News | July 17, 2012

Inter Press Service reports on EWI-FES Middle East Workshop

The Inter Press Service reports on The Changing Middle East, a workshop hosted by EWI and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung New York Office.

With ever increasing sanctions against Iran, escalating violence in Syria and the continuing political struggles in Egypt, a new dynamic has been added to the long-standing policy challenges in the Middle East.

“The Middle East is a place where the weak minorities are wiped out… Peace is viable so long as no one is stronger than us,” said Ephraim Sneh, Chair of the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Strategic Dialogue at Netyanya College, Israel.

He spoke at a one day workshop in New York on Wednesday, hosted by Freidrich-Ebert-Stiftung New York and the EastWest Institute, which brought together speakers from Turkey, Iran, Israel and Egypt, as well as Russia, the United States and Europe.

“Small nations can rely only on themselves and we will never deposit our future in the hands of anyone,” said Sneh. “Israel will not abandon its military balance.”

The mounting international pressure on Iran was also a key topic of discussion, with many concerns raised for the efficacy of the imposed sanctions. “The [Iranian] population is suffering tremendously from the sanctions that have been imposed,” said Trita Parsi, President of the National Iranian American Council.”

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