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Thursday May 23, 2024

Dividends of peace

March 22, 2023

If the detente between Saudi Arabia and Iran holds, one of the greatest benefits could be the cessation of hostilities in Yemen. A broad-based peace between the government and the opposition forces might be achieved. China, by arranging peace between the two Middle Eastern giants, has succeeded in doing something that the US and European powers were not able to do. The main reason for China’s success appears to be its strong trade relations with the two countries. China’s leverage with Saudi Arabia is the huge amount of crude oil they buy from the Saudis every year. In the case of sanctions-hit Iran, China is one of the few major economies willing to engage it in significant trade. It is now up to Iran and Saudi Arabia to live up to the expectations of the peace deal and open up new opportunities for the countries and peoples of the region. Pakistan can also benefit from this peace deal by improving its relation with both Saudi Arabia and Iran, besides improving its internal situation.

Akbar Jan Marwat

Islamabad