Burka bans in Europe
Why the burka is so important for right-wing populists
New books on the Middle East
The clouds of war or the dawn of a new beginning?
Iran–China 25-year Cooperation Programme
The Islamic Republic's timely vaccine against U.S. pressure?
The Sufi Trail
Anatolia through the eyes of a pilgrim

Burka bans in Europe

On 7 March, Switzerland became the latest European country to vote in favour of a so-called "burka" ban. It was yet another feather in the cap of the right-wing populist Swiss People's Party (SVP) on an issue that remains a perennial favourite with the Right across Europe. Essay by Daniel BaxRead more

Book review: new books on the Middle East

German Middle East analyst Guido Steinberg and television journalist Ulrich Tilgner have both published new books on the conflicts in the Middle East. Their analyses and their forecasts for the region could not be more different. By René WildangelRead more

Iran–China 25-year Cooperation Programme

On 27 March, Iran and China signed a 25-year accord intended to foster "strategic co-operation". Despite ongoing uncertainty over the deal's actual scope, content and chances of realisation, the agreement has been hailed by Iranian officials as nothing less than a game-changer when it comes to securing the interests of the Islamic Republic. By Ali Fathollah-Nejad and Amin NaeniRead more

The Sufi Trail

The Sufi Trail is a long-distance hiking route from Istanbul to Konya that seeks to revive the ancient tracks used by foot pilgrims on their way to Mecca. Marian Brehmer spoke to the trail's founder and hiking route developer Sedat CakirRead more

Politics

Dr Guido Steinberg (left) and Ulrich Tilgner (photos: Eventpress Stauffenberg/picture-alliance and Future Image/imagoimages)

Book review: new books on the Middle East

The clouds of war or the dawn of a new beginning?

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (left) and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, Tehran, March 2021 (photo: AFP)

Iran–China 25-year Cooperation Programme

The Islamic Republic's timely vaccine against U.S. pressure?

Shepherds in Raqqa in 2017 (photo: Chris Huby/Le Pictorium/imago images)

Syrian conflict

How climate change paved the way to war in Syria

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (left) and Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Riyadh, 24 March 2021 (photo: BANDAR AL-JALOUD/Saudi Royal Palace/AFP)

China in the Middle East

Beijing's new charm offensive

Society

Protest again the burka ban in Denmark (photo: picture-alliance/AP Photo/Ritzau Scanpix/M. C. Rasmussen)

Burka bans in Europe

Why the burka is so important for right-wing populists

Protesters move away as Turkish police officers intervene during a demonstration in support of Bogazici University students, at Kadikoy in Istanbul, 1 April 2021 (photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP)

Turkish graduates in Europe

Turkey's best and brightest flee in brain drain

Rafik Schami (photo: Dieter Nagl/AFP)

Spotlight on bridge-builders: Rafik Schami

The story-teller from Damascus

Culture

Bicycle parked along a track on the Sufi Trail (photo: Marian Brehmer)

The Sufi Trail

Anatolia through the eyes of a pilgrim

Iraqi author Usama Al Shahmani (photo: Ennio Leanza/Keystone/picture-alliance)

Usama Al Shahmani's "Im Fallen lernt die Feder fliegen"

Falling, the feather learns to fly

Mali musician Anansy Cisse (source: Facebook)

Album review: Anansy Cisse's "Anoura"

A joyful tonic for the pandemic-weary