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December 17, 2021

Middle East and North Africa
Understanding Sharia: The Intersection of Islam and the Law

Sharia guides the personal religious practices of Muslims worldwide, but whether it should influence modern legal systems remains a subject of intense debate.

People attend Friday prayers at the Wazir Khan mosque in Lahore, Pakistan.

September 15, 2021

Afghanistan
The Taliban in Afghanistan

The Taliban have returned to power in Afghanistan twenty years after their ouster by U.S. troops, sparking concerns that they will impose harsh rule, neglect to provide basic services, and abuse huma…

A Taliban fighter holds a gun and walks past a beauty salon with images of women painted over.

August 17, 2021

Palestinian Territories
What Is Hamas?

The Palestinian armed group has struggled to govern Gaza. Yet, it remains committed to resisting Israel and shows little desire to reconcile with Palestinian leadership in the West Bank.

Gun-toting Hamas militants ride a vehicle amid a massive crowd of the group's supporters

May 19, 2021

Somalia
Al-Shabab

Al-Shabab remains capable of carrying out massive attacks in Somalia and surrounding countries despite a long-running African Union offensive against the Islamist terrorist group. 

Al-Shabab in Somalia

February 19, 2020

Middle East and North Africa
The Arab League

Founded as a loose confederation of states in 1945, the Arab League has struggled to overcome dysfunction and disunity among its members.

Flag of Arab League member states accompany the league's seal

June 13, 2006

Terrorism and Counterterrorism
Abu Hamza al-Muhajir, Zarqawi’s Mysterious Successor (aka Abu Ayub al-Masri)

Five days after U.S. forces killed al-Qaeda in Iraq leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the group announced his successor, the unknown Abu Hamza al-Muhajir. Speculation abounds about the man and the signifi…

April 23, 2021

United Kingdom
Moving Past the Troubles: The Future of Northern Ireland Peace

The Good Friday Agreement has dampened sectarian tensions and brought stability to Northern Ireland, but Brexit border arrangements and growing dissatisfaction are throwing the region’s hard-won gain…

Northern Ireland

July 1, 2020

Trade
NAFTA and the USMCA: Weighing the Impact of North American Trade

President Trump reached a deal with Canada and Mexico to restructure the North American Free Trade Agreement, hoping a new trilateral accord will reinvigorate the U.S. manufacturing sector.  

Mexican commercial trucks cross into the United States.

September 30, 2011

Terrorism and Counterterrorism
Threat of Homegrown Islamist Terrorism

An increase in terror incidents involving Islamic radicals who are U.S. citizens is vexing law enforcement officials and posing new questions about the roots of their radicalization.

March 1, 2021

China
China’s Repression of Uyghurs in Xinjiang

More than a million Muslims have been arbitrarily detained in China’s Xinjiang region. The reeducation camps are just one part of the government’s crackdown on Uyghurs.

An ethnic Uyghur shopkeeper works next to a Chinese flag at his shop on June 29, 2017 in the old town of Kashgar, in the far western Xinjiang province, China.