Publications

Country Reports

Politischer Stillstand und soziale Proteste: Der Irak im Krisenzustand

by Hannes Pichler, Sebastian Gerlach

Die aktuelle Krise bedroht die Stabilität im Irak
Seit den nationalen Parlamentswahlen vom 12. Mai 2018 ist der Irak nicht zur Ruhe gekommen. Das komplexe politische Kräfteverhältnis, Vorwürfe über massiven Wahlbetrug und die Einflussnahme externer Akteure behindern die Regierungsbildung in Bagdad massiv. Zugleich haben soziale Unruhen den Süden des Landes und die Hauptstadt ereilt. Mit ihren Forderungen nach Arbeitsplätzen und einer gesicherten Energie- und Wasserversorgung heben die Demonstranten die strukturellen Defizite der irakischen Politik, Wirtschaft und Verwaltung hervor.

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Lebanon and the Return of the Displaced Syrians

Problematics and Scenarios Towards a State Approach
With Lebanon being the country that took in the most Syrian refugees per capita since 2011, this paper discusses the arrangements for the return of the displaced Syrians, defining the roles and responsibilities of Lebanon and the international community, and hoping to contribute to framing general national policies on the subject. In this joint publication of the KAS Syria/Iraq Office and the Issam Fares Institute, the author, Ziad El-Sayegh, explores Lebanon’s concerns with the preparation of a voluntary, dignified and safe return.

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From Jabhat al-Nusra to Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham

KAS and Nahrain Center publish paper on the evolution and approach of HTS
In this joint publication of the KAS Syria/Iraq Office and the Al-Nahrain Center for Strategic Studies, Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi writes on the history and evolution of the group Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham, beginning from its formation as the al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra, to Jabhat Fatah al- Sham and, finally, the present form of Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham. Based on testimonies from high-ranking operatives, the article discusses the complex relationship of Jabhat al-Nusra, Jabhat Fatah al-Sham and Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham to al-Qaeda during the transformation and rebranding process.

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Alternative Governance - The Involvement of Non-State Actors

KAS and Maison du Futur publish paper on Iraqi Reconstruction Process
With the Islamic State (ISIL) militarily defeated, Baghdad is now pushing for international assistance, including foreign investments and loans for its reconstruction process. Isadora Gotts, guest researcher at Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung’s Syria/Iraq Office, explores in this paper, published with Maison du Futur, the main obstacles to Iraq’s recovery and argues that a successful reconstruction process must take into account all actors that wield considerable influence on the national and local level, which in Iraq’s case include a variety of Non-State Armed Groups.

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Moscow’s Flexible Alliances in the Middle East - Opportunities and Constraints

KAS and Al Bayan Center publish paper on Russia's Relations with post-Saddam Iraq
Russia has been seeking a more robust relationship with Iraq since the so-called Arab Spring started in 2011, eager to build on the remnants of what was once a strong Soviet-Iraqi alliance during the Cold War. The Kremlin’s appetite for courting Iraq has been driven by security considerations, shrewd economic interest, as well as the desire to seek status in the wider region. Hanna Notte - an expert on Russia and the Middle East - analyzes the successes and obstacles to a Russian-Iraqi relationship in her latest publication with KAS and the Al-Bayan Center for Planning and Studies.

Country Reports

Iraq after the Election: Transformation of the Political Landscape

by Nils Wörmer, Hannes Pichler

IRAQI ELECTION SURPRISES WITH UNEXPECTED RESULTS AND LOW VOTER TURNOUT
For the first time after the military defeat of the Islamic State (ISIL), national parliamentary elections were held in Iraq. Around 7,000 candidates, organized on 88 party lists, competed for 329 parliament seats in the election on May 12. When results are official, the new parliament will be appointed to form a new Iraqi government.

Country Reports

Iraq at a Crossroads: Stabilization or Further Fragmentation?

by Nils Wörmer, Hannes Pichler

THE ELECTIONS WILL PREDICT THE OUTCOME OF STABILIZATION AND REFORMS IN IRAQ
The upcoming elections on May 12, 2018 mark the first national elections in Iraq after the military victory over the Islamic State (ISIL). These elections will determine whether Iraq will be able to stabilize itself politically, to establish a nation-wide security regime and to start an urgent reform process after years of civil war and the fight against ISIL.

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Mapping Iraq’s Political Organizations Ahead of the National Elections

KAS PUBLISHES RESEARCH PAPER ON THE POLITICAL LANDSCAPE OF IRAQ
Iraq’s political landscape has experienced tremendous changes since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003. After transforming from a dictatorship into a democracy, Iraq’s political environment is dynamic and ever-changing. While sectarian interests have dominated Iraqi politics in the past 15 years, attributing all post-2003 politics to sectarianism oversimplifies the complex web of players, historical rivalries, regional interference, religion, violence and personal animosities. Ahmed Ali, an expert on Iraqi political affairs, maps in this KAS publication the political landscape of Iraq.

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Community Reporting and Independent Media in Syria

by Nils Wörmer, Lucas Lamberty

Syria Direct and KAS conduct country wide trainings for citizen journalists
While Syria has experienced an unprecedented extent of violence over the course of the last years, the civil war has also spurred the establishment of citizen journalists all over the country. These journalists report independently and critically about developments on the ground in their communities. In order to support the nascent independent media landscape in Syria, KAS and Syria Direct in 2017 provided trainings for citizen journalists in Idlib, Hama, Aleppo, the South and the predominantly Kurdish areas in the North.

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Addressing Idlib Migration Through Community Mobilization

by Nils Wörmer, Lucas Lamberty

KAS supports CCSD in promoting strategies to counter mass migration
In January 2018, the Syrian regime launched a new operation in the eastern parts of Idlub province. The province in northwestern Syria is one of the last strongholds of the armed Syrian opposition and has been severely affected by extreme violence, airstrikes and the dramatic increase of the population through the accommodation through large numbers of internally-displaced people (IDP). In 2017, KAS supported the “We Can Stay Here” campaign of the Center for Civil Society and Democracy (CCSD) that aims at fighting root causes of migration in Idlib.
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