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Kuwaiti port plans reflect spending push

Kuwait
Issue 905 - 23 July 2011

Emirati activists plead not guilty

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Five Emirati activists charged with “opposing the government” and threatening national security pleaded not guilty when they appeared in court on 18 July.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
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The start of construction on the new Kuwaiti Mubarak Al-Kabir port near Iraq has reignited long-standing resentments over territory, security and the legacy of reparations from the Saddam era

Kuwait | Iraq
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The start of construction on the new Kuwaiti Mubarak Al-Kabir port near Iraq has reignited long-standing resentments over territory, security and the legacy of reparations from the Saddam era.

Kuwait | Iraq
Free

Prince Turki Al-Faisal has again shown his capacity to express Saudi policy concerns that go beyond the platitudes that too often pass for political discourse in the Gulf, this time discussing concerns about Iran’s nuclear ambitions and interference in regional conflict zones. Turki speaks with authority,

Saudi Arabia
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As the summer heat rises, the state of politics in Baghdad and the provinces is causing alarm in Washington and Tehran, according to sources canvassed by GSN. But in the long game that is Iraqi politics, Prime Minister Maliki is playing a steady hand, outflanking opponents and imposing policy even if the necessary laws aren’t in place

Iraq
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Major reshuffles remain a rarity in Saudi Arabia, so recent decrees merging two high-profile courts and reshuffling prominent personalities – including the monarch’s confidant Khalid Al-Tuwaijri – have got Saudi-watchers talking

Saudi Arabia
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The first official session of Bahrain’s National Dialogue, chaired by Council of Representatives speaker Khalifa Bin Ahmed Al-Dhahrani, took place on the evening of 5 July.

Bahrain
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Foreign and local critics of the regime’s response to demonstrations calling for political reform have welcomed the appointment of an international commission to enquire into Bahrain’s ‘Arab Spring’ crisis. With opposition reactions ranging from reservation to distrust, King Hamad has much to do to rebuild trust in his divided kingdom

Bahrain
Issue 904 - 09 July 2011

AL-MAKTOUM: Senior appointments

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Senior appointments

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
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It is no surprise that decision-making in Abu Dhabi can often seem opaque when there are various similarly named councils and a huge number of ruling family members involved in various levels of government. Here, GSN tracks the membership of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council and analyses its current make-up

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
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US publication ARTnews has named Sheikh Saud Bin Mohammed Bin Ali Al-Thani as one of the biggest art collectors in the world in the past 12 months.

Qatar
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Largely unaffected by the ‘Arab Spring’ surging through the Middle East and North Africa (Mena), Qatar – with its tiny national population and burgeoning hydrocarbons and investment revenues – has consolidated its reputation as a small state that punches hugely above its demographic weight in a number of arenas of current global significance, including Libya and Sudan (where Doha has played a significant role, largely unrecognised, in smoothing the financial complexities of the impending independence of South Sudan and its impact on the regime in Khartoum).

Libya | Qatar
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As the rift between President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Rahbar (Supreme Leader) Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his supporters grows, one of the head of government’s apparently waning number of allies, foreign minister Ali Akbar Salehi, faces impeachment over his controversial 19 June appointment of Mohammad Sharif Malekzadeh as his deputy. Conservative politicians, and particularly the Intelligence Ministry headed by Heidar Moslehi – a close Khamenei ally who Ahmadinejad unsuccessfully attempted to remove in April – were infuriated by the Malekzadeh appointment, at a time when corruption charges were hanging over him.

Iran
Issue 903 - 25 June 2011

Reuters correspondent expelled

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Reuters correspondent Frederik Richter is among the journalists to be expelled from Bahrain as the authorities have cracked down. He reported that Ministry of Information official Sheikh Abdullah Bin Nezar Al-Khalifa on 16 June gave him one week to leave, complaining that Reuters had lacked balance in its reporting during the crackdown on pro-democracy protesters.

Bahrain