Tag "Syria"

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Middle East/North Africa Security

Iraq and Syria: The Local and Regional Impact of Illicit Economies

In my previous article, I discussed the risk of Iraq and Syria entering a state of perpetual violence brought about by militias, to sustain their presence and maintain their profits. High rates of unemployment and increasing militarisation of governance and the economy, have meant that forming, joining and sustaining militias has become one of the few profitable rent-seeking methods. This article examines their illicit economic activities in greater detail showing the impact on a local to regional scale and the wider reverberating consequences.

Africa Security

Can the US’s New Special Envoy to the Horn of Africa Set a New Policy Direction?

The US’s Special Envoy to the Horn of Africa, Jeffrey Feltman, returned from his first visit to the region last week. The newly created post which brought Feltman, a veteran of the UN and the State Department, out of semi-retirement, shows the strategic importance of the region to Biden’s foreign policy priorities and his desire to mark a clear break with the Trump era. What is less clear is whether Biden represents a policy shift from longer term American approaches to conflict and security in Africa.

Middle East/North Africa Security

Syria’s Decade of War and Russia’s Encouragement of the Ongoing Conflict

As of March 2021, Syria has now been embroiled in civil war for ten years, as both the Syrian interim government and various other rebel factions continue to fight back against Bashar al-Assad and the human rights abuses that have occurred under his presidency. Yet, after an entire decade of war, there still does not appear to be any clear indication of peace in sight. This raises the question as to what has caused the conflict in Syria to last so long, and which state actors or nations might be responsible. 

Middle East/North Africa Security

US withdrawal from Syria: What next?

Changes in the US’ foreign policy in the Middle East took another turn when President Donald Trump announced that US troops were to withdraw from Syria.

Middle East/North Africa Security

Russia grows impatient with Turkey in Syria

On August 2, Syria’s warring factions announced a ceasefire to fighting in the last remaining stronghold of Idlib. It did not last long as three days later fighting resumed between the government and its opposition. 

Middle East/North Africa Security

Syria’s Idlib: Limited offensive to enforce Sochi Accord

Bashar al-Assad’s regime started an aerial assault against rebel-held areas in northwest Syria in late April. The purpose of the offensive is capturing the M4 and M5 highways from Aleppo to Hama and Lattakia, as agreed in Sochi.

Middle East/North Africa Special Reports

Turkey: Impact of the Syrian war’s next stage

The Syrian Civil war is nearing its end game. This article, part five of a five-part series on the regional impact of this news, examines the current economic obstacles and opportunities for Turkey.

Middle East/North Africa Special Reports

Lebanon: Impact of the Syrian war’s next stage

The Syrian Civil war is nearing its end game. This article, part four of a five-part series on the regional impact of this news, examines the current economic obstacles and opportunities for Lebanon.   

Middle East/North Africa Special Reports

Iraq: Impact of the Syrian war’s next stage

The Syrian Civil war is nearing its end game. This article, part three of a five-part series on the regional impact of this news, examines the current economic obstacles and opportunities for Iraq. Part one of the series considered Syria, the second part assessed Jordan.

Middle East/North Africa Special Reports

Jordan: Economic impact of the Syrian war’s next stage

The Syrian Civil war is nearing its end game. This article, part two of a five-part series on the regional impact of this news, examines the current economic obstacles and opportunities for Jordan.