Rethinking MENA’s political settlements: ‘stability’ vs accountability


Credit: POMED

In their attempts to reach political settlements among rival elites in the Middle East and elsewhere, international policymakers have repeatedly prioritized ‘stability’ over accountability, analysts Renad Mansour, Tim Eaton and Lina Khatib write for Chatham House, the London-based foreign policy think tank. The resulting settlements (or ‘elite bargains’) have instead created and perpetuated political systems that benefit those elites at the expense of citizens. Many citizens in affected countries now protest against, and demand an end to, the very settlements that were meant to solve the problem of violence.

Focusing on the examples of Iraq, Lebanon and Libya, new research shows that while such bargains have successfully reduced direct violence, they have overlooked structural forms of violence and failed to improve – and, in some cases, worsened – corruption and human development scores. The paper proposes a revised, inclusive approach to political settlements centered on increasing accountability. RTWT

Check out the Weekly Wire from the Project on Middle East Democracy (above), a partner of the National Endowment for Democracy (NED). 

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