Special Reports


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Embodying the very notion of the "Balkanization" of politics, Bosnia and Herzegovina today rests on a fragile peace agreement originally envisioned as its first step toward long-term stability. With a constitution that recognizes only three national groups (Muslim Bosniaks, Catholic Croats, and Orthodox Serbs) –  thereby excluding the other ethnic groups that reside in the country from effective political participation – the country's highly complex system of governance has limped on, guided by an internal arrangement that divides power along ethnic lines. This arrangement has hindered all attempts to change the fragile status quo and achieved litt
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Author: Alvin Camba and Asma Alkaabi
Our report analyzes the Philippines’ relations with the GCC countries in three key dimensions. First, we look at economic relations, including foreign direct investment (FDI), trade, and development finance. Second, we analyze the political importance of the Philippines to specific GCC states and how GCC countries have responded to international issues prioritized by the Philippines. And finally, we examine the political economy of Philippine labor exports, an economic strategy that inexorably binds the Philippines and the GCC. While the policy paper is organized according to these three themes, we also, where relevant, discuss them in relation to the most recent Philippin
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Author: Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat
When a former furniture store owner and mayor of the small city of Surakarta, Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, was elected as Indonesia’s seventh president in 2014, his limited experience in foreign affairs left many observers thinking his ‘presidency would see few significant breakthroughs in the country’s foreign policy.  However, despite these presumptions, Jokowi has succeeded in strengthening Indonesia’s relationship with various Middle Eastern partners, including Saudi Arabia. As a result, over the past decade, ties between Jakarta and Riyadh have solidified and become more multifaceted, with the scope of cooperation expanding from the diploma
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Author: Hamad Sulaiman Othman Alturki
This publication is available in Arabic only.
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Author: John P. Burns
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leads and manages governance in China, a rising geopolitical and economic superpower. The party is organized territorially throughout the country, including in local jurisdictions like the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. However, because of Hong Kong’s recent past as a British colony, the party operates differently there than on the mainland. Understanding these differences sheds light on the operation of the CCP as the leading institution in the world’s largest country. The paper drills down into the history, organization, and functions of the local party in Hong Kong and its relationship to the central party and government
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Author: Abdullah Hamidaddin
Previous experiences of post-war reconstruction (PWR) inform us that it will always fall short of the expectations of donors and recipients alike. There is not one experience of such reconstruction where things went according to plan. Experts and writers have to go all the way back to post-WWII reconstruction in Europe and Japan to find successful examples, only to discover that their contexts were fundamentally different from any subsequent post-war scenarios. This report is available in Arabic only. Its English version has been published in “The Cairo Review of Global Affairs.&rd
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Author: Joshua Craze
Rather than preventing conflict, internationally backed peace agreements in South Sudan, Sudan, and elsewhere have established a system of incentives that structure elite compacts in the capital that actually intensify the political economy of war. Such peace agreements rely on a normative vision of the state that is at odds with how states have actually come to function in many conflict zones in the world since the 1980s. This normative vision enables peace agreements to be easily instrumentalized by elites and is a major reason why such agreements fail to prevent conflict. Such failures are not contingent but are structural properties of peace agreements that at best aim for r
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Author: Makki Hamid
This paper will shed light on the Official Development Assistance (ODA) provided by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) to developing countries worldwide. The KSA has contributed significantly to the well-being of many developing countries. However, for quite some time, such valuable assistance was not publicized enough in the media nor reflected in international aid platforms. This paper discusses KSA’s aid in detail, outlining the various categories of aid, where it is dispersed (by country and region), to which sectors, and how it has evolved over time. Moreover, it covers KSA’s assistance to developing countries in their quest to reach the Susta
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Author: Mohamed Al-Sbitli
This publication is available in Arabic only. 
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Author: Abdullah Hamidaddin
This paper considers the various risks to a sustained peace in Yemen and the possibilities of a continuation of the conflict by other means, focusing on factors that may be unintentionally generated by the peace process itself. These factors include the quest for inclusiveness and transitional justice, both of which have the potential to legitimate and institutionalize conflict-generated fault lines and identities, creating new obstacles to stability and expanding the field for contentious politics amongst the powerful, incubating new militant expressions of grievances. The paper also focuses on a risk that is not given sufficient attention, namely dehumanization, which has inte
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