Chapter 6: The Ukraine crisis
ExtractThis chapter brings the Ukraine crisis to the fore of the analysis. First, six rough phases of the Ukraine crisis to date are identified and elaborated: begining with initial popular mobilisation led by the EuroMaidan movement up until a post-Minsk II agreement impasse. Thereafter, given that all three of the examined areas of the relationship – trade, energy and security – have experienced shifts (some significantly) since the onset of the crisis, a section on each of trade, energy and security are offered to give further insights into the competitiveness of EU–Russian relations in Ukraine. Lastly, the three intervening variables – identity, perceptions and domestic foreign policy-making process – are brought into the analysis and provide a deeper look at what is still a complex and multi-layered triangle relationship. It is argued that while the crisis does, on the surface, confirm that the relationship has become ultra-competitive, the complexity of the relationship meant that competition was not merely born from policies or geopolitical changes but by the interaction of the intervening variables which affected foreign policy-making significantly for both the EU and Russia.
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