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  • Author: Helle Malmvig
  • Publication Date: 08-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The Middle East regional security order is under rapid transformation. The Arab Uprisings and the Syrian War are changing not only the relationship between state and societies, but also some of the region's core norms and historical divisions. This report analyses key changes in regional security order the Middle East in the period after 2010. It identifies five key issues where regional order is changing: State-society relations Relations with the West and foreign policy posturing The impact of the Iran-Syria –Hezbollah Axis (the Resistance Front) and radical-moderate divide The Sunni-Shia rift and the rise of identity politics The Saudi-Qatar rivaling, and the role of the Muslim Brotherhood.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Civil War, Islam, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Arabia, Syria, Qatar
  • Author: Rune Friberg , Lyme
  • Publication Date: 10-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: Local demonstrations in the provincial town of Da'ra in March 2011 fuelled the eruption of unprecedented popular demonstrations and protests throughout Syria. The Syrian leadership's half-hearted promises of reforms were accompanied by brutal repression that propelled the conflict into escalating violence and ultimately a vicious and complex civil war. Dismayed by the unfolding events, a number of countries and regional organisations imposed sanctions on Syria with reference to the regime's grave human rights abuses from 29 April 2011 onwards. As the conflict has drawn out a substantial battery of international sanctions has been developed, most significantly by the USA, Turkey, the League of Arab States and the European Union. Aimed initially at bringing the repression to a halt and, later, to an increasing extent at weakening the Syrian regime, the sanctions have primarily targeted: equipment and material used for monitoring and repression; the Syrian oil and energy sector; the banking and financial sector; and there are also sanctions targeted at individuals believed either to be responsible for or assisting in the regime's oppression.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Infrastructure
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Arabia, Syria
  • Author: Pinar Bilgin, Eduard Soler i Lecha, Ali Bilgic
  • Publication Date: 08-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: This paper analyses the implications of European security practices vis-à-vis the Mediterranean in value terms as deduced from an analysis of 'facts on the ground' and local actors' perspectives (based on interviews conducted in Algeria, Egypt and Morocco). It is argued that European security practices have had adverse implications for various security referents in the South. While it is too soon to tell whether the so-called 'Arab Spring' has been delayed or brought on by such collaboration, our research shows how Euro-Mediterranean security collaboration has rendered more defenceless the already vulnerable individuals and societies in the South and how Southern Mediterranean states/regimes and societies have become further alienated from each other following such collabo-ration. The paper also highlights how the very practices adopted by European actors to secure the Union and its values may have rendered it less secure insofar as they have had consequences for the very meaning of what it means to be 'European'.
  • Topic: Security, Popular Revolt
  • Political Geography: Europe, Arabia, Algeria, Egypt, Morocco
  • Author: Dr. Ann M Fitz-Gerald, Christian Dennys
  • Publication Date: 11-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: This paper argues that the emergence of stabilisation as a concept out of peace-building, state- building and counter-insurgency theories has carried with it some of the key weaknesses of international intervention, in particular the idea that imposing western liberal systems on non- western societies will contribute towards stability. With reference to two case studies, the Wheat Seed project in Afghanistan and a gas cylinder distribution project in Iraq, the paper argues that stabilisation activities do not engage fully with the underlying premise that stabilisation must support and engender local political legitimacy, in part because of the conceptual baggage that stabilisation has adopted from other areas. The paper concludes by arguing that greater use should be made of the knowledge and histories of non-western state formation, characterized as being non- Weberian, as a counter to the overuse by interveners of the desire to support rational Weberian state structures in other countries.
  • Topic: Security, Development, Foreign Aid, Neoimperialism
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, Arabia