In this week’s Roundup, as world leaders meet in New York, we look at the importance of understanding extremist ideology, and how the chaos of the conflict in Yemen has helped al-Qaeda’s branch in the country.
In this week’s Roundup, we examine how ISIS is using the education system in the territories under its control to inculcate its ideology in the next generation, and explore the ideological underpinning of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.
In the Roundup this week, we look at the justifications ISIS provides for its destruction of ancient sites, including the Baalshamin Temple in Palmyra, as well as the plight of Assyrians in Iraq who are targeted by ISIS.
In the Roundup this week, we look at the context of Monday's suicide attack in Turkey, a spate of murders of Muslim religious leaders in Uganda, and the importance of data in responding to jihadi violence.
ISIS recently accepted pledges of allegiance from jihadis in the Russian Caucasus, declaring the creation of 'Caucasus Province.' Mubaraz Ahmed looks at what this means for Russia and the rest of Europe.
In the Roundup this week, we look at the strength of Hamas in Gaza, how ISIS gained a foothold in Egypt, the presence of Islamist groups in the Sahel, and the threat of extremists to the Philippines peace process.
To view the destruction of ancient sites and artefacts as the irrational acts of a death cult is to miss the point. Like its policies of genocide and enslavement, this is driven by clear goals and religious justifications.
Egypt's Sinai region has witnessed a gradual escalation in levels of violence since 2011, mainly at the hands of the ISIS affiliated Ansar Beit al-Maqdis. Peter Welby explores the factors behind the group's rise.
In the Roundup this week we look at tensions between ISIS and the Afghan Taliban, the growing divide between peaceful and conflict-riven nations, and how poor governance can open the door to extremist groups.
In the Roundup this week we draw together analysis on ISIS' latest propaganda magazine, a report on religion, conflict and the state in Iran, and how Hindu nationalism has shaped Pakistan's development.
The latest edition of ISIS' propaganda magazine, Dabiq, includes an unapologetic defence of its actions, including the sexual slavery of Yezidi women, and emphasises a 'duty' to migrate to the 'caliphate.'
In this week's Roundup we look at what the latest message from ISIS says about its ideological evolution, concerns over 'religious protection' laws in Myanmar, and the vulnerability of religious minorities in Pakistan.
In this week's Roundup we look at the threat from ISIS in Malaysia, the origins of Mali's Islamist and separatist insurgency, and the security threat posed by Kenya's closing of Dadaab, the world's largest refugee camp.
In the Roundup this week we look at the threats to religious freedom from religiously motivated movements, the state of regional cooperation against Boko Haram, and responses to the jihadi threat in Lebanon.
In the Roundup this week we look at the threat Tunisia faces from jihadi networks, four years of Syrian civil war, and February's murder of Copts in Libya in the context of the history of persecution of the Coptic church.
In the Roundup this week we look at ISIS' recent destruction of Iraq's pre-Islamic history, the emergence of jihadi groups in Libya as a 'third force' in the conflict, and the role of Jabhat al-Nusra in Syria's civil war.
In the Roundup this week we look at an account of life inside al-Qaeda, the state of religious minorities in Iraq, and efforts to stop jihadi groups becoming involved in the conflict in the Central African Republic.
Four years after the revolution, as Tunisia completes its transition, this briefing note looks at the successes and challenges of the country's integration of Islamist politics into a democratic system.
After Wednesday's appalling assault on the offices of Charlie Hebdo, this week's Roundup draws together analysis on the Salafi-jihadi current behind it, and the need to build effective counter-narratives.
In this week's Roundup, we look at whether Friday's horrific bomb attack in Nigeria represents a change in the pattern of violence in the country. We also highlight how the recently released 2014 Global Terrorism Index can help to inform policy makers.
The attack on Kano’s Central Mosque on Friday 28 November 2014, while vicious on a scale rarely seen previously, is not necessarily a turning point in the ongoing battle to control Nigeria's religious narrative.
In the Roundup this week, Professor Philip Jenkins argues for an understanding of contemporary conflicts that draws from historical context, and Ambassador John Campbell considers the multiple political challenges facing Nigeria.
In the Roundup this week we examine Abu-Bakr al-Baghdadi's recent audio-tape as well as the importance of political candidates and religious leaders in ensuring peaceful elections in Nigeria. We also highlight rising tensions in Jerusalem after recent brutal attacks, sectarian violence in Pakistan, and the Institute for Economics and Peace's new Global Terrorism Index released this week.
High tensions continue to develop from controversy around the issue of access to the Temple Mount / al-Haram al-Sharif in Jerusalem. The Centre on Religion & Geopolitics looks at the significance of the site, and its symbolic importance to conflict in the region.
On Thursday 13th November an audio recording of ISIS leader Abu-Bakr al-Baghdadi was released by the group on social media networks. The Centre on Religion & Geopolitics identifies nine points that reveal the strategy and objectives of ISIS, including subtext, religious significance of the language and the effect that Muslim scholarly criticisms are having.
In the Roundup this week we feature our new data section, highlighting the importance of assessing current data alongside the best expert analysis on religion and conflict. We interview Brian Grim, President of the Religious Freedom & Business Foundation, on the importance of data in improving policy. Also featured is a backgrounder on the insurgency in Egypt led by the Salafi-jihadi group Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, commentary on the latest events in Myanmar and articles on how neighbouring countries are being affected by the growth of ISIS.
In a week that has seen violent outbursts in Jerusalem and the lynching of Christians in Pakistan under blasphemy laws, the Centre on Religion & Geopolitics examines these issues and publishes interviews with Brian Grim on the importance of data in improving policy, Dr. Usama Hasan on the divergent theological arguments of ISIS, and a situation report from Jason Pack on Libya.
After a week that has seen Tunisia elect a secularist party, Egypt declare a three-month state of emergency after a bomb attack in Sinai, and Libya continuing to be rocked by fighting we bring together expert commentary and analysis on religion and geopolitics in this week's Roundup. This includes a wide-ranging interview with Jonathan Powell, the British Prime Minister's Special Envoy to the Libyan Transition, who speaks about the role of religion in peace negotiations in Libya and the wider region.
The Roundup this week features several articles analysing the religious ideology underpinning ISIS propaganda. We also look at the alleged ceasefire between Nigerian authorities and Boko Haram, the increasing use of blasphemy laws in Pakistan and the challenges of inter-religious discord in the pluralistic societies of Indonesia and Myanmar.
In this Briefing Note, the Centre on Religion & Geopolitics examines the latest issue of the ISIS magazine, Dabiq. The magazine serves a dual-purpose: in making claims to Islamic legitimacy, ISIS seeks to rally the group’s supporters to its cause and in boasting of its victories, threaten its critics. We look at the ways in which these claims fail to stand up to scrutiny.
This week's Roundup discusses a number of perspectives on ISIS, including religious counter-arguments, and historical and political trends in the region, which have led to the current situation. We also look at positive counter-narratives to division and oppression in the Indian sub-continent and Lebanon, and the importance of education for security.
As more partners join air strikes against ISIS strongholds in Iraq and Syria, this Week's Roundup draws together analysis on the group's increasing influence in Africa and the Maghreb, as well as Pakistan and Afghanistan. Meanwhile we look at the continuing violence in Yemen and how this has affected the country's vulnerable population.
The threat posed by ISIS is determining policy for governments across the Middle East; we look at some of the complex issues this raises. Elsewhere, we examine the growing power of militant groups in Yemen and Nigeria and growing threats to religious freedom in South East Asia.
With the United Nations Security Council voting unanimously on 24 September to adopt a resolution emphasising the urgent need to tackle foreign fighters associated with ISIS and affiliated groups, the Centre on Religion & Geopolitics provides an examination of the complex religious aspects of ISIS and the wider conflict.
As the 69th United Nations General Assembly meets this week in New York and the Security Council agrees a resolution on foreign fighters and countering violent extremism, the Centre on Religion & Geopolitics has produced a Briefing Note on the religious aspects of the ISIS conflict. On this theme, we also look at analysis on ISIS and Kurdish fighters in border towns and the new ISIS-affiliated group in Algeria. We also explore the Houthi occupation of the Yemeni capital Sana'a, a power sharing agreement that ends six months of political paralysis in Afghanistan and China's incarceration of Uighur academic Ilham Tohti under separatist charges.
As world leaders discuss options for military intervention in Iraq and Syria, UN peacekeepers arrive in the Central African Republic, a sign of the ever worsening conflict in the country. This week’s Roundup also highlights analysis on the religious elements of a number of conflict situations in Asia and Africa.
As President Barack Obama gives his speech on the American strategy for responding to ISIS, we examine the evolving characteristics of jihadi movements, and escalating religious conflicts in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Nigeria, Afghanistan and India, as well as new developments in existing contentious religious situations in Pakistan, Myanmar, the Philippines and Indonesia.
World leaders gathering at the NATO summit will discuss the ongoing threat from ISIS. This week we take a look at the factionalism of the global jihadi movement, the effect it is having on religious conflict around the world and the ongoing conflicts in Nigeria, Central African Republic and Thailand.
In this Briefing Note, we take a look at Libya and the recent escalations in a conflict which has continued since the uprising against Colonel Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. We explore the domestic security challenges, the political deadlock and look at the international aspects of the conflict.
As an indefinite ceasefire agreement is reached between Israel and Hamas, we also look at the developing situation in Libya, how Boko Haram continue to expand their operations in Nigeria and the worsening of the political deadlock in Afghanistan.
Amid worldwide revulsion at the execution of journalist James Foley by ISIS, this week's Roundup examines the arguments raging about the sectarian drivers of the Middle East's conflict and the options for defeating groups like ISIS.
As the global backlash against ISIS' atrocities grows, in this week's Roundup we look at how the militant group is exploiting sectarian division to legitimise their brutal violence. We also focus on rising religious violence across China, and the country's attempts to nationalise religious practice.
The plight of the Yezidi in northern Iraq demonstrates that ISIS' persecution of religious minorities has reached new levels of brutality. The Centre on Religion & Geopolitics considers the extreme understanding of Sharia that they use to justify their actions.
This week's Roundup brings together a number of analysis pieces about the persecution of religious minorities, particularly ISIS's treatment of Yezidis and Christians in Iraq. In Kenya, terror attacks are on the rise, and we feature an article examining the increasing influence of al-Shabaab in the country. We also look ahead to the presidential election this weekend in Turkey, and highlight a report into the ongoing dispute surrounding the Afghanistan election result.
As violence continues on the ground in Gaza, this week's Roundup looks at the conflict and its effect on the wider region. Meanwhile, with the world media's attention elsewhere, fighting between rival militant groups in Libya worsens, with no end to the crisis in sight.
As election results are announced this week in Indonesia, we release our Situation Report on the country, with a commentary examining the risks to pluralism. Meanwhile, the conflict in Israel and Gaza continues to escalate; David Aaronovitch argues there is a solution, but it depends on negotiations without preconditions from either side. Also in the Roundup, analysis of the ongoing conflicts in Syria, Iraq, Myanmar and the Central African Republic.
This week's Roundup covers how the Indonesian elections have brought religion to the fore at an interesting time for the country. We also have some analysis on how religious groups are coming together in north east Syria; a backgrounder on Nigeria looking at the religious context of the country, and reports on the situation in Israel/ Palestine.
The fighting in Iraq and Syria continues to dominate the news, and this week's roundup pulls together the best commentary and analysis on that. Elsewhere, we have two takes on communal violence in India, and Buddhist militarisation in Myanmar.
Events in the Middle East and Iraq continue to make headlines and we feature the latest commentary on this. The Roundup this week also covers significant stories that we have followed recently: the continuing conflict in Myanmar, where we have a situation report and commentary; we focus again on Boko Haram after further attacks in Nigeria; and we include reports on renewed discussions amid hopes for the recent peace agreement in the Philippines.
Iraq continues to dominate this week's Digest, with events there reverberating around the region. We include a backgrounder on ISIS, and a report into the way that the group uses social media as an auxiliary to its military campaign.
Events in Iraq this week have been dramatic and have developed rapidly. We focus on this in the Roundup as well as keeping focussed on security situation in Nigeria and look ahead to the run-off in the Afghanistan election.
Egypt, the most populous country in the Middle East and North Africa, went to the polls this week. We look at various aspects of the election and the situation facing the new President in a special section.
This week has seen a lot of interest in Boko Haram. The Roundup includes a 'primer' on the organisation, commissioned for the Centre on Religion and Geopolitics, and coverage of a massacre of Muslims in Assam.
There is special section of this week's Roundup devoted to Iraq, given the importance of the 30 April 2014 elections. Two other stories also particularly stood out to us; the ongoing crisis in Syria and the horror of the 230 abducted school girls in Nigeria.
There has been huge international reaction to Tony Blair's speech this week on tackling extremism. There is an urgent need for well-informed debate and analysis of conflict situations involving religion. We highlight several examples this week.
This week's Roundup highlights the importance of social media to the evolution of recent conflicts, pointing out a groundbreaking study by the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence.
The perception of conflicts in the Middle East, dealing with religiously motivated extremism, interest around the Indian general election and continuing concerns in the Central African Republic all feature in this week's Digest.
There are a number of countries in which religion is an important factor in the choices people make in going to the polls. This is true of various countries with elections at this time. We look at this and more in this week's Roundup.
In this week's Roundup, the Financial Times takes an in-depth look at Islam in Malaysia, the New York Times profiles a Sunni activist in Saudi Arabia campaigning for the rights of the Shia minority, and the influence of Al-Qaeda is assessed from two different viewpoints.
In this week's Roundup, Aron Lund profiles Michael Aflaq, the founder of Baathism, the Financial Times reports jihadist chatter on the Crimean crisis, and various writers mark the third year of the Syrian civil war
In this week's Roundup, President Obama talks about the Middle East, the Economist looks at the role of the Orthodox churches in the Ukrainian crisis, Reuters reports the spread of the plight of the Rohingya community of Myanmar to Malaysia, and Foreign Policy examines the history of ethnic conflict in China
The events in Ukraine do not fit the mould of a conventional religious conflict (if, indeed, there is ever such a thing). But concerns have already been raised about the way Jews have become a convenient scapegoat.
The purpose of this roundup is not just to bring you commentary and analysis from the usual reputable places, but also to alert you to blogs and news sources that you might not have considered. In this week's roundup we recommend several that look at the Middle East and the Muslim world.
One role of the Religion and Geopolitics site is to provide readers with a regular roundup of the best commentary from around the world. These articles are reflective of the range of opinion we shall cover on this site, and though they will not always directly engage with the subject of religion and geopolitics, they will hopefully inform the debate.
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