The power concentration of recent years continues in Saudi Arabia. The winner is the Salman branch of the royal family, which is systematically extending its political influence. But bearing in mind the planned economic reforms, the family is running a high risk. By Matthias SailerMore
Palestinian prisoners in Israel have launched a collective hunger strike. The imprisoned Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti is thus returning to the political stage. Inge Gunther in Jerusalem has the detailsMore
Algeria′s myriad Islamist parties are either barred from the elections or internally divided over whether to support the government or join the opposition, limiting their chances of success. An analysis by Riccardo FabianiMore
Whenever a country is the target of a terrorist attack, the issue of whether the perpetrators were linked to Islam rears its head. As Assem Hefny argues, questions regarding the relationship between Egypt′s Al-Azhar mosque and university, terrorism and ideological extremism – though hurtful – should not be dismissed out of handMore
The parliamentary elections in Algeria on 4 May 2017 mark a political watershed. Even though the outcome of the elections is not expected to hold any big surprises, this time the regime’s credibility really is on the line. By Isabel SchaferMore
In future, Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia will be governed by a Muslim: during recent elections, the sitting Christian governor, Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, was beaten by his Muslim opponent Anies Baswedan. Christina Schott reports from JakartaMore
The referendum campaign has polarised Turkey in a way rarely seen, but instead of seeking balance and reconciliation, Erdogan immediately announced further referenda on the death penalty and EU accession talks. A risky tactic, argues Ulrich von SchwerinMore
By expanding his powers through a slim, contested victory in Sunday's referendum, Turkey's Recep Tayyip Erdogan has consolidated his rule – over a nation bound for social turmoil. Diego Cupolo reports from AnkaraMore
Economist Ishac Diwan compares the failure of the Arab Spring with the rise in right-wing populism across the western world, both of them phenomena marked by massive social tensions. Moreover, he argues, the efforts of progressive movements to provide a viable alternative have all but run aground More
As the war in Syria rolls on and civilians continue to die, caught in the deadly crossfire of a multi-front conflict, the Syrian military and political opposition – bowing to intense international diplomatic pressure – has been dragged into political negotiations that lack the minimum conditions for success. Essay by Burhan Ghalioun, former chairman of the Syrian opposition Transitional National CouncilMore
Last week U.S. President Donald Trump turned the table on the Syrians. All those who were seated at it, comfortably or even dozing, have now stood up with a start and are wondering what all the broken crockery means for them. By Karim El-GawharyMore
Willing to co-operate with terrorists as and when it suits him, Assad has intentionally shaped the course of the Syrian conflict. Nor does IS have the monopoly on committing atrocities against civilians, as the regime's repeated use of chemical weapons, most recently near Idlib, reveals. By Hakim KhatibMore
In likening present-day Germany to the Nazi era, Recep Tayyip Erdogan demonstrates that his ignorance of Germany is on a par with his ignorance of Nazism. As the Lebanese journalist Hazem Saghieh writes, it is a glaring example of the illiteracy that is prevalent among politicians in the Middle EastMore
Gao was once regarded as a jihadist stronghold. French intervention at the beginning of 2013 managed to quash the rebel insurgency, yet there has been little stability since. Mali continues to be shaken by attacks despite the presence of UN blue helmets. By Katrin GanslerMore
While ex-dictator Hosni Mubarak – who has apparently got off scot-free – will not be called to account for the deaths of hundreds of demonstrators, democracy activists released from detention such as Ahmed Maher continue to suffer harassment at the hands of the legal system. Karim El-Gawhary reports from CairoMore
After a five-month deadlock during which Moroccan Prime Minister Abdelilah Benkirane was unable to form a coalition government, he has been ousted by King Mohammed VI, showing his increasing unwillingness to tolerate any ruler beside himself. An analysis by Moroccan dissident and journalist Ali AnouzlaMore
Once again a European city has become the target of terrorism. The vicious attack in Westminster this week highlights our vulnerability in the face of extremist hatred. As Dutch news correspondent Joris Luyendijk argues, the only way we can beat the terrorists is by living life to the fullMore
Since the outbreak of war in Syria, the entire Lebanese border has become a red zone: travellers from the West are advised by their governments to give it a wide berth. Yet once in the field, only the odd military checkpoint serves to remind travellers that tensions in the area remain high. In the Bekaa Valley, Hezbollah – the Party of God – holds sway. Wielding considerable political, military and social clout, this powerful Shia Islamist organisation is government, parliament and welfare state rolled into one. By Eric Lafforgue
Kuwaiti analyst Shafeeq Ghabra on the Gulf Cooperation Council
Professor of political science and regular Arab media contributor, Shafeeq Ghabra comments on the current crisis facing the Gulf Cooperation Council.More
German Institute for International and Security Affairs: »Shrinking spaces« in Israel
The contraction of democratic space, consolidation of occupation and ongoing human rights violations call for a paradigm shift in Europe′s policies More
"Buddha would have helped Myanmar's Muslims"
The Dalai Lama has spoken out for the first time about the Rohingya refugee crisis, saying Buddha would have helped Muslims fleeing violence in Buddhist-majority Myanmar.
The top Buddhist leader is the latest Nobel peace laureate to speak out against the violence, which the UN special rapporteur on human...More
Civil rights in Turkey under the spotlight
Turkeypurge.com is a small group of young Turkish journalists – the voice of a people currently suffering under an oppressive regime. The website tells the stories of those affected by Erdogan′s draconian crackdown. Some are imprisoned. Some are being tortured. And the arrests continue.More
No, Channel 4: Islam is not responsible for the Islamic State
“I am a longstanding admirer of Holland. However, the arguments he makes in his film are intellectually dishonest.” Peter Oborne, former chief political commentator of the Telegraph takes a critical...More
"We need a secular state"
"If a state claims to be Islamic and imposes a particular view of Islam, it is denying my freedom to disagree. And that is why we need a secular state," says Abdullahi An-Na'im, a leading scholar of law and Islamic jurisprudence.More
Al Jazeera facing closure
The insurgent TV network has raised political awareness across the Middle East. No wonder Qatar’s conservative enemies want it shut downMore
BBC R4 series with Jeremy Bowen: "Our man in the Middle East"
Jeremy Bowen, the BBC's Middle East editor presents a personal history of the region.More
"Disturbing the peace": Voices from the Israeli-Palestine conflict
Mixing poetic footage with first-hand accounts, Stephen Apkon's documentary, "Disturbing the Peace", attempts to unpick hatred through dialogue, telling stories from both sides of the divide and finding cause for optimism amid the longstanding anger and despair.More
Olivier Roy: "It's not Islam that drives young Europeans to jihad"
French Islam scholar Fethi Benslama: ″There is no such thing as political Islam″
According to the French psychoanalyst and Islam scholar Fethi Benslama, there is no such thing as political Islam. More
Amnesty International: "Journalism is not a crime"
Turkey has earned an accolade which holds no glory: according to the Committee to Protect Journalists, it is the biggest jailer of journalists in the world. Globally in 2016, one third of all imprisoned journalists, media workers and executives...More
Keynote address by Ussama Makdisi
Makdisi's address unpacks sectarian framing of identities and conflicts and exposes the forced dichotomies created around the concept. He gave the speech at "Sectarianism, Identity and Conflict in Islamic Contexts: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives," a conference held at George Mason University in April 2016.More