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  • Position : Chairman of the Executive Board
  • Affiliation : PIR Center
  • Affiliation : Director of OSCE Academy
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International Security Index iSi decreased to 2773 points. Buzhinsky, Dunay comment events of the week.

30.07.2013

MOSCOW, JULY 30, 2013. PIR PRESS Egypt is on the verge of civil war. There are no reasons to count on possibility that the Muslim Brotherhood will yeld the power, which was gained democratically. After decades of prohibition it is hardly possible. Following the first shock of the rapid disposal of Mohammed Mursi by the military authorities, the Islamists began to rebound and already declare their readiness to defend their rights by force of arms”, - PIR Center Senior Vice President, Lieutenant-General (Retired), Evgeny Buzhinsky

The new weekly International Security Index iSi was published in Kommersant (in Russian).

During the week of July 22-29, 2013, the International Security Index iSi decreased to 2773 points.  In Syria, continued fightings between the army and the rebels. The opposition held a meeting with representatives of the UN Security Council to garner international support. In Iraq, big group of jihadists escaped from the prison of Abu Ghraib and headed to Syria to fight against Bashar al-Assad. In Tunisia, mass protests after the murder of opposition leader Mohammed al-Brahmi broke out. In Egypt, continued violent clashes of supporters of Islamists with police. Egypt's army launched Operation Desert Storm to eliminate militants in northern Sinai. Terrorist acts were  committed in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq and Egypt. China's military violated the border with India and invaded in the state of Uttarakhand. In Spain, as a result of a train crash 80 people were killed.

Comments on the week's events by members of the International Expert Group of the PIR Center 

Evgeny Buzhinsky (Russia), PIR Center Senior Vice President, Lieutenant General (Retired)  by phone from Moscow: Egypt is on the verge of civil war. There are no reasons to count on possibility that the Muslim Brotherhood will yeld the power, which was gained democratically. After decades of prohibition it is hardly possible. Following the first shock of the rapid disposal of Mohammed Mursi by the military authorities, the Islamists began to rebound and already declare their readiness to defend their rights by force of arms. Under current conditions, the armed forces have no other options but to began large-scale repression against the  Islamists movement, including its expulsion from the political process. At the same time this could lead to the loose of the support of the new government from the West and the introduction of military rule in Egypt for quite a long time.

Events in Egypt gave new impetus to anti-Islamic sentiment in Turkey. I think that the protests of opponents of Recep Tayyip Erdogan will continue to grow, especially as the fate of the park Gezi virtually disappeared from the list of demands and has been increasingly replaced with demand of resignation of the government. Everything will depend on how long Erdogan can cope with the protest movement only using police force. The tough action of the Turkish police against the protesters, is slowly degrading Erdogan's perception in the West, especially in Europe. The moment of truth for him would be a decision to use gendarmerie forces that are part of the Turkish armed forces for restoring order (such a possibility, he has already been mentioned). I continue to believe that despite the fact that Erdogan thoroughly cleaned out the command of the Turkish Armed Forces, there is no guarantee  that the army will protect Islamic values. I think that because of the legacy of Kemal Ataturk Turkish military would rather stand up for the secular foundations of the state.

Pál Dunay, (Hungary), Head of the International Security Program of the Geneva Center for Security Policy - by e-mail from Budapest: In summer 2013 in some states the contestation of the regimes has taken place for more limited objectives. The cases of Brazil and Turkey have demonstrated that political instability may emerge although the demand for regime change remains limited or even marginal. They have demonstrated that fast developing economies may not remain immune from instability.

Although the governments have regained control in both cases there are lessons to learn: 1. Corruption has played significant role in both cases that contributes to the disenchantment of population groups. Similarly to India in 2011 where contestation remained peaceful it is visible that the politically interested part of societies understand the role of corruption undermining good governance. 2. In case of Turkey it was demonstrated that the role of Islam in politics is contested by forces of the society that object to it that would prefer a secular, Kemalist option. 3. It was important that the armed forces did not engage in the regaining of governmental control in Turkey. However, the announcement of the Deputy Prime Minister that the government considered employing the armed forces at least verbally demonstrated that Erdogan subordinated the armed forces to the government, certainly a major change compared to the original constitutional set-up. 

In autumn  2013 the current problems will continue to influence international security although with the difference that some issues (Turkey, Brazil) will lose their relevance while others (Syria, Egypt) will continue to retain their importance.

For all the questions concerning the International Security Index please contact Galiya Ibragimova by e-mail ibragimova at pircenter.org

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