AMU faculty chairs session at international webinar

ALIGARH  : “The political agenda of the Abraham Accord between Israel, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, Sudan, and Morocco, signed between August and December, 2020, normalizing diplomatic relations, was largely to contain Iran’s influence in the region by introducing Israeli counter influences and the accord is not only a win for Israel and its people, it is telling of a marked shift away from the control of Saudi Arabia over other gulf states”, said Professor Mohammad Gulrez, Department of West Asian and North African Studies, Aligarh Muslim University.

He was delivering inaugural address in the two day International webinar on “Global Power Transition and Evolving Regional Architecture in West Asia: Iranian and Indian Perspective” organized by the Centre  of West Asian Studies, School of International Studies, JNU, New Delhi. He was invited to chair the session on “Abraham Accord or Discord in the Region”.

Professor Gulrez highlighted the volatile geopolitics of West Asia and the unstable balance of power in the aftermath of the 2011 uprisings in the Arab world. He said the US administration’s rejection of the 2015 nuclear deal is to be seen as a catalyst in influencing the political relations between Israel and the Arab states around the Persian Gulf.

He pointed out that in this scenario, India will have to play a very delicate and balancing role between the Arab Gulf and Israel as about 8.5 million Indians reside in Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, and 55 percent of remittances into India comes alone from this region. India also imports nearly two-thirds of India’s hydrocarbon supply from the GCC countries.

“India has welcomed the establishment of diplomatic relations between the UAE and Israel, calling both its strategic partners. Nonetheless, it has also made clear that it would continue to support the cause of Palestine,” he added.

However, in order to ensure fool proof energy security, India must build special ties with the countries of the region, including Saudi Arabia, other members of six GCC states as well as Iran with whom it has long lasting cultural and economic relations, added Professor Gulrez.

The webinar was inaugurated by H.E. Dr. Ali Chegani, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Iran and keynote address was given by Prof. Girjesh Pant, Former Vice Chancellor, GSS University and Doon University.

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