Early August marked intensified activities among Russia, Turkey, Iran and South Caucasian countries. The visit of the Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan to meet with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Moscow amidst these developments bring more questions. Mr. Heydar Mirza, an expert in foreign policy and security studies with focus on the South Caucasus and Caspian region, shares his opinion on the...

The July 29 announcement by Jabhat al-Nusra on severing affiliation ties with Al Qaeda and changing its name to Jabhat Fateh al-Sham came as a blessing for Qatar, which for a long time has tried to encourage the group of making such a move. Doha is interested in using the significant fighting capabilities of al-Nusra on the ground to pursue one of its foreign policy goals in the Middle East – the...

Europe is left again in a state of shock and distress when Germany was hit by a surprising attack leaving 9 people dead and many more wounded. The attack on the Olympia shopping centre in Munich, three days after another attack on board a  train executed  by an Afghan refugee and followed by an explosion in a small town of Ansbach, seems to be politically motivated violence rather than...

Since the end of May 2016, the world has been once again closely following the events in Syria, where the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG)-dominated Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have started massive offensive in the northern part of the country to liberate the city of Manbij and its surrounding territories from the Islamic State militants. This area is of significant strategic importance, as...

In his speech made in early July, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan declared his plan to offer Turkish citizenship to the Syrian refugees. "Turkey is your home, too,” he said, addressing Syrians, who have found asylum in Turkey. "I believe that among our brothers and sisters there are some who want to become citizens of the Republic of Turkey. Our interior ministry is taking steps in that...

The dramatic breakdown of the Russian-Turkish partnership in the aftermath of the Su-24 incident had very dramatic consequences for the both sides, which now show first signs of their desire to break the ice. Mr. Orhan Gafarli, Azerbaijani political expert based in Ankara talked to us to give his perspective on the future of the relationships between Russia and Turkey and what wider implications they may...

Some researchers have done fact-findings about Israel unilaterally, but Israelism: Arab Scholarship on Israel, a Critical Assessment aspires to stress the critique of Israeli studies in the Arab world. This book also points out to the underdevelopment of Israeli studies in Arab society. Since the onset of the Israel-Palestine controversy, the studies and research about Israel have lacked objectivity being...

Bulgaria has recently moved even closer to diversifying its sources of natural gas supply. This time, it seems it may be happening with less geopolitical grandeur and fanfare. After years of flirting with Russia over its monster pipeline projects on the Balkans, a 182-km long gas interconnector link with Greece may do the trick. The source? Most probably Azerbaijani gas. On 17 May, 2016, in the Greek city...

Whatever the end of the quagmire in the Middle East will be, it can be confidently claimed that the Kurdish problem is now looming larger than ever in the regional politics. In Syria the YPG, armed groups under the local Kurdish party PYD, are among the most solid and reliable forces fighting against radical jihadists; in Iraq the prospects of possible independence exert a steady impact on national...

  Cooperation platforms such as Istanbul Process, Tokyo Mutual Accountability Framework or International Contact Group on Afghanistan were viewed by international community as mechanisms for complementing military and security-related tasks and contributing to building stability and prosperity in Afghanistan ridden by recurrent violence for decades. Yet such platforms hitherto failed to produce...

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