Showing results for "Shoura Council"

Conflict is the business Iran has chosen

  • My very first diplomatic posting to the Middle East was to the UAE in 1983. It was at the height of the Iran-Iraq War, which — after the retaking of Khorramshahr by Iranian forces the previous year — was about to become a bloody stalemate, characterized by human wave attacks, missile and artill...
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Change in Iran can only come from within

  • The Islamic Republic of Iran will on Monday celebrate the 40th anniversary of the revolution that brought it into being. It is unlikely that the rest of the world will celebrate in quite the same way. But, like it or not, the events of 1979 represent what the French scholar of Iran, Bernard ...
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Iran’s dangerous influence in Iraq a cause for region-wide concern

  • President of Iraq’s Badr Organization Hadi Al-Ameri. (Reuters) What times we live in. Sometimes it seems as if everything we used to believe about the Middle East and North Africa — indeed about the world — is crumbling to dust before our eyes. At other moments, we seem to find o...
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Myanmar — apportion blame and sanctions where they belong

  • Myanmar is back in the news again. The UN Human Rights Council (UNHCR) is meeting in Geneva this week and will consider the recent report by the UN Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar, headed by the distinguished former Indonesian Attorney-General and Cabinet Secretary Mar...
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Post-Brexit Britain must focus on its many strengths

  • Two years ago, I was in the Middle East when the British referendum on membership of the EU took place. I cast my proxy vote in favor of staying in the EU — I was and still am a “Remainer.” I went to bed thinking the country was staying in and woke to find we had voted to leave. The pollsters w...
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Keeping Iran off balance may allow Yemen deal

  • The latest reports from Yemen suggest that largely local forces trained, equipped and supported by the UAE and with air cover provided by the Saudi-led coalition, have made significant progress toward Hodeidah, securing most of the airport area and advancing on the port. The Houthis, who (like...
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The dawn of a new world Order?

  • Just over 100 years ago, the great Anglo-Polish novelist Joseph Conrad published “The Secret Agent.” The story’s central character is a man called Verloc, who is in the pay of a foreign power represented by a diplomat named Vladimir, who presses him to commit an act of violent provocation against...
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UN has to be the forum for achieving peace

  • The UN Security Council last month adopted Resolution 2401 calling for an immediate ceasefire, the protection of civilians and unrestricted humanitarian access across the whole of Syria. The immediate stimulus for such action was the viciously sustained bombardment of Eastern Ghouta, the old...
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In the Middle East, money can’t buy you love 

  • The new Arab News/YouGov poll on US perceptions of the current dispute between Qatar and some of its Arab neighbors is both interesting and complex.  Interpreted properly, credible opinion polling is a highly valuable tool for understanding the reality of popular positions and their under...
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Qatar and the interconnection of regional crises

  • One of the problems with much commentary on the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) at the moment — and with much Western policy — is that complex issues are too often seen as separate policy challenges requiring separate treatment. In reality, everything is connected. This has always been true...
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