China’s New Foray into U.S. Energy Market Shows Evolving Strategy

News arrived this week that the second-largest oil company in China has agreed to pay $900 million, and contribute as much as $1.6 billion to future drilling costs, for a one-third stake in five American exploratory oil projects. The foray into American energy investment, the first by China Petrochemical Corp., known as Sinopec, comes in the form of a partnership with Oklahoma-based Devon Energy Corp. to develop shale reserves. “It’s a marriage of convenience and opportunity,” said Clayton Dube, associate director of the University of Southern California’s U.S.-China Institute. “This is further evidence of Chinese firms and the Chinese state […]

Hamas’ Haniyeh Strengthens Ties with Turkey

In his first official trip abroad since his radical Palestinian group came to power in 2007, Ismail Haniyeh, the prime minister of the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, is on a tour of the Middle East, with stops that have so far included Egypt, Sudan and earlier this week, Turkey. The visits aim to strengthen ties in the region in the wake of the Arab Spring uprisings, which have so seen the rise to prominence of Islamist parties in Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco. “Islamist political victories in Egypt and beyond have created a more conducive regional political environment, which Hamas seeks to […]

Ethiopia’s Oromo Liberation Front Shifts from Violence to Politics

The Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), the oldest armed rebel group in Ethiopia, announced earlier this week that it plans to drop its long-held demands for secession and instead work within the political system. The OLF’s move from insurgent activity to electoral competition is both surprising and significant, explains John Harbeson, an African Studies lecturer at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and emeritus professor of political science at the City University of New York. “It is a complete 180 from what at least a faction of the OLF has always wanted to do,” he said, pointing to the […]

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