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Iranian-backed Shia militias allied with the Baghdad government also appear set to gain influence, with Sunnis worried about waning influence.

Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has called for immediate 'free' presidential and parliamentary elections, but many are suspicious about the intentions of the former hard-line president.

Russia eschews UN condemnation of Iran over Yemen missiles

The New Arab & agencies

Russia eschews UN condemnation of Iran over Yemen missiles

Russia is expected to veto a resolution that will impose sanctions on regional ally Iran for supplying weapons to Houthi rebels in Yemen

The convoluted geopolitics of the battle for Afrin

Paul Iddon

The convoluted geopolitics of the battle for Afrin

Analysis: The Kurdish-held enclave in northern Syria is coming under fire from all sides, writes Paul Iddon.

Iran's 'proxy armies' must stop: US

The New Arab

Iran's 'proxy armies' must stop: US

The US has warned that action must be taken to prevent Iran from continuing its "Hizballah-like" proxy armies to spread influence in ...

The New Arab & agencies

EU promises funds if Syria's Assad joins UN talks

The EU is seeking to leverage its aid donor role to revive stalled UN-led talks, which have achieved little over seven years of war.

James M. Dorsey

Saudi Arabia and Iran battle it out in Azerbaijan

Comment: Saudi Arabia and Iran are extending their bitter rivalry beyond the Middle East, into the Caucasus, writes James Dorsey.

The New Arab & agencies

Tillerson demands 'Iranian-backed militias withdraw from Syria'

The US diplomat voiced his concern over Iran's military presence in Syria, citing the recent confrontation between Israel and Iran as an ...

The New Arab

Tillerson: Hizballah is part of Lebanon's political process

Despite its designation as a 'terrorist group', Hizballah is part of Lebanon's political process, and the Trump administration must 'acknowledge ...

Air India plans flights to Israel through Saudi airspace

The New Arab & agencies

Air India plans flights to Israel through Saudi airspace

India is planning flights to Tel Aviv over Saudi Arabia but Riyadh officials have denied approving Air India's use of its airspace for direct ...

Bashdar Ismaeel

Regional alliance punishing Iraq's Kurds for referendum cannot last

Analysis: Determination to derail Kurdish statehood aspirations led to the emergence of a newfound Ankara-Baghdad-Tehran alliance, but this ...

Trump administration targets Hizballah's 'financial tentacles' with new sanctions

The New Arab

Trump administration targets Hizballah's 'financial tentacles' with new sanctions

The US has imposed fresh new sanctions on individuals and companies linked to Lebanon's Hizballah as part of a major new bush by the Trump ...

Investigation: Coercive 'voluntary' deportations leave refugees trapped in jail

Matt Broomfield

Investigation: Coercive 'voluntary' deportations leave refugees trapped in jail

Exclusive: A scheme to repatriate refugees whose asylum bids have been rejected amounts to bullying and bribing desperate people to return to ...

Iran opposition leader Karroubi criticises Ayatollah Khamenei's 'disastrous' rule

The New Arab & agencies

Iran opposition leader Karroubi criticises Ayatollah Khamenei's 'disastrous' rule

An Iranian opposition figure under house arrest has voiced rare criticism of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, blaming him for the ...

Kurdish autonomy is part of self-determination for all Syrians

Robin Yassin-Kassab

Kurdish autonomy is part of self-determination for all Syrians

Comment: The Syrian opposition needs Turkey's support, and has had it, but it should not back Ankara's occupation of Afrin, writes Robin ...

The New Arab & agencies

French foreign minister to visit Iran in March

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian will visit Iran in March following a cancellation of a previously planned trip due to unrest in the country.

Anthony Harwood

GCC crisis: What's behind Trump's volte-face on Qatar?

Comment: If America cannot bring the two sides to negotiate a settlement, it would be a huge blow to its standing in the region, writes Anthony ...

The New Arab

US signals open-ended military presence in Syria

Despite Trump arguing against his predecessors' military interventions while running as a candidate, his presidency has brought about an ...

The New Arab

Trump praises Qatar as UAE attempts to escalate crisis

The US president on Monday praised Doha for its counter-terrorism efforts as rival UAE sought to escalate crisis with unsubstantiated claims ...

Syrian Kurds remain vital to Russian and US interests

Bashdar Ismaeel

Syrian Kurds remain vital to Russian and US interests

Analysis: As Syria's civil war stutters towards an eventual end, the jockeying for political influence and strategic footholds is as ...

Behnam Gharagozli, Jon Roozenbeek, Adrià Salvador Palau

Ghosts of 1979: Iran protests won't bring regime change

Comment: Unlike 1979, there is no unifying force among the anti-government protesters, write Behnam Gharagozli, Jon Roozenbeek, Adrià Salvador ...

Iran protests raise questions for US and Saudi policymakers

James M. Dorsey

Iran protests raise questions for US and Saudi policymakers

Comment: These protests will likely strengthen hardline conservative factions within Iran, which Saudi and US foreign policy may seek to ...

Syrian regime, Hizballah capture areas near Israeli-occupied Golan

The New Arab

Syrian regime, Hizballah capture areas near Israeli-occupied Golan

Syrian regime and Hizballah have captured three new areas near the southern borders with Lebanon and Israel amid Israeli concerns of expanding ...

Syrian regime, Hizballah advance near border with Israel

The New Arab & agencies

Syrian regime, Hizballah advance near border with Israel

Syrian regime and Hizballah are advancing near the southern borders with Lebanon and Israel, pushing towards rebels holding out in a strategic ...

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