The global trade in weapons is booming, with sales to the Middle East surging. Amid regional instability, an arms race is under way among Arab Gulf countries. The members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) - Qatar, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Saudi Arabia, and Kuwait - have spent billions of dollars on weapons this year alone. Here's a look at the recent deals made. So far in 2018, Saudi Arabia has allocated over $3bn to arms deals.
For the past five days, the Gulf region has been experiencing one of its most serious political crises in recent history. Early on Monday, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain cut diplomatic relations with Qatar in an apparent attempt to isolate the country. In addition to these three countries, Egypt, Libya, Yemen; the island nations of Maldives and Mauritius; and countries such as Jordan, Mauritania, Djibuti and Senegal have also joined in the campaign against Qatar, one of the most prosperous countries in the Gulf region. This unwise decision will undoubtedly harm the feeling of unity among the Gulf countries and cause serious repercussions for the perpetrators behind it. Since the beginning of the crisis, analysts have been trying to understand the motives behind this move, which was spearheaded by Riyadh and Abu Dhabi.
In this Sunday, Sept. 4, 2016 photo, U.S. President Barack Obama arrives at the Hangzhou Exhibition Center to participate in G-20 Summit in Hangzhou, China. In this Sunday, Sept. 4, 2016 photo, Russian President Vladimir Putin arrives at the Hangzhou Exhibition Center to participate in G-20 Summit in Hangzhou, China. The White House says President Barack Obama, French President Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel are meeting on the sidelines of the G-20 summit to review the status of the conflict. Xi shook hands and posed for photos Sunday afternoon with leaders including President Barack Obama, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Russian President Vladimir Putin with a G-20 backdrop.
FILE - In this Friday, July 7, 2017, file photo, President Donald Trump meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G20 Summit, in Hamburg. FILE - In this Friday, July 7, 2017, file photo, President Donald Trump meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G20 Summit, in Hamburg. FILE - In this Friday, July 7, 2017, file photo U.S. President Donald Trump meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G-20 Summit in Hamburg. AMMAN, Jordan (AP) -- A separate truce for southern Syria, brokered by the U.S. and Russia, is meant to help allay growing concerns by neighboring Jordan and Israel about Iranian military ambitions in the area, including fears that Tehran plans to set up a disruptive long-term presence there.
ANKARA – Turkish warplanes struck suspected Kurdish rebel positions in Iraq and Syria on Tuesday, drawing condemnation from Baghdad and criticism from the U.S.-led coalition fighting the Islamic State group, which is allied with Kurdish factions in both countries. Syrian activists said the attack killed at least 18 members of the Syrian Kurdish militia known as the People's Protection Units, or YPG, which is a close U.S. ally against IS but is seen by Ankara as a terrorist group because of its ties to Turkey's Kurdish rebels. The airstrikes also killed five members of the Iraqi Kurdish militia known as the peshmerga, which is also battling the extremist group with help from the U.S.-led coalition. The YPG said the strikes hit a media center, a local radio station, a communication headquarters and some military posts, killing an undetermined number of fighters in the town of Karachok, in Syria's northeastern Hassakeh province. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an opposition group that monitors all sides of the conflict, said the strikes killed 18 YPG fighters.