How Does Russia Conceive of the Mediterranean Space in Its Official Discourse and Narratives? A Critical Discourse Analysis

The Middle East is not among the priorities of the Russian foreign policy agenda, but the region plays both now and historically a central role in Moscow’s calculus. This is mainly related to Russia’s aspiration to enjoy a Great Power status. The Mediterranean does not constitute the basis for defining and conceptualizing a region in the strategic thinking of the Russian Federation. In fact Middle East and North Africa (MENA) is the prevalent term in the official documents. Russia’s official discourse does not coincide with that of the European Union. There are some potential complementarities when it comes to security and stability, but strategic distrust will prevail in the foreseeable future. Moscow presents itself as a stability-provider confronting the West. Hence there is a limited ground for effective and meaningful cooperation despite apparent shared goals of fighting terrorism or preventing further destabilization.

Roma, IAI, June 2017, 15 p.
Working Paper 9
Publication date: 

1. The Paradoxical Central Role Played by a Region Officially of Secondary Relevance
2. The Foreign Policy Concepts
2.1 The Foreign Policy Concept of the Russian Federation (June 2000)
2.2 The Concept of the Foreign Policy of the Russian Federation (February 2013)
2.3 Foreign Policy Concept of the Russian Federation (November 2016)
3. The National Security Strategies
3.1 National Security Concept of the Russian Federation (January 2000)
3.2 Russia’s National Security Strategy to 2020 (May 2009)
4. The Military Doctrines
References: Official Documents

Research area