With a doctorate from Oxford University, Leon Colm has travelled through, and written about the de facto states that resulted from the break-up of the former Soviet Union, both as a scholar and as a negotiator for several international organisations. He has taught at Oxford University and Kings College, London, and was a Research Fellow at St (...)With a doctorate from Oxford University, Leon Colm has travelled through, and written about the de facto states that resulted from the break-up of the former Soviet Union, both as a scholar and as a negotiator for several international organisations. He has taught at Oxford University and Kings College, London, and was a Research Fellow at St Antony’s College and the Royal Institute of International Affairs. Author of a number of books in English on European security and on conflicts, he is also the author of an essay in French, Improbable Abkhazia (Éditions Autrement, 2009).
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Session 1 : Improbable Abkhazia - A conversation between Maxim Gvinjia and Leon Colm

[Paris • France]
Max and Leon met in 2000. Max was working at the Foreign Ministry of self-declared Abkhazia, while Leon was a university lecturer, interested in war and separatism. Max eventually became the Foreign Minister of Abkhazia, and Leon became a senior advisor to an international organisation dealing with conflicts in the former Soviet Union. For the Saturday Sessions, a conversation between Max and Leon will revisit History—the collapse of the USSR, the rise of separatist States—and a history, the tale of two men, of two friends. A small story in the bigger story.