and I will be speaking about the uses and abuses of international legal arguments in attempts to resolve separatist conflicts. If any Opinio Juris readers attend, please say hello!