Turkey: Orchestrating Violence Beyond Borders

In late December 2019, the Tripoli based-UN backed- Government of National Accord (GNA) appealed for Turkey to intervene in Libya. As a response, the Turkish Parliament held an emergency session on January 3rd, 2020, and voted to authorize President Recep Tayep Erdogan to deploy Turkish troops to Libya. Soon after, the deployment of troops materialized. However, not only were Turkish military forces deployed but Syrian rebels from northern Syria too.

Combatting a Geopolitical Void: The EU’s Role in the Future of Iraq

Currently, the Iraqi security sector has relied on international assistance over the past years to combat terrorism within the country through capacity building, military trainings and financial assistance. With current tensions in the region, Iraq has called for a withdrawal of all foreign military troops, which could have widespread consequences that impact the future stability of the country.  


Turkey and the Weaponization of Syrian Refugees

Coercive Engineered Migration corresponds to an attempt from a challenger to obtain political, economic or military concessions from a target through the instrumentalization of a migration “crisis”. It generally appears as an asymmetric weapon by a weak actor against a stronger one and may, in some cases, be considered as a punishment strategy. Usually the favorite target in this exercise of coercive diplomacy is defined by a democratic mode of governance.


Iran's response to Soleimani’s assassination: What implications?

Tensions are escalating in the Middle East, as Iran and the United States have reached the most critical point in their relationship since the hostage crisis in 1979. As promised, Tehran did not let the assassination of General Soleimani go unpunished. After three days of mourning, which were punctuated by numerous threats of retaliation, Iran has finally decided to take its revenge. 


Welcome Letter to EU Leaders

BIC President, Ambassador Marc Otte, welcomes new EU leaders with words of advice on three key issues that will shape an audacious agenda for a stronger and smarter Global Europe, and ensure that the EU demonstrates true leadership in an unpredictable geopolitical arena with emerging actors and new challenges.



Dear EU Leaders,


Qasem Soleimani: Iran’s Strongman Killed

On Friday, January 3rd, 2020 the United States launched a drone strike that killed top Iranian military official, Lieutenant General, Qassim Soleimani near the Baghdad airport in Iraq.[1] Soleimani was head of the Iranian Quds Force, the military intelligence unit in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).[2] Soleimani was killed along with Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy commander of the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF, Hashd al-Shaabi), which is an Iranian-backed Iraqi mi

Operation Peace Spring: Delusion in Turkey’s Objectives

Turkey announced its plan to engineer a ‘safe zone’ in northern Syria, an initiative that, according to Turkey, mainly emanates from the country’s discontent from the presence of armed Syrian Democratic Forces’ (SDF) on its southern borders. At their essence, safe zones are employed by states to pursue politically motivated objectives. In the case of northern Syria, Turkey’s ambitions go beyond pushing the Kurds away from its border.

Power of the People: Sectarian Rhetoric and Iran’s Role in Fueling Division in Iraq

Ongoing protests in Iraq have once again fueled discussion of sectarian rhetoric that has been used to describe the evolving situation in Iraq for decades.  In a post-Hussein, post-2003 United States invasion Iraq, sectarianism has been coined as a term to describe widespread historical issues throughout the country. After the US invasion of 2003, the fragile government of Iraq fell victim to deep divisions that allowed Iran to advance their influence in Iraq, in a time of weakness.

Leftover Landmine Kills School Children in Deir Ez-Zor: The Aftermath of the Islamic State

Submitted by Elisa Cherry on Wed, 12/04/2019 - 11:56

Earlier this week at Ibn Sina School, in al-Taybah, in the eastern Syrian province of Deir Ez-Zor a landmine exploded in the school courtyard.[1] Five children were reportedly killed from the attack and another 17 were injured.[2] The death toll could rise in the days following the attack, due to the number of children still in critical condition, according to hospital officials.[3] Unfortunately, incidents like this are not uncommon in many areas liberated from the Isla