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Tisdall, Simon

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5 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

The Guardian - United Kingdom | 10/04/2012

Nato must end Syria conflict

The Nato states must intervene more decisively in the Syria conflict before it spreads any further, the left-liberal daily The Gurdian urges: "Strategically speaking, the western rationale for non-intervention in Syria has sprung some Titanic-size holes. The Turkish and Lebanese incidents are a measure of how one justification for inaction - that direct western involvement could precipitate a wider conflict - is now very much beside the point. Syria is burning out of control. The fire is already spreading. ... All these various [horror] scenarios remain dangerous, worrisome and unpredictable. But the point is, they move closer to being the reality with every rebellious day that passes."

The Guardian - United Kingdom | 15/06/2010

Flashpoint Central Asia

The unrest in Kyrgyzstan is justifiably a cause of concern for the major powers, writes the left-liberal daily The Guardian: "If recent history is any guide, the ethnic violence roiling southern Kyrgyzstan is unlikely to be prolonged or to spark a wider conflagration in neighbouring Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. Similar outbreaks ignited by disputes over land, food prices and poll results across the divided Fergana valley in 1990 and 2005 eventually subsided, with or without the type of foreign intervention sought at the weekend by the interim government in Bishkek. But these precedents offer scant comfort to the big powers - Russia, China and the US - whose economic, security and strategic interests are increasingly affected by central Asian instability. Kyrgyzstan's unresolved problems, including extreme poverty, poor education levels among the rural majority, complex ethnic and tribal rivalries, north-south divisions and the spread of extreme Islamist ideology mean the next crisis is never far away."

The Guardian - United Kingdom | 13/11/2007

Kosovo's future in the ballot box

"Belgrade has opened a dangerous new front in the struggle over the province's future", notes Simon Tisdall. "Twelve years after a war that cost 100,000 lives ... the Bosnian nightmare is returning to haunt the chancelleries of Europe Serbia's Russian-backed nationalist Prime minister, Vojislav Kostunica, spelled it out last week: 'Preserving Kosovo and the Serb Republic [the north-eastern half of Bosnia-Herzegovina] are now the most important goals of our state and national policy.' Recent developments in Kosovo and Bosnia posed 'an open threat to the essential interests of the Serb people'. Disturbed by scary echoes of Slobodan Milosevic's 'Greater Serbia' policy, western diplomats are scrambling to hold the line with Belgrade. ... Adding to the urgency, the mandate for the EU's peacekeeping force in Bosnia expires on November 21."

The Guardian - United Kingdom | 18/05/2006

Montenegro referendum

"If Montenegro were to vote to secede from Serbia at the weekend and finally screw down the coffin lid on the corpse of Yugoslavia, General Ratko Mladic [fugitive former Bosnian Serb army leader indicted for war crimes] would be an apt choice as pallbearer and gravedigger-in-chief," writes columnist Simon Tisdall. "The referendum is finely balanced. Attaining the EU-mandated 55% majority in favour of independence could be touch and go. But Belgrade's continuing failure to arrest Mladic ... may yet tip the scale. It is helping persuade voters from Montenegro's Bosnian Muslim and Albanian minorities that Serbia, where roughly a third of voters still regard Mladic as a hero, is not a country they want to associate with any longer. ... Far from burying the past, Montenegro's close-run referendum may mark the beginning of a new cycle of uncertainty."

The Guardian - United Kingdom | 16/03/2006

Belarus's thorny election

"For a man apparently assured of victory, Alexander Lukashenko is going to unusual lengths to ensure the 'right' result in Sunday's presidential election in Belarus. His anticipated triumph may mark a glum turning point for pro-democracy movements in the former Soviet sphere," writes columnist Simon Tisdall, noting a recent crackdown against opposition activists, journalists and poll monitors. "...The likely collapse, for now, of hopes of democratic reform in Belarus coincides with a broader loss of confidence in the future of the 'colour revolutions' that swept countries such as Ukraine, Georgia and Serbia in recent years. ... If a backlash is under way against the populist revolutions that shook the post-Soviet space, a much-distracted US and EU bear some blame. The benefits of 'joining the west' have not proved impressive so far."

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