Regional Overview – Middle East 28 May 2018

Violence between state forces and militant groups increased last week in both Turkey and Iraq, some of which can be attributed to the month of Ramadan. In Iran, wide-scale economic protests continued, mostly led by labour groups. In Syria, Islamic State (IS) militants evacuated from the areas south of Damascus, and regime forces prepared for…

Regional Overview – Middle East 14 May 2018

Both Lebanon and Iraq held elections last week, with the number of riots and protests as well as election-related violence rising, respectively, in each case. Demonstrations in Iran were focused on “Teacher’s Week” while a smaller subset of demonstrations were focused on the United States’ pulling out of the Iran nuclear deal. Demonstrations were held…

Recent Trends in Jordanian Demonstrations

On 27 January 2018, the Jordanian government approved a new budget which removed subsidies on wheat and imposed a tax hike on over 100 common items. However, protests in the kingdom were less attended and less widespread than anticipated due to the same factors that limited protests during the Arab Spring. During the Arab Spring,…

Regional Overview – Middle East 7 May 2018

Events relating to elections and labour concerns stood out in a number of countries this past week, which included International Workers’ Day on May 1. In Iraq, Islamic State (IS) militants continued to engage in election-related violence. Iran’s protests were also focused primarily on labour and economic issues this past week. A number of notable…

Regional Overview – Middle East 30 April 2018

The number of political violence events recorded in Iraq, Israel, Lebanon, and Palestine dropped this week, while the number of events in Bahrain and Turkey rose considerably. Meanwhile Syria is seeing a renewed focus by various forces on fighting the Islamic State, while fighting remains roughly static in Yemen. In Iraq, a discernible lull in…

Regional Overview – Middle East 23 April 2018

Event numbers across the Middle East were largely static last week, while only a few new trends were recorded in Iran, Iraq, Palestine, Syria, and Yemen. In Iraq, event levels dropped slightly last week despite the upcoming elections planned for May 12. There were, however, several clashes reported between Kurdish rebels and Turkish military forces…

Regional Overview – Middle East 16 April 2018

This week was characterized by relatively static levels of political violence and protests in most countries in the Middle East, including in Gaza where Great Return March demonstrations were again held this past Friday. Meanwhile, Syria saw an end to fighting in Eastern Ghouta as well as a highly-publicized international response by America, British, and…

Regional Overview – Middle East 9 April 2018

Over the last two weeks a number of disparate trends have appeared in countries across the region, including in Iran, Iraq, Israel, and Palestine in particular, while pro-government forces in Syria and Yemen continued to make gains in their respective conflicts. In Iran, at least a dozen of demonstrations have been reported over the past…

Regional Overview – Middle East 26 March 2018

Trends in political violence and demonstrations stayed largely static this week, outside of some interesting activity in Bahrain, Iraq, and Turkey. Syria and Yemen also saw continuations of existing trends, with Syria in particular seeing ongoing offensives by government and Turkish forces respectively coming close to completion. Israel and Lebanon had a relatively low number…