The network looked at the security situation in three different sub-regional theatres: the Arctic, the Baltic Sea region and the Black Sea region. There was agreement that these regions differed significantly in terms of political constellations, EU-Russian interaction and the level of tensions. The Arctic was seen as a low-tension area which offered opportunities for political and economic cooperation (see EUREN Brief no. 5)
. The participants stressed, however, that the potential spill-over effects from contradictions in other areas should not be underestimated. They pointed to Russia's veto against the EU gaining observer status in the Arctic Council
and constraints on economic cooperation because of EU sanctions as examples for such effects. The network agreed that Russia and the EU should try to cooperate and create synergies that were possible, for instance in the areas of science, rescue operations, the environment and economic relations.
The Baltic Sea was seen as comparatively stable, as it has well-established multilateral political mechanisms and is free of unresolved conflicts (see EUREN Brief no. 6)
. However, here too the dividing line between Russia and the other countries has become much deeper, particularly since 2014. While the participants agreed that there was no prospect of overcoming the divisions in the foreseeable future, all sides should work to keep tensions under control. This could be realised through intense dialogue within the existing frameworks, restraint and self-restraint in the military area, and cross-border cooperation.