Region

Gulf and Red Sea Regions

Stories under this heading cover the Gulf and the Red Sea regions, including the Arabian Peninsula, Iran and the countries bordering the Red Sea.

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Ethiopians celebrate second filling of controversial Nile dam

Ethiopians celebrate second filling of controversial Nile dam

Thousands of Ethiopians gathered at Meskel Square in Addis Ababa as the government announced the completion of the second filling of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD). While Egypt is relieved by the quick ending of the filling, joined by Sudan, it still calls to reach a final trilateral agreement with Ethiopia on the operation of the dam. 

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News
Tough negotiations continue in Vienna on Iran nuclear deal

Tough negotiations continue in Vienna on Iran nuclear deal

Intensive efforts are continuing as negotiations entered the fourth round in Vienna to bring Iran and the United States back to a nuclear agreement. Multiple reports suggest ‘positive’ developments coming out of Vienna as negotiators achieved a better understanding of difficulties that had prevailed in earlier rounds. These difficulties revolved around which sanctions are to be lifted and which measured are needed to be taken by Iran.
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Qatar supports Gulf-Iran dialogue

Qatar supports Gulf-Iran dialogue

The Qatari Foreign Minister, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al Thani, said that he welcomed any dialogue and positive spirit that concerns Iran's relations with the Gulf states and Saudi Arabia in particular. Al Thani stressed Doha's support for such dialogue and said he was certain that dialogue will have a significant impact on regional stability. 
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Commentary
Commentary: Mohammed bin Salman and his quest to reinterpret the relationship between state and religion  in Saudi Arabia

Commentary: Mohammed bin Salman and his quest to reinterpret the relationship between state and religion in Saudi Arabia

In a recent wide-ranging interview Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, appeared to be reinterpreting – if not exactly redefining – the relationship between state and religion in the Kingdom. This is highly dangerous and uncharted territory for a Saudi leader, but something that is absolutely necessary if the Kingdom is to reinvent itself as a modern progressive state, whilst respecting the religious foundations which are part of its legacy and legitimacy.
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Positive vibes in Saudi-Iranian relations

Positive vibes in Saudi-Iranian relations

Iran's Foreign Ministry on Thursday (29 April) welcomed Saudi Arabia's new positive tone towards Iran. During an interview on Tuesday (27 April), Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's expressed his desire for dialogue and good relations between the two countries.