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  • Author: Clare Castillejo
  • Publication Date: 01-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Centre for Conflict Resolution
  • Abstract: China is expanding its engagement across South Asia, with significant implications for the region's most fragile states. Western donors and peacebuilding actors are aware of this changing context and concerned about their resulting loss of influence. Yet they have so far failed to develop a coordinated response or to engage effectively with China regarding its impact on fragility within the region.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Emerging Markets, International Political Economy, International Trade and Finance, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: China, South Asia, Israel, Asia
  • Author: Khalil Shikaki
  • Publication Date: 05-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Centre for Conflict Resolution
  • Abstract: With no agreement on a two-state solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in sight, one-state dynamics are gaining momentum – a development that will be difficult to reverse or even contain. In the medium and long term, no one benefits from such a development. Indeed, all might lose: an ugly one-state dynamic has no happy ending, and such a solution is rejected by Palestinians and Israelis alike. Instead, the emerging one-state reality increases the potential for various kinds of conflicts and contradictory impulses. The international community too finds itself unprepared and perhaps unwilling to confront this emerging reality, but in doing so it imperils the prospects for peace in the region – the exact thing it seeks to promote.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Treaties and Agreements, Territorial Disputes
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arabia
  • Author: Mariano Aguirre
  • Publication Date: 02-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Centre for Conflict Resolution
  • Abstract: The debate about the Iranian nuclear programme has heated up over recent months, with the danger that the situation could get out of control and violence may erupt. Currently, the main threatis an escalation of violence between Iran and the U.S. Strategically, an attack will further decrease U.S. legitimacy in a region already in turmoil and will isolate Israel even further. The consequencesof these processes are both serious and unpredictable.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Nuclear Weapons, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Sanctions
  • Political Geography: United States, Iran, Middle East, Israel
  • Author: Frans-Paul van der Putten
  • Publication Date: 12-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Centre for Conflict Resolution
  • Abstract: This paper provides a brief overview of current developments relevant to Sino-U.S. security relations, and to China's involvement in regional security issues, in East and South-East Asia. The most fundamental challenge with regard to regional stability is how the roles of China and the United States in the Asia Pacific can be reconciled. While the U.S. is concerned that a rising China will eventually push American influence out of East and South-East Asia, China in turn fears that the U.S. will try to retain its leadership role by exploiting and amplifying tensions between the Chinese and their neighbours. Currently the Sino-U.S. rivalry is threatening unity within ASEAN, which poses an immediate risk for regional stability. A substantial improvement in regional stability – whether in South-East or in East Asia – is unlikely unless the U.S. and China manage to stabilise their bilateral relationship. It is important for all interested parties, inside Asia but also outside (including in Europe), to contribute to a move away from a scenario in which regional stability continues to deteriorate, and in the direction of a scenario that involves a cooperative arrangement between China and the U.S. in a stable multilateral setting.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation, International Trade and Finance, Bilateral Relations, Hegemony
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Israel, East Asia, Australia/Pacific, Southeast Asia
  • Author: Trond Bakkevig
  • Publication Date: 02-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Centre for Conflict Resolution
  • Abstract: Many political conflicts have a religious dimension, as religion is at the heart of the identities of those involved. Thus, religious dialogue may be a key to the peaceful resolution of these conflicts. Nowhere is this more true than the Holy Land. But how can such a dialogue be initiated and sustained, what problems does it face, and what is the character and role of a facilitator in the process? Here, Rev. Dr. and Canon Trond Bakkevig addresses these questions by drawing on his long experience of working in the area of religious dialogue between religious leaders of Israel and Palestine.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Diplomacy, Religion, Treaties and Agreements
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Israel, Palestine
  • Author: Henry Siegman
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Centre for Conflict Resolution
  • Abstract: Failed bilateral talks over these past 16 years have shown that a Middle East peace accord can never be reached by the parties themselves. Israeli governments believe they can defy international condemnation of their illegal colonial project in the West Bank because they can count on the US to oppose international sanctions.
  • Topic: Peacekeeping
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Greece, Spain, Italy, Ireland
  • Author: Yossi Alpher
  • Publication Date: 12-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Centre for Conflict Resolution
  • Abstract: Israel's approach to Turkey and Iran must be understood against the backdrop of its “periphery doctrine” of forming alliances with non-Arab and non-Muslim regional actors and its search for a Middle Eastern identity. The “periphery strategy” it pursued in the 1950s led to alliances with, among others, Turkey and Iran, who were viewed as natural allies against the hostile and powerful Arab “centre” spearheaded by Nasserism. In Israel's eyes, “periphery” peoples also seemed to have broadly accepted the legitimacy of having a Jewish state in the heart of the Middle East.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Iran, Turkey, Middle East, Israel, Arabia
  • Author: Jean-Paul Marthoz
  • Publication Date: 12-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Centre for Conflict Resolution
  • Abstract: This paper is based on interviews with diplomats, experts and political analysts and provides an overview of Turkey's foreign policy, particularly in relation to peacebuilding. In the past year, Turkey has moved to the centre stage on the international scene. After making the headlines with its joint mediation initiative with Brazil on Iran's nuclear issue, in May Ankara clashed with Israel over the storming of the Gaza-bound “humanitarian flotilla”. Suddenly all eyes were on a country situated in this most turbulent and strategic region of the world – a country that had appeared at least until recently to be a reliable and predictable ally of the West, and of Israel. However, the country's actions and reactions should not have come as a surprise. Over the past ten years Turkey has been busy developing a very active foreign policy, particularly in the Middle East and Central Asia. It has reached out to countries traditionally considered as adversaries, such as Russia, Iran and Syria. Ankara has also not been afraid to express its differences and diverge from the West on certain issues, from Cyprus to Armenia to Palestine.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, Humanitarian Aid
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Israel, Asia, Palestine, Armenia, Syria, Cyprus