Europe’s role in MENA conflict zones: a declining influence?

What are the key issues for European countries about their engagement in the MENA region?

Members event
17 February 2021 — 2:00PM TO 3:15PM

Europe has long-standing ties with countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. However, a year into the coronavirus crisis, Europe has turned inwards, closing its borders and focusing on internal responses to the pandemic.

The pandemic has exacerbated existing conflicts in the MENA region, affecting European geopolitical and geosecurity interests, including those of the UK. But, while the EU, has been the largest donor of humanitarian assistance to Syria, and has played an instrumental role in the Libyan conflict in its role brokering the Libyan Political Agreement, a disjointed European approach to the region recently has allowed for other international powers to gain influence.

In this discussion, the panellists explore key issues for European countries about their engagement and role in the MENA region:

  • What does Europe’s declining influence mean for its geopolitical and geosecurity interests?

  • How will the new US administration affect European policy towards Syria and Libya?

  • How will other powers like Russia and Turkey respond?

  • And has the pandemic affected the EU’s long-term capacity for conflict prevention and peacebuilding in the region?

This event is being held in partnership with the Al Sharq Forum and is part of the Europe and its Neighbourhood conference series. It is open to all Chatham House members as well as Al Sharq Forum supporters and stakeholders. Register now to share, debate and develop ideas on this critical international issue. Guests of the Al Sharq Forum, please email Sam Martin to register. 

As with all member events, questions from the audience drive the conversation.

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