Making sense of EU's conflict management strategy in South Caucasus
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The thesis is focused on EU conflict management strategy in case of South Caucasus through the prism of the engagement strategy. The concept of engagement refers to the use of non-coercive means to ameliorate the non-status quo elements of [targeted state’s] behavior. The ultimate goal of the strategy is protection of the international order. In the scope of this thesis EU is the status-quo power in relation to South Caucasus and is engaged with Abkhazian, SO and NK conflicts from this particular position. The method of case study is chosen; academic and official sources are analyzed. Based on provided analysis of developments in the region and EU responses this thesis argues that EU engages with conflicts from the position of protector of status quo. The aim of EU is to minimize conflict in order to avoid war and meanwhile keep immunity of the existing international order. Analysis reveals that Russia, in 2008 explicitly intervening into the erupted conflict between Georgia and SO on the side of the latter threatened status quo and provoked EU active engagement with Abkhazian and SO conflicts. Meanwhile, EU perception in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia determines the extent EU is engaged with conflicts, whereas EU perception in Abkhazia, SO and NK does not affect EU decision engage or not to engage.