Recording: Seeking Stability? The Foreign Policies of Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Qatar

A panel discussion about ongoing regional developments in the Middle East, in light of the war between Israel and Hamas, and building on Dr Tobias Borck’s recent book on the foreign policies of Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Qatar.

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The attack by Hamas against Israel on 7 October and the war that is now following has opened a new chapter in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but it also has significant implications for the wider Middle East region. Until 7 October, the main trend in the region appeared to be one of de-escalation and the normalisation of bilateral relations. The current war, and the widespread concerns that it could escalate into a wider regional conflagration, once again highlight the fragility of the evolving regional order and raises the question of what stability in the Middle East could look like.

In this event, Ambassador Jonathan R. Cohen, RUSI Distinguished Fellow, former US Ambassador to Egypt and the UN, will chair a panel discussion with: Dr Tobias Borck, Senior Research Fellow for Middle East Security Studies at RUSI; Dr Louise Kettle, RUSI Associate Fellow and Assistant Professor of International Relations at the University of Nottingham; and Michael Stephens, RUSI Associate Fellow.

The discussion will build on Dr Tobias Borck’s latest book, Seeking Stability Amidst Disorder: The Foreign Policies of Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Qatar, published by Hurst in October 2023. The book traces the foreign policies of these three Gulf Arab states during the 2010s, focusing particularly on their diverging and often competing conceptions of regional stability. The panellists will consider what the Israel-Hamas war means for the Gulf monarchies and other states across the region, and reflect on what this means for the UK’s policy towards the Middle East and its relationships with the Gulf states.


Dr Tobias Borck

Senior Associate Fellow

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