Research Unit

Briefs

  • Ayman Shabana | 25 Mar 2020

    The Peace Deal in South Sudan and Prospects of Implementation

    On 13 March 2020, Salva Kiir Mayardit, the President of South Sudan, issued a presidential decree to appoint members of the Transitional Government of National Unity in accordance with the terms of the peace deal. This development paved the way for the debate between those who see it as a real step towards the implementation of the peace deal and the restoration of security and stability and those who consider it a mere response to external pressures, an attempt to buy time, and the deferral of an imminent clash because of which the country could relapse into overall civil war.

  • Dr Kamal Hamdan | 18 Mar 2020

    The Worsening Public Debt Crisis in Lebanon and How to Resolve It

    The debt crisis in Lebanon has reached unprecedented levels, pushing the Government to announce the suspension of foreign debt payments in what has been described as an “historical precedent”. This paper examines the nature of the crisis and the challenges faced, as well as possible solutions.

  • EPC | 17 Mar 2020

    Struggle for International Highways in Syria: Calculations of Actors and Map of Control

    For the last two years, the war in Syria has focused on the country’s roads, leading some to coin the term the “Highway War”, referring to the M4 and M5 international highways that link the country east to west and north to south.

  • Amr Abdel-Aty | 16 Mar 2020

    Trump’s Attempts to Control American Intelligence Community: Motivations and Consequences

    In an attempt to control the US intelligence community, whose conclusions are routinely rejected by President Donald Trump regarding substantive issues for US national security, including Russian intervention in the 2016 presidential elections, and the potential thereof in this year’s elections, Richard Grenell, the pro-Trump US Ambassador to Germany, was appointed Acting Director of National Intelligence.

  • EPC | 15 Mar 2020

    Possible Consequences of Oil Price Decline on Iran’s Economy

    Oil prices dropped to record lows on March 9, 2020, which had a direct impact on national markets in the region, especially those of oil-producing nations. Although initial outlooks do not suggest that Iran will be greatly impacted by the drop in global oil prices, owing to the stability of its exports, kept at very low levels due to sanctions, and its apparent lack of dependence on oil revenues, the Iranian markets have nonetheless responded clearly to the price drop.

  • EPC | 15 Mar 2020

    The Resurgence of 'ISIS' in Syria: Is it Possible?

    Having seized control over Islamic State’s last strongholds in Al-Baghuz in the eastern Euphrates in March 2019, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the USA declared victory over Islamic State. Despite the US assassination of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, leader of Islamic State, in late October 2019, new warnings have been issued regarding the possible return of Islamic State to Syria, given the chaos and conflict on Syrian soil between various national, regional, and international forces.

  • EPC | 12 Mar 2020

    The Russian-Turkish Agreement to Ceasefire in Idlib: Problems and Possibilities

    Russia and Turkey have reached a new agreement on the situation in Syrian Idlib in Moscow on 5 March 2020. Yet the items of the Agreement declared at the end of the talks entailed a number of question marks on its fate and applicability, particularly that the Agreement was meant to supplement the Sochi Agreement, which was signed on 17 September 2018 and which the parties failed to implement. That failure was the direct reason for the outbreak of the recent round of conflict.

  • Ayman Shabana | 11 Mar 2020

    Sudan: Controversy Regarding Omar Al-Bashir’s Trial and Likely Scenarios

    Sudan has been caught in a deep controversy at the official and popular levels following the announcement that former President Omar al-Bashir and a number of his aides might be handed over to the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague. The debate between the opponents and proponents of the potential move focus on three main talking points: The extent to which the transitional authority’s intentions to hand over Al-Bashir were truthful; the feasibility of this step in ensuring the rule of law and justice; and its role in ensuring a peaceful transition towards building a new political order and bringing peace to the country.