“Stratfor” Center for Strategic and Security Studies has published its annual report on the outlook of the global policies process during 2016. The report dealt with the anticipated upcoming political trends in the Middle East, and saw that Russia will be the number one player there considering the role it is currently playing in Syria. According to the report, Moscow will not back from its partnership with the Syrian state particularly in terms of fighting terrorism and weakening the Islamic State “ISIS”. This partnership will push Russia to face all the forces that are working to target the Syrian state and thus, it will try to derail Turkey’s hostile military plans against Syria by increasing the Russian military presence in the Syrian territories and the increased use of air force over northern Syria, as Russia can revive its ties with the Kurdish factions as a pressure tool against Ankara.
As for the role of Iran, the report said that Tehran will work alongside Moscow to maintain the steadfastness of the Syrian state and to support it in the fight against terrorism, and will work to use the divisions in the Iraqi Kurdish areas to fight Turkey’s efforts aiming at strengthening Ankara’s ties in economy and energy in northern Iraq on the account of Baghdad.
In light of all this, the report expected “ISIS” to face noticeable losses this year in Syria and Iraq, which will push its leaders to launch more attacks in the west and to promote attacks especially in Arab Maghreb, West Africa and the Arabian Peninsula as Al-Qaeda groups there have closer links.
About the situation in Egypt, the report said that the constant terrorist threat in Sinai to the Egyptian state will push it to deepen its security relation with Russia, who can help in fighting the terrorist groups and halting their expansion.
As for the situation in Yemen, the Saudi alliance’s resolve to attempt incursion at the heart of the mountainous nature of Yemen will expose the invading forces to further losses in equipment and lives, while ISIS’s increasing tendencies in Libya to launch attacks outside the Libyan borders will lead to more foreign interference in the country, despite the fact that this intervention will be limited, according to the report, to air strikes and the local forces support to undermine the said group.
- Source (( Ugarit Studies Website)).