Iran’s Shanghai dream

  • Author: Kevjn Lim
  • Published: 27 July 2016

Tehran has enjoyed observer status in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) since 2005, but has repeatedly pressed its case for full membership. The organisation’s two centres of power disagree over Iran’s position: Moscow supports Iranian accession but Beijing seemingly opposes such a move. Iran shares with the SCO the ambition to challenge US dominance and the Western-led order. For Iran, the SCO is also the closest it has to an international defence bulwark, since it is not a member of any other regional security organisation. Read more

Iran seen from Beijing

  • Author: Kevjn Lim
  • Published: 16 June 2015

China views Iran as a central element in its much-touted Silk Road Economic Belt, which aims to extend Beijing’s influence overland through Central Asia to the Persian Gulf and Europe. This article for the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, Open Briefing analyst Kevjn Lim discusses Iran’s importance to China, including the geostrategic Iran plays as China’s most convenient non-Russian access route to open waters and the only east-west/north-south intersection for Central Asian trade. Read more

Transnational organised crime monthly briefing, June 2015: Australian Crime Commission highlights links between terrorism and organised crime

  • Source: Intelligence unit
  • Filed: 11 June 2015

Monthly intelligence briefing on transnational organised crime from Open Briefing. This month: the Australian Crime Commission has highlighted the links between terrorism and organised crime; the World Health Organisation has called for an end to the global illicit tobacco trade; the Criminal Justice Inspectorate of Northern Ireland has reported on how organised crime groups are becoming increasingly involved with ‘waste crime’; and more. Read more

Transnational organised crime monthly briefing, February 2015: Spotlight on Asia and Pacific

  • Source: Intelligence unit
  • Filed: 13 February 2015

Monthly intelligence briefing on transnational organised crime from Dr Mary Young. This month’s spotlight on Asia and the Pacific includes details of efforts to tackle transnational organised crime gangs, which are to blame for the increase in environmental crime in Asia. Read more

Philippine military steps up counter-insurgency campaigns against Abu Sayyaf and Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters

  • Source: Blog
  • Filed: 16 January 2015

The Philippine military has continued its campaign against Islamist insurgency, particularly against the militant group Abu Sayyaf, where it has made considerable progress. The military had reduced the intensity of operations against other groups leading up to Christmas and ahead of Pope Francis’ visit to the Catholic-majority country on 15 January. Read more

Stalled hope? The resource conflict risk to Myanmar’s political and economic transition

  • Author: Scott Hickie
  • Published: 3 November 2014

In 2011, Myanmar’s quasi-civilian government initiated one of the most ambitious economic and political transformation campaigns of the last 50 years. The reformist agenda has the potential to steer Myanmar away from insecurity and economic stagnation. But it will be difficult to leverage significant endowments of natural resources to achieve sustainable security, lasting political settlements with ethnic states and economic growth that supports human development. As such, this briefing paper assesses the trajectory and significance of resource conflict risks and threat multipliers in Myanmar. Read more

India: Jostling for geopolitical control in Afghanistan

  • Author: Shazad Ali
  • Published: 27 March 2014

In this article co-published with openDemocracy, Open Briefing contributing analyst Shazad Ali argues that the international community has somewhat ignored India’s role in Afghanistan’s future, which, in fact, will be pivotal as US forces drawdown in the country by the end of the year. Read more

The Papua New Guinea solution: Competitive cruelty and strategic folly

  • Source: Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainability
  • Filed: 7 August 2013

Kevin Rudd’s announcement that asylum seekers arriving by sea will be detained in Papua New Guinea and never settled in Australia may be politicking of the worse kind but it is also likely to undermine the already limited chances of sustainable peace in Papua New Guinea. Read more


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