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    Nathan Beauchamp-Mustafaga: Bargaining over North Korea

    29 May 2013.  Tensions have subsided on the Korean peninsula since Pyongyang withdrew its Musadan missiles from its east-coast launch site earlier this month, and the US and China have turned their attention to more pressing issues. But the next time North Korea increases tensions, the United States will again look to China to rein in its ally. And Beijing might look for concessions in return, writes IISS’s Nathan Beauchamp-Mustafaga for the China–US Focus...

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    Christian Le Miere: An exercise in deterrence

    29 May 2013.  By Christian Le Miere, Senior Fellow for Naval Forces and Maritime Security Although the Shangri-La Dialogue will hold much of the Institute’s – and international – attention over the coming week, the IISS will remain active on other issues. Yesterday, the IISS’ Bahrain office held the NATO Gulf Strategic Dialogue, bringing together a range of practitioners and academics, and in just under a week the Geo-Economics and Strategy Programme will run...

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    Sanjaya Baru: India and Japan: A confluence of interests

    28 May 2013.  By Dr Sanjaya Baru, Director for Geo-economics and Strategy India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh arrives in Tokyo this week for what may well be his most important foreign visit in his second term in office. The visit’s importance derives as much from the particular economic interests of India and Japan, as both economies seek to boost growth, trade and investment, as it does from the realisation that they must work together to temper China’s...

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    Nigel Inkster: Obama presses 'reset' button for war on terror

    24 May 2013.  By Nigel Inkster, Director, Transnational Threats and Political Risk In his national security speech on 23 May, President Obama may have focused on the specific issues of the Guantanamo detention centre and drone strikes, but he also used the speech to set out a new approach to national security and counter-terrorism that his administration has been working towards for the past four years. This speech could mark the point at which the US...

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    Pierre Noel: The future of oil

    23 May 2013.  The increase in US oil and natural gas production could have a dramatic effect on world energy markets, according to Dr Pierre Noel, Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Senior Fellow for Economic and Energy Security at IISS–Asia. Dr Noel appeared on CNN yesterday to discuss the future of the global oil market, the effect of sanctions against Iran, and new figures released by the International Energy Agency indicating increased oil and gas production in the United States. ‘US...

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    Suvi Dogra: India's quest for Arctic ice

    21 May 2013.  By Suvi Dogra, Research and Liaison Officer, Geo-economics and Strategy Programme From the Antarctic to the Arctic? Over 30 years ago, India surprised the world with its expedition to the Antarctic. It may have surprised once again by securing observer status at the Arctic Council – a grouping of Arctic States (Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the US). For months, the Arctic Council has been debating the issue of admitting...

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    How Iran’s Syria policy is hurting its regional popularity

    21 May 2013.  By Dina Esfandiary, Research Associate, Non-proliferation and Disarmament Program and Islam Al Tayeb, Research Analyst, IISS-Middle East These days, there are not many things that Arabs agree on. In fact, it may be fair to say they agree to disagree more often than not when it comes to regional policy. But Iran, once the darling of the Arab Street, is finding both popular and government opinion turning against it. And at the heart...

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    Mona Moussavi: Rafsanjani, the accidental reformist

    17 May 2013.  By Mona Moussavi, Editorial assistant This year’s Iranian presidential election race got a lot more interesting last Saturday when former president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani registered his candidacy just minutes before the deadline. The move transforms the race to replace Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who cannot stand in June’s poll after serving two full terms. Rafsanjani has a turbulent relationship with Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei. And despite being a conservative, he is attractive to...

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    Kiran Hassan: A ‘naya’ (new) Pakistan?

    17 May 2013.  By Kiran Hassan, Research assistant, South Asia Programme Can a third-time prime minister rescue a nation in trouble? This is a question being asked about Nawaz Sharif since his party won the most number of votes in historic elections in Pakistan last weekend. The poll – in which one elected Pakistani government succeeded another for the first time since independence in 1947 – leaves Sharif and his Pakistan Muslim League–N (PML–N) in charge...

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    Sanjaya Baru: Rio's man takes WTO reins

    15 May 2013.  Sanjaya Baru’s most recent column in the Indian Express focuses on Brazil’s Roberto Carvalho de Azevedo, who has just been announced as the next director general of the World Trade Organisation (WTO). Azevedo will be the first Latin American in the job when he takes over from Pascal Lamy on 1 September. Baru, the IISS director for geo-economics, says that the media stereotyped the Brazilian Azevedo as the voice of protectionism and of the...

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