The agreement that China signed to normalize bilateral relations in Iran and Saudi Arabia in March this year is an open indictment that how significant China is going to play in the Middle East and now China will be the Center Stage in Middle East conflicts. The deal with Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to Saudi Arabia and Iran in December 2022 reflects China’s dynamic role in the Middle East, in which all its focus is on resolving the Middle East conflict.
If we look closely at the Middle East’s conflict after World War II, it is revealed that their backdrop is stimulating mutual jealousy ‘misconduct’, and overthrowing each other’s governments. However, the current rulers of the major Middle East countries are well aware that not only their state energies are lost due to the mutual conflict of these countries, but the peace and stability of the region are in danger. The article will give a brief address of conflicts and problems found in the Middle East that lead to mutual tension and mistrust. These conflicts have allowed external forces to intervene in the region. Reviewing these disputes makes it clear that if these countries resolve their regional issues like the Iran-Saudi agreement, it will benefit them all.
In the historical context, the regional politics of the Middle East and the Gulf are complex and uncertain. Over time, friendships and enemies change in the Middle East. If there is a friendly ceremony with any other country in the region of one country, then on another occasion, their friendship can turn into tension. In view of this uncertainty of relations, Pakistan should refrain from interfering in the conflicts of Arab countries and give them advice to resolve their disputes with peaceful and diplomatic means. The mixed atmosphere of mutual tension and cooperation has been a significant and prominent attribute of the Middle East, especially when General Mohammad Najib’s leadership rebelled before the support of the Free Officer group, including Jamal Abdul Nasir, in July 1952, and after that, in 1954-56. Jamal Abdul Nasser took over power.
Jamal Abdul Nasser’s ‘Arab nationalism’ slogan introduced new and revolutionary political forces in several Middle East countries, which resulted in a prominent political division in the region. The likes of the United States bothered the pro -Kingdoms that many countries could not survive without being affected. In the 1960s, Middle East politics was divided due to the positive and negative effects of Arab nationalism. Later, Anwar al -Sadat took over Egypt and visited Jerusalem in November 1977 to direct bilateral issues with Israel, which further divided the Middle East. Egypt’s membership was suspended. It took many years to return to Egypt’s Arab League.
The wave of ‘Arab Spring’ in the Middle East has led to a new political crisis in the Middle East. Countries like Egypt, Libya and Yemen, faced political turmoil, which, the US, European countries and several countries in the region, found an excuse for political and military intervention in these states. Egypt’s experience of political chaos and military coup as a result, an authoritarian government came to power, but political stability in Egypt came. Libya also suffered political chaos when Colonel Gaddafi rebelled and killed in it. The United States and the European countries openly intervened in Libya and thus internal groups had the opportunity to overthrow Gaddafi. Even after the collapse of the government, it is constantly suffering from internal chaos.
Sham President Bashar al-Assad suffered internal insurgency in 2011, which lasted for eleven years. Conservatives, Arab kings and the United States supported anti-Syrian government elements, which caused severe pressure against the Syrian government; However, President Bashar al -Assad managed to escape the crisis because the Syrian army supported him on a large scale. He also received military and political aid from Russia and Iran. In 2011, the Arab League suspended Syria’s membership that Syrian government had used state force indiscriminately against its opponents. In 2017, Qatar and other neighboring countries became a new fault line. These countries accused Qatar of promoting terrorism by supporting militants in the region. Another reason for this boycott was Qatar’s close ties with Iran, with these four countries strained. Land, air and naval contacts with Qatar were suspended. The tension reached its end in January 2021 when Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries decided to bring their relations with Qatar to a re-enactment.
The most serious fault line in the Middle East is in the form of strained relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran. Iran’s major target was conservative and pro -US kingdoms. Iran and Saudi Arabia suspended their ambassadors’ level relations in 2016. Both countries were involved in a proxy war by supporting militant groups in Yemen and Lebanon. The support of Hezbollah in Iran’s Hamas and Lebanon in the Gaza Strip created further distance between the two countries. Iran began openly confronting Israel, but Saudi Arabia pursued a tension-free policy with Israel. One of the major causes of concern for Saudi Arabia was Iran’s nuclear program. When US President Donald Trump canceled the nuclear deal with Iran in 2018, Saudi Arabia expressed satisfaction.
The agreement to normalize diplomatic relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia on China’s Emma has also created a possibility of a launch of peace and stability in the Middle East. The war can also be expected. After the improvement of Iran-Saudi relations, Pakistan will also be able to promote multilateral and active trade and economic relations with Iran. After that, Iran -Pakistan gas pipeline will also be completed and industries in Pakistan. The shortage of gas will also be resolved. With the improvement of Pak -Iran relations, mutual dependence between the two countries will also increase.
Writer is a MPHIL. Scholar from Ripha University.