Olga Vassilieva
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Conflict management in the Caucasus via development of regional identity
in Potentials of disorder

This chapter considers the preconditions for and possibilities of Caucasian integration as a way of conflict management in the region. The 1990s has revealed that a common Caucasian identity might be used for 'constructing' a regional security community. The idea of the 'Common Caucasian Home' is the essence of a common Caucasian identity. The chapter addresses the question of how different identities have influenced the development of nationalism and cooperation, conflict escalation and conflict settlement since 1990. It further analyses the impact of different cooperative organisations on conflict management, both directly and via the changes in governmental policies towards ethnic conflict and the identities which fostered it. Perceptions of external powers have influenced the political behaviour of Caucasian elites, sometimes more than real policies and actions. The Caucasus has demonstrated a strong sense of community and a Caucasian identity, which has deep cultural and historical roots.

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