Regions

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has won the first round of what could prove to be an unprecedented power grab that comes to haunt him. The prince's frontal assault on significant segments of the kingdom's elite; assertions of unrest in the military and the national guard, and a flood of rumours, including allegations that a prominent member of the ruling family, Prince Abdul Aziz bin Fahd, died under mysterious circumstances suggest however that the struggle may be far from over.

Authors: Anna Kolotova & Zhao Wenbin*

Since the Soviet Union was disintegrated in late 1991, people are always puzzled by the fact that China and Russia have come to be so rapidly and closely that they have forged the entente. In retrospect, Joseph Nye Jr. warned 17 years ago, it would take very clumsy American policy and behavior to drive China and Russia more fully into each other’s arms.

Few paid attention to a rare protest in Saudi Arabia in late January 2011 as a wave of popular uprisings swept the Middle East and North Africa, toppling the leaders of Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Yemen.

The Republic of India is the world’s largest democracy. More than 800 million voters are eligible to exercise their right to elect a government. Democratic decentralization has ensured that every voter has a chance to elect a representative of his choice at a national, state and local level.

Late September, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Embassies accredited to the Russian Federation celebrated the 37th Anniversary of SADC at the Korston hotel in southern Moscow.

Tales of exaggeration and outright lies by this president are not new.  In 1974, the New York Times did a profile on the young Trump.  He claimed he was worth $200 million when his taxable income then was $2,200 a week; that he was of Swedish heritage; that he had graduated at the top of his class at Wharton!   Claims of high intelligence are repeated often, and an assurance of how he would get better deals abroad.

A target of massive Saudi investment, the Maldives severed diplomatic relations with Qatar hours after a Saudi-UAE-led alliance of largely financially dependent states declared in June an economic and diplomatic boycott of the Gulf state.

On October 27, the Catalonian autonomous region's parliament voted to pass the motion for "independence" and then declared the "establishment of an independent state". Beijing quickly stated that China's stance on this issue has been consistent and unequivocal.

In the shadowy world of covert proxy wars, Iran is taking centre stage, both as a target and a player. A series of incidents involving Iranian ethnic and religious minorities raise the spectre of the United States and Saudi Arabia seeking to destabilize the Islamic republic.

With the US President Donald Trump’s decertification of Iran nuclear deal, the prospect of peace and stability in the Middle East appears to be a distant dream. Largely seen as dangerously irresponsible act,

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