LINKS Europe is a Dutch Stichting based in The Hague, and is part of the LINKS network established in 1997 to contribute to the peaceful resolution of conflicts and the process of transition in Europe’s neighbourhood.
We aspire for a peaceful, secure and prosperous Europe, in friendship and solidarity with its neighbourhood.
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We aim to achieve our vision through dialogue, research and analysis, outreach and dissemination, and training and capacity building.
LINKS Europe is a peace-building organisation. We support the quest for peace through track 2 and track 1.5 initiatives, including through dialogue and confidence-building. Our work is currently focused primarily on areas in the EU’s neighbourhood, with particular emphasis on the South Caucasus.
LINKS Europe firmly believes that peace and prosperity in Europe are strongly dependant on peace and prosperity in Europe’s neighbourhood. It supports an extensive EU commitment to the future of neighbouring regions, including through political and economic co-operation, support for peace initiatives, and extensive people-to-people contacts. We group the EU’s neighbourhood in six clusters: North Africa and the Sahel; Turkey, the Balkans and the Levant; Russia and Eastern Europe; The South Caucasus; The Gulf and Red Sea Regions, and Central Asia. Whilst each cluster has its own specificity there are also a number of common features resulting from geographic proximity and common historical experiences and connections.
Europe’s increasing ambition to become a global geo-political player is a result of necessity. We believe this will happen despite the reluctance of some and the shortcomings of others. It is therefore important to engage with this debate and help forge the new global Europe that can provide safety, security and prosperity for its citizens and be a force for good in the world. The process of “The Conference on the future of Europe” provides us with an excellent focus and platform to do this in a structured way
In an increasingly inter-dependent world isolation is not the solution. Developing proper connectivity that works well for all concerned is one of the biggest challenges of the time. Connectivity, in areas such as transport and communications, is also a potential tool for peace, improving trade and business, facilitating people to people contacts, and enabling countries and communities to develop shared interests. LINKS Europe is contributing towards the debate on how connectivity can contribute to peace and prosperity.
Globalisation and connectivity have their negative side too. Radicalisation has shown a capacity to spread quickly, often leading to violence. Vulnerable groups – be they whole communities and tribes in the Sahel, or disenchanted sons of migrants in the slums of Paris, are prone to fall victim of radicalisation. No religious or ethnic group is immune. White communities impacted by economic downturns are equally likely to succumb to extreme ideas, leading some to see violence as a solution. LINKS Europe works to understand the phenomena, including the connection between radicalisation and violent conflicts, and on ways of fighting back against this dangerous trend.
In June 2021 LINKS Europe welcomed to Brussels Mr Asset Assavbayev, Secretary-General of the Intergovernmental Commission TRACECA for a series of meetings with EU and other stakeholders on the future of the transport corridor-Europe-Caucasus-Asia. Here Mr Assavbayev is seen with EU officials at the offices. of the European External Action Service.
Dennis Sammut is the Director of LINKS Europe and Managing Editor of the web portal commonspace.eu.
He was educated at the London School of Economics (Masters in International Relations) and at the University of Oxford, where he was awarded a doctorate in history for his thesis on “the end of the British period in Arabia 1951 - 1972”.
He is currently also a member of the Strategic Council of the European Policy Centre in Brussels.
Dennis Sammut is regularly invited to give expert opinion by the European Parliament, the Council of Europe and the NATO Parliamentary Assembly.
From 2003-8 he was special advisor to the South Caucasus Parliamentary Initiative
He served with the United Nations in Afghanistan (2006/7) where he was part of a small UN team that assisted in the setting up of the new Afghanistan Parliament. He was a member of the EU Tagliavini Commission on the Georgia-Russia War (2008/9).
In 2006 he was awarded the OBE by HM The Queen for his peacebuilding work in the South Caucasus