Protests in Iran and the Fault-lines

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Recent protests in Iran, apparently for redress of economic woes, should raise concerns for all who desire peace in Middle East and South Asia. It is because the Iran-US and Saudi rivalry has potential of growing these protests in full-blown civil war-like infernos already blowing in Syrian, Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine. Trumps’ may have failed to nullify the nuclear deal reached with Iran in face of European opposition, this very instance may present a chance to his crazy head to harp on minority group sentiments in Kermanshah, predominantly a Kurdish city and Sistan, Balochistan, mainly populated by Sunni Baloch. How will Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman of Saudi Arabia respond to the crisis is yet to be seen; however, for now, it seems he already had failed foreign policy ventures manifested in failed attempts of Labanese PM Saad Hariri’s resignation and the Yemen hotchpotch. Whatever the possible responses of US and Saudia may be in the offing, the faultlines in this region remain highly volatile and any spread of violence can easily sneak into Balochistan’s bordering towns where much has been invested by Saudi Arabia in seminaries for strategic reasons. Instability of any sort, be it ethnic, sectarian, religious or separatist, is really not in favour of anyone and specifically Balochistan at a time when ambitious projects like CPEC are on cards. Policy makers should remain vigilant of any development that could tear the delicate fabric of peace in Balochistan and should go for durable arrangements for sustainable peace and development instead of ad hoc arrangements!

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