An ongoing clamp down on undocumented Ethiopian migrant workers in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia rendered thousands vulnerable as many were not able to renew work permits before the November 4th deadline signifying the expiration of an amnesty that was announced in April.
Amidst the great uncertainty that prevails in the Middle East today there is at least one thing that is certain: we are living through a great shift in the region's politics and alliances, the repercussions of which are yet to be fully felt.
Last week's decision by Saudi Arabia to pass on an opportunity to become a member of the UN Security Council speaks to the Council's perceived ineffectiveness on a host of issues, and what comes with membership -- the need to take a public position on sensitive issues in international relations.
One would assume that Syrian President Bashar Assad would be worried. Well he doesn't seem to be too worried. Why? Why should he? It is the United States and its allies that need to worry. And let me tell you why.
It is no secret that the German military equipment being purchased by Saudi Arabia will most likely be used to crack down on anti-government demonstrations inside Bahrain, and/or the Shia-majority region of eastern Saudi Arabia.
While Oman continues to use its leverage to thwart a military confrontation in the Arabian Gulf, officials in Muscat have accepted that their influence is naturally limited, and they have taken actions to prepare for a scenario in which the Strait of Hormuz is closed.
While the Saudis are delighted to see Iran's top ally facing a potentially existential threat, Riyadh would be wise to recognize that Iran's loss might not necessarily advance the Saudis' longer term interests in the Middle East.
The 20th century witnessed a string of influential women who have impacted the world of Western art from Gertrude Stein to Peggy Guggenheim. Perhaps unknown to some even in the arts field, a mixture of native and expatriate women across the Arab Gulf States have also played a major role.
Groundbreaking is definitely an overrated word these days. Yet there are some instances when nothing else will do. Haifaa Al Mansour's Wadjda for example, is a film that demands the multiple use of this word.
It was business as unusual on the first day of the week in Saudi Arabia, as millions of Saudis woke to the disturbing news of the passing of Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz, long-time Defense Minister and heir to the throne since 2005.
Turkey and Saudi Arabia sit on opposite sides of the spectrum, the first a Sunni state defined by its secularism, the latter a Sunni state defined by its sect, and yet the countries have never been closer.
Circumstantial evidence suggests that the Obama people have no comprehensive strategy. Instead, our policies bounce around like a pin-ball that is impelled by one of our four preoccupations: Israel, Iran, 'the war on terror' and oil.