One Year On: The Challenges of Democratic Transition in the Wake of the Arab Uprisings
Yezid Sayigh, Senior Associate, Carnegie Middle East Center, Beirut
Chair: Dr Maha Azzam, Associate Fellow, Middle East and North Africa Programme, Chatham House
The ousting of presidents-for-life in several Arab countries in 2011 removed an important obstacle to democratization. However, as the speaker will explore, changing such authoritarian systems that have been constructed over decades presents major challenges. They include: political and institutional legacies; economies distorted by crony capitalism; social strains arising from unequal development; identity politics; and the role of the armed forces and internal security agencies.