A new report on organised crime around the world indicates Arab countries are amongst the world’s biggest offenders, with states in conflict or post-conflict at the bottom of the list.
The kingdom, with Mohammed bin Salman at the helm, is building a tourism sector from the ground up spending vast sums in a bid to secure a lucrative industry.
Arab Digest · Putin powers ahead in the Middle East
Arab Digest · Jerusalem
As the crisis in Jerusalem deepens Prince Hassan of Jordan calls for an end to expropriations, confiscations and annexation. “Jerusalem,” he writes “is a shared gift, not the exclusive property of one government or one people.”
Heroin mostly enters the Arab world from Afghanistan via Iran enroute to markets in Europe. Arab countries close to the main smuggling routes are the most impacted by the trade. The Syrian war has led traffickers to re-route heroin shipments via the Black Sea and Africa.
Tourism is a crucial economic sector for MENA that has been ravaged by the Covid pandemic and recovery is still a long way off.
Summary: the Middle East and North Africa is a crucial battleground in the global struggle to contain the damage climate change is inflicting but time is fast running out for countries in the region to take concerted action.
King Abdullah is secure after his half-brother and former crown prince is detained along with other high level figures known to have close connections to Saudi Arabia, Israel and the UAE.
A Covid-19 surge and soaring unemployment are challenging Jordan’s King Abdullah II and threatening a government widely seen as incompetent and corrupt.