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France to leave Afghanistan soon

May 29th - 2012 President François Hollande wants the French force in Afghanistan to come home by the end of this year leaving just a residual force to help train local army and police. His announcement has prompted some criticism from NATO members who plan to wind down combat operations next year and withdraw NATO forces by the end of 2014. Will France change NATO's overall strategy in Afghanistan? Is France's initiative likely to affect the Harper government's decision to leave Afghanistan by March 2014?


Our expert Frédéric Mérand, University of Montréal, asks: "French socialists now accept NATO but want out of Afghanistan: is training of Afghan forces  the solution?" He is available for comments May 29th and May 30th by appointment.


Frédéric Mérand is Professor of Political Science at the University of Montréal and Professor of European Studies at LUISS University in Rome. He received his Ph.D. in 2003 from the University of California, Berkeley. He was a policy advisor in the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade and a Research Fellow at the San Diego-based Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation. Mérand has published on the European Security and Defence Policy, EU-NATO relations, transatlantic relations, Canadian foreign policy, and the sociology of international relations. Media Experience: Dr. Mérand has a great deal of experience responding to TV, Radio and Print Media inquiries.

A Shifting Europe

May 15th, 2012 - Given the recent shift in leadership across Europe and the continued economic challenges weighing down members of the EU, experts debate on what to expect next, how it may impact us here in Canada, possible solutions for the precarious situation in Europe and more. The following experts are available for comments.

Achim Hurrelmann is Associate Professor at the Department of Political Science, Carleton University. Hurrelmann teaches in the areas of comparative politics, European integration, and state theory. His research mainly deals with the politics of the European Union; it focuses in particular on questions of legitimation and democratization in the European system of multi-level governance.  Achim Hurrelmann is associate director at Carleton University's Center for European Studies, where he co-ordinates the research group on social integration and citizenship.

Oliver Schmidtke is Professor at the Department of Political Science, University of Victoria. Schmidtke also holds the Jean Monnet Chair in European History and Politics. He is specialized in comparative European politics, party politics, and EU integration. With respect to the current debate on "Shifting Europe" Oliver Schmidtke can offer expertise on the political fight over austerity measures, its effects on domestic politics, and the interplay between domestic and European politics.

This media tip was partially reposted from the Carleton University News Room release. To see the complete Carleton University media advisory please visit: http://bit.Ly/JYGXwu

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