With the start of the military intervention in Syria in 2015, and the U.S.-Russian diplomatic effort that accompanied it, the Middle East has become a key testing ground for Russia’s attempt to return to the global stage.
The Russian-U.S. relationship in the Middle East over the coming years will likely be defined by rivalry and competition rather than by cooperation.
The rapid depreciation of the Syrian pound has caused a further decline in the living standards of ordinary Syrians and threatens the continued functioning of what remains of the state.
U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Jacob Lew discussed the evolution of sanctions, outlined lessons learned from previous challenges and successes, and raised the importance of guarding against their misuse.
Verification and maintaining incentives for compliance will be important factors in the continued implementation of the Iran deal, and Japan’s membership on the UN Security Council and business relationships with Iran are potential assets for addressing these issues.
The 2016 elections to the Iranian parliament and Assembly of Expert definitely brought, at least, nominal changes in the political landscape of the country. Yet, the potential impact of these changes on the future development of the country will probably be limited.
Despite encouraging results in recent elections, the road to change in Iran is still long. Europe has only very limited influence on events there.
Despite modest gains for reformists and moderates in Iran’s recent parliamentary elections, prospects for change remain limited.
After a two-week journey from Beijing’s industrial heartland in the eastern Zhejiang province, the 32-container train that arrived in Tehran on February 15 is the first ever to traverse the fabled silk road between China and Iran.
Recent events in Syria threaten to plunge the region into a broader conflict.