Young Progressive Voices from the MENA Region Advocate for Security Through Regional Cooperation

Saliba 2020 MENA Regional Cooperation

Source: UN Women Arab States /​Flickr

Tackling security threats in the MENA region requires a holistic approach to regional cooperation. Together with the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES), we selected a distinguished group of progressive young professionals working on security issues in civil society organizations, think tanks and universities from across the Middle East and North Africa to develop policy ideas for addressing regional crises and security concerns.

In 2019, the participants came together to discuss current security issues across the region with a range of experts from think tanks, academia and political institutions. In addition, these young professionals received training on policy paper writing and presenting their analyses to decision-makers in the following year. After completing these trainings, the participants were invited to write policy papers on current security issues in their region. The policy paper topics range from regional cooperation on agricultural water management, tackling the proliferation of illicit small arms, the dilemma of maritime security in the Gulf, the chances for short-term ceasefires in current conflicts, a trust-building approach to de-escalation in the Persian Gulf, increasing access to humanitarian aid for Syrians, to improving gender representation in security services in Turkey and Israel.

All of the policy papers look at regional cooperation as a means to achieving progress toward more security and safety for the people in the region. These papers are a contribution to the often stalemated discussions on security cooperation in the Middle East. They address policy makers, think tankers as well as civil society in Europe the Middle East and beyond.


The policy papers are all available for download.