The developments in the Middle East region have activated the involvement of a numerous diverse state and non-state actors in the regional affairs. The goals, positions, ideologies, different, and even contrast policy behaviors had procured the spreading and continuity of crisis. Non-state actors varying from Islamic organizations to takfiri-terrorist movements on one hand and regional and trans- regional actors, from another side, seek to reach their interests in the power struggle. Here, a research worthy question comes on the agenda: taking into consideration actors’ contradictory interests and constraints what are the regional peace and stability perspectives? Therein, different actors’ aims definition, their actions and behaviors, which affect instability, can be regarded as independent variables; whereas, on the contrary, Middle East peace and stability perspective analysis is a dependent variable. Though, this regional peace and war theory based research admits the significant influence of trans-regional actors, it asserts the roots of violence to derive from region itself. Consequently, hot war and conflict prevention and hot peace assurance in the Middle East region cannot be attained only by demands and approaches of trans-regional actors. Moreover, capacity of trans-regional actors is sufficient only for a cold war or cold peace to be reached in the region. Furthermore, within the framework of current conflict (struggle) between regional actors it seems to be difficult and even impossible to turn the cold war into a cold peace in the region.
The Shanghai Cooperation Organization is one of the successful outcomes of China's foreign policy since the end of the Cold war. The expansion of multilateral ties all over the world by dint of pursuing institutional strategies as SCO, identify China as a more constructive power. SCO became a new model of cooperation that was formed on remains of collapsed Soviet system, and predetermined China's geopolitical role in the region. As the fast developing effective regional mechanism, SCO today has more of external impact on the international system and forms a new type of interaction for promoting China's grand strategy of 'peaceful rise'.
The modern world is experiencing fundamental and dynamic changes. The transformation of international relations; the end of confrontation and successive overcoming of the Cold War consequences have expanded possible international cooperation. The global nuclear conflict threat has been minimized, while a tendency to establish a unipolar world structure with the U.S. economic and power domination is growing. The current world system of international relations, apparently is secular. However, the religious beliefs of one or another nations play a certain (sometimes a key) role, both in the domestic affairs of the individual countries and in the development of bilateral ties. Political situation in Central Asia has been characterized by new factors such as international terrorism; religious extremism and radicalism; narcotrafficking and illicit arms trade of a global character immediately threaten to peace and political stability in Central Asia. The role and influence of Islamic fundamentalism is increasing; political ethnocentrism and the associated aggravation of inter-ethnic relations, the ambiguity of national interests and objectives of major geo-political groups in the Central Asian region regarding the division the political influence, emerge. This article approaches the following issues: the role of Islam in Central Asia; destabilizing factors in Central Asia; Islamic movements in Central Asia, Western Europe and the United States; the United States, Western Europe and Central Asia: religion, politics, ideology, and the US-Central Asia antiterrorism and religious extremism cooperation.
It is impossible to think about democracy without elections. The litmus test of any electoral process in any country is the possibility of a one time minority to become a majority at another time and a peaceful transition of power. In many countries in Sub-Saharan Africa though the multi-party elections appeared to be competitive they failed the acid test of democracy: peaceful regime change in a free and fair election. Failure to solve electoral disputes might lead to bloody electoral conflicts as witnessed in many emerging democracies in Africa. The aim of this paper is to investigate electoral conflicts in Africa since the end of the Cold War by using the 2005 post-election violence in Ethiopia as a case study. In Ethiopia, the coming to power of the EPRDF in 1991 marked the fall of the Derg dictatorial military government and the beginning of a multi-party democracy. The country held multi-party parliamentary elections in 1995, 2000, and 2005 where the ruling EPRDF party “won" the elections through violence, involving intimidation, manipulation, detentions of political opponents, torture, and political assassinations. The 2005 electoral violence was the worst electoral violence in the country-s political history that led to the death of 193 protestors and the imprisonment of more than 40, 000 people. It is found out that the major causes of the 2005 Ethiopian election were the defeat of the ruling party in the election and its attempt to reverse the poll results by force; the Opposition-s lack of decisive leadership; the absence of independent courts and independent electoral management body; and the ruling party-s direct control over the army and police.