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  • Affiliation : President, President, The Middle East Institute (MEI)
  • Affiliation : Director General, Russian International Affairs Council
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International Security Index iSi decreased to 2829 points. Satanovsky, Kortunov comment events of the week

30.09.2014

MOSCOW, SEPTEMBER 30, 2014. PIR PRESS “The strategy announced by the USA on fighting with the Islamists is piecemeal and will not lead to the destruction of the Islamic state. The basis of the strategy is that Americans rely on one terrorist group to fight a similar one and are also training the third terrorist group . The main, open-ended question is whether the United States will strike at Bashar al-Assad’s troops in Syria”,President of the Institute of Middle East Studies, Evgeny Satanovsky,

During the week of September 22 – 29, 2014, the International Security Index iSi decreased to 2829 points. In southeastern Ukraine, a firefight occurred; in the Donetsk region, mass graves of people were found. Petr Poroshenko unveiled a program for transforming the country "Strategy 2020". The UN Security Council adopted a resolution on the fight against international terrorism. United States attacked the positions of the militants of the Islamic state in Syria and Iraq. In Libya, fierce fighting of the army with the Islamists continued. In Yemen, Shia rebels consolidated their positions in the south of the capital. North Korea offered to reunite the two Koreas into one confederation. In Hong Kong, there were clashes between police and protesters who were demanding the democratization of  elections. Terrorist attacks occurred in Afghanistan and Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region of China. In Japan, many people were injured in a volcanic eruption.

Comments on the week's events by members of the International Expert Group of the PIR Center

Evgeny Satanovsky (Russia), President of the Institute of Middle East Studies – via phone from Moscow: The level of security in the Middle East and Africa continues to decline rapidly due to the activation of militants of the Islamic State and Boko Haram. The war declared on the Sunni terrorists by Iran, Egypt, Israel and the Syrian government – each in its own manner – is generally a positive trend. However, the strategy announced by the USA on fighting the Islamists is piecemeal and does not lead to the destruction of the Islamic state. The basis of the strategy is that Americans rely on one terrorist group to fight a similar one and are also training the third terrorist group. The main, open-ended question is whether the United States will strike at Bashar al-Assad’s troops in Syria. The fact that Russia started deliveries of military equipment to the Government of Iraq inspires some optimism. I do not think that the situation in the region will improve in the coming months, as the terrorist threat in the Middle East continues to grow rapidly.

Agreement on the enduring truce, reached between Israel and Hamas, could last from several weeks or months to two years. The Palestinian leadership will keep the conflict at a moderate stage, trying to strike Israel while not attaining too sensitive of a loss. Israel will try to negotiate with the Palestinian leadership, at the same time losing the hope that it is possible.

Andrey Kortunov, Director General, Russian Council for Foreign Affairs – via phone from Moscow: The resolution adopted by the UN Security Council confirmed that cooperation between Russia and the United States in the struggle against international terrorism remains an important undertaking. In my opinion, Russia and the United States, in spite of their difficult relationship, take it as a positive partnership. However, the American strikes against Iraq and Syria are perceived in Moscow not only in the context of the fight against terrorism. In Moscow, they are seen as a continuation of the usual US behavior of ignoring international law and violating the Syrian sovereignty, without the express consent for such operations. Supporting the resolution, Russia has signaled that it is willing to cooperate in the fight against terrorism, including with the Islamic State. However, this support should not be seen as a license to commit any of these steps, which are contrary to international law. Washington is unlikely to listen to criticism from Moscow, but this cannot be ignored. Without the Russia’s participation, American actions in the fight against the Islamists will obviously be ineffective.

For all questions concerning the International Security Index please contact Galiya Ibragimova by e-mail ibragimova at pircenter.org

     

     

     

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