Terrorist attacks in Paris and the plane crash over Egypt's Sinai Peninsula might provide a turning point in Russia's relations with the West, allowing Moscow to break out of international isolation. Major Western powers might have to adopt a more lenient tone when talking to Russia in order to have Moscow contribute to fighting international terrorism, says Laurynas Kasčiūnas, analyst at the Eastern Europe Studies Centre.
Vladimir Putin and François Hollande
© AP/Scanpix

"Right now, Russia's goals might be somewhat different. It has to break out of the international isolation and sanctions imposed by the West. If a week or two ago we could have said that extending sanctions in December or January was an assured thing, today we cannot be so sure. France can be the first one to leave this united front against Russia over Ukraine," Kasčiūnas told the Žinių Radijas radio.

According to him, Russia wants to see France act more independently from the US or NATO. To weaken the latter alliance is another goal of Moscow, he says, and that represents very real danger to Lithuania. Vilnius should not stop reminding the West that Russia is still a menace in the region.

"The situation is much more complicated now. Unfortunately, we once again find ourselves at the intersection of interests and agreements among the big states. Our voice, that of the smaller states, will not be as loud. But of course, a lot will depend less on countries in our region than on Germany," Kasčiūnas believes.

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