march, 2017

18mar(mar 18)10:0019(mar 19)18:30Towards A New Security Architecture For The MENA Region

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Event Description

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The collapse of regional order has made the security failures of the Sharq region ever more apparent. State failures, violent extremism, the emergence of militia groups as prevalent regional forces, chemical warfare, and the arms race are among the security problems, which call for the development of a new security architecture for the MENA region.

The phenomenon of the failed state as witnessed in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Libya triggered the rise of violent extremism and militia forces as new security apparatuses in the region. The legitimacy concerns surrounding non-state actors, given their prevalent terrorist actions across the region, make determining legitimate actors of the new security architecture even harder. The long-standing crises the region has been suffering seem to have created support for autocratic regimes and whether the foreign powers favored these regimes is an issue that should be discussed. In efforts to map the road ahead for establishing the new security architecture, the role of international powers is of paramount importance especially in the issue of implementing economic and political cooperation. Additionally, the regional leadership is needed in consolidating counter-terrorism efforts without resorting to proxies to end sectarian divisions in framing this new structure.

The region witnessed change in the nature of security apparatuses and the nature of conflicts. Energy resources, nuclear efforts, technological developments, and even social media became sources of conflict, let alone the emergence of new characteristics in warfare and type of militarization. In order to determine a well-functioning new security architecture, understanding the nature of conflicts is a must. Yet, amid this surge of conflict, the issue of human rights and its importance in the new security architecture should not be overlooked. Peoples of the region have deeply suffered from the use of chemical weapons, asymmetrical force and continue to be exposed to surveillance that overrides the right to privacy. To find solutions to breach of rights, the integration of human rights into this structure through international and regional conventions should be debated. The new security architecture also needs to lay grounds for law enforcement in complying with human rights and citizenship rights in the region. The role of regional and international multilateral organizations is another point of debate. The new structure needs to assess the role that global institutions such as the UN, UN related bodies, NATO, OSCE and regional institutions including the Arab League, the OIC and the GCC should play in the region.

This conference organized by the Al Sharq Forum and Afro Middle East Center (AMEC) partnership will bring together experts, policymakers, and current and former officials, as well as representatives of international agencies, to share new perspectives and provide new insights on the aforementioned security issues in order to suggest frameworks for a new security architecture in the MENA region

Time

18 (Saturday) 10:00 - 19 (Sunday) 18:30

Location

Hilton Istanbul Bosphorus

Harbiye Mahallesi, Cumhuriyet Cd. No:50, 34367 Şişli/İstanbul

Schedule

    • Day 1
    • Day 2
    • 18 March 2017
    • 10:00 SPECIAL INVITATIONS ONLY, CHATHAM HOUSE RULES APPLY10:00 - 12:30Round Table 1: The Role of Regional Powers, Institutions and Actors in the New Security Architecture for the MENA A) Defining the Context: The New Security Architecture B) Regional Powers and Actors C) Non-State Armed Groups & Proxy Wars D) The Arms Race and Defense Industries E) The Changing Nature of Conflict in the New Security Structure F) Regional Institutions G) Regional Security Forum -------------------------- Chair: Galip Dalay, Research Director, Al Sharq Forum Rapporteur: Omer Aslan, Associate Fellow at Al Sharq Forum

    • 19 March 2017
    • 09:30 Opening Cermony09:30 - 10:00Opening CermonySpeakers: Galip Dalay, Na’eem Jeenah

    • 10:00 Plenary 1 – Session 1 The collapsing regional order and the need for a new security architecture for the MENA region10:00 - 11:45■ The failed state phenomenon, terrorism and the emergence of militia forces as the new security and military apparatus in the region ■ Dictatorship vs. democracy: Are the long-standing crises in the region creating the backing for autocratic regimes? ■ The role of foreign interventions and foreign involvement in the collapsing security order in the region: direct military operations and indirect involvement (e.g. political, financial and military aid) ■ What is the role of military alliances and aid in fueling current military conflicts and security dilemmas in the region? ■ What should be the pillars of the new security architecture?: Economic, military and/or political cooperation?Speakers: Galip Dalay, Paolo Magri, Seyed Kazem Sajjadpour, Wadah Khanfar, Richard Atwood, Falah Mustafa Bakir, Taha Ozhan

    • 12:00 Parallel Session 1 Determining the actors of the new security architecture12:00 - 13:30■ Who are the legitimate state actors?: Questions of the legitimate use of force and state terrorism in defining actors within the new security architecture ■ Defining legitimate non-state actors: a) The problems associated with the legalization of non-state militia groups b) The unlawful characteristics of militias as barriers for legitimization: terrorist acts committed by militia groups across the region c) What should be the balance between the integration and elimination of militia groups vis a vis the new security architecture? ■ Defining stateless actors: long-term stateless actors as governing bodies.Speakers: Ranj Alaaldin, Resul Serdar Atas, Walter Posch, Mohammad Marandi, Ammar Kahf, Haldun Yalçınkaya

    • 12:00 Parallel Session 2 The role of regional and international multilateral organizations in the new security architecture12:00 - 13:30■ What can the Arab League, the OIC, the Maghreb Union, the GCC and the African Union offer to new security architecture in the region? ■ What can the UN and other related bodies offer to new security architecture? ■ Can NATO, OSCE or the EU provide frameworks for the new architecture? ■ Can multilateral organizations help prevent the use of armed groups as proxy war and foreign policy tools in the region?Speakers: David Hearst, John Bell, Yury Barmin, Soli Özel, Patrick Milton, Mohammed Dangor

    • 15:00 Parallel Session 3 The changing nature of conflicts in the region15:00 - 16:30■ What are the changing characteristics of war and militarization in the region: - The impact of the demand for a particular type of military equipment and training due to the increasing threat of civil wars, coups and internal conflicts - Porous borders and cross-border military entities - Energy resources as war targets and sources of war funding ■ Nuclear military capacity in the region: how to ensure nuclear non-proliferation within the new security architecture ■ How illicit arms trade interests in the region affect current crises and how to bring rules and standards to the arms trade in the region ■ The role of social media in recruitment for terrorism and disseminating the fear of terrorism ■ The impact of the use of unmanned devices (drones, UAVs, etc.) in the regionSpeakers: Ezzeddine Abdelmoula, Fatma Ceren Yazgan, Omar Ashour, Saban Kardas, Adnan Tabatabai

    • 15:00 Parallel Session 4 Human rights and the new security architecture15:00 - 16:30■ The tragedy of chemical warfare: preventing the use of chemical weapons in regional conflicts ■ How can we integrate human rights into the new security structure?: (The role of international conventions and the need for drafting regional conventions) ■ What can be the mechanisms to enforce human rights in the new security architecture? ■ How to determine the moral and ethical pillars of the new security architecture in the region? ■ Where is the line between lawful surveillance and the invasion of the right to privacy?Speakers: Amr Darrag, Fuat Keyman, Monica Marks, Sami Atroushi, Zeynep Coskun, Yılmaz Ensaroğlu, Yasser Tabbara

    • 16:45 Final Session – Plenary Session 2 Mapping the new security architecture: the road ahead16:45 - 18:30■ Which states, actors and organizations should/could be at the nucleus of the new architecture? ■ How essential are economic and political cooperation as complementary efforts towards the new security architecture? ■ What role can international powers take in the new architecture? ■ What are the ways to end the sectarian divide under this new security framework? ■ How can we prevent the use of non-state actors as proxy war and foreign policy tools? ■ How can we create effective counter-terrorism efforts within the new security architecture?: Consolidating counter-terrorism efforts under regional leadership Speakers: Na’eem Jeenah, Kayhan Barzegar, Said Ferjani, Vasily Kuznetsov, Nihat Ali Özcan, Tarik M. Yousef

Speakers for this event

  • Wadah Khanfar

    Wadah Khanfar

    President of The Al Sharq Forum

    Wadah Khanfar is the President of the Al Sharq Forum and former Director General of the Al Jazeera Network. He is a board member of the International Crisis Group and Global Editors Network (GEN). Khanfar has been named as one of Foreign Policy’s Top 100 global thinkers of 2011 as well as one of Fast Company’s ‘Most Creative People in Business’ of the year.

    President of The Al Sharq Forum

  • Paolo Magri

    Paolo Magri

    Executive Vice President and Director, Italian Institute for International Political Studies

    Executive Vice President and Director, I...

  • Ranj Alaaldin

    Ranj Alaaldin

    Visiting Fellow, Brookings Institute, Doha

    Visiting Fellow, Brookings Institute, Do...

  • Hemin Hawrami

    Hemin Hawrami

    Member, Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and Head of KDP Foreign Relations Office

    Member, Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP)...

  • Seyed Kazem Sajjadpour

    Seyed Kazem Sajjadpour

    Head, Center for International Research and Education Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Iran

    Head, Center for International Research ...

  • Galip Dalay

    Galip Dalay

    Senior Associate Fellow at Al Sharq Strategic Research

    Research director at Al Sharq Forum and senior associate fellow on Turkey and Kurdish Affairs at Al Jazeera Center for Studies. He previously worked as a visiting fellow at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) in Berlin and as a political researcher at SETA Foundation in Ankara. He is a regular contributor to German Marshall Fund of the United States’ on Turkey policy brief series, and a columnist for Middle East Eye.

    Senior Associate Fellow at Al Sharq Stra...

  • Basheer Nafi

    Basheer Nafi

    Senior Associate Fellow at Al Sharq Strategic Research

    Senior Associate Fellow at Al Sharq Forum and Senior Research Fellow at Al Jazeera Centre for Studies. He writes weekly columns for Middle East eye. His research interests include Egypt, Iraq, Political Islam, and Middle Eastern Politics in general.

    Senior Associate Fellow at Al Sharq Stra...

  • Ali Osman Ozturk

    Ali Osman Ozturk

    Public Diplomacy Coordinator & Chief Advisor to the Turkish Prime Minister

    Ali Osman Öztürk is the Public Diplomacy Coordinator & Chief Advisor to the Turkish Prime Minister. Ali Osman Öztürk received his BA and MA at Istanbul University. He earned his Ph.D. in Public Administration at North Carolina State University (2005). Dr. Öztürk started his administrative career in 2007 serving as the director of Leadership in the Public Sector (LPS) B.A. program, and his academic career as a faculty member at School of Public and International Affairs, North Caroline State University. After moving back to Turkey, he first joined Istanbul Commerce University serving as the director of leadership and entrepreneurship research and application center by mid-2014. Since then, he has been a faculty member in Political Science and Public Administration Department at Istanbul Medipol University. His research has appeared in Social Science Computer Review, Public Administration and Development, Journal of Political Science Education, and Journal of Business Ethics. His research interests include new public management, leadership and entrepreneurship in the public sector, public sector ethics and public sector organizational culture. Dr.Öztürk has been working with Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Prof. Numan Kurtulmuş as a senior advisor since late 2014, and serving as the public diplomacy coordinator of Turkish Prime Ministry since April, 2016.

    Public Diplomacy Coordinator & Chief Adv...

  • Amr Darrag

    Amr Darrag

    Executive Board of the Egyptian Freedom and Justice Party (FJP)

    Amr Darrag is a member of the Executive Board of the Egyptian Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) currently operating out of Istanbul, Turkey. He is a founding member of the FJP on whose platform Mohammed Morsi ran for presidency. Darrag served as Egypt’s former Minister of Planning and International Cooperation during the last two months of Mohammed Morsi’s presidency before the military coup.He was elected as Secretary General of the Assembly drafting the 2012 Egyptian Constitution. He used to be a Civil Engineering Professor at Cairo University and he got his Ph.D. from Purdue University, USA 1987. He established and is currently chairing the prominent think tank “The Egyptian Institute for Political and Strategic Studies” based in Istanbul.

    Executive Board of the Egyptian Freedom ...

  • David Hearst

    David Hearst

    Editor-in-Chief of the Middle East Eye

    David Hearst is the Editor-in-Chief of the Middle East Eye, an independent website based in London covering the Middle East in English and French. He writes a column for the Huffington Post’s “The World Post” section and appears as a commentator on the Middle East for Al Jazeera Arabic, Al Jazeera English, TRT, Alaraby TV, Russia Today, Masr Al-Aan TV. Prior to that, he was Chief Foreign Leader writer of The Guardian, Associate Foreign Editor, and Moscow Bureau Chief, European Correspondent, and Northern Ireland correspondent.

    Editor-in-Chief of the Middle East Eye

  • Dorothee Schmid

    Dorothee Schmid

    Expert on Mediterranean and Middle East issues

    Dorothee Schmid is an expert on Mediterranean and Middle East issues. Schmid joined IFRI (The French Institute for International Relations) in 2002 in Paris. She has produced extensive analysis on EU and French policies in the region, induced democratization, the political economy and regional balance of powers. She established the Contemporary Turkey Program in 2008 in order to follow in real time the rise of Turkish foreign policy and the transformations of the Turkish regime. The present agenda of IFRI’s Middle East and Turkey department includes the dynamics of political transitions in the post-Arab spring period, the future of the rentier-state culture, rising conflicts, territorial reorganizations and the new competition for influence among powers. Before focusing on academic research, Dorothée Schmid worked as a country-risk analyst for Bank Crédit agricole-Indosuez and as a Euromed attaché for Cités Unies France, a federation of French local authorities. She has carried out various consulting missions for public institutions (the European Commission, French Ministry of Economy, French Ministry of Foreign Affairs), NGOs and private companies. She authored many articles and reports about Turkey and the Middle East and regularly appears in the French and international media.

    Expert on Mediterranean and Middle East ...

  • Fatma Ceren Yazgan

    Fatma Ceren Yazgan

    Deputy Director General for Security and Intelligence at the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs

    Deputy Director General for Security and Intelligence at the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs

    Deputy Director General for Security and...

  • Fuat Keyman

    Fuat Keyman

    Director of Istanbul Policy Center and a Professor of International Relations at Sabancı University

    Fuat Keyman is the Director of Istanbul Policy Center and a Professor of International Relations at Sabancı University. Keyman is a leading Turkish political scientist and an expert on democratization, globalization, international relations, Turkey – EU relations, Turkish foreign policy, and civil society development. He is a member of the Science Academy. He has worked as a member on the Council of Wise People as part of the Peace Process to the Kurdish issue. He also serves on advisory and editorial boards for a number of respected international and national organizations as well as for academic journals.

    Director of Istanbul Policy Center and a...

  • Gunter Seufert

    Gunter Seufert

    Senior Researcher at the German Institute for International Security Affairs in Berlin

    Gunter Seufert is a senior researcher at the German Institute for International Security Affairs in Berlin. He has focused on political developments in Turkey and the Cyprus dispute. He served as a correspondent for newspapers during 2001-2004 and between 2007-2010 in Istanbul, German, Switzerland and Austria. He was a visiting lecturer at the University of Cyprus in Nicosia. In Turkey, he has taught Middle East Studies department between 2004-2007. He worked as a researcher and director of the German Oriental Society Institute which is Located in central Beirut between the years 1996-2001. Seufert has sociology doctorate at the University of Lausanne and has worked as a postdoctoral researcher.

    Senior Researcher at the German Institut...

  • Ihtisham Hibatullah

    Ihtisham Hibatullah

    International relations manager at Al Jazeera Media Network

    Ihtisham Hibatullah is the international relations manager at Al Jazeera Media Network, and board member of the Al Sharq Forum. Prior to this role, he has held various positions within the Al Jazeera including as head of international relations and project manager for marketing and communications. He continues to attend and contribute to international forums and seminars on issues related Middle East and wider region.

    International relations manager at Al Ja...

  • MESUT ÖZCAN

    MESUT ÖZCAN

    Director of Diplomacy Academy of MFA

    Mesut Ozcan is currently the Director of Diplomacy Academy of MFA. He serves on the editorial boards of Insight Turkey, Divan and Perceptions journals. He previously lectured at Istanbul Ticaret University’s Department of International Relations and continues to teach at Istanbul Sehir University. Ozcan is the author of three books: Sorunlu Miras Irak (Istanbul: Küre, 2003), Harmonizing Foreign Policy: Turkey, the EU and the Middle East (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2008), and Medeniyetler ve Dünya Düzen(ler)i, Mesut Özcan and Muzaffer Şenel (ed), (Istanbul: Klasik, 2010).

    Director of Diplomacy Academy of MFA

  • Monica Marks

    Monica Marks

    Visiting Fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations

    Monica Marks is a Visiting Fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations and a Rhodes Scholar at St Antony’s College, Oxford, where she is completing her Ph.D. A leading analyst on Islamist politics in Tunisia. Her work has appeared in peer-reviewed academic publications, think tanks including the Brookings Institute and Carnegie Endowment, and more popularly oriented publications including the New York Times, Washington Post, Guardian, and Foreign Policy. Her research is currently supported by the IREMAM institute in Aix-en-Provence, France, where she is a Research Fellow. She is currently based in Istanbul and Tunisia, researching Islamist movements and MENA regional politics in Arabic, French, and Turkish.

    Visiting Fellow at the European Council ...

  • Na’eem Jeenah

    Na’eem Jeenah

    Executive Director of the Afro-Middle East Centre

    Na’eem Jeenah is the Executive Director of the Afro-Middle East Centre, a research institute based in Johannesburg, South Africa, that focuses on the Middle East and Africa. Na’eem taught political science at the University of the Witwatersrand. His recent publications include: Pretending democracy: Israel, an ethnocratic state (2012) and (co-edited) The PLO: Critical appraisals from the inside (2014). He also coauthored (with Shamima Shaikh) Journey of discovery: A South African Hajj (2002). Na’eem is sought-after as a commentator on a range of issues regarding the Middle East and North Africa, Political Islam, Islam and Muslims in South Africa.

    Executive Director of the Afro-Middle Ea...

  • Omar Ashour

    Omar Ashour

    Senior Lecturer in Security Studies at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies of University of Exeter

    Omar Ashour is a Senior Lecturer in Security Studies at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies of University of Exeter and an Associate Fellow at Chatham House in London. He is currently working on a book analysing the military tactics and strategies of IS in Iraq, Syria, Libya and Egypt. He specializes in asymmetric armed conflict, Islamist movements, insurgency/counterinsurgency, terrorism studies, and democratization. He is a regular contributor to media outlets including the BBC, Al-Jazeera, Sky News, CNN, al-Arabiya and others and his op-eds are frequently published in many media outlets in seven languages, in over 40 countries. He previously served as a senior consultant for the United Nations on security sector reform, counter-terrorism, and de- radicalization issues. He is the author of The DeRadicalization of Jihadists: Transforming Armed Islamist Movements.

    Senior Lecturer in Security Studies at t...

  • Omer Aslan

    Omer Aslan

    Associate Fellow at Al Sharq Strategic Research

    Omer Aslan is an Associate Fellow at Al Sharq Forum, and a researcher at the Institute for Security Sciences at the Turkish National Police Academy (TNPA). He previously worked at the political research department of the Ankara-based SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research. He received his B.A. degree in political science from Bilkent University. After finishing MSc in International Relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science, he entered the Ph.D. program in political science at Bilkent University in 2010. Ömer is now a Ph.D. candidate at the same university, currently working on his dissertation in the field of civil-military relations. Among his publications are “A Turkish Muslim Between Islamism and Turkish Nationalism: Seyyid Ahmet Arvasi (1932–88)”, and “‘Unarmed’ we Intervene, Unnoticed we Remain: The Deviant Case of ‘February 28th Coup’ in Turkey “. Research Interests: Military and Politics in the Muslim World, External Actors and Military Coup d’états, Police and Politics.

    Associate Fellow at Al Sharq Strategic R...

  • Resul Serdar Atas

    Resul Serdar Atas

    Director of Programmes and Managing Editor at TRT World

    Resul Serdar Ataş is the Director of Programmes and Managing Editor at TRT World. He is a member of the Euronews Editorial Board on behalf of TRT Network, which is the fourth biggest shareholder of Euronews. He has worked for Al Jazeera Network for about five years, where he served as planning producer, senior producer and the head of the Middle East Desk. He is also presenting a weekly show on Tvnet covering regional affairs.

    Director of Programmes and Managing Edit...

  • Thembisa Fakude

    Thembisa Fakude

    Head of Research Relations at Al Jazeera Centre for Studies in Doha

    Thembisa Fakude is the Head of Research Relations at Al Jazeera Centre for Studies in Doha. He holds a masters degree in politics from the university of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa. He is the former Bureau Chief of Al Jazeera Media Network in Southern Africa and the former Chairperson of the Foreign Correspondents Association of Southern Africa. He is also a regular contributor in the Peninsula Newspaper, a leading English daily newspaper in the state of Qatar.

    Head of Research Relations at Al Jazeera...

  • Mohamed Okda

    Mohamed Okda

    Political Consultant, focused on the Middle East and Political Islam

    Mohamed Okda is a Political Consultant, focused on the Middle East and Political Islam; active in the issues of interfaith, crisis mediation and assessment, the economics of conflict and religious–secular dialogue. He is also the founder of Insight into Crisis, a conflict advisory.

    Political Consultant, focused on the Mid...

  • Walter Posch

    Walter Posch

    Senior Research Fellow at the National Defence Academy in Vienna

    Dr. Walter Posch is a Senior Research Fellow at the National Defence Academy in Vienna, Dr. Posch holds a PHD in Iranian Studies and a MA in Turkish studies, he focusses on modern Iran, modern Turkey and the Kurdish issue. Previously, he was posted at the European institute of Security Studies EUISS in Paris and at the German Institute for Foreign and Strategic Affairs SWP in Berlin.

    Senior Research Fellow at the National D...

  • Zeynep Coskun

    Zeynep Coskun

    Former Research Fellow at Al Sharq Strategic Research

    Zeynep Coskun is a Research Fellow at Al Sharq Forum. Prior to joining Al Sharq, she was a Dr. Herchel Smith Fellow at the University of Cambridge conducting Economic and Anthropological research concerning the MENA region. Zeynep has an MPhil in Social Anthropology from the University of Cambridge and a B.A. from Williams College in Economics and Arabic Studies. Her research interests include Turkish Foreign Policy, Regional Kurdish Politics, Iraq, Energy Politics and Nationalism

    Former Research Fellow at Al Sharq Strat...

  • Mohammad Affan

    Mohammad Affan

    Training Director at Al-Sharq Forum

    Mohammad Affan is the Training Director at Al-Sharq Forum. A medical doctor by training, Affan obtained his MA degree in Political Science from the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at the American University of Cairo (2015). He also holds three post-graduate diplomas: One in “Civil Society and Human Rights”, from the Faculty of Economics and Political Sciences at Cairo University (2010), another one in Political Research and Studies from the Institute of Arab Research and Studies at the Arab League (2012), and the third diploma in Islamic Studies from the Higher Institute for Islamic Studies in Cairo (2012). Among his publications is his book titled: “Wahhabism and the Brotherhood: the conflict on the concept of the state and the legitimacy of power.” Affan is currently pursuing his PhD in the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies at the Exeter Univesity in the UK. His research interests include, Islamism, State-Theory, and Comparative MENA Studies.

    Training Director at Al-Sharq Forum

  • Saban Kardas

    Saban Kardas

    TOBB University of Economics and Technology, Ankara

    Saban Kardas is the President of ORSAM and a faculty member at the Department of International Relations at TOBB University. He has published scholarly articles and book chapters on Turkish domestic and foreign policies, human rights, energy policies and international security and has been an occasional contributor to Turkish and international media. He has taught classes at Diplomacy Academy, Sakarya University, Police Academy and Turkish Military Academy. He received his doctoral degree in political science from the University of Utah. Dr. Kardas also holds a master’s degree in international relations from the METU in Ankara, and a second master’s degree in European Studies from the Center for European Integration Studies in Bonn, Germany.

    TOBB University of Economics and Technol...

  • Richard Atwood

    Richard Atwood

    Director for the New York based International Crisis Group

    Richard Atwood is the director for the New York based International Crisis Group, a non-governmental conflict prevention organisation. He advises Crisis Group’s president on policy in Africa and the Middle East; represents the organisation at the United Nations; and leads its cross-cutting work on al-Qaida and ISIS. Before Crisis Group, he worked across the Middle East, Africa and South Asia for about fifteen years under different local and international organizations

    Director for the New York based Internat...

  • Frederic Wehrey

    Frederic Wehrey

    Senior fellow in the Middle East Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

    Frederic Wehrey is a senior fellow in the Middle East Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. He specializes in security affairs, civil-military relations, and identity politics, with a focus on North Africa and the Gulf. He holds a doctorate in International Relations from Oxford University. He studied Arabic at Cairo University, the University of Jordan, and the Yemen Language Center in Sana’a

    Senior fellow in the Middle East Program...

  • Falah Mustafa Bakir

    Falah Mustafa Bakir

    Head of the Department of Foreign Relations for the Kurdistan Regional Government

    Falah Mustafa Bakir is the Head of the Department of Foreign Relations for the Kurdistan Regional Government. Minister Falah Mustafa Bakir was appointed as the first Head of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Department of Foreign Relations in September 2006, tasked with administering KRG foreign policy and bolstering the Region’s relations with the international community for the government’s fifth cabinet. He is also representing KRG at multinational forums

    Head of the Department of Foreign Relati...

  • John Bell

    John Bell

    Director of the Middle East & Mediterran Programme at the Toledo International Centre for Peace

    John Bell is the Director of the Middle East & Mediterranean Programme at the Toledo International Centre for Peace, and the Director of The Conciliators Guild, an organization dedicated to new foundations for policy development and excellence in diplomacy. He was formerly Middle East Director in Jerusalem for Search for Common Ground. He was also an advisor to the Canadian Government during the Iraq crisis

    Director of the Middle East & Mediterran...

  • Taha Ozhan

    Taha Ozhan

    Turkish Politician

    Taha Özhan, Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Commission, Grand National Assembly of the Republic of Turkey. Previously, He served as Chief Advisor to the Prime Minister of Turkey. Prior to this, He served as president of Ankara-headquarterd SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research

    Turkish Politician

  • Yacoob Abba-Omar

    Yacoob Abba-Omar

    Head of Strategy and Communications at the Banking Association of South Africa

    Yacoob Abba Omar is the Head of Strategy and Communications at the Banking Association of South Africa. He graduated with an M.Phil in South African Political Economy through the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University. He is currently completing his PhD on ‘Sovereignty and National Identity in South Africa’ through Wits University. From January 2013 to December 2016 he worked at the Mapungubwe Institute (MISTRA), a Johannesburg-based research institute

    Head of Strategy and Communications at t...

  • Sami Atroshi

    Sami Atroshi

    Researcher at University of Duhok, Center for Peace and Conflict Resolution Studies

    Sami Atroshi is a researcher at University of Duhok, Center for Peace and Conflict Resolution Studies, Former Member of Iraqi Parliament (2006-2010), founding member of (Kani) Organization for Coexisting in Duhok/Iraq, a member of the Steering Committee of Center for Peace and Human Security of American University of Kurdistan (AUDK). He is a PH.D student in peace studies in Sudan University of Science and Technology

    Researcher at University of Duhok, Cente...

  • Ibrahim Turhan

    Ibrahim Turhan

    Member of Turkish Parliament

    Ibrahim Turhan is a member of Turkish Parliament. He previously served as the Chairman and CEO of the İstanbul Stock Exchange, 2012 - 2015. Mr. Turhan was also a member of the Leaders' Circle as well as the Advisory Board of the Global Economic Symposium organized by the Kiel Institute for the World Economy. Prior to these roles, Mr. Turhan served in a number of capacities with the Central Bank of Turkey, including Deputy Governor post

    Member of Turkish Parliament

  • Mohammad Sarmini

    Mohammad Sarmini

    Director general of Jusoor for Studies Center

    Mohammad Sarmini is the director general of Jusoor for Studies Center is an independent institution specialized in publishing information, conducting studies and research concerned with political, social, economic, and legal affairs in the Middle East with a special focus on Syrian affairs.

    Director general of Jusoor for Studies C...

  • Sinan Hatahet

    Sinan Hatahet

    Senior Associate Fellow at Al Sharq Strategic Research

    Sinan Hatahet is currently a consultant working with a number of think tanks on Syria. His research is concentrated on governance and local councils, anti-radicalization, Islamism, the Kurdish National Movement, and the new regional order in the Middle East. He previously worked as the executive director of the Syrian National Coalition (SC) media office from its creation in late 2012 until September 2014.

    Senior Associate Fellow at Al Sharq Stra...

  • Usman Muhammad Bugaje

    Usman Muhammad Bugaje

    Usman Muhammad Bugaje, born in Nigeria, earned his PhD in intellectual History of West Africa, graduating in 1991 from Institute of African and Asian Studies, University of Khartoum . From 2007 to 2010 Usman Bugaje was the National Secretary of the Action Congress, one of the major opposition parties in the country. His research interests includes: epistemology and policy issues, especially on education, poverty and good governance

  • Yury Barmin

    Yury Barmin

    Consultant whose work focuses on issues Related to the Middle East

    Yury Barmin is a risk consultant whose work focuses on issues related to the Middle East and Russia’s positioning in the region. Mr Barmin holds an MPhil in International Relations from the University of Cambridge. He is an Expert at the Russian International Affairs Council covering the Middle East and North Africa, Moscow’s policy towards the region as well as the conflict in Syria

    Consultant whose work focuses on issues ...

  • Kayhan Barzegar

    Kayhan Barzegar

    Director of the Institute for Middle East Strategic Studies in Tehran

    Barzegar is the Director of the Institute for Middle East Strategic Studies in Tehran. He is also Associate Professor of International Relations and the Chair of the Department of Political Science and International Relations at the Science and Research Branch of the Islamic Azad University. Dr. Barzegar was a Research Fellow at Harvard University’s Belfer Center. Dr. Barzegar is Editor-in-Chief of Discourse: An Iranian English Quarterly

    Director of the Institute for Middle Eas...

  • Luca Bader

    Luca Bader

    Senior Advisor for International Affairs of the Prime Minister of Italy

    Luca Bader is Senior Advisor for International Affairs of the Prime Minister of Italy. 2014- 2016 Chief of Staff of the Foreign Minister of Italy. After finishing undergraduate and postgraduate studies in International Relations at the London School of Economics in 2000, Luca Bader moved to Rome to take up the position of Senior Research Fellow at the Italian Institute of International Affairs (IAI)z

    Senior Advisor for International Affairs...

  • Adam Bensaid

    Adam Bensaid

    Deputy Producer, TRT World

    Adam Atauallah Bensaid is a Researcher at SESRIC, Organization of Islamic Cooperation, where he conducts policy and strategy design for OIC member states in the fields of security sector reform, CVE, national security capacity building and deradicalization. He completed his Msc in Strategic and Defense Studies from the University of Malaya, Malaysia, and is currently completing an MA in International Relations and Contemporary War from King's College London

    Deputy Producer, TRT World

  • Mohammad Marandi

    Mohammad Marandi

    Professor of English Literature and Orientalism at the University of Tehran

    Mohammad Marandi, Professor of English Literature and Orientalism at the University of Tehran

    Professor of English Literature and Orie...

  • Bayar Dosky

    Bayar Dosky

    Assistant professor at the College of International Studies at the American University of Kurdistan

    Dr. Bayar is an assistant professor at the College of International Studies at the American University of Kurdistan (AUK) and has 14 years of expertise in supervising and teaching undergraduate and master degree students in various universities, he taught Turkey and Iran’s Politics, Politics of Kurds and Kurdistan, and international Issues. He obtained his PhD focusing on the Kurdish Question in American Policy toward Turkey 1991-1999 from Mosul University

    Assistant professor at the College of In...

  • Osama Farid

    Osama Farid

    Economic and political Advisor

    Osama Farid is an economic and political Advisor. He served as an advisor to President Morsi as the head of international relations

    Economic and political Advisor

  • Said Ferjani

    Said Ferjani

    Advisor to the Head of Ennahdha politburo

    Said Ferjani is currently the advisor to the Head of Ennahdha politburo, member of the policies formulation committee of the shura council, and a member of the shura council. He is also the former advisor to the Secretary of state justice after being exiled for 22 years and a victim of torture under Ben Ali’s rule

    Advisor to the Head of Ennahdha politbur...

  • Yavuz Güçtürk

    Yavuz Güçtürk

    Research assistant at Law and Human Rights Directorship, SETA Foundation

    Yavuz Güçtürk is a research assistant at Law and Human Rights Directorship, SETA. He is studying doctorate in Department of Political Science at Faculty of Political Science, Ankara University. Previously, he worked with various non-governmental organizations in the field of human rights as a reporter and expert. He graduated for both bachelor and master from ODTU (Middle East Technical University), Department of History

    Research assistant at Law and Human Righ...

  • Nurşin Güney

    Nurşin Güney

    Professor of international relations and head of International Relations Department at Yildiz University

    Nurşin Ateşoğlu Güney is professor of international relations and head of international relations department at Yıldız Technical University in Istanbul, Turkey. Prof. Güney is also vice president and security and nuclear energy fellow at the Wise Men Center for Strategic Studies (BILGESAM). She contributes to BİLGESAM every month by writing one analysis on security related matters. She has extensively published on Middle East, security studies, American foreign and security policies

    Professor of international relations and...

  • Leonid M. Issaev

    Leonid M. Issaev

    Member at the Scientific Council of the Russian Political Sciences Association (RPSA)

    Leonid M. Issaev is a member at the Scientific Council of the Russian Political Sciences Association (RPSA). He earned a PhD in 2014 from Institute for African Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences. He is a Senior Lecturer in the Department for Political Science of the National Research University Higher School of Economics. He has published more than 100 publications in Russian and English

    Member at the Scientific Council of the ...

  • M. Akif Kayapınar

    M. Akif Kayapınar

    Assistant professor in political science and International Relations at Istanbul Sehir University since 2009

    M. Akif Kayapınar is an assistant professor in political science and international relations at Istanbul Şehir University since 2009. He completed his PhD at SUNY Binghamton University. His research interests include comparative political theory, comparative politics, and theories of international relations. Recently he has focused on Islamic political thought, with special reference to Ibn Khaldun

    Assistant professor in political science...

  • Gilbert M. Khadiagala

    Gilbert M. Khadiagala

    Head of Department of International Relations at the University of Witwatersrand

    Gilbert M. Khadiagala is the Jan Smuts Professor of International Relations and Head of Department of International Relations at the University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. He previously taught comparative politics and international relations in Kenya, Canada, and the United States. Prof. Khadiagala holds a doctorate in international studies from the Johns Hopkins University, Washington, D.C. . His research focuses on governance, leadership, conflict management

    Head of Department of International Rel...

  • Vasily Kuznetsov

    Vasily Kuznetsov

    Head of the Center for Arab and Islamic Studies

    Vasily Kuznetsov is the head of the Center for Arab and Islamic Studies, Institute of Oriental Studies under the Russian Academy of Sciences, and the Head of the Centre for Political Systems and Cultures, Faculty of World Politics, Moscow State University. He tries to combine researches in the field of classical Arabic studies to analysis of the current political process in the Arab World

    Head of the Center for Arab and Islamic ...

  • Ammar Kahf

    Ammar Kahf

    Co-Founder and Executive Director of OMRAN Center for Studies

    Ammar Kahf is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Omran for Strategic Studies, and a Board Member of the Syrian Forum. He earned his Ph.D at the Interdisciplinary Program for Islamic Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles with a subfield focus on political science, history and sociology. His dissertation research was entitled "Syrian Authoritarianism: Persistence or Change?" His research work focuses on geopolitical political studies, transitional period comparative studies, local governance, and economic development

    Co-Founder and Executive Director of OMR...

  • Jamal Abdullah

    Jamal Abdullah

    Senior Researcher at TRT World

    Jamal Abdullah is currently an Academic Visitor at the Middle East Centre, Saint Antony’s College, University of Oxford in the UK. Before joining the University of Oxford in October 2016, he worked for five years (from May 2011 to May 2016) as Researcher and Head of Gulf Studies Unit at Al Jazeera Centre for Studies, part of Al Jazeera Media Network in Doha, Qatar

    Senior Researcher at TRT World

  • Ahmet Okumuş

    Ahmet Okumuş

    Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Relations at Istanbul Sehir University

    Ahmet Okumuş is an Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Relations, Istanbul Sehir University. Dr. Okumus received his PhD in political science from Sabanci University. Dr. Okumus is also currently the president of Bilim ve Sanat Vakfi (Foundation for Sciences and Arts). His research interests include contemporary political theory, democratic politics, religion, politics and secularism, theories of modernity and comparative political theory

    Assistant Professor of Political Science...

  • Nihat Ali Özcan

    Nihat Ali Özcan

    Nihat Ali Özcan, completed his undergraduate studies in the Turkish Military Academy and in Istanbul University Law Faculty. He received his MA and Ph.D from Dokuz Eylul University in İzmir. His doctorate thesis is on the “PKK, (Kurdistan Workers’ Party), it’s history, ideology and methods”. It was published as a book in 1999. He completed his post-doctoral studies in Oxford University Faculty of History

  • Soli Özel

    Soli Özel

    Professor of International Relations at Kadir Has University

    Soli Özel is a professor of International Relations at Kadir Has University in Istanbul and a columnist at Habertürk daily newspaper. He worked as a guest lecturer at Georgetown, Harvard, Tufts and other US universities and has taught at UC Santa Cruz, SAIS, the University of Washington and the Hebrew University. He is also a member of the European Council on Foreign Relations

    Professor of International Relations at ...

  • Saadet Oruc

    Saadet Oruc

    Saadet Oruc started her journalistic career in Ankara as a diplomatic correspondent in 1995. From 2002 up until 2013 she was based in France. She worked for different news organizations until late 2015. On November 2015, she was appointed as the Chief Advisor to the President of the Turkish Republic by President Erdogan. She writes for the daily Star newspaper and the Daily Sabah(English), and hosts a daily radio program at TRT Radyo Haber

  • Garth le Pere

    Garth le Pere

    Professor of International Relations at the University of Pretoria

    Garth le Pere is a Professor of International Relations at the University of Pretoria and a Senior Associate of the Mapungubwe Institute for Strategic Reflection based in Johannesburg. Having served for 12 years, he is also the founding Executive Director of the Institute for Global Dialogue. His areas of interest and publications include international relations theory, multilateral trade and emerging markets

    Professor of International Relations at ...

  • Ferhat Pirincci

    Ferhat Pirincci

    Faculty member in the Department of International Relations

    Ferhat Pirincci is a faculty member in the Department of International Relations and the Vice Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences at Uludağ University. He has worked as an Advisor at the Center for Middle Eastern Strategic Studies (ORSAM) based in Ankara

    Faculty member in the Department of Inte...

  • Patrick Milton

    Patrick Milton

    Postdoctoral Fellow at Freie Universität Berlin

    Patrick Milton is currently employed as a Postdoctoral Fellow at Freie Universität Berlin. He received his PhD from the University of Cambridge in 2013 under the supervision of Prof. Brendan Simms. He won the 2013 annual joint essay prize of the German History Society and the Royal Historical Society. He has since worked on a collaborative project at the University of Cambridge

    Postdoctoral Fellow at Freie Universitä...

  • Samuel Plumbly

    Samuel Plumbly

    Political Officer with The Shaikh Group (TSG)

    Samuel Plumbly is a Political Officer with The Shaikh Group (TSG), focusing on its Syria Track II Dialogue Initiative, a project that aims to build consensus among key Syrian actors in support of a political process to end the conflict. Prior to joining TSG he worked with IOM in Lebanon and as a senior research assistant at the Brookings Institution’s Doha Center

    Political Officer with The Shaikh Group ...

  • Muhanad Seloom

    Muhanad Seloom

    Expert in ethno-sectarian conflicts.

    Muhanad Seloom is an expert in ethno-sectarian conflicts. He is a criminologist in training and a linguist [Arabic, English, and Kurdish]. His research focuses on ethno-sectarian conflicts in the Middle East, terrorism and mechanisms of securitization. In his PhD thesis at the University of Exeter, his hypothesis examined the relationship between designating violent groups “terrorist” and the choice to use violence in an ethnic conflict context

    Expert in ethno-sectarian conflicts.

  • Adnan Tabatabai

    Adnan Tabatabai

    Co-founder and CEO of the Germany-based Think-Tank (CARPO)

    Adnan Tabatabai is the co-founder and CEO of the Germany-based think tank CARPO - Center for Applied Research in Partnership with the Orient. As an expert on Iranian affairs, Tabatabai is consulted by institutions of the EU, German Federal Ministries, members of the Bundestag as well as by research institutions and political organizations on Iran-related issues. Tabatabai is author of the book “Morgen in Iran”.z

    Co-founder and CEO of the Germany-based ...

  • Özgür Ünlühisarcıklı

    Özgür Ünlühisarcıklı

    Director of GMF’s office in Ankara

    Özgür Ünlühisarcıklı is the director of GMF’s office in Ankara, Turkey. Prior to joining GMF, he was the manager of the Resource Development Department of the Educational Volunteers Foundation of Turkey. Previously, Ünlühisarcıklı worked as the director of the ARI Movement, a Turkish NGO promoting participatory democracy, and as a consultant at AB Consulting and Investment Services

    Director of GMF’s office in Ankara

  • Hakkı Uygur

    Hakkı Uygur

    Deputy Director of İRAM (Iranian Studies Center)

    Hakkı Uygur is the Deputy Director of İRAM (Iranian Studies Center). He was born in Berlin, Germany in 1975. After being graduated from high school in Istanbul, he went to Iran for higher education. He received his master’s degree from IKUI Tehran University in History of Islamic Culture and Civilization. He got his PhD program in Persian Language and Literature from Tehran University in 2015

    Deputy Director of İRAM (Iranian Studie...

  • Ahmet Uysal

    Ahmet Uysal

    Prof Ahmet Uysal was born in Sekarya, Turkey in 1972. He finished his undergraduate at METU in Sociology department at 1994. He then continued his masters in Political Science at Bilkent University in Ankara. Later on Dr. Uysal conducted research in the Department of Sociology at the Southern Illionis Univerisity in Carbondate Illionis at 1999. He finished his Ph.D. at the same institution in the department of Sociology in 2003

  • Victor Willi

    Victor Willi

    Advisor to the World Economic Forum’s Middle East Practice and the Academic

    Victor Willi is currently an Advisor to the World Economic Forum's Middle East practice and the Academic Director of two interdisciplinary Master programmes at the Graduate Institute in Geneva J. Willi holds a DPhil in History from the University of Oxford, and an MA in Arabic, Islamic Studies and Middle East History from University of Zurich. He is fluent in English, German, Arabic and French

    Advisor to the World Economic Forum’s ...

  • Mariya Petkova

    Mariya Petkova

    Bulgarian journalist

    Mariya Petkova is a Bulgarian journalist covering the Middle East, the Balkans and Eastern Europe. She is currently deputy editor at Al Jazeera English

    Bulgarian journalist

  • Tarik M. Yousef

    Tarik M. Yousef

    Director of Brooking Doha Center and Senior fellow

    Tarik M. Yousef is a Senior Fellow in the Global Economy and Development program and the Director of the Brookings Doha Center. His career has spanned the academic world at Georgetown University and the Harvard Kennedy School; the public policy arena at the IMF, the World Bank and more recently the NGO space at Silatech. He has a PhD in economics from Harvard University

    Director of Brooking Doha Center and Sen...

  • Murat Yetkin

    Murat Yetkin

    Murat Yetkin was born in 1959 in Gaziantep. He graduated from the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the Middle East Technical University. He worked as reporter and news editor in media outlets such as BBC World Service, Deutsche Welle, AFP, Turkish Daily News, Kanal D, NTV and Sabah. Since February 2001, he served as Ankara Correspondent of Radikal daily until the newspaper was closed in 2016. Currently, he is the editor-in-chief of Hürriyet Daily News

  • Mahlatse Mpya

    Mahlatse Mpya

    Mahlatse Mpya is the events and publications coordinator for the Afro-Middle East Centre, based in South Africa

  • Haldun Yalçınkaya

    Haldun Yalçınkaya

    Haldun Yalçınkaya graduated from Kuleli Military High School and later Turkish Military Academy. During his military service as an officer, he completed his post-graduate studies in International Relations at İstanbul University. After having served more than ten years at the Turkish Military Academy, as of 2013 he became an Associate Professor in International Relations at TOBB University of Economics and Technology

  • Arzu Yılmaz

    Arzu Yılmaz

    Chair of Department of International Relations at the American University of Kurdistan

    Dr Arzu Yılmaz is Chair of Department of International Relations at American University of Kurdistan based in Duhok, Kurdistan Region of Iraq. Dr. Arzu Yılmaz has obtained her PhD in International Relations from Ankara University in Turkey, where she wrote her dissertation on Kurdish refugees and the political identity of the refugee agent. Her research interests are : Kurdish Question, Middle East Politics, Migration/Refugee, Gender and Conflict Resolution

    Chair of Department of International Rel...

  • Yılmaz Ensaroğlu

    Yılmaz Ensaroğlu

    Chief Advisor to the Turkish Ministry of Justice

    Chief Advisor to the Turkish Prime Ministry. He previously served as the president of MAZLUMDER, and director of Law and Human Rights Department of SETA Foundation. He has authored many articles in various books, journals and newspapers on issues of human rights, civil society, democratization, security sector reform, civil-military relations, coup d’états, freedom of religion, secularism, Kurdish question, and hate crimes among others

    Chief Advisor to the Turkish Ministry of...

  • Yasser Tabbara

    Yasser Tabbara

    Senior Researcher at OMRAN

    Senior Researcher at OMRAN Center for Strategic Studies. Prior to that, he served as the spokesperson and legal advisor for the President of the Syrian Interim Government (SIG), the National Coalition of Syrian Revolution and Opposition Forces (SOC), and the Syrian National Council (SNC). He also served as Executive Director of the Syrian American Council (SAC), Syrian American Council

    Senior Researcher at OMRAN

  • Mohammed Dangor

    Mohammed Dangor

    Ambassador, Middle East and North Africa advisor to the South African Minister of International Relations and Cooperation

    As an ambassador Mohammed Dangor is the Middle East and North Africa advisor to the South African Minister of International Relations and Cooperation. He previously served South African ambassador to Syria and to Libya. Ambassador Dangor has a long history in the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa, and served in the underground movement of the African National Congress.

    Ambassador, Middle East and North Africa...

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