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This essay examines EU relations towards those states in the east that are outside the EU accession process. Long been forgotten, Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova represent significant neighbours of the EU that require careful policies of reform in order to promote political and economic development, and therefore greater security across Europe.

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Poland, among 10 states, is taking an extraordinary step by joining EU on May 1st. The sensitive balance of EU and the future of the new member states are about to change. The vital step in sustaining this balance is the ability and timeliness of adjustment processes for both Poland and the EU.

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Several institutions exist in El Salvador to monitor and enforce compliance with human rights standards by multinational corporations (MNCs). However, their effectiveness varies strongly as they differ in terms of legitimacy, resources and sanctioning power. Comparing these institutions, the article comes to the conclusion that many of them are largely ineffective. The most effective one is a special Salvadoran institution, GMIES, created on the basis of a voluntary agreement between MNCs and NGOs, which combines NGO independence with MNC cooperation.

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Human rights abuses in Sub-Saharan Africa are increasing the risk of HIV transmission to women and girls throughout the region: an overview of rights violations and relevant international law.

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A reassessment of the age of the European Parliament could theoretically put the EU as a political system on a par with other new democracies in transition. Applying such theories of transitology through the comparative politics paradigm to analyze the EU might offer a more appropriate benchmark for studies into institutional developments, particularly of trans-national agents such as the new EU level parties. By considering the characteristics of the EU, this essay evaluates the merits of a transition-comparison with reference to several aspects of the EU: institutions; actors; civil society and legitimacy. The discussion considers the implications and problems of this new approach.

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