With just about everyone expecting the need for a runoff, it came as a significant surprise when moderate presidential candidate Hassan Rouhani captured more than 50 percent of the vote. A late surge of enthusiasm and some key endorsements gave Rouhani the victory and seems to have given new life to Iran’s reform movement. Haleh Esfandiari, the Wilson Center’s Middle East Program Director, provides context.
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Jane Harman and Aaron David Miller comment on U.S.-Israeli relations in light of the election.
In this Director's Forum, the Foreign Minister of Jordan, H.E. Marwan Jamil Muasher, discussed the role of the Arab world and his nation in democratic reform in the region, the peace process between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, and in rebuilding Iraq. Video and transcript of his presentation are available here.
"After the Arab Uprisings: Women on Rights, Religion, and Rebuilding" examines ordinary citizens' views on the issues vital to rebuilding after the revolution. The report focuses on several countries that experienced upheaval in 2011, exploring the perspectives of women and men on the role of religious legislation, women's rights, life perceptions, and the economy.
Many observers see the military’s removal of President Morsi from office as a step backward for democracy and the rule of law. We spoke with a former Egyptian official who believes the opposite and sees the current situation as an example of democracy in action. Moushira Khattab provides context on the evolution of Egyptian politics.
The Syrian refugee issue in Lebanon is threatening to become the real humanitarian crisis in the region. There are more Syrian refugees in Lebanon than in any other country in the region. Straddled by a weak economy, domestic political infighting, and internal divisions over the crisis in Syria, Lebanon is finding it hard to cope with the evolving problem inside its borders. In the absence of a quick and sustained international support, the refugee issue in Lebanon could become a full blown crisis with domestic and regional implications for Lebanon.
Journalists and academics from around the world convened to discuss the state of reporting in their respective countries. Panelists discussed journalist's access to, and freedom to disseminate, information and the media's impact on public opinion and policy.
David Ottaway is a senior scholar at the Wilson Center who has recently returned from Morocco. The following piece is an overview of his observations on Morocco’s Islamists.