Countries
Regional Affairs
ENERGY
OPEC+ Holds Course on Output as IEA Calls Time Out on Oil
Kate Dourian Jun 9, 2021
OPEC and its Russian-led allies stick to their planned oil production strategy, issuing words of caution regarding the strength of the demand recovery.
SECURITY
The Gulf Cooperation Council at 40: Finally Ripe for a Regional Security System?
Emma Soubrier May 27, 2021
The signing of the Al Ula agreement ending the GCC crisis may finally allow the Gulf countries to establish a regional security system, an endeavor that has been decades in the making.
POLITICS AND GOVERNANCE
Abraham Accords Face Early Test
Kristin Smith Diwan May 24, 2021
Israeli expansionism in East Jerusalem and the attack on Al-Aqsa Mosque prompt sharp condemnation and popular support for Palestinians from Gulf signatories to the Abraham Accords.
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Bahrain
ARTS AND CULTURE
Latifa Al Khalifa: A Local Curator Showcases Gulf Societies
Joud Al Marar Apr 11, 2021
From collecting wedding photos and exploring the evolution of khaleeji music to using humor to write about how people behave during the holy month of Ramadan, a Bahraini curator brings to light intriguing stories about Gulf societies.
ENVIRONMENT
A Conversation with H.E. Dr. Mohamed bin Mubarak Bin Daina, Special Envoy for Climate Affairs, Bahrain
March 25, 2021
On March 25, AGSIW hosted a conversation with H.E. Dr. Mohamed bin Mubarak Bin Daina to discuss climate-related challenges facing Bahrain and how the kingdom is mitigating these challenges.
ECONOMY
Bahraini Marriages: Against Pandemic Odds, Tying the Knot Gets Easier
Omar Al-Ubaydli Mar 10, 2021
Economics may offer some insight into why Bahrainis tied the knot more frequently in 2020.
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Kuwait
SOCIETY
Kuwait’s Ongoing Struggle Against Gender Violence
Nour al-Mukhled Jun 8, 2021
Grassroots activism demanding an end to gender-based violence in Kuwait has gained national traction and is encouraging more legislative action.
POLITICS AND GOVERNANCE
The Politics of Permanent Deadlock in Kuwait
Luai Allarakia and Hamad H. Albloshi Mar 11, 2021
A newly elected National Assembly quickly falls under old dynamics of confrontation and gridlock. Will Kuwait find a path to compromise and reform?
POLITICS AND GOVERNANCE
Will Kuwait and Senegal’s Exceptional Friendship Endure?
Mara A. Leichtman Feb 23, 2021
The long-standing partnership between Kuwait and Senegal has been beneficial to both parties. With a new emir, fallen oil prices, and a smaller 2021 budget, will Senegal remain a priority for Kuwait?
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Oman
ECONOMY
Oman's Protesters Seek Jobs and Reform
Rafiah Al Talei Jun 11, 2021
While the high rate of unemployment among youth sparked recent protests in Oman, the problem now goes beyond creating job opportunities.
POLITICS AND GOVERNANCE
Roundtable with Ambassador Leslie M. Tsou, U.S. Ambassador to Oman
April 7, 2021
As part of its Ambassadors Series, AGSIW hosted a discussion with Ambassador Leslie M. Tsou, U.S. ambassador to Oman.
ECONOMY
Oman’s VAT Implementation Is Necessary and Not Enough
Robert Mogielnicki Apr 8, 2021
If Omanis aren’t ready to shoulder a 5% VAT, then they have a long, bumpy economic road ahead of them.
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Qatar
ENERGY
Qatar and Gaza’s Electricity: Mediation, Aid, and Expertise 
Sima Aldardari May 26, 2021
As the largest liquefied natural gas exporter in the world and one of the few countries able to work and negotiate with various parties in Israel and Gaza, Qatar is uniquely positioned to work within Gaza’s energy sector.
ENERGY
Qatar Petroleum Comes of Age as it Assumes Sole LNG Ownership
Kate Dourian Apr 23, 2021
After more than 25 years of working alongside international oil company giants, Qatar Petroleum has the technical capability and expertise to manage its own gas business. But it is unlikely to end all its partnerships.
POLITICS AND GOVERNANCE
Qatar’s Regional Relations and Foreign Policy After Al Ula
Anna L. Jacobs Apr 14, 2021
The agreement ending the rift with Qatar seems to have helped mitigate some regional tensions, but will the spirit of cooperation continue?
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Saudi Arabia
SOCIETY
The Line: A Promising Vision for a Progressive Future?
Yasser Elsheshtawy Jun 3, 2021
Regardless of whether The Line comes to fruition, the most important aspect of the project may be its promotion of a new vision of urban living.
ECONOMY
The Centralization of Economic Policymaking in the Kingdom
Robert Mogielnicki May 3, 2021
Robert Mogielnicki discusses the centralization of economic policymaking and the consolidation of power amid the fast pace of new initiatives in the kingdom since the launch of Vision 2030.
SOCIETY
Keep the Faith: Mohammed bin Salman’s Message to Saudis
Kristin Smith Diwan May 3, 2021
On April 27, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman sat down for a television interview five years after the announcement of Vision 2030.
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United Arab Emirates
ARTS AND CULTURE
Obaid AlBudoor: An Emirati Photographer Finds Beauty in the Desert Wilderness
Joud Al Marar May 24, 2021
A self-taught local photographer explores the region’s hidden gems and captures underrepresented cultural practices.
UPCOMING EVENT
Climate Action in the UAE: A Conversation with Aisha Al Abdooli, UAE Ministry of Climate Change and Environment
June 17, 2021 10:00am - 11:00am EDT
On Thursday June 17, AGSIW will host Aisha Al Abdooli, acting assistant undersecretary for green development and climate change for the UAE’s Ministry of Climate Change and Environment.
POLITICS AND GOVERNANCE
The UAE’s Message of Hope, Delivered With a Soft-Power Focus and Some Strategic Hedging
Emma Soubrier Apr 22, 2021
The UAE’s Hope Consortium and Hope Probe illustrate a growing shift from a focus on hard power to a broader consideration of human security and the incorporation of new technologies.
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Iran
POLITICS AND GOVERNANCE
Engineering Presidential Elections in Iran: Coronation of Raisi
Ali Alfoneh May 26, 2021
By narrowing the range of choice, Iran’s supreme leader and the Guardian Council effectively eliminate competition and reduce electoral participation, increasing the chances of their favorite candidate: Chief Justice Ebrahim Raisi.
ECONOMY
Rising Crime and Insecurity in Iran
Sara Bazoobandi May 18, 2021
The Iranian government’s failure to devise policies to address the economic challenges facing Iranians has directly contributed to the rise of crime in Iran.
SECURITY
Saudi Arabia’s New Dialogue With Iran was Long in the Making
Hussein Ibish May 4, 2021
New talks reflect a broad range of regional and international developments in recent years.
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Iraq
POLITICS AND GOVERNANCE
Kadhimi Triumphs Over the Militias, At Least for Now
Geneive Abdo Jun 1, 2021
Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi’s arrest and detention of a powerful militia commander signals significant changes in Iraq as the country prepares for parliamentary elections.
SOCIETY
The Long Game in Iraq: Shia Clerics, Activists Find Common Cause To Confront the State
Geneive Abdo May 17, 2021
A new generation of Iraqis has formed an informal alliance with Iraqi clerics in a move that has the potential for a reimaging of the Iraqi state.
ENERGY
Iraq Puts Faith in Total To Deliver More Gas, Water, and Solar Projects
Kate Dourian Apr 12, 2021
A $7 billion deal with French oil major Total could provide a lifeline for Iraq’s fragile economy.
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Yemen
SECURITY
Yemeni Soldiers and the Battle for Pay
Eleonora Ardemagni Apr 30, 2021
Lacking and intermittent payments to soldiers risk incentivizing local small wars that could persist regardless of whether a national conflict resolution deal is achieved.
SECURITY
The Great Fall: Putting Together Peace Talks for a Broken Yemen
Gregory D. Johnsen Apr 21, 2021
With Yemen’s increasingly fractured political landscape, the longer the war continues, the harder it will be to resolve.
SECURITY
With Renewed Efforts To End the War, What are the Prospects for Peace in Yemen?
April 28, 2021
On Wednesday April 28, AGSIW hosted a discussion on efforts to end the conflict in Yemen.
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