Germany has intensive relations with Russia, the five Central Asian republics, Ukraine, the three Southern Caucasus republics, Moldova and Belarus and is very keen to see this major region east of the EU flourish and enjoy stable development. However, regional cooperation is not working everywhere and there are tensions, crisis situations – such as the current one in Ukraine – and unresolved frozen conflicts.
Strengthening intersocietal dialogue
The Coordinator’s task is to intensify intersocietal dialogue, thus laying the groundwork for official policy, and to use it to serve Germany’s stated political objectives.
Dirk Wiese had the following to say about his appointment:
I am delighted to have been appointed as Coordinator for Intersocietal Cooperation with Russia, Central Asia and the Eastern Partnership Countries. Germany has intensive relations with these 12 countries and has a vested interest in the peaceful and stable development of this region in the European Union’s immediate neighbourhood. However, regional cooperation is not always without tension, and there are crises and unresolved or frozen conflicts.
In this situation, what we need are clear positions, and also constructive channels of dialogue on as many levels as possible. A priority for me in this office is to intensify social dialogue as the basis for mutual trust and understanding. This is particularly the case in view of the difficult political conditions in German-Russian relations. I firmly believe that even closer contacts and exchanges between people from both countries, especially the younger generation, can help to counter the alienation of our societies. An active civil society that intends to drive political and social reform forward is making itself heard to an increasing degree also in the other countries of the region. We want to be a good partner for them.