Catherine Shakdam

MKO Puts Albania at Risk Over Refusal to Comply with State Measures over COVID-19

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As Europe is coming to terms with the reality of a life interrupted courtesy of the covid-19 pandemic, governments after governments have had to call for their respective communities to comply with strict isolation rules not to overwhelm their already stretched out healthcare systems. Speaking at a daily public briefing this Friday…

The Houthis may Side with the Muslim Brotherhood against Saudi Arabia

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“Efforts have been made in recent weeks by members of Al Islah in Yemen (a political unbrella for various tribes and Islamic outfits, such as the Muslim Brotherhood) to organize an alliance of convenience with the Houthis to weaken Saudi Arabia’s influence in the Arabian Peninsula,” sources in Sana’a posited in exclusive comments…

Iraq’s Stability Hedge on Ayatollah Sistani’s Longevity in Power

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News this Thursday of Ayatollah Sistani’s health issues very much put in focus the matter of his succession, and maybe more pertinently yet, Iraq’s ability to weather such a catastrophic loss to the integrity of its institutions. “His Eminence was subjected to a twisting in the left leg that led to a fracture of the thigh bone, and he will be…

America Plays Warlord in Iraq – the New Frontline against Iran

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Keeping to a long standing tradition of hawkishness US President Donald Trump, whose campaign ran on the promises of peace and conflict resolution, ordered the deployment of an additional 4000 troops to Kuwait in view of escalating tensions with Iran in neighbouring Iraq. Just when we thought the region could not possibly become more volatile, the United States choose to light…

Yemen’s Exiles… Millions Live in Limbo Unable to Return Home

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Earlier this month, Human Rights Watch called on the United States government to extend and redesignate Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Yemen, which expires on March 3, 2020, so that those Yemenis who found themselves stranded in the US when the war broke out in late March 2015 would not…

The Cost of Feeding Yemen as War Rages On

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Yemen’s war has proven to be far more than just another failed attempt at enforcing a certain socio-political reality. As it were, the cost of keeping Yemen afloat, and by that I mean the funds which have been allocated to alleviate such plagues as famine, cholera, and overall misery is fast becoming an unsustainable burden on the international community…

Ayatollah Sistani Defies Iran to Promote Self-Governance in Iraq

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Hailed a liberator and a savior against ISIS after it dedicated its men, military expertise and efforts in neighbouring Iraq, Iran has now become the subject of Iraqis’ ire over its perceived political and ideological patronage, as well as the perceived arrogance with which Tehran has looked upon protesters, advocating violence to quell…

Yemen’s Muslim Brotherhood Remains the Biggest Obstacle Towards Peace

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The elephant in the room that no one wishes to directly address Yemen’s Muslim Brotherhood, also known as Al Islah party has become the single biggest impediment to peace. Unlike many of its political counterparts who remain willing to compromise to see an end to the violence and bloodshed, the Brotherhood has adopted…

Building a Lasting Peace in Yemen by Getting Ahead of the Generational Gap

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While Yemen remains locked in a grand political dispute, its people bound by the competing ambitions of various factions and militias as they each argue power, legitimacy, and righteous politics, it is likely that peace will require more than a coming together of those warring parties … Peace as it were, will…

Ending the War by Coming to Terms with Yemen’s Political History

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While Saudi Arabia sits only days away from a political agreement with Yemen’s STC forces (Southern Transitional Council) in its bid to salvage Abdo Rabbo Mansour Hadi’s presidential claim over an increasingly divided nation, such headways remain symptomatic of Yemen’s unravelling. And though many will see in the move…

How Yemen’s War Stands to Redefine the Region’s Future

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If ever anyone was still under the impression that North Yemen would soon surrender to Saudi Arabia’s intense military pressure, Saturday’s attack on Aramco some 200 miles east of Riyadh, the Kingdom’s capital, most definitely shattered such belief. If anything, Ansarallah, under…

What Would Need to give for Yemen’s War to Come to an End

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“If you want to keep a secret, you must also hide it from yourself” – George Orwell. I find this one quote from George Orwell to be particularly fitting to Yemen’s war, and more to the point, to Saudi Arabia’s attitude towards Yemen’s war … a war the Kingdom both engineered and…


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