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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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Saudi King appoints Mohamed bin Salman as new prime minister

Saudi King appoints Mohamed bin Salman as new prime minister

King Salman ibn Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia has appointed Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman as prime minister. This is the first time that a Saudi King has not held himself the post of prime minister since the system of Cabinet of Ministers was first introduced. Seperating the two roles is likely to improve the process and speed of decision making in the Kingdom which in the past had seen backlogs of decisions and appointments waiting for the King's approval. The appointment formalises the authority of Mohamed bin Salman over the Saudi government, and is seen as part of the process of renewal that the Kingdom embarked on a few years back. Mohamed bin Salman, or MBS as he is sometimes called, has been a controversial figure since he was appointed as Crown Prince in 2016. The war in Yemen, the murder of Adnan Kashoggi and a heavy handed approach towards critics have made him a target of much criticism by western media. But inside Saudi Arabia itself, MBS is mostly seen as a reformer who has taken on, successfully, the conservative religious elite, that had dominated life in the Kingdom since the Saudi State was established in the early 20th century. His appointment as prime minister will help consolidate his power, and is likely to embolder him on to the next set of changes. Internationally, the appointment comes days after a Saudi diplomatic success, which saw Mohamed bin Salman negotiating the release of ten foreigners held as prisoners by Russia for their participation in the Ukraine war. 

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In Tehran, at Friday prayers they hail Raisi's visit to Moscow

In Tehran, at Friday prayers they hail Raisi's visit to Moscow

Russia this week rolled out the red carpet for Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi. His visit included a rare invitation to address the State Duma, as well as a long meeting with president Putin. Raisi gave Putin the draft of "a document on strategic cooperation between our two countries" which he said can determine or at least clarify the co-operation between the two countries for the next two decades.
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Houthis attack on Abu Dhabi airport is a dangerous escalation

Houthis attack on Abu Dhabi airport is a dangerous escalation

There has been widespread international condemnation of a drone attack on Abu Dhabi International Airport. The Yemeni Houthi Group, which is backed by Iran, has claimed responsibility for the attack which killed three persons. The attack on the airport of the UAE capital is seen as a serious escalation of the ongoing conflict in Yemen where a regional coalition including Saudi Arabia and the UAE is assisting the internationally recognised government of Yemen in its efforts to regain control of the country from the Houthi movement which seized the capital and large swats of the country in 2015.
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Israel says it does not oppose "a good nuclear deal" with Iran

Israel says it does not oppose "a good nuclear deal" with Iran

Israeli leaders appear to have recently softened their position as regards a nuclear deal with Iran, saying they would not oppose "a good deal". Israel’s foreign minister, Yair Lapid, said that Israel would have no problem with a strong nuclear deal with Iran on condition that the deal permanently limits Iran’s ability to assemble a nuclear weapon.
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The editorial team at commonspace.eu wish all our readers and subscribers a very happy new year 2022

The editorial team at commonspace.eu wish all our readers and subscribers a very happy new year 2022

We wish health, peace, and prosperity to all our readers and subscribers in Europe and Eurasia, the Caucasus Region, the Middle East and world wide. Happy New Year!