•  
    •  
    • Press Contact

    • For information regarding BCSP activities please contact our Communications Officer

      Dragana Belanovic +381646479097

      dragana.belanovic@bezbednost.org

       

    •  
    •  
    • Info BCSP

    • Sign up to receive our e-bulletin.
    •  
    •  
    •  
     
    • The first Security Research Forum opened the debate on the security dilemmas in the Western Balkans

    •  
    • Date: 13 December 2012
      The relations between the Albanian and Serbian communities remain of key importance to the security and stability of the Balkan Region. Despite the improved relations and the engagement in the European Union integration, the relations between Belgrade, Prishtina and Tirana are still hampered by unresolved issues from the past. These are main conclusions reached at the first Security Research Forum.
      Security sector reform in Serbia, Kosovo and Albania, relations between the Albanian and Serbian communities, and regional security were topics of the first Security Research Forum held in Tirana on 13th December 2012
      Security sector reform in Serbia, Kosovo and Albania, relations between the Albanian and Serbian communities, and regional security were topics of the first Security Research Forum held in Tirana on 13th December 2012

      Three main issues that have been discussed at the first 1st Security Research Forum Belgrade-Prishtina-Tirana werecurrent state of security sector reform in Serbia, Kosovo and Albania; regional security and economic developments, and the role of academia and media in improving perceptions and relations between these communities.

      "While there is an intensive exchange between Prishtina-Tirana security policy elites, there seems to be a minimum formal cooperation between Belgrade and Tirana. With this initiative, we aim to provide an alternative source of analytical and evidence-supported material on security developments in each capital and to facilitate establishing links between policy communities. This is why we will launch a newsletter within this project, so to facilitate regular exchange among researchers and policy-makers interested in developments in three respective communities" noted BCSP Director Sonja Stojanovic Gajic during the event.

      The 1st SRF meeting was hosted by the Institute for Democracy and Mediation (IDM) in Tirana on 13 December 2012 and it gathered relevant representatives of Albanian policy community including policy makers, practitioners, civil society organizations, academia, and media.

      At the panel on security sector reform (SSR) Stojanovic Gajic presented the achievements and weaknesses in Serbian SSR and responded to the number of questions regarding Serbia’s security policy. The local participants were interested to know how predictable and transparent is a formal accountability and command chain in Serbian security institutions and if there are any parts of security sector that are not fully controlled by democratically elected politicians.

      In the same panel Kosovar Centre for Security Studies (KCSS) Director Florian Quehaja stated that the Kosovo security institutions were built by different international organisations from the scratch with weak local ownership for the sake of regional stability and not internal transformation. The next phase of SSR in Kosovo is expected to be completed with an ongoing Strategic Security Sector Review which is to be finalised in June 2013.

      Arijan Dyrmishi from IDM highlighted that the security reforms in Albania did not bring major changes until the crisis of 1997. Despite membership in NATO, the accountability has not yet become the only game in Albanian security sector. In a discussion, it became evident that one of similarities of analysed reforms was the influence of non-state actors on SSR, such as political parties, tycoons, veterans etc.

      In a response to audience questions about public concerns regarding safety, it became evident that Serbian and Kosovo public opinion share perceptions of internal threats. Both local communities perceive economic problems such as unemployment, corruption and politicians as threats.

      When it comes to external threats, the threats are opposite images. Serbian citizens have highlighted Albania as the third threat state, while Kosovo Albanians have picked Serbia as the source of external threats. In the panel on media perceptions of Serbo-Albanian relations, it was highlighted that this is due to the selective reporting of the bad news from other capitals.

      The Security Research Forum is a joint initiative of three independent thinks tanks: BCSP (Belgrade), Kosovar Centre for Security Studies (Prishtina) and IDM (Tirana) with an aim to enhance understanding of bilateral and trilateral security issues. This is going to be done by establishing various links among security policy communities (Belgrade-Prishtina-Tirana) and increasing transparency in security governance. 

      In 2013, three think tanks will exchange researchers for two weeks, publish 2 policy papers and newsletter and organise SRF meetings in Belgrade and Prishtina.

      For more information about the project see atached factsheet.

    •  
    • Post a comment

    •  
    •  
    • See all comments

    •  
    •