Event Recaps

“The refugee crisis has totally been invented”, said Laura Batalla. As the co-author of the report entitled “Toward Long-Term Solidarity with Syrian Refugees? Turkey’s Policy Response and Challenges”, published by the Atlantic Council IN TURKEY(AC), Batalla emphasized the misperception among Europeans about Syrian refugees in her speech during the presentation of the report in Istanbul this week.

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On October 10, 2018 Atlantic Council’s Global Business and Economics Center’s EuroGrowth Initiative hosted a roundtable featuring Dr. Stefano Scarpetta, Director for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs at the OECD.

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Days after the first round of voting in the Brazilian election, the Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center and Digital Forensic Research Lab (DFRLab) hosted the conference call “Brazil's Vote: The Role of Disinformation in the 2018 Elections” to discuss the impact of disinformation and misinformation on Sunday’s results.

The Atlantic Council’s #ElectionWatch Latin America initiative has identified, exposed, and explained disinformation and the spread of misinformation in this year’s elections in Colombia, Mexico, and Brazil. In Brazil, findings reveal that disinformation and misinformation circulated across Latin America's biggest democracy as voters headed to the polls in an extremely polarized environment.

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On Tuesday, October 9th, the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East held a conference to discuss the nature of foreign involvement in ongoing conflicts in the region as well as the resilience of Jihadism in the post-2011 period. The conference coincided with the launching of a report, “The Arc of Crisis in the MENA Region: Fragmentation, Decentralization, and Islamist Opposition,” which explores a number of trends in governance that have emerged since the Arab Spring.

Atlantic Council President and CEO, Frederick Kempe, kicked off the conference with opening remarks, followed by the President of the Italian think tank the Institute for International Political Studies (ISPI), Ambassador Giampiero Massolo, and the Ambassador of Italy to the US, His Excellency Armando Varricchio

Following the introductory remarks, the Rafik Hariri Center’s senior fellow Karim Mezran led a panel titled “A Great Powers Game,” featuring Mona Yacoubian, senior advisor for Syria and the Middle East and North Africa at the United States Institute of Peace; Ambassador Rend al Rahim, co-founder of The Iraq Foundation, Nabeel Khoury, nonresident senior fellow at the Rafik Hariri Center, and Federica Saini Fasanotti, a nonresident fellow at the Brookings Institution.

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Panel I: The Struggle for Regional Hegemony: A Great Powers Game

The conference continued with a panel titled “The Resilience of Jihadism” featuring: Kim Cragin, senior research fellow at the National Defense University’s Institute for National Strategic Studies;  Hassan Hassan, senior research fellow at the George Washington University’s Program on Extremism; Frederick Kagan, Director of the American Enterprise Institute’s Critical Threats Project; and Arturo Varvelli, co-head of the Middle East and North Africa Centre at ISPI. 

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Panel II: The Islamic State, al Qaeda, and the Resilience of Jihadism

Finally, the conference closed with a keynote address by Ambassador Joan Polaschik, Acting Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Bureau of Near East Affairs at the US Department of State, followed by a moderated discussion with William Wechsler, Senior Advisory for Middle East Programs at the Atlantic Council.



On September 25, 2018, the Atlantic Council in Turkey launched the report Toward Long-Term Solidarity with Syrian Refugees? Turkey’s Policy Response and Challenges at the Concordia Summit in New York during the United Nations General Assembly week.

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On Tuesday, October 9, only two days after the first round of voting in Brazil, the Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht Latin America, the Brazil-US Business Council, and the Brazil Institute at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars hosted the conference call “Brazilian Elections: Results and Expectations” to discuss the impact of the outcomes ahead of second-round voting on October 28. 

Paulo Sotero, director of the Brazil Institute at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, kicked off the call with opening remarks, and Renata Vasconcellos, senior director of the Brazil-US Business Council, moderated the discussion between Ricardo Sennes, nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center, and Monica de Bolle, director of the Latin American Studies and Emerging Markets Department at Johns Hopkins University (SAIS).

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Just minutes before the September 30 deadline, the United States and Canada – following the US-Mexico deal – reached a new trade accord that modernizes the nearly 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement. The newly rebranded United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement is now set to be signed before December 1, 2018. The Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center, in partnership with the Atlantic Council’s Global Business and Economics Program held a rapid reaction conference call on Tuesday, October 2 to discuss key points of the deal and the implications for the future of North American relations. Below is the audio recording and summary.

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On October 2, the Atlantic Council’s Africa Center hosted a roundtable with Taban Deng Gai, currently first vice president of the Republic of South Sudan, on the situation in his country following the signing of the most recent peace agreement between President Salva Kiir and former First Vice President Riek Machar last month.

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On the margins of the 73rd ordinary session of the United Nations General Assembly, the Atlantic Council’s Africa Center and Global Energy Center hosted a half-day conference focusing on new opportunities for development across Africa’s energy sector. The event featured welcoming and introductory remarks by Dr. J. Peter Pham, Atlantic Council vice president and Africa Center director, followed by brief remarks by Mr. Bernard Looney, BP chief executive for upstream. H.E. Daniel Kablan Duncan, vice president of the Republic of Côte d'Ivoire and Mr. Andrew M. Herscowitz, Power Africa coordinator at the US Agency for International Development, presented keynote remarks during the event, while Mr. Randolph Bell, Global Energy Center director, delivered closing remarks.

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On September 21, 2018 Atlantic Council’s Global Business and Economics Center along with the Eurasia Center co-hosted a roundtable with Sir Suma Chakrabarti, President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

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