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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

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.

June 16, 2021

Iran
Iran’s Presidential Election: What to Know

Iran holds its presidential election on June 18, and turnout is expected to be low as the country deals with a battered economy and the ongoing pandemic. But does the Iranian president matter?

October 22, 2014

Energy and Climate Policy
U.S. Energy Exports

Calls for lifting U.S. controls on energy exports are mounting as production nears a forty-five-year high.

An oil rig in North Dakota.

June 3, 2014

Financial Markets
The Rise of Islamic Finance

After growing to a $1 trillion asset class in Muslim countries, Islamic finance is poised for an era of globalization.

A Bank Islam branch office in Malaysia

June 16, 2017

Middle East and North Africa
Modern Sunni-Shia Tensions

Iran’s Islamic revolution, which brought Shias to power in 1979, and the Sunni backlash have fueled a competition for regional dominance. This timeline highlights Sunni-Shia tensions in recent decade…

April 8, 2015

Religion
The Sunni-Shia Divide

This video is part of the Council on Foreign Relations’ InfoGuide Presentation, "The Sunni-Shia Divide."

Play

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

April 14, 2021

Somalia
Somalia's Political Crisis Demands Sustained Attention

The lower house of Somalia’s parliament has voted to postpone national elections, which have already been delayed by months, by an additional two years, leaving themselves and President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, known as Farmaajo, in place in the interim

A picture of Somali lawmakers with their hands raised, and one with her left thumb up, as they sit in the lower house of parliament.