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November 8, 2018

IMES Regional Brief – November 2018

In the IMES Regional Brief for November 2018, we will be taking a panoramic view of the MENA to address post-war ramifications on the countries and peoples of the region, whether economically, politically, ethically or religiously. War produces profound wounds, the consequences of which often lasting long after fighting has stopped. It is indisputable that wars have political aims, but religion has often been an integral part of such conflicts. This is the reality of the MENA region. We are witnessing in South Sudan the recruitment of child soldiers to fight in the battles of adults. In Lebanon, we see cleavages between the youth along sectarian and party lines, parties that were the result of war as well as a reason behind it. Young people are being mobilized to fight battles not their own and this is being reflected in university elections. In Egypt, people have lost faith in religious leaders and their rhetoric, even when calling for peace. They read into the words of religious leaders, judging their intentions. The people of Jordan and Syria are struggling to achieve balance between civil peace and social justice. The story of Palestinian dispossession is ongoing, even when done in the name of peace. Now, Palestinians are being inhibited from obtaining pilgrimage visas to Mecca and Medina. Algeria, 50 years after achieving liberation from the brunt force of colonialism, faces an apology by its previous colonizer and questions its credibility and fairness.


The Church’s Positive Involvement in the Lives of the Youth for a Bright Future

“Students for Change” was the name of the electoral process for American University of Beirut students for seats on the Student-Faculty Committee...Read More


Palestine, Pilgrimage and the Question of Islamic Unity

Saudi Arabia has stopped issuing pilgrimage visas for Palestinians with temporary Jordanian passports, as well for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon holding refugee travel documents. Such actions effectively prohibit hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from visiting Mecca and Medina....Read More


The Reopening of the Jordan-Syria Border and the Risk of Complacency with Empire

The reopening of the Jaber-Nassib border crossing between Jordan and Syria was announced on Monday the 15th of October, according to Reuters and other news agencies...Read More


Balance Between Support and Criticism Towards Religious Discourse in Egypt

Egypt’s Grand Imam Ahmed al-Tayeb participated in the international conference, Bridges of Peace, Religions and Cultures in Dialogue, held at the Fair Congress Centre of Bologna, Italy from 14 – 16 October. Al-Tayeb was also awarded by the highest academic medal from the University of Bologna...Read More

South Sudan

South Sudanese Child Soldiers Find Healing at Church

Since the start of South Sudan’s civil war in 2013, armed forces have recruited up to 19,000 children. In 2018, 934 children were officially released, of whom almost 30 percent are girls...Read More


Algeria’s Stance from the Apology of its Previous Colonizer

France’s colonial rule in Algeria remains an open wound in French historical memory despite ending more than 50 years ago. It is considered a dark era in the history of the French people...Read More

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