At this year's Security Conference in Munich, the European Union's High Representative Federica Mogherini named Ukraine and Libya as her top priorities. She explained, "In Libya there is the perfect mix ready to explode and in case it explodes, it will explode just at the gates of Europe. […] The combination of elements present there is extremely dangerous for us and for the security of the region"(1).
Iran’s regional strategy has been a matter of controversy over the past decades. The country has sought to establish itself as a key cultural, political and economic player that links the Middle East and Asia. Iran’s strategy in the region underwent changes due to the regional trends that have often been triggered by external powers’ military intervention, as well as the administrative changes in Tehran. The latest Iranian presidential election has opened a new door for the country’s foreign policy strategies.
Executive branches of governments have always enjoyed a primacy in managing foreign policy and waging war. However, the highly influential parliamentary debates in the United Kingdom, the United States or France on the Syrian conflict have given rise to the perception that parliaments are becoming increasingly influent in first-order international affairs. When looking at recent developments concerning the Syrian crisis, could it be that parliamentary prerogatives in matters of foreign and defense policy are gaining new momentum?
Executive branches of governments have always enjoyed a primacy in managing foreign policy and waging war. However, in several contemporary constitutional systems this trend has been offset through (more or less effective) parliamentary powers. When looking at recent developments concerning the Syrian crisis, could it be that parliamentary prerogatives in matters of foreign and defense policy are gaining new momentum?
Sectarian tendencies and antagonisms grew into levels unknown before in the modern Middle East. They were exacerbated by conflicts in Iraq, Syria, Bahrain and Lebanon, and by the social and political uprisings following the “Arab spring”.
The Middle East and North Africa Region has probably recovered more strongly than other regions of the world from the financial crisis, thanks to the dynamics of oil prices. However, the outbreak of the Arab Spring, motivated also by economic grievances, suggests that the impact of the world economic crisis in the region is probably deeper than imagined. Despite growth and increasing investments, unemploy-ment in the region is persistent, due on the one side to the growing population on the other side to rising inequality and ineffective management of the economy (rentier state).