Summary: as the war in Ukraine enters an ever more dangerous phase, MENA states continue to take a fence-sitting posture that keeps their options open and avoids annoying Putin.
Summary: as President Biden seeks to turn Putin into a global pariah, he has let slip another target, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who is increasingly gaining international approval and acceptance despite his ruthless suppression of Saudis at home and attacks on critics abroad.
Summary: the media landscape in MENA shows a harsh story of journalists jailed, criticism silenced and authoritarians in absolute control.
Summary: what seemed a certainty has now bogged down and the Vienna talks are at risk of stalemate with America’s Gulf allies finding themselves caught between a rock and a hard place, on the one hand worried that either the US will do a deal that gives away too much and leaves them in the lurch or on the other that a no deal scenario will further heighten their regional insecurity fears.
Summary: another prime minister has resigned, another government ends as Kuwait’s political impasse endures.
Summary: attention-grabbing headlines notwithstanding, the UAE’s move to a corporate tax is unlikely to alter the Gulf state’s lucrative role as a tax haven while personal income tax still looks a long way off.
Summary: despite concerns that crypto currencies may violate Islamic jurisprudence and conceal criminal activities, several MENA countries are surging forward in the race to establish pre-eminence in a rapidly emerging financial sector with the potential for staggering profits.
Summary: a massive redevelopment project under the aegis of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is levelling huge tranches of the Red Sea city of Jeddah with residents being given scant notice before their homes are knocked down.
Summary: MBS is seeking to legitimise his power historiographically by portraying the “three states of Saudi Arabia” as a continuation of a glorious past.
Summary: Kuwait’s anti-corruption drive has bagged some impressive trophies but questions swirl over special treatment and a lack of urgency as Kuwaitis call for accountability and a more robust campaign.