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The Struggle for Supremacy: Religion, Territory and the Rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran

The Struggle for Supremacy: Religion, Territory and the Rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran

The Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI) hosted a seminar on the implications of the rivalry between two regional powers in the Middle East.

The rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran has occupied a central role in shaping the nature of Middle Eastern politics. Amidst fragmentation of state-society relations across the region, both states have attempted to increase their regional power by exerting influence across a number of proxies along ethnic and religious lines.

This rivalry has intensified in the aftermath of the Arab Uprisings, where the current regional disorder is opening up new spaces in which the proxy competition between these two powers can develop further.

Key note speaker:
Simon Mabon, lecturer and researcher at the Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion, Lancaster University and Director of the Richardson Institute, will analyse the current implications of this rivalry, with a special focus on questions of legitimacy and sovereignty.

Commentator:
Lucia Ardovini, Research fellow at UI's Middle East and North Africa Programme.

The seminar was be moderated by Lars Erslev Andersen, Senior Associate Fellow at UI's Middle East and North Africa Programme and Reseracher at the Danish Institute for International Affairs.

The UI Podcast:
Also, listen to a short conversation with Simon Mabon about his forthcoming book 'Houses built on Sand' which explores the fragmentation of state-society relations in the post Arab Uprisings Middle East using the ideas of Giorgio Agamben and Hannah Arendt.

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