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Interview by Joël Frei - Institute for Conflict Transformation and Peacebuilding (ICP), August 2015

The director of the Cordoba Foundation of Geneva and strong advocate for peace, Abbas Aroua, on the quest for fairness and balance in the Islamic tradition, the need for a secular space in the Arab countries and non-violence as the only effective way towards lasting peace.

You state that Islam is a religion of balance and committed to the search of middle positions. What do you understand by that?

One of the main concepts in the Islamic religion is wasatiya, the middle position between the extremes. This concept is complex because it sums up a set of different ideas. For the Prophet Mohammed, "being wasati" means being just and fair. Wasatiya could be translated into French as "le juste milieu" or "die goldene Mitte" in German. It implies fairness, while the extremes lead to biased positions driven by passions and emotions, not by reason.

In light of propaganda against the movement, media censorship, book banning and bogus Interpol arrest warrants against its founders, the regime clearly sees it as a threat. But why?

In a recent piece on the detention of Algerian human rights lawyer and opposition figure Rachid Mesli, Robert Fisk asked why Interpol is doing the work of Arab despots. Mesli is the subject of an arrest warrant by the Algerian regime that dates back to 2002. In addition to founding Alkarama (dignity), an organisation that defends human rights in the Arab region, Mesli is co-founder of Rachad, an opposition movement to the Algerian regime.

بقلم: أبوبكر السعيد

عندما قامت ما عرف بثورات الربيع العربي لم يكن اليمن بمنأى عن ذلك فاندلعت ثورة فبراير 2011 ضد نظام الرئيس صالح لكن الحسم الثوري لم يتم سريعا ودخلت اليمن في ازمة سياسية راوحت مكانها .

وبعد جهود إقليمية ودولية جاءت المبادرة الخليجية برعاية إقليمية وأممية ودولية وكانت هي المخرج السياسي للأزمة اليمنية وبتوافق داخلي أعقبه انتخاب الرئيس هادي وتشكيل حكومة الوفاق التي دفعت بالرئيس هادي وحكومته (حكومة الوفاق الوطني) الى سدة الحكم.