Briefing: The Eastern Partnership challenge

21 November 2013 – Presseurop

Europe or Russia? The EU's Eastern Partnership summit to be held in Vilnius on November 28 and 29 comes down to this choice for many countries that were once part of the Soviet empire.

But Russia's Vladimir Putin, who is determined to establish a Eurasian Customs Union that would strengthen ties with several former Soviet republics, views this development with suspicion.

The Eastern Partnership aims to continue the EU's diplomatic engagement with the East, but is quickly becoming a battleground where Europe and Russia wrestle for influence in the region, a situation which risks a freeze the region's development for a long time to come.