19

toradh/torthaí

Focal/focail
Saghas foilseacháin
Réimse beartas
Údar
Eochairfhocal
Dáta

G20 Summit of November 2020: Great expectations despite boycott calls

19-11-2020

On 21-22 November, under Saudi Arabia's presidency, the G20 will hold its first regular summit in a virtual format. Unavoidably the focus will be on the current crisis, more specifically on protecting lives and livelihoods and restoring growth. Given the crucial role it played in tackling the 2008-2009 financial crisis, hopes are high regarding the G20's potential role in proposing a financial and economic solution to deal with the ongoing downturn. Several major G20 members have invested massive ...

On 21-22 November, under Saudi Arabia's presidency, the G20 will hold its first regular summit in a virtual format. Unavoidably the focus will be on the current crisis, more specifically on protecting lives and livelihoods and restoring growth. Given the crucial role it played in tackling the 2008-2009 financial crisis, hopes are high regarding the G20's potential role in proposing a financial and economic solution to deal with the ongoing downturn. Several major G20 members have invested massive amounts of money to keep their economies afloat, in line with the decision of the extraordinary G20 summit held in the spring, but the depth of the current crisis requires additional action. Some critics have argued that the G20 is not up to its perceived role. The lack of US leadership in particular has been seen as an obstacle preventing the group from living up to its full potential. One of the crucial measures adopted by the G20 has been to freeze the official debt payments of developing countries, with the measure recently being extended. Many voices consider that this will not be enough to avoid state defaults however. Saudi Arabia, the first Arab country to hold the presidency, has been eager to use the opportunity provided by its G20 presidency to showcase its ambitious internal reform programme and its economic potential. The Saudis' leadership of the G20 in these times of turmoil has not escaped criticism, first of all because of the perceived inconsistency between stated objectives at G20 level and internal reality in the country, but also because of the role the country played in the oil price crash of 2020. Given the dire human rights situation in Saudi Arabia and in its fighting in Yemen, calls for a boycott of the summit have been multiplying. The European Parliament has suggested that the EU should downgrade its presence at the summit.

Rebuilding the Iraqi State: Stabilisation, Governance, and Reconciliation

15-12-2017

The victory over the so-called Islamic State’s territorial rule presents a chance for the Government of Iraq to rebuild its state institutions and re-assert its authority. In this transition, will the Iraqi leadership move past cycles of failure and address the structural problems that perpetuate state weakness and facilitate the emergence of groups like ISIS? To answer this question, this paper analyses the challenges of short-term stabilisation programming with longer-term governance reform at ...

The victory over the so-called Islamic State’s territorial rule presents a chance for the Government of Iraq to rebuild its state institutions and re-assert its authority. In this transition, will the Iraqi leadership move past cycles of failure and address the structural problems that perpetuate state weakness and facilitate the emergence of groups like ISIS? To answer this question, this paper analyses the challenges of short-term stabilisation programming with longer-term governance reform at the local and national levels. It argues that, without establishing representative and responsive state institutions, the processes of reconciliation and integration will be unsuccessful. To conclude, this paper offers policy recommendations on how the EU can support the upcoming state-rebuilding process.

Údar seachtarach

Renad MANSOUR, Research Fellow, Chatham House, United Kingdom

Saudi Arabia: Economic indicators and trade with EU

22-11-2017

The EU is Saudi Arabia's first trading partner in goods, with 16.3 % of Saudi Arabia’s global trade, followed by China with 14.1 % and the US with 11.8 %. Saudi Arabia is the EU's 15th trading partner in goods, with an EU market share of 1.5 %. The trade balance is positive for the EU, as this infographic illustrates. Trade between the EU and Saudi Arabia takes place within the framework of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which includes Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia and the United ...

The EU is Saudi Arabia's first trading partner in goods, with 16.3 % of Saudi Arabia’s global trade, followed by China with 14.1 % and the US with 11.8 %. Saudi Arabia is the EU's 15th trading partner in goods, with an EU market share of 1.5 %. The trade balance is positive for the EU, as this infographic illustrates. Trade between the EU and Saudi Arabia takes place within the framework of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which includes Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The GCC countries formed their own customs union on 1 January 2015. The EU exports a wide range of goods and services to the region; however, around 50 % of the EU's exported goods to the GCC are machinery, including power generation plants, railway locomotives, aircrafts, electrical machinery and mechanical appliances. Meanwhile, approximately 70 % of all EU imports from the GCC consist of fuels and their derivatives. Following a reliance on oil revenues for about 90% of its budget in recent years, Saudi Arabia has embarked on an ambitious plan to restructure its oil-dependent economy, known as Vision 2030, involving diversification, privatisation, tax increases and subsidy cuts. Saudi Arabia has significant defence relationships with a rising number of EU Member States, primarily driven by the trade in arms (and often also related contracts for training and maintenance).

Saudi Arabia in the Western Balkans

17-11-2017

The Gulf States, along with other external players, have raised their profile in the Western Balkans in recent years. While most have set out on an economic quest, Saudi Arabia is considered to have a more ideological approach, seeking a strong role among the region's Muslims. In the 1990s Bosnian war, it provided significant aid for the Muslim cause and has stayed in the region to expand its influence, introducing stricter interpretations of Islam that are gradually taking root there.

The Gulf States, along with other external players, have raised their profile in the Western Balkans in recent years. While most have set out on an economic quest, Saudi Arabia is considered to have a more ideological approach, seeking a strong role among the region's Muslims. In the 1990s Bosnian war, it provided significant aid for the Muslim cause and has stayed in the region to expand its influence, introducing stricter interpretations of Islam that are gradually taking root there.

Workshop: Sectarianism in the Middle East

14-07-2017

Sectarian conflict and polarisation has become a key feature of Middle East politics in the aftermath of the Arab uprisings of 2011. This workshop looked at some of the key drivers of this, such as the troubled legacy of foreign intervention, state failure, regional rivalries between Saudi Arabia, Iran and others, ruling strategies of authoritarian regimes as well as the spread of identity and sect-based political movements. With in-depth analysis of the two key arenas of sectarian conflict in the ...

Sectarian conflict and polarisation has become a key feature of Middle East politics in the aftermath of the Arab uprisings of 2011. This workshop looked at some of the key drivers of this, such as the troubled legacy of foreign intervention, state failure, regional rivalries between Saudi Arabia, Iran and others, ruling strategies of authoritarian regimes as well as the spread of identity and sect-based political movements. With in-depth analysis of the two key arenas of sectarian conflict in the contemporary Middle East, Syria and Iraq, and a paper on the consequences of state collapse, this publication looks also tries to make recommendations how the EU could help reduce sectarian tensions.

Údar seachtarach

Dr Toby MATTHIESEN, St Antony's College, Oxford University, Dr Simon MABON, Lancaster University ; Dr Renad MANSOUR, Chatham House, Dr Raphael LEFÈVRE, Oxford University

Qatar: Rising tension in the Gulf

09-06-2017

On 5 June 2017, several Arab nations, including Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), simultaneously announced that they were severing ties with Qatar, a fellow member of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). Accusing Qatar of supporting and financing 'terrorism and extremism' in the region, the above countries announced that they would halt all land, air and sea traffic with Qatar, expel its diplomats and ask Qatari citizens to leave their territory within 14 days. Oil prices ...

On 5 June 2017, several Arab nations, including Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), simultaneously announced that they were severing ties with Qatar, a fellow member of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). Accusing Qatar of supporting and financing 'terrorism and extremism' in the region, the above countries announced that they would halt all land, air and sea traffic with Qatar, expel its diplomats and ask Qatari citizens to leave their territory within 14 days. Oil prices rose initially as markets responded nervously to the worst crisis to involve the GCC since its creation in 1981, but then dropped again. Any escalation in the crisis would likely lead to more sustained increases in oil and gas prices.

Relations between the EU Member States and Saudi Arabia in the Field of Security and Defence

14-12-2016

The workshop was organized on October 13, 2016 at the initiative of the Subcommittee on Security and Defence (SEDE) with the aim of assessing relations between Saudi Arabia and the Member States in the field of armaments cooperation, touching on the absence of a common European position in this area. Agnès Levallois, lecturer at Sciences Po Paris and ENA, is affiliated to the Académie Diplomatique and works as a consultant, specialising in political, strategic and economic issues in the Middle East ...

The workshop was organized on October 13, 2016 at the initiative of the Subcommittee on Security and Defence (SEDE) with the aim of assessing relations between Saudi Arabia and the Member States in the field of armaments cooperation, touching on the absence of a common European position in this area. Agnès Levallois, lecturer at Sciences Po Paris and ENA, is affiliated to the Académie Diplomatique and works as a consultant, specialising in political, strategic and economic issues in the Middle East. Jane Kinninmont is a senior research fellow and deputy head of the Middle East and North Africa programme at Chatham House.

Údar seachtarach

Agnès LEVALLOIS (Fondation pour la recherche stratégique, FRS) and Jane KINNINMONT (Chatham House) with contribution from Antoine VAGNEUR-JONES (Fondation pour la recherche stratégique, FRS)

The Conflict in Yemen: Latest Developments

24-10-2016

The Yemen conflict has deteriorated since 2015 despite repeated rounds of peace negotiations. The most recent round of UN-led Talks ended in August 2016 with no agreement. The conflict is in danger of escalating beyond Yemen’s borders with frequent Houthi incursions into Saudi Arabia, foreign ships being targeted by missiles from Houthi-controlled areas near the Bab el-Mandeb Strait – a major international trade route – and Saudi Arabia and Iran siding with opposite sides in the conflict. The latest ...

The Yemen conflict has deteriorated since 2015 despite repeated rounds of peace negotiations. The most recent round of UN-led Talks ended in August 2016 with no agreement. The conflict is in danger of escalating beyond Yemen’s borders with frequent Houthi incursions into Saudi Arabia, foreign ships being targeted by missiles from Houthi-controlled areas near the Bab el-Mandeb Strait – a major international trade route – and Saudi Arabia and Iran siding with opposite sides in the conflict. The latest 72-hour cease-fire starting 20 October was not renewed when it ended on 22 October. The cease-fire did, however, allow humanitarian aid agencies to step in to start to provide assistance to some of the 21.2 million people across the country who are in need of humanitarian aid. UN OCHA has estimated it needs USD 1.63 billion for its Yemen humanitarian response plan, but it has only received pledges for 47 % of that amount so far. The EU has recently announced a further EUR 40 million for the fund, taking the total EU pledge to EUR 120 million. The European Parliament has called for an EU arms embargo on Saudi Arabia, which is responsible for the majority of the destruction of civilian infrastructure.

Iran-Saudi Arabia relations: Figuring out the next move

11-01-2016

Relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia – two powerhouses and major rivals of the Muslim world – have always been complicated. The 1979 Revolution in Iran, and the Iran-Iraq war (1980-1988), have contributed to entrenching their historical antagonisms and left an imprint in the foreign policies of both Iran and Saudi Arabia. Since 2011, Tehran and Riyadh have repeatedly exchanged blows, including through their proxies in Syria, Iraq and Yemen. Iran has also often been accused of interfering in the ...

Relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia – two powerhouses and major rivals of the Muslim world – have always been complicated. The 1979 Revolution in Iran, and the Iran-Iraq war (1980-1988), have contributed to entrenching their historical antagonisms and left an imprint in the foreign policies of both Iran and Saudi Arabia. Since 2011, Tehran and Riyadh have repeatedly exchanged blows, including through their proxies in Syria, Iraq and Yemen. Iran has also often been accused of interfering in the internal affairs of Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and other Gulf countries with significant Shiite minorities. Iran, on the other hand, has accused Saudi Arabia of promoting anti Shiite policies and practices. Both sides have also resorted to downgrading or suspending diplomatic ties in the past – as was the case of Iran and Saudi Arabia in 1988, and Iran and Bahrain in 2011 and 2015. In that sense, the recent decision by Saudi Arabia and several other Gulf countries to cut or downgrade diplomatic ties with Iran does not represent a radical change in their bilateral relations but is nonetheless worrying given growing sectarian problems in the region. The escalation of the conflict between Iran and Saudi Arabia – only a few weeks after the two countries sat for the first time at the same table to discuss the conflict in Syria – comes at a particularly sensitive moment. Implementation of the carefully brokered diplomatic undertakings of the past few months – in particular the nuclear deal with Iran and the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 2254 (2015) on Syria – depend on good relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran. Therefore, diplomatic efforts to find a means to help de-escalate the conflict and present all sides with a face-saving option will remain the main challenge for the coming months.

The 2015 Sakharov Prize

12-10-2015

Established in 1988 by the European Parliament, the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought is awarded each year in December to individuals or organisations for their outstanding achievements in upholding human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Established in 1988 by the European Parliament, the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought is awarded each year in December to individuals or organisations for their outstanding achievements in upholding human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Imeachtaí atá ar na bacáin

21-09-2021
EPRS online Book Talk with David Harley: Inside the room - Shaping Europe, 1992-2010
Imeacht eile -
EPRS
21-09-2021
Putting the 'e' in e-Health
Ceardlann -
STOA
27-09-2021
Turning the tide on cancer: the national parliaments' view on Europe's Cancer Plan
Imeacht eile -
BECA

Pairtnéirí