Conservative forces in Iran see their more moderate counterparts, headed by President Hassan Rouhani, as a danger to the status quo and their hold on power. The conservatives have used the recent missile tests to undermine Rouhani’s standing with the West.
While the potential for conflict between India and China is low, a combination of regional competition and water-sharing tension could still threaten regional stability. Improved communication and co-operation would reduce the potential for conflict.
Indonesia and Malaysia are becoming increasingly important to political developments in South-East Asia. Both countries can play an important role in delegitimising, and offering a counter-narrative to, extremist groups in the region.
Indonesia is not water scarce as it has enough water to satisfy the needs of its population and economy. Uneven distribution, poor management and a lack of infrastructure, however, have left parts of the country with insufficient access to water. Without considerable investment, water security in Indonesia will remain tenuous and subject to rapid deterioration.
The Indian Navy’s Maritime Security Strategy document 2015 (titled ‘Ensuring Secure Seas: Indian Maritime Security Strategy’) is a precursor of India’s evolving maritime strategic thought and its proposed force posture. Together, they form important spokes in the wheel of New Delhi’s politico-military strategy.
Indonesia has long sought to restore its self-sufficiency in key agricultural commodities and has embarked on an infrastructure development programme that could go some way to boosting market access for domestic producers. This is unlikely to be enough to guarantee future food security and it will continue to depend on foreign markets.
Groundwater usage is increasing and it is the main source of water for much of Australia’s dry interior, even as recent research suggests that replenishment rates may be slower than previously thought.
The headwaters of six of Asia’s major rivers begin on the Tibetan Plateau. It is crucial that China and the countries downstream co-operate to ensure freshwater supplies for all. Dwindling water sources in the transboundary rivers of the Tibetan Plateau threaten water security and create a high potential for geopolitical conflict in the region.
Saudi Arabia faces a raft of internal and external challenges that could collectively bring down the House of Saud.