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Al Majalla provided 360 analyses of the crucial Arab summit held in Jeddah on Friday. The summit was remarkable for a variety of reasons, including the attendance of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, whose country was booted from the Arab League in 2011 following the regime’s crackdown on pro-democracy protesters.
But perhaps it was the surprise attendance of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that stole the show. Ibrahim Hamidi gave a detailed breakdown of the subtle messages delivered by the two leaders to their respective allies and enemies. The summit brought together Russian President Vladmir Putin’s ally, al-Assad, and his sworn enemy, Zelensky, in both an awkward and incredible twist of fate.
On his part, Khaled Hamadeh gave his takeaways from the summit, explaining that the Arab League which, in the past, had been criticised for not effectively addressing Arab crises, is now playing a more assertive role, while also maintaining a neutral position in international and regional conflicts.
And going all the way back to the Arab League’s inception in 1946, Sami Moubayed walks us through the key Arab summits that have taken place since then, marking important milestones along the way.
Meanwhile, Al Majalla continued with its comprehensive coverage of the Turkish elections, as the country is set for a run-off later this month. Omer Onhon gave a detailed analysis of the results and performances of alliances and politicians, highlighting the important role Turkish politician Sinan Ogan will play in deciding the country’s future.
On the ground, Shelly Kittleson spoke with Turks about their views. She wrote that while the West was seemingly shocked by Erdogan’s strong performance, few in Turkey were.
In our Opinion section, Con Coughlin wrote that despite criticisms of the election, the ability of opposition candidate Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu to force a run-off showed that Turkish democracy is alive and well.
Switching gears, Haid Haid’s opinion piece focused on recent Jordanian air strikes on Syrian drug factories. He suggested that air strikes alone won’t be sufficient enough to deal with the growing epidemic and a more comprehensive strategy needs to be considered.
In our Business & Economy section, Mohamed Sharki gave a comprehensive overview of Morocco’s new locally-made car which will hit the market very soon. He wrote that NEO’s drive into its home market at a competitive price could be a major revenue engine for Morocco’s car industry, which is currently the second biggest supplier of low-cost vehicles to EU markets.
On his part, Shujaa Albogmi highlighted the impact Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 reforms are having on the country, which has recorded a steady increase in non-oil revenues.
And finally, Toufic Chanbour tackled the expected hike in the US government borrowing limit. He laid out a series of potential and negative consequences it could have on the global financial system.
In our Culture & Social Affairs section, to commemorate the legendary late Saudi singer Talal Maddah, Shadi Alaa Aldin wrote on the icon’s role in introducing the Arab world to the Saudi music genre, while also highlighting his role as a modernising force in the country way before his time. On his part, Adel Hoshan wrote on Maddah’s unique style and musical ingenuity, which earned him the title the “Voice of the Earth”.
Arab summit brings together odd pairing: Putin's ally al-Assad and foe Zelensky
Both leaders used their platform in Jeddah to deliver subtle messages to their allies and enemies
Unpacking al-Assad and Zelenksy’s participation in the Arab Summit
Arab states will refrain from intervening in internal Arab conflicts but will help facilitate dialogue between the conflicting parties as the sole means for conflict resolution
Defending Palestine dominates agenda of first Arab summit in 1946
In part one of a two-part series, Sami Moubayed gives a historical review of key Arab summits over the years as Arab leaders grappled with consecutive wars, conflicts and uprisings
Turkey heads for run-off election with Ogan the likely kingmaker
Turkey's 64 million plus registered voters will mobilise once again for the second round which will be held on 28 MayOmer Onhon
Elections demonstrate vibrancy of democracy in TurkeyCon Coughlin
Air strikes alone won't end Syria's drug tradeHaid Haid
Learning from the realpolitik of peace agreementsWahid Abdel Maguid
Talal Maddah: A Saudi music legend and 'voice of the earth'
He was not the only Saudi singer who sang about the colours and heritage of Saudi Arabia, but he was the one that stole the hearts of its people
Morocco makes a success of its drive into the automotive industry
With a fully locally made car gearing up for its market debut, a clear industrial policy is paying dividends in what is one of Africa's most industrially developed nations. Here's how they did it.
Saudi Arabia’s economy broadens as public spending powers reform
Saudi Arabia's first-quarter budget figures reflect a steadily diversifying the economy, reducing reliance on oil as the country's main source of income, and boosting opportunities the private sector
Talal Maddah: The artist who introduced Arabs to the Saudi music genre
He has helped introduce people from all corners of the Arab world to Saudi Arabia's dialect and style, and has played a key role in the modernisation that Saudi Arabia is currently experiencing
Continuing support for Erdogan ‘shocks’ West but few in Turkey
The default assumption voiced repeatedly by both Western diplomats and Western journalists in recent months had been that Turks and the West both "want him [Erdogan] out"