Ethno-Regional Parties in the European Parliament: The Unevident Political Actor

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Ethno-regional parties play a vital role in the conflict between the center and the ethnic regions, which is relevant for all modern multiethnic EU states. The European integration allows these parties to participate in the regional policy of the EU (contributing to the decentralizing reforms in the member states), as well as to interact within Euroregions and on communitarian platforms, such as the European Parliament. This article aims to clarify if this ethno-regionalist faction is able to influence the integration processes in Europe, and to what extent. To achieve this goal, we need to answer the following questions: how can the ethno-regionalists be described from a theoretical point of view? What is the dynamic of their development within the European Parliament, considering the historical retrospective? What are their current ideological attitudes that allow them to maintain unity and achieve success? The article is based on the author’s concept of cultural-territorial differentiations, which points the correlation between the political ethno-regional movement and the existing ethnocultural features and historical territory. The author concludes that it was Europeanization that led to the strengthening of the ethno-regional movement in Europe as it made the question of the ethno-regional collective response relevant. Therefore, ethno-regionalists are an essential element of every political system at the national and supranational levels. At the same time, the historical evolution and experience of European regionalists prove that they cannot constitute an independent and autonomous political force at the supranational level as their cooperation depends on various legal and political circumstances occurring on the state level.

About the authors

Natalia V. Eremina

Saint-Petersburg State University

Author for correspondence.
ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1349-8659

Professor of Department of International Relations

Saint-Petersburg, Russian Federation


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