International Conference the future of transatlantic relations: Turning a new page on enhanced cooperation amid new security challengesDate: (07-12-2021)
THE FUTURE OF TRANSATLANTIC RELATIONS: TURNING A NEW PAGE ON ENHANCED COOPERATION AMID NEW SECURITY CHALLENGES
Location (Hybrid format): Central Military Club, online
Organizers: Sofia Security Forum (www.sofiaforum.bg), NATO CMDR COE (www.cmdrcoe.org) and Konrad Adenauer Foundation (www.kas.de)
The transatlantic relationship is at the core of preserving peace and stability on the European continent. The shared democratic values and cultural familiarity between the United States and Europe has helped the latter to advance its economic and political development in the decades following the Second World War. The transatlantic partnership has helped countries from the Eastern Bloc to effectively integrate into the Euro-Atlantic security system in a post-Cold War world.
We are now entering a new era of both traditional and emerging security challenges. The United States and Europe are facing complex defence and security issues, which require a new approach to rebuilding trust and working together to meet the new threats which both sides confront.
The main purpose of this conference is to critically examine the ways in which the new relationship between the European Union and the Biden Administration will evolve in the future. It will also discuss potential strategies for addressing and dealing with the most pressing security challenges of our times under this reinvigorated transatlantic partnership.
The conference will seek to unpack and discuss in-depth the following issues:
- the present state of transatlantic relations will be examined as perceived by the United States and Europe respectively;
- the role of these relations in the context of the future of European defence and security;
- how the ‘reset’ of transatlantic relations would impact the Eastern European countries;
- the impact of the new security challenges on the relationship between the United States and Europe.
The Conference will bring together representatives from both sides of the Atlantic – Europe, the United States and Canada, including high level political representatives: Presidents, Senators, Ministers, High-level military representatives, NGOS and think-tanks, academia, media.
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President of Sofia Security Forum
M. +359 887700458
Rumen Manchev, NATO CMDR COE
Cell phone: +359 897 067 282;
Efthymios Greventopoulos, NATO CMDR COE
Cell phone: +359 89 3037988
Speakers of the Conference “The future of transatlantic relations: Turing a New page on Enhanced Cooperation Amid New Security Challenges”
Mr. Alper Coşkun
Alper Coşkun is a senior fellow within the Europe Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington, DC. His research focuses on Turkish foreign policy, especially in relation to the United States and Europe.
He is a retired career diplomat of thirty-two years with extensive experience in both bilateral and multilateral settings. He was the director general for international security affairs at the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2016-2019), covering NATO, transatlantic relations, as well as Euro-Atlantic security/defense and arms control/disarmament matters. Before that, he was ambassador to Baku, Azerbaijan (2012-2016), where he oversaw one of Turkey’s most active and largest diplomatic missions with a wide multiagency composition.
He has held positions within the Turkish Foreign Ministry at various levels on issues related to maritime jurisdiction affairs, counter terrorism/intelligence, and NATO/Euro-Atlantic security matters. He has served in the cabinets of both the minister of foreign affairs and the undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. His foreign assignments include Turkish missions in Moscow, Athens, and the United Nations, as well as NATO, where he was the deputy permanent representative. Previously, he was a faculty member of the NATO Defense College in Rome. He is married and has two daughters.
Mr. Bruno Tertrais
Bruno Tertrais is Deputy Director of the Foundation for Strategic Research (FRS). His areas of expertise include geopolitics and international relations, strategic and military affairs, nuclear deterrence and non-proliferation, US policy and transatlantic relations, security in the Middle East and in Asia. Tertrais is a member of the Group of Eminent Persons of the CTBTO Preparatory Commission; of the Group of Eminent Persons for the Substantive Advancement of Nuclear Disarmament; of the International Institute for Strategic Studies; of the editorial board of The Washington Quarterly; of the editorial board of the Journal of Security and Strategic Analyses. He is also a Senior Fellow at Institut Montaigne, and a scientific adviser to the French government’s High Commissioner for Planning.
Ms Tara Varma
Tara Varma is a policy fellow and head of the Paris office of the European Council on Foreign Relations, where she follows French foreign policy and European and Asian security developments.
She looks particularly at current French defence and security proposals in the European framework, as well as the latest developments in the transatlantic relationship. She is also interested in Asian security, and the role Europeans could play in it, notably in the Indo-Pacific region. Varma joined ECFR in January 2015 as a coordinator and then deputy head of the Paris office. She previously worked and lived in Shanghai, Delhi and Paris. She graduated from Sciences Po Lille and SOAS in London in International Relations, with a focus on Asian Politics and Indian and Chinese foreign policies.
Ms Elena Lazarou
Elena Lazarou is the Acting Head of the External Policies Unit of the European Parliamentary Research Service. Her work focuses on global governance, transatlantic relations and EU foreign and security policy. Previously she headed the Center for International Relations of the Getulio Vargas Foundation, Brazil. She received a Ph.D. in International Relations from the University of Cambridge and has held research positions at the University of Cambridge and the London School of Economics. She is an Associate Fellow of the "US and Americas" programme at Chatham House and of ELIAMEP.
Amb. Elena Poptodorova
Amb. Elena Poptodorova has spent a lifetime in diplomacy, international relations and global and regional security. She is currently Vice President of the Atlantic Club of Bulgaria overseeing trans-Atlantic relations and the 3SI. She retired from diplomatic service in 2016, when she ended her second term as Bulgaria′s Ambassador to the United States (2010-2016), her first one spanning from 2002 through 2008. During her career at the MFA of Bulgaria she held various positions - Director of the Himan Rights and International Organizations Directorate, Director of the NATO and International Security Directorate, Spokesperson of MFA, Ambassador-at-large for the Black Sea Region.
In 1990 she ran in the first democratic election in Bulgaria and three successive election rounds to remain a Member of Parliament until 2001, when she returned to the diplomatic service. In Parliament she served on the Committees of Foreign Relations and of National Security, among others.
She also served in Bulgaria′s Embassy in Rome and was Bulgaria′s Consul General to the Republic of San Marino.
Ms. Poptodorova got her BA and MA in the "Kliment Ohridski" University of Sofia.
Ms Marie Brethous
Marie Brethous is an Associate Analyst in charge of the Transatlantic Relations and EU-NATO affairs portfolio at the EU Institute for Security Studies (EUISS). She specialises in security and defence policy analysis, with a focus on the international security community.
Marie formerly worked at NATO in the Political Affairs and Security Policy (PASP) division, where she analysed political and policy developments in NATO partner countries in Western Europe as well as the Black Sea and South Caucasus regions.
Her prior experience also includes EU Government Affairs at Siemens AG, Transatlantic Relations at the German Marshall Fund of the United States (GMF) and policy development for DG EXPO at the European Parliament.
She is a member of Women in international Security (WiiS) since 2018, and a co-organiser of the upcoming 2021/2022 WiiS Mentoring Programme - a professional development scheme for women active in the fields of international relations, security and defence.
Marie holds a postgraduate degree in European Studies with a concentration in European External Relations from KU Leuven (Belgium), a graduate degree in European Studies from Maastricht University (the Netherlands) and studied Political Science at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich (Germany).
Mr. Plamen Tonchev
Plamen Tonchev has been Head of Asia Unit at the Institute of International Economic Relations (IIER), Greece, since 1998. As an IIER representative, Plamen is a founding member of the European Think-tank Network on China (ETNC). In addition, he is a co-founder of the Southeast European Centre for Asia-Pacific Studies (SEECAPS). Plamen sits on the EU Chapter of the Council for Security Cooperation in the Asia-Pacific (EU CSCAP) committee and the Asia-Europe Sustainable Connectivity (AESCON) Scientific Committee.
Mr Tonchev has published books on Japan, India and Pakistan, as well as articles in academic journals on political/economic co-operation between Europe and Asia. The list of his recent publications on China includes "China′s Road: Into the Western Balkans" (EUISS, 2017); "Along the Road: Sri Lanka′s Tale of Two Ports" (EUISS, 2018); “China’s Shift to a New Economic Model: From Quantitative to Qualitative Growth?” (Academy of the Kingdom of Morocco, 2019); “China’s Soft Power in Southeast Europe” (Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, 2020); “Impact of COVID19 on ASEM Connectivity” (co-authored, European Commission, 2020); “China’s Soft Power in Europe” (co-authored, ETNC, 2021), etc.
Mr. Sebastian Carr
Sebastian Carr took up the post of Head of Europe and Canada, in the UK Ministry of Defence’s Directorate of Euro-Atlantic Security, in September 2020. He is responsible for bilateral relations with countries in Europe plus Canada, defence policy on a number of multilateral groups (including EI2, JEF, CJEF), and devolution issues.
Sebastian’s early career included posts in future IT systems, international policy, high-threat counterterrorism in the Cabinet Office, and change management of acquisition reform. Following promotion to Assistant-Head level, he was the lead Defence analyst for the Chilcot Inquiry into the Iraq War. Subsequent posts include leading the team responsible for augmenting civilian personnel to support Defence’s top priorities and, most recently, as the Deputy Head of Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean.
In 2015/16, Sebastian attended the NATO Defense College Senior Course in Rome, and has a First Class Honours degree in Computer Science. He is married to Katie, and lives in Surrey with their daughter Evelyn.
Mr. Vladimir Shopov
Vladimir Shopov is a visiting fellow with the Asia Programme at the European Council on Foreign Relations.
He was a full-time lecturer in politics at Sofia University (2004-2006) and an adjunct professor at Sofia University (1997-1998) and the New Bulgarian University (2012-2014). He has been an external lecturer on the European Union, NATO, security, and south-eastern European affairs at the Diplomatic Institute of the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs since 2004. He is currently teaching on Asian Affairs in the Politics Department of Sofia University as an adjunct professor. He has been a foreign affairs columnist at Forbes Bulgaria since 2011. He is a co-founder and columnist of Reduta.bg, a Bulgarian website for analytical journalism.
On 24-25 November 2014, the Crisis Management and Disaster Response Centre of Excellence (CMDR COE) hosted two important events – the 2nd Steering Committee Meeting and the Accreditation Visit from HQ SACT.
During the Steering Committee meeting on 24 November, the SC members approved the proposed Program of Work 2015 of the Centre as well as the proposed CMDR COE budget estimates for FY-2015.» read more
On 22 October 2014, the Deputy Chief of Defence, Major General Konstantin Popov opened the Flag-level Strategic Communications Course.
Organized by the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Bulgaria and CMDR COE in partnership with HQ SACT and STRATCOM COE, the course brings together flag-level representatives of governmental bodies from 11 countries - with the goal to enhance the common understanding in the field of Public Diplomacy, Public Affairs, Information Operations and Psychological Operations.
» read more
CMDR COE is pleased to announce that COL Jarosław KUBISZ is joining the Centre to run our Transformation Branch activities.
COL Jarosław KUBISZ representing the Polish Armed Forces (PAF). He finished officers′ military school in 1994, and Academy of National Defence in 2002. Last time he served inter alia in Operational Directorate of the General Staff of the PAF and Crisis Management Centre of the Ministry of National Defence. In both mentioned above institutions he has dealing with crisis management matters in PAF and NATO as well.» read more
Crisis management is one of the fundamental security tasks of the Alliance along with collective defense and cooperative security. Depending on the nature of the crisis, different types of crisis management operations may be required. The good operations planning process understanding is essential for all NATO Planners. In line with this, Crisis Management and Disaster Response Centre of Excellence (CMDR COE) developed and will run pilot Crisis Response Operations Planners Professional Development Course from 26th to 28th November 2014. The course will be held in English at Shipka hotel, Sofia, Bulgaria.» read more
"We have to learn to counter effectively to the new hybrid type of crisis and disasters, destabilizations and confrontations. And this Centre is a way ahead", stated the Bulgarian president Mr. Rosen Plevneliev in his address to the Opening ceremony of the Crisis Management and Disaster Response Centre of Excellence (CMDR COE) as an International Organization. The ceremony was with the presence of ambassadors and military attaches of diplomatic missions accredited to the Republic of Bulgaria, commanders of the armed forces, and representatives of other ministries and departments.» read more
The Crisis Management and Disaster Response Centre of Excellence (CMDR COE) welcomed Major General Terry M. Haston, the Adjutant General Tennessee National Guard for an official visit on August 7th, 2014.
During his visit, Maj. General Haston had an office call with the CMDR COE Director, Col. Vassil Roussinov. The meeting was attended by Maj Hancock, bilateral affairs officer, Office for Defense Cooperation of US Embassy and CMDR COE branch chiefs, Col Nikolay Nikolov and LtC Dimitar Dimitrov.» read more
CMDR COE has successfully hosted its 2nd Annual Seminar, which is designed to facilitate meeting of experts and sharing of experience among bodies dealing with crisis and disaster response. The event took place from 1st to 3rd July, 2014 in Sofia.
Interagency interaction in crisis management and disaster response was the main topic of the seminar. "...If we are united and share our common experiences we will be ready to tackle the different and sometimes unexpected crises and disasters. Crucial for this is the interagency cooperation..." pointed out Rear Admiral Petev in his opening speech.» read more
CMDR COE delegation was in Nashville, Tennessee to attend the four-day 2014 CAPSTONE exercise (16-19 June 14) led by the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency (TEMA). The purpose of this visit was to make acquaintance with the TEMA procedures and practices of designing and conducting disaster response exercises. The current one was on a scenario of an earthquake with magnitude 7.7 resulting into severe impacts in 8 states. During the exercise were briefings and presentations concerning the organization and responsibilities of the state′s entities in response of a disaster. CMDR COE team held meetings with representatives from the private sector and Red Cross & Red Crescent who present their engagements in case of emergencies. The CMDR COE delegation was well received by MGen Terry M. Haston, commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Military as he praised the successful partnership between CMDR COE and the State of Tennessee. He also highlighted ideas for further cooperation as more significant contributions by civilian organizations from NATO countries.» read more
The CMDR COE has received a formal letter of appreciation on behalf of the Croatian Armed Forces General Staff. It recognizes the great efforts CMDR COE Mobile Training Team has done to conduct courses in regard of the of exercise SEESIM 14 preparation process. Expressing special thanks, the Croatian site states the desire to develop cooperation in future.
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On 28-30 April 2014, the Crisis Management and Disaster Response Centre of Excellence (CMDR COE) hosted the workshop Military Medical Response in Disaster Management, sponsored by US European Command (USEUCOM) and the Bulgarian Ministry of Defence. The 3-day workshop focused on topics related to principles and practices of medical and psychological support in military missions as well as in operations in response of disasters. The workshop was attended by more than 25 participants from the Bulgarian Military Medical Academy, Joint Force Command, Land Forces, Air Force, medical experts from the services HQs, and Bulgarian Red Cross. Informative presentations delivered by instructors of 212-th Combat Support Hospital and Military Medical Academy and fruitful discussions during each session treated of important issues like framework of disaster planning process, components of basic and contingency plans, psychological aspects of disaster reaction and preventive medicine.» read more
The Exercise Planners′ Training Course was conducted by the Crisis Management and Disaster Response Centre of Excellence (CMDR COE) National Defense Academy Mobile Training Team (MTT) in conjunction with the SEESIM 14 Main Planning Conference (MPC) in the Croatian Defense Academy in Zagreb from 31 March to 1 April 2014.
The course was designed to enhance the theoretical knowledge and practical skills of NATO and Partners′ Exercise Planners. The course was attended by 46 participants from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Georgia, Romania, Montenegro, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, USA, Greece, and SEEBRIG.
The participants were familiarized by members of the MTT with NATO and EU approaches in crisis management and disaster response as well the main exercise planning documents and stages. Presentations "Introduction to Exercise Planning Process", "NATO and EU Crisis Management Systems and Mechanisms", "Main Stages in NATO Exercise Planning Process", "Computer Assisted Exercises and Simulations", and "NATO Crisis Management and Operations Planning" was included in the main part of the course.» read more
U.S. Ambassador to Bulgaria, Marcie B. Ries paid a special visit to the Host Nation Coordination Cell (HNCC) a component of Saber Guardian 2014 co-hosted by the CMDR COE. The Ambassador took part in a VTC with the 7th Civil Support Commander at Novo Selo Training Area and expressed an active interest in matters of the exercise. The Ambassador familiarized with the objectives and goals of Saber Guardian 14 provided realism to the exercise execution. The CMDR COE then hosted the Ambassador at their headquarters where she met with the CMDR Staff.» read more
U.S. Army Europe (US EUCOM) and the Bulgarian Land Forces Soldiers kicked off Saber Guardian 2014 on Mar 31, 2014.
Saber Guardian 2014 is a multinational training exercise designed to reinforce U.S. Army Europe′s commitment to increasing regional flexibility, preserving and enhancing NATO interoperability, and facilitating multinational training.
USAREUR Deputy Commanding General, Maj. Gen. Richard Longo, and Deputy Commander of the Bulgarian Land Forces, Brig. Gen. Krasimir Kanev, will serve as this year′s exercise co-directors.» read more
A Mobile Training Team (MTT) consisted by lectures from the CMDR COE and National Defense Academy has conducted a Crisis Management and Disaster Response Workshop. It took place at the South-Eastern Europe Brigade (SEEBRIG) HQ in Greece from 17 to 19 February 2014. The MTT was led by col.Lyubomir Simeonov, Deputy Chief of National Defence Academy
The SEEBRIG was established and activated by seven participating Nations on 31st of August 1999 and is currently located in Larissa. The workshop goals were to provide educational information and details for the Crisis Management understanding and the NATO COEs Network covering the HQ staff area of interest by:» read more
A welcoming speech of the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany, His Excellency Matthias Hoepfner has opened the Civil-Military Interaction: Disaster Preparation and Response Workshop, which is taking place in Sofia, 11-13 February 2014. The event is under the patronage of George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies and co-hosted with the Crisis Management and Disaster Response Centre of Excellence (CMDR COE). The workshop is attended by representatives from civilian and military structures from 11 countries – Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Germany, Greece , FYROM, Kosovo, Romania , Croatia, Montenegro and USA. In addition on the American side taking part are delegations from the National Guard of the states of Vermont, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey and Tennessee as part of the State Partnership Program.» read more
The Final Planning Conference of the exercise Saber Guardian 14 was held in Sofia last week (3-7 Feb 2014). The CMDR COE experts headed by LtC Orlin Nikolov, head of Capabilities Branch, participated in the workshops of the Contingency Management Planning/Unified Action (CPM/UA) syndicate.
On February 5, 2015, the CPM/UA members met with representatives of several GOs and NGOs. The meeting was arranged by the CMDR COE and co-hosted with the J9 USEUCOM as there were entities as Bulgarian Ministry of Interior, Chief Directorate Fire Safety and Civil Protection, State Agency of National Security, State Agency for Refugees, Bulgarian Academy of Science, Military Medical Academy, Red Cross, Caritas Bulgaria, Gender Research Foundation, Tennessee National Guard, Bulgarian Modeling and Simulation Association (BULSIM). The purpose of the meeting was to present them the scenario and storyline of their engagement into the exercise.» read more
The initial planning conference for the distributed computer assisted exercise South Eastern Europe Simulation Network (SEESIM 14) was held in Zagreb, Croatia. The Republic of Bulgaria is co-organizer and participates actively in the conducting of the exercise together with the Host Nation. Among the participants are also representatives of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Montenegro, Romania, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, United States of America and the SEEBRIG.
The exercise is held under the auspices of the Ministers of Defence of the SEE Nations.
» read more
- In 3-7 of February experts from the CMDR COE team will take part in the Final Planning Conference of the SABER GUARDIAN ′14 Exercise, organized by the US EUCOM and BGR LANDFORCE.
The purpose of the exercise is to train and educate civilian and military participants in planning and conducting an UN mandated Chapter VII Peace Operation/Crisis Response Operation, based on a Comprehensive Approach, and focusing on co-operation and co-ordination within an unstable environment, involving all stakeholders. The principal exercise focus is the civilian-military cooperation and coordination. The scenario supports exercising a wide range of peace operations functions (e.g. rule of law, humanitarian, etc.). The CMDR COE will contribute to achieving the exercise objectives by providing subject matter expert support in the CMDR area and by organizing distributed point for White cell.
- In 11-13 February 2014 the Civil-Military Interaction: Disaster Preparedness and Response Workshop will take place in Sofia. The workshop is sponsored by the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies, the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Bulgaria and the CMDR COE. The workshop comprises lectures dedicated to NATO and EU Crisis Management, role of military in civil security, risk management, as well as discussions and tabletop exercise.
The CMDR COE organised an internal seminar which was held on 20.12.2013. The main focus of the seminar was the crisis in Syria. The CMDR COE experts discussed issued related to the chronology of the crisis; the increased influx of refugees to neighbouring countries and Bulgaria; the positions of NATO, the UN and EU; the involvement of international humanitarian organisations etc.» read more
On 11-12 December 2013, the Crisis Management and Disaster Response Centre of Excellence (CMDR COE) co-hosted together with US European Command (USEUCOM) and the US embassy in Bulgaria the workshop Visualizing Implications of Climate Change on Military Activities and Relationships. The opening remarks were given by the Deputy Minister of Defence of Bulgaria, Mr. Ivan Ivanov, who welcomed the participants and underlined the importance of the topics that the workshop focused on.» read more