EU and its Eastern Neighbourhood conference in The Hague on 23 November 2021

As a research consultant and conflict analyst, I have been invited to attend the future-of-Europe conference ( on the ‘EU and its Eastern Neighbourhood’ at The Hague Humanity Hub ( on 23 November 2021, co-organised by The Hague City Council and LINKS Europe ( I attended the 2nd and 3rd sessions, and the after-event ‘Meet the Ukrainians’.

The following text is reproduced from the pdf-document sent to the invited attendees.



Conversations on the future of Europe in the World

The EU and its Eastern Neighbourhood

The Maple Room, The Hague Humanity Hub (City Centre), 09:30-16:30

Tuesday, 23 November 2021



09:00-09:30: Coffee and Registration

09:30: Session 1: The EU and the process of reform and renewal in the Eastern Neighbourhood: Six countries, six nuances, and a giant elephant in the room.

Chair: Dr Dennis Sammut, Director, LINKS Europe Welcome:

– Wim Jansen, Director of International Affairs, The City of The Hague

– Jill Wilkinson, Managing Director, The Hague Humanity Hub

Opening Remarks:

– Didier Herbert, Head of the Representation of the European Commission to the Netherlands

– Jaap Frederiks, Special Representative for Europe and the Eastern Partnership, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Netherlands

Keynote speaker: HE Ambassador Vsevolod Chentsov, Head of the Mission of Ukraine to the European Union


– Professor Dr Antoaneta Dimitrova, Professor of Comparative Governance, Leiden University

– Harry Hummel, Senior Policy Advisor, Netherlands Helsinki Committee



11:45: Lunch break


12:15: Session 2: The EU and conflicts in the Eastern Neighbourhood

Chair: Alexander Hug, Head of Mission, Iraq, International Commission on Missing Persons; Former Principal Deputy Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine


Remarks: Ambassador Mika-Markus Leinonen, EU Liaison Officer to The Hague, The European External Action Service

Keynote Speaker: Tony van der Togt, Senior Associate Fellow, Russia and Eastern Europe Centre, Clingendael Institute Speakers:

– HE Ambassador David Solomonia, Ambassador of Georgia to the Netherlands

– Dr Anar Ahmadov, Associate Professor, Leiden University

– Alexander Petrosyan, Brussels-based independent analyst, focusing on the South Caucasus region and Eastern Europe



14:15: Coffee break


14:30: Session 3: The EU and the Rule of Law in the Eastern Neighbourhood

Chair: Ambassador Robert Serry, Chairman, UPEACE Centre, The Hague; the Former Dutch Ambassador to the Ukraine

Keynote Speaker: Mrs Lydia Izovitova, President, The Ukraine National Bar Association (UNBA)


– Brian Mefford, Founder and Director, Wooden Horse Strategies, LLC; Non-Resident Senior Fellow, Atlantic Council

– Ivan Grechkivsky, Chair, International Relations Committee, UNBA; Managing Partner, Grechkivsky Law Offices

– Lino Brosius, Senior Programme Manager, Center for International Legal Cooperation (CILC)

– Valentyn Gvozdiy, Vice President, UNBA; Managing Partner, GOLAW


The conference will finish at 16:15

Meet the Neighbours – Meet the Ukrainians

23 November 2021, 16:30-18:00 at Humanity Hub City Centre Café

Participants to the conference are cordially invited to a networking event in the series “Meet the Neighbours” organised by LINKS Europe. The event, “Meet the Ukrainians” will be co-hosted with the Embassy of Ukraine in The Netherlands and theUkrainian National Bar Association. If you would like to come and haven’t already registered – independently or as part of your conference registration – please register here.


All activities on 23 November will be held under strict covid-19 guidelines – this means that a proof of vaccination, recovery, or recent (<24hrs) official test is required for entry. There will be no exceptions