Middle East & North Africa

Can the Middle East Make Economic and Social Progress?

Why do some countries grow faster than others? How do we engineer an economic miracle? Some economists believe that manufacturing growth is like cooking a good dish—all  the needed ingredients should be in the right proportion; if only one is under- or overrepresented, the ‘chemistry of growth’ will be sub-optimal. Rapid economic growth can only happen if several necessary conditions are met at the same time.

Iran: Children at the Gallows

As Iran currently executes the highest number of juvenile offenders in the world, hundreds of Iranian minors helplessly watch their childhoods pass them by as they await their fatal ends behind bars.

Is Hypocrisy The Silent Strategy of Western Democracy?

The official reasons for the US-led, UK-backed invasion of Iraq in 2003 were to disarm Iraq of weapons of mass destruction, end Saddam Hussein’s support of terrorism, and free the Iraqi people.

Clueless in Iraq

For many Americans and Brits the 2003 Iraq war is seen as not only a disaster for Iraq and its neighbours but also as a defeat of the US and UK forces. The recently published Chilcot inquiry lends its considerable weight to this view. It went so far as to describe the circumstances in which the British pulled out of Basra, after negotiating a deal with a local militia there, as “humiliating”.

Saudi Scapegoats

The eleventh day of September 2001 seems a distant memory now. On that day, 19 hijackers unleashed mayhem in the skies over the United States of America. Fifteen of these 19 hijackers, it would later be discovered, were Saudi citizens. Yet the war that ensued, that cast its bloody fingers deep into the Middle East and South Asia, would not be a war against Saudis. It was instead against Afghans, Iraqis and, at least via remote control, Pakistanis.

Suspend Saudi Arabia from Human Rights Council, Human Rights Groups Say

Saudi Arabia’s membership in the Human Rights Council (HRC) should be suspended by members of the UN General Assembly, Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Amnesty International (AI) said on Wednesday.

Ethiopia, Kazakhstan, Sweden Among New Members of UN Security Council

Bolivia, Ethiopia, Kazakhstan and Sweden were elected on Tuesday to serve on the UN Security Council (UNSC) as non-permanent members, while Italy and Netherlands have split the remaining contested seat.

The Case for Cash in Humanitarian Emergencies

Currently only six percent of humanitarian aid worldwide comes in the form of cash handouts, yet many aid organisations believe that cash transfers should be seen as the rule, not the exception.

Journalists Face Unprecedented Violence

There has never been a time more dangerous to be a journalist than today. On an average week, one journalist gets killed, according to UNESCO, and the pace of these attacks keeps increasing.

Worldwide Displacement At Levels Never Seen Before

Displacement has increased to unprecedented levels due to war and persecution, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has found.

Fearing Violence, LGBT Refugees Rarely Seek Help

Despite their extreme vulnerability, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) refugees often do not seek the assistance they need, since revealing their sexual or gender identities can put them in grave danger.

Majority of Vulnerable Refugees Will Not Be Resettled in 2017

Only a small percentage of the world’s most vulnerable refugees will be resettled in 2017, according to new figures released by the UN High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) this week.

Leaving Saudi Arabia

The Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia is not one pilgrims or foreign tourists normally visit. Set against the Persian Gulf, it is the heart of the kingdom’s oil industry. Unsurprisingly, it is also home to most of its migrant workers whose labour populates this sector.

From Somalia to Afghanistan: The Dangers Local Journalists Face

On Sunday, June 5, three reporters were killed: Somali broadcast journalist Sagal Salad Osman, Aghan journalist Zabihullah Tamanna, and American photojournalist David Gilkey.

UN-Backed Findings Reveal Startling Small Arms Trade Increase

A report released by The Small Arms Survey here Monday shows the alarming rate at which the trade of small arms and light weapons has been increasing.

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