US/Polish proposal for a ministerial on the Middle East, but mainly on Iran. No takers so far.
Jordan – continuing protests over austerity and corruption. Remains a significant regional player. MBS doesn’t come.
Europe’s dilemma in the Middle East – its interests differ from those of the US but it bears some of the cost of US policies decided regardless of its interests, Palestine, Iraq, Iran. Khashoggi may be another example?
Khashoggi – murder evidence accumulates, but Saudi Arabia still in denial. Cautious reaction in the Middle East. Trump ambiguous, but strong reaction from Congress and from international finance.
Khashoggi murdered or renditioned to Saudi Arabia. Will international concern be enough to change policy towards the kingdom? There is now convincing evidence, short of absolute proof, that the prominent Saudi journalist and commentator Jamal Khashoggi (our posting of 3 October) was detained in the Saudi consulate general in Istanbul on 2 October and taken either dead or alive to Saudi Arabia. There is no evidence to support the Saudi claim that he left the building freely. In what follows we assume, like virtually all other commentators, that the Saudi …
Egypt – 75 death sentences on protesters from 2013. Actions to limit freedom of expression. Why?
Morocco – long prison sentences on protesters at corruption and neglect. Protests continue at a low level so far. A royal pardon?
Qatar vs. the four: no sign of compromise. The dispute static but not safe, and causing harm. The four have won no friends.
An explosive series of events in Jerusalem and Palestine which may lead to violence. Extremists at the wheel – Trump loses the support of Europe.
Saudi and UAE money for Sahel force with troops from five sub-Saharan states backed by the UN with French leadership to fight jihadists in the Sahara.