Prof. dr. Ioana RIEBER
Abstract. The Caucasus Mountains represent one of the few natural barriers that the Russian Federation has as borders. The loss of control over these mountains would generate grave security issues. On the other hand, the population in the area has been aspiring to freedom and saw the fall of USSR as an opportunity. Republics were proclaimed: Armenia, Georgia, Chechenya, Dagestan, etc. Russia’s vulnerabilities are linked especially to the loss of north Caucasus, reason for which the pressures exerted there have been stronger and the republics joined the Commonwealth of Independent States. Independent states exist in the southern area, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Armenia, but there are also frozen conflicts in South Ossetia or Nagorno-Karabakh.
Key words: Caucasus area, frozen conflicts, vulnerabilities, security, Russia