Humanitarian Foreign Aid of Gulf States

Background and Orientations

Foreign aid from the main Gulf donors (the UAE, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait) have been controversial for many years. This is due to the fact that Gulf foreign aid objectives and types are intrinsically intertwined. During the past fifteen years, humanitarian aid has transformed the Gulf states to become amongst the leading international humanitarian donors. However, the politicisation of humanitarian aid has done more damage to Gulf states than creating visibility and reputation. This article looks into the development of Gulf aid and the politics of humanitarian aid.

Education in Saudi Arabia

Challenges and Opportunities

Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 has made education a central part of achieving development goals related to overcoming unemployment, developing national talent and growing a diverse private sector. However, in tying educational excellence to economic outcomes, the Saudi education system has placed insufficient emphasis on the education process itself. By strengthening key components of the education system and schooling process, a stronger cohort of graduates will inevitably contribute to a growing economy. Steps toward greater flexibility and individual choice are underway, but more needs to be done in this area to deliver on the demands of the 2030 key performance indicators.

Bitter-Sweet Elections

The Oxymoronic Condition of the Kuwaiti Current Political Scene

The author of this article deals with the political scene in Kuwait during and after the last election term. She looks at some of the positive and not so positive electoral changes and the expected aftermath of these changes on the sociopolitical atmosphere of Kuwait. She also attributes significant space to the issue of Kuwaiti women in politics, using this brand-new womanless parliament as a case-in-study. The author also briefly provides basic electoral information as well as analyzes current results with mention of certain names and occurrences that were effectively operational during this election term.

Towards a Regional Security Mechanism in the Gulf Region

The Gulf region requires a regional security mechanism, based on both conceptual and operational baskets, through which regional as well as relevant external actors can engage with one another. Building on recent calls for de-escalation, Europe in particular should take the lead given the various tool of conflict resolution that it can bring to the table.

Xander Heinl /

"Europe is a strategic partner for us"

Saudi Minister of State Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir at KAS

Currently, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia holds the presidency of the G20 and will host the G20 summit on November 21 and 22. In the course of a visit to Berlin, the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom, Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir, took part in a digital round table discussion at KAS with political decision makers and experts on Friday. In addition to the Saudi G20 Presidency, the main topics were current developments in the Gulf and the role of Europe in the region.

Migration and The COVID-19 Pandemic in the Gulf

A Study of Foreign Expatriate Worker Communities' Coping Attitudes, Practices, and Future Prospects in Dubai and Jeddah

In this study, Dr. Fahad L. Alsharif from King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies, and Froilan T. Malit from the University of Cambridge examine the impact of Covid-19 on a sample of foreign expatriates in Jeddah and Dubai. The study specifically explores how Covid19 has affected foreign workers’ economic and welfare status in both Gulf cities mainly on the working and living conditions, access to medical services and dispute resolution system, remittance contribution, and current and future employment and security perceptions both in the Gulf and home country’s labour markets.

Offensive Realism and Saudi Foreign Policy towards Iran

A zero-sum game?

The Arabian Gulf has long been one of the world’s tensest regions. Since 1980, three main wars occurred, and the region has undergone a military buildup ever since. Most of those in the Arabian Gulf states see the Iranian Revolution of 1979, which changed the face of the entire region, as the predominant causal factor for its instability. Since then, tensions and hostility have only increased between the two sides of the Gulf: the Arabian side, led by Saudi Arabia, and Iran. This article is an attempt to explain an iteration of this relationship between the two sides, via an examination of Saudi foreign policy (SFP) towards Iran.

The Evolution of State Capacity in the Gulf Region

For a long period of time, the Gulf States’ revenues were external resource rents from oil exports rather than being acquired through traditional taxation. Consequently, the Gulf States skipped a traditionally pivotal step in the state formation process, namely, building a capable bureaucracy that is able to penetrate the Gulf societies. However, the drop of oil prices in 2014, coupled with the diminished dependence of the U.S. on the Gulf oil due to the development of the production of shale oil, have led the Gulf States to consider taxation, rolling back subsidies and imposing fees on the employment of migrant workers. All these measures required the creation of professional and skilled bureaucracy to carry out them; a mission the Gulf States achieved in a short period of time. Thus when the outbreak of Covid-19 occurred, the Gulf States were ready to deal with it effectively.

Religious Discussions on Coronavirus in Yemen

This policy report focuses on the religious discourses surrounding the pandemic of COVID-19 in Yemen. It aims at discerning this diversification and to point out to some discursive and theological implications that has to do with the current political conflict in Yemen, secularization processes and the polemical debates between the established traditional religious elite and the emerging young public intellectuals. Based on the author’s analysis of the data, they classify the Yemeni religious debate into two main trends: plain religious discourse and rationalized one. Within both trends, they find different voices that belong to different sects and schools of thought in Yemen. Nevertheless, the sectarian and religious orientations of the main interlocutors of this debate are not ignored.

The Gulf States and the Israeli Annexation Plan

Relations between Israel and the Gulf States rose to the centre stage when Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, declared his intention to annex the Jordan Valley and the settlements in the West Bank by early July this year. In this article, the authors outline the Gulf States reaction to Israel’s annexation plan. We argue that the Gulf States’ message is clear: the annexation plan will roll back, at least, the visible aspects of normalization with Israel. However, the extent of their reaction will depend on the scope of annexation. The authors also make it clear that the position of the Gulf States in regards to the normalization with Israel is not unified.