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    • Schneider: in the interdependent world we can reduce risks, not eliminate them

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    • Date: 17 June 2011
      On Friday 17th June 2011, Jiří Schneider, first deputy minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic, was a guest of Belgrade Centre for Security Policy. He presented his views on issues such as who are the main challenges for security that modern Europe is dealing with, how can small countries act effectively in a dynamic world, where is Europe moving today and many others.

      Schneider has marked dynamics of events as one of the main problems and challenges of modern global society. Attendees could hear that the modern world is one highly unpredictable whole, where it is impossible to fully predict any event. Schneider said that now almost anything becomes a security problem and that it is hard to avoid the securitization of current issues. Contribution to this state of affairs is also given by the media, which in real time transmits information with rapid speed and thus contributes to the public alert even when it is not necessary to do so and when such development of the situation does not contribute to problem-solving.

      He further said that the main characteristic of modern society is a feeling of vulnerability and, derived from it, the great potential of creating “securitized field”. Also, when answering the question how can civil society communicate messages and force governments of one state to adopt recommendations of experts, he said that it is necessary to have a good and rational approach on this issue and that sometimes it is really hard to transfer some knowledges to the public field, because the public is already too busy with trivial issues and can not address challenges that are not visible and not real at the time.

      Schneider said also that the main task of security structures should be “to limit risks” and it would be good to accept that life itself is dangerous and that it is impossible to completely eliminate all threats.

      When asked how one small country can effectively act in a dynamic security environment, Schneider said that simply they need to specialize, because they can not cope with security risks alone. As an example he noted the cooperation between Czech Republic and Baltic states in airspace protection. According to the guest of Belgrade Centre for Security Policy, security challenges and lack of resources are forcing states to cooperate. European Union (EU) is the clear example of this approach. However, Schneider thinks that European Union makes relations between states “too close, too fast“ and that Europe, if it strayed, “must go the other way, even backwards, if it necessary.” 

      Report by Stevan Ranđelović, BCSP Intern

      Related topics:scheider, czech, Security, eu, europe
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