In recent years, the Arab region witnessed popular movements demanding freedom and equality for all citizens without discrimination. But political developments have led to the strengthening of ethnic, religious, or racial identities at the expense of citizenship. And in countries including Iraq, Syria, Libya, and Yemen, these strengthened identities have led to armed confrontation. Is a state built on the principle of citizenship still possible?
Carnegie Middle East Center, in cooperation with the Arab Forum for Alternatives and the Hivos Foundation, hosted a two-day conference that brought together Arab researchers and experts to discuss the conditions of citizenship in Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Libya, and Morocco. These experts also debated the future of states based on citizenship in the Arab region. The event launched the book Citizenship and Social Constituency in the Arab World (Rawafed, 2015).
Day 1 November 16, 2015
9:45 to 10:00 a.m.
Welcome and Introduction: Maha Yahya
10:00 a.m. to 12:00p.m.
Book Launch “Citizenship and Social Constituency”
Mohamed Elagati, Fawwaz Traboulsi
Moderator: Doreen Khoury
12:00 to 12:30 p.m.
12:30 to 2:00 p.m.
Citizenship and Social Diversity in the Mashreq and Maghreb
Youssef Laaraj, Saad Salloum
Moderator: Gameel Matar
2:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Day 2 November 17, 2015
10:00 to 11:30 a.m.
Citizenship and Social Classes
Georges Fahmi, Sabah Al-Hallak
Moderator: Oussama Safa
11:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
12:30 to 1:30 pm
Pluralism and Political Mobilization
Walid Haddouk, Heba Raouf Ezzat
Moderator: Kawa Hassan
Sabah Al-Hallak is a researcher on women’s issues and a member of the Syrian Women’s Association and the Syrian Association for Women Citizens.
Mohamed Elagati is the executive director of the Arab Forum for Alternatives.
Georges Fahmi is a visiting scholar at Carnegie Middle East Center.
Walid Haddouk is a Tunisian political researcher and writer.
Kawa Hassan is director of the Middle East North Africa Program at the EastWest Institute and a nonresident scholar at Carnegie Middle East Center.
Doreen Khoury is Middle East Liaison at Hivos International.
Youssef Laaraj is a researcher in Amazigh affairs.
Gameel Matar is an Egyptian thinker and writer who focuses on reform and democratization issues.
Heba Raouf Ezzat
Heba Raouf Ezzat is assistant professor of political science and deputy director of the Center for Humanities and Interdisciplinary Studies at Cairo University.
Oussama Safa is section chief of Participation and Social Justice, Social Development Division, UN-ESCWA.
Saad Salloum is the director the research department in the College of Political Sciences of Mustansiriya University.
Fawwaz Traboulsi is a Lebanese historian, writer, activist, researcher, and political analyst.
Maha Yahya is a senior associate at Carnegie Middle East Center.