Middle East

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  • Vineet R. asked: Historically, what has been the Palestinian position on Kashmir?

    Adil Rasheed replies: According to the Ministry of External Affairs, “India’s support for the Palestinian cause is an integral part of our nation’s foreign policy”.

    India’s Opportunity in the Middle East

    The increased diplomatic activity in the Middle East (West Asia) with regional leaders engaging each other at various levels and forums, in spite of the continued regional power competition, ideological misgivings and threat perceptions, is a pleasing as well as a puzzling development. For India, this is an opportunity to enhance its diplomatic and economic engagements with the regional countries.

    November 22, 2021

    American Activism on Religious Freedom in the Middle East: A Critique

    Since its enactment in October 1998, the International Religious Freedom Act has become a major instrument to further the American foreign policy agenda in the Middle East and elsewhere. While the annual reports are a great source of information on lesser-known facts and shifts concerning religious minorities, they also underscore an inherent bias in favour of Christian missionaries, politicization of the minority question and American exceptionalism.

    May 2021

    Venu Srivastava asked: What is the US interest in the Middle East even though it possesses more oil (shale gas) reserves?

    Adil Rasheed replies: Although the US has recently become the largest oil and natural gas producing country in the world, the OPEC states still produce about 40 per cent of the world’s crude oil with Middle East (or West Asian) states producing about a third of the global output. The global oil market is seamless and any disruption in supplies by one supplier impacts global oil prices simultaneously. As the adage goes, “We all sip from the same cup”.

    Modi’s Agenda 2.0 for the Middle East

    During his first term, Modi had invested considerable political capital in cultivating critical players. The second term should enable him to reap the fruits of his political investments and elevate his engagements to a higher level.

    May 24, 2019

    Suchak Patel asked: What is the difference between ‘West Asia’ and ‘Middle East’ from the Indian perspective?

    Adil Rasheed replies: Indian academicians prefer to use the term West Asia and not the Middle East. The term Middle East may have made some geographical sense for British colonialists ruling from London, but that has lost relevance following the disappearance of the British empire after World War II. In fact, the term Middle East outside its vague colonial context does not specify the geographical region it refers to.

    China’s Mediation Efforts in the Middle East and North Africa: Constructive Conflict Management

    Mediation diplomacy has emerged as one of the central pillars of China’s foreign policy objectives and practice, with Beijing deliberately positioning itself as a peacemaker in the MENA region. This study evaluates China’s role as a regional peacemaker by examining Beijing’s growing engagement with bringing about a peaceful resolution to the MENA disputes. Specifically, this study seeks to examine whether or not China’s mediation efforts in the MENA region augur a shift in China’s non-intervention principle and practice.

    January 2018

    What does Modi’s Israel visit mean to the Palestinians?

    Modi is merely responding to the changing Middle Eastern situation. A few hours of stay in Ramallah will not gain him any political dividends in the region or in India.

    July 03, 2017

    Trends and Prospects for Cooperation with the Middle East

    Trends and Prospects for Cooperation with the Middle East

    It is too early for India to get involved in any regional security arrangement as it would have to answer two basic questions; security for whom? And against whom? Most regimes feel threatened internally and any involvement would entail India taking sides between rival factions.

    January 21, 2016

    Jamil Zaid asked: Will the continued political turmoil in Middle East and North Africa affect the US rebalance policy to the Asia-Pacific region?

    Gulshan Dietl replies: Since late 2011, the Obama Administration has been making a series of pronouncements on a pivot to Asia-Pacific, which has now been moderated to a rebalance to Asia-Pacific. As the global power equations evolve, so do the strategic choices of the states. For example, the US policies were focussed on the Soviet Union during the Cold War. It is now China that is at the epicentre of the US worldview; and it is this worldview that advises and influences the US foreign policy.

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