DIALOGUE FOR MUTUAL SECURITY IN THE MIDDLE EAST

The Shaikh Group: Dialogue for Mutual Security in the Middle East

Since September 2018, The Shaikh Group has been running its Track II "Dialogue for Mutual Security in the Middle East" initiative. Supported by the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the German Federal Foreign Office, Institut Montaigne and the Policy Center for the New South, this project’s novel contribution has consisted in taking an “outside-in” approach to regional dialogue, by facilitating a series of consultations initially among former officials and senior experts from global powers - the United States, Russia, China, India and Europe (Phase I, September 2018 - August 2019).

In September 2019, the Track II transitioned into the regional phase (Phase II), with the Track's global power participants starting discussions with senior interlocutors from relevant regional states on the ideas on regional mutual security thus far developed.

Since the difficulties in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region have reached an unprecedented level of complexity and concomitant corrosive effect in the international system, there is today a need for global powers to find common ground and greater understanding between themselves first, before engaging regional parties on a long-term framework for the future. The dialogue series aims to produce tangible policy recommendations for key capitals and international stakeholders on improved governance mechanisms to address the spread of insecurity and conflict in MENA. 

The initiative will run for up to three years and consist of three phases, which will cumulatively build on each other and are focused on: Phase 1) a strategic dialogue on the interests and approaches of global powers to the MENA region; Phase 2) dialogue among these powers and key regional actors, and Phase 3) arrival at conclusions and recommendations for key international stakeholders.
 


From 26-30 October 2019, the Track II initiative partnered with the Munich Security Conference's Core Group Meetings,
which were convened in Cairo and Doha.  
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