Oman A visit by Sultan Qaboos bin Said of Omar to Iran has provoked speculation that it was an effort to mediate between Tehran and Washington. Sultan Qaboos is not a frequent traveller.

Closing embassies

Closing embassies On 4 August the State Department spokeswoman announced the closure of 19 US embassies and consulates, mostly in the Middle East “out of an abundance of caution”, adding that “This is not an indication of a new threat stream, merely an indication of our commitment to exercise caution.”

Kuwait: elections again

Kuwait: elections again With all its weaknesses, the Kuwaiti parliamentary system is the most democratic in the Arab Gulf monarchies. Parliament can pass legislation and interrogate ministers, but parliaments have repeatedly been dissolved after challenging governments.


Kuwait In the latest development in the struggle between Parliament and government in Kuwait, unique in the Gulf monarchies, the Constitutional Court has again ordered Parliament to be dissolved and fresh elections to be held. A decision on the date for elections is expected imminently, and is urgently needed to end a period of political …

Kuwait

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