We are delighted to share with you the results of the December monthly survey and wish to thank the 22 experts who participated in it. The results include the experts' assessment of key trends in the Gulf, Jordan, Turkey, Egypt, and North Africa. It will be interesting to see how the trends play out over the next few weeks.
Read the report here:
Middle East Trends in December 2020
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On Security in the Gulf
"The prospect of a US strike against Iran and whether that leads to retaliation (either pre-emptive or subsequent) by Iran against targets in the Gulf states, as happened in 2019 with maritime and energy targets in Saudi Arabia and the UAE."
-Dr. Kristian Coates Ulrichsen, Fellow for the Middle East at Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy
On politics in Turkey
"The most important domestic policy topic in Turkey – it's the possibility of imposing EU and US sanctions against Ankara. In December, the EU will take steps within the union or at a bilateral level against Turkey and this resonates negatively in domestic policy. The US Congress CAATSA sanction act against Turkey will seriously damage the relationship between NATO and Ankara. Turkey's domestic policy is on a very serious turn because of these two developments."
Dr. Orhan Gafarli, Political Risk Analyst, Ankara Policy Center
On the economy in Jordan
"The ongoing economic crisis due to coronavirus impact will grow in intensity since the health crisis does not seem to be reducing."
Victoria Silva Sánchez, freelance journalist and security analyst
"In light of the continuing COVID-19 and the increase in mortality and injuries, which has been accompanied by worsening economic difficulties, the loss of the national economy, and the failure of most economic enterprises, especially small and medium-sized enterprises. I think that the debate on the draft budget of the current government in the House of Representatives will be very important and dangerous regardless of the position of the deputies negatively or positively."
Dr. Saud Al-Sharafat, founder and Chairman of Shorufatِ Center for Globalization and Terrorism Studies, Amman
Trends in North Africa
"It will be needed to watch if the dedication of the security forces to guaranteeing social order in the southern region of Tunisia in the face of the call for demonstrations and industrial blockades gives criminals, smugglers, and sleeper cells of terrorists more room for maneuver as a result."
Dr. Guadalupe Martínez-Fuentes, Professor of Political Science and Administration, Universidad de Granada
"Terrorism continues to pose a threat, but COVID-19 and potential water shortage are rising as significant threats."