Geopolitics in Middle East & South Asia: Lessons for the Balkans

Bakhatyar Aljaf (left), Abdullah Khurram and Zijad Bećirović


In the framework of the "EU and the World" lecture cycle


the International Institute for Middle-East and Balkan Studies (IFIMES)


invites You kindly to take part at the lecture




Geopolitics in Middle East & South Asia: Lessons for the Balkans

which will be delivered by


 Abdullah Khurram


South Asia & Middle East Fellow, PoliTact (USA)

Committee on International Relations, University of Chicago


The lecture will be held on Tuesday, 23 June 2015, at 16.00 h

in the “Grad” hall of Hotel Lev (13th floor) at Vošnjakova 1, Ljubljana.


In the 20th century, both the Middle East and the Balkans found themselves at the epicentre of global sectarian and ethnic conflict respectively. Since then, these regions have come a long way; not only have they experienced the creation of new nation-states and identities but also numerous new economic opportunities. Despite this, the burden of history and the revenge of geography keeps dominating many aspects of their current socio-political outlooks. Today, as countries in these regions are on their way to democratize, they face serious domestic and international challenges. From fixing domestic economics to resolving key regional foreign policy issues to navigating between the interests of world’s major powers, all core issues will require serious societal and political efforts. Drawing on from the nationalism discourses, diaspora politics and geopolitical lessons from the Middle East and South Asia, this lecture will emphasize on the key lessons for the Balkan countries. In doing so, there will also be a special emphasis to discuss the US policy towards Balkans and the new democracies, and the opportunities and challenges posed by the rise of China.


Bio: Abdullah Khurram is a South Asia & Middle East Fellow at PoliTact and a Strategic Advisor at Gulf State Analytics. He is based at the Committee on International Relations, University of Chicago. Formerly, Khurram was a Research Associate at the Middle East Institute in Washington, D.C and his previous research work has also been based at the Institute of Strategic Studies in Islamabad, Pakistan and at the Economic Policy Research Institute, Cape Town, South Africa. Amongst other places, he has guest lectured at Columbia, Duke University, Bangladesh Foreign Service Academy and the National Defense University of Pakistan.


The lecture will be in English followed by a discussion moderated by Zijad Bećirović and Bakhatyar Aljaf.


Live broadcast at:  


Please take your seat at the hall by 15.55 h at the latest.


Attendance is free of charge. Please confirm your participation at telephone number (01) 430 15 33 or at .


Ljubljana, June 17, 2015