ORCID: Agata Włodkowska-Bagan: 0000-0002-7676-0693
Afiliacja: Akademia Finansów i Biznesu Vistula
Edition: Lublin 2012
The South Caucasus is the region where the interests of EU, Russia, Turkey and Iran are crossing. Some of these powers have been involved in the rivalry over this region for centuries. The competition concerns mainly an economic dimension (natural gas and oil resources), but relates as well to political, military and security issues. However this text concentrates on the rivalry in the field of culture and ideology. Each of the powers involved in this competition has a vested interest regarding the historical and cultural bonds with one or more of the Caucasian states. Even though we can observe similarities between countries like Turkey and Iran (Muslim states) their rivalry seems more intensive then competition between Ankara and EU. Partly it is a consequence of close links between them (and the US) and the co-operation which is motivated by fear of Iran’s radical Islam influence in the region. Despite the rivalry, which takes place in the South Caucasus and despite the decreasing Russian role in this region, Moscow is still the most important player. It is worth noting that Iran quite often cooperates with Russia in the South Caucasus, mainly to balance Turkish and Western influence in the region.