Middle East and North Africa

Why enlargement-lite will not save the Arab Spring

The European Union has a vital role to play in helping consolidate the transitions of the Arab Spring. But first they need to rethink their approach and develop a new foreign policy for the Southern neighbourhood: Enlargement lite will not work.  

Europe’s multipolar neighbourhood

The upheavels in North Africa are further evidence that the EU's neighbourhood has fundamentally changed, both to the south and to the east. In response, the EU needs to develop a real foreign policy to deal with this increasingly competitive region.  

Ten reasons for a European ‘yes’

There are 10 good reasons for Europeans to support enhanced UN status for the Palestinians. There is also an eleventh reason: the 27 EU nations can show that they count on the world stage if they are able to stick together.  

Why the EU should abstain on the Palestinian issue in the UNGA

Europeans have much to gain from unity during any vote at the United Nations supporting Palestinian statehood. However the best response to a complex situation is to abstain. A response to ECFR's recent memo in favour of a 'yes' vote.  

Who is the next Egyptian pharaoh?

Egypt's transition towards democracy is a delicate work in progress. The identity of the new leader – the new 'pharaoh' – of a third of all Arabs will be crucial if the transition is to be a successful one.  

Germany’s contribution to the Arab Spring: arms sales

Berlin's failure to support intervention in Libya but willingness to arm Saudi Arabia shows the central contradiction in a foreign policy that is increasingly driven by the needs of a geoeconomic power's export industry.  

Without military reform Egypt cannot democratise

Egypt will struggle to progress towards democracy unless some form of military reform takes place. The first challenge is to make sure that any moves towards reform are palatable to the entrenched interests of Military Inc.  

In search of a ‘new Egypt’

After the euphoria of toppling Hosni Mubarak several months ago, little has been seen of the reforms demanded by protestors in Egypt. Democratisation is a long and complex process, but it is important that the rule of law and broad political participation are given prominence.  

The EU and Libya: Missing in action in Misrata

The European Union needs to learn the lessons from the past as it wrestles with using military support to underpin its humanitarian assistance in Libya. This will allow it to develop more credible intervention forces for future crisis – ones that might actually work.  

South Sudan & Palestine could heat up the UN’s summer

The reputation of the UN and Ban Ki-moon may hinge upon the outcome in two of the world's trouble spots – South Sudan and Palestine. South Sudan in particular remains a crucial test of the institution's ability to handle weak states.