In the article, prof. dr. Bebler analyzes the geopolitical importance of the Balkans, which since the end of the “Cold War” has lost most of its geopolitical importance to the great powers, while the politically fragmented Western Balkans have become an important source of uncertainty that spilled over to other parts of the continent.
The author notes that there are currently no visible external conventional military threats outside the region for any country in Southeast Europe. Nevertheless, the sources of political and social instability in the region still exist, but they have become much less important for European security. Extra-regional sources of conflict in, over, or around the Balkans have been greatly reduced.
Despite the existing problems, there have been several positive developments and the fact is that the Balkans have ceased to be the European “powder keg”. Despite old and new security challenges, there are reasons to hope that the Balkans will eventually become a region of stability and prosperity, rather than diminishing security in Europe.
Vol. 3 – No. 3, 2022: Security challenges in the Balkans (Bebler) [ENG]