On November 14, 2019, the GLOBSEC Policy Institute, in the framework of the Think Visegrad – V4 Think Tank Platform, held the presentation, “Hybrid threats posed by Russian regional influence in the Visegrad 4 (V4) countries”, by Think Visegrad 2019 Fellow Mr. Rufin Zamfir.

In this session Mr. Zamfir, who is a Programmes Director at the Global Focus Center in Romania, presented his research, resulting from the five – week long´ Think Visegrad Fellowship Programme. In total, Mr. Zamfir done 25 open-ended, semi-structured interviews on Hungary (5 interviews), Poland (5 interviews), Slovakia (10 interviews) and Czech Republic (5 interviews).

His research aimed to investigate the existence of, and to analyse the mechanisms for counteracting hybrid threats in Visegrad countries (V4). Starting from the analysis of the most significant vulnerabilities identified in each Visegrad country, the author intended to test the potential for viability of a joint Stratcom-type mechanism, as part of a more complex response in hindering the efforts of hostile states to interfere in the internal affairs of the V4 members, based on the current institutional design and operational arrangements in place in the four Visegrad members.

It was concluded that at the present moment, it is impossible to make a proper assessment of the viability of such a joint response mechanism. The limited awareness of the threat in V4 states and the subsequently limited individual response capacities – with few notable exceptions – do not offer the necessary set of circumstances that might be conducive to the development of a joint mechanism.

Full analysis will be available here in January.

Think Visegrad – V4 Think Tank Platform is a network for structured dialogue on issues of strategic regional importance. The network analyses key issues for the Visegrad Group, and provides recommendations to the governments of V4 countries, the annual presidencies of the group, and the International Visegrad Fund. For more information about Think Visegrad and its members visit www.thinkvisegrad.org

GLOBSEC and the V4 Think-Tank Platform support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents. which reflects the views only of the authors, and GLOBSEC and the V4 Think-Tank Platform cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.