Asia

‘Never write off Saudi Arabia’

New diplomatic face of the Gulf Kingdom promises gradual change, extends olive branch to Russia and lashes out at Iran.. By BARBARA SURK   The Saudis put on a diplomatic charm offensive in the EU capital this week designed to highlight looming changes in the ultra-conservative Gulf Kingdom… Source: ‘Never write off Saudi Arabia’ – POLITICO Read More »

Turkish academics talk about living in fear: ‘It’s the final stage of a witch hunt’

After the coup attempt that failed to remove Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan last week, the government has gone on the offensive against what it says is a vast network of plotters, which it calls a “parallel state” run by exiled cleric and Erdogan enemy Fethullah Gülen.. By Alberto Riva and Asli Pelit Some of the targets of the purge are pretty obvious, with thousands of military officers… Source: Turkish academics talk about living in fear: ‘It’s the final stage ... Read More »

China’s Muslims under threat of religious persecution

China’s president Xi Jinping, who has been accused of implementing draconian laws against religion since taking office in 2012, spoke directly to Chinese Muslims today – signifying a possible crackdown on a group that has so far avoided his harsh measures.. While visiting a mosque in the northwestern autonomous region of Ningxia, home to more than two million Muslims, Xi urged Chinese Muslims to practise their religion as part of Chinese society and “carry forward the patriotic tradition”… Source: China’s ... Read More »

The Eurasian Economic Union: Power, Politics and Trade

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Since its creation in 2015, the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) has kept only a few of its promises. Its limited economic success cannot mask the many tensions between Russia and its neighbours. Much of the EEU’s future success will depend on its members’ will to shift away from geopolitics and focus on international cooperation, governance, social welfare and migration… Source: The Eurasian Economic Union: Power, Politics and Trade – International Crisis Group Read More »

How India and China view Brexit

While Indian businessmen think Brexit could harm their investment in Britain, China expects solid manufacturing opportunities in the long run under its global Belt and Road connectivity program. Brexit also provides geostrategic benefits to China. Since the mood in Europe is turning inward after the historic vote, France may drop its demand to send EU patrols to defend ‘freedom of navigation’ in the South China Sea. Brexit was a seismic event that evoked divergent responses in India and China… Source: How ... Read More »

Saudi Arabian clerics declare Pokémon ‘un-Islamic’

The fatwa says franchise promotes ‘global Zionism’ but does not mention Pokémon Go.. Saudi Arabia’s top clerical body has renewed a 15-year-old edict that the Pokémon game franchise is un-Islamic, Saudi media said on Wednesday, although the fatwa made no mention of the successful new Pokémon Go mobile game… Source: Saudi Arabian clerics declare Pokémon ‘un-Islamic’ Read More »

The Case for Kurdish Statehood

Why has the West been so supportive of Palestinian nationalism, yet so reluctant to support the Kurds, the largest nation in the world without a state? BY NOAH BECK , OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR The Kurds have been… Source: The Case for Kurdish Statehood Read More »

The U.S. tried to kill Erdogan, says editor in chief of Turkish daily

“The U.S. is the one who planned and applied this coup attempt.”… Source: The U.S. tried to kill Erdogan, says editor in chief of Turkish daily – The Washington Post Read More »

Links between Nice attacker and ISIL not yet established, says minister

Links between the Nice truck attacker and “terrorist networks,” including the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) which has claimed the killings, “have not yet been established by the investigation,” French interior minister said July 18.. “We cannot exclude that an unbalanced and very violent individual” has been “through a rapid radicalization, committed to this absolutely despicable crime,” which killed 84 people, Bernard Cazeneuve told France’s RTL radio… Source: Links between Nice attacker and ISIL not yet established, ... Read More »

How the Clintons and the Rest of Washington Are Getting Rich From the Turkey Coup

Here’s one outcome of the Turkish coup attempt that you can bet on: Washington will be getting rich off it… The Podesta Group, a firm with close ties to Bill and Hillary Clinton, registered in May to lobby for the “Alliance for Shared Values.” That comically named organization supports Fethullah Gulen, the Pennsylvania-based imam that the Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, blames, rightly or wrongly, for the coup… Source: How the Clintons and the Rest of Washington Are Getting Rich ... Read More »

5 things about the man Turkey says was behind the coup

Fetullah Gülen is an influential Islamic cleric and a former close ally of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.. By BARBARA SURK Tanks were still trawling the streets of Istanbul and the parliament in Ankara was under bombardment when Turkish government officials pointed at self-exiled Islamic cleric Fetullah Gülen as the man behind the attempted coup, carried out by a faction of the military… Source: 5 things about the man Turkey says was behind the coup – POLITICO Read More »

Turkey coup attempt could destabilize ally in region reeling from terrorism

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Middle East experts say Turkish military’s apparent attempt to seize power on Friday has sent shockwaves through Nato and across the world Live updates: Tanks open fire near Turkish parliament building The attempted coup in Turkey threatens to dangerously destabilise a western ally in a region already reeling from war, terrorism and mass migration, according to experts and analysts in the region… Source: Turkey coup attempt could destabilize ally in region reeling from terrorism | World news | The Guardian Read More »

Turkey: The sick man of Europe, once again — Spengler

The outcome of tonight’s apparent coup attempt in Turkey remains unclear, but the motivation for regime change in Turkey has been building under the surface for years. Turkey faces a perfect storm of economic, political and foreign policy problems. First, Turkey’s much-heralded economic growth spurt of the 2000’s has come to a grinding stop. The Erdogan boom, which inspired predictions that Turkey might emerge as another China, resembled the Asian experience less than it did the Latin American credidt bubbles ... Read More »

Lessons from History to Defeat ISIS and al-Qaeda

Current counter-terrorism strategic communications efforts can take a much-needed morale boost from history. Long-term commitment to these efforts in support of both national security and broader foreign policy interests will be essential to foster the organisational stability and learning required to meet current and future challenges. There is still reason for optimism in the battle against extremist propaganda. One of the most pressing national security issues facing many Western governments is how to improve counter-terrorism strategic… Source: Lessons from History to ... Read More »

Landmark South China Sea Ruling Could Revive Negotiations

An international tribunal has issued a sweeping ruling against China in a landmark case brought by the Philippines over disputed claims in the South China Sea. Beijing rejected the ruling, but the judgment’s legal clarity could ultimately provide the basis of a better, durable, negotiated outcome for the many parties involved… Source: Landmark South China Sea Ruling Could Revive Negotiations | Crisis Group Read More »

South China Sea: China waives the rules

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China has no legal basis for its territorial claims in the South China Sea. The ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, an arm of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), was widely predicted, but was a metaphorical bombshell, nevertheless. The worry now is that it could presage the deployment of the real things in a part of the world that has become synonymous with unresolved strategic tension. By finding in the ... Read More »