Rafat Al-Akhali

  • Losing Hope in Yemen

    The figures reported for the ongoing conflict in Yemen speak for themselves: more than 5,000 dead and 26,000 injured (according to the NGO Action on Armed Violence and the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, a staggering 86 percent of those killed and injured are considered civilian), almost 2.3 million displaced from their homes, and more than 21 million people—about 80 percent of the population—is in desperate need of humanitarian assistance. But the figures fail to adequately portray the crippling sense of despair with which Yemenis must live, especially the youth.
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  • Al-Akhali: Yemen is Shatterd and Peace Seems a Long Way Off. The World Can't Just Watch On

    Rafik Hariri Center Nonresident Fellow Rafat Al-Akhali cowrites for The Guardian on war in Yemen and its effect on terrorist groups and young people: 

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  • Al-Akhali on Yemen Situation

    Rafik Hariri Center Nonresident Fellow Rafat Al-Akhali joins CCTV's The Heat to discuss the current situation in Yemen:

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  • The Challenge of Federalism in Yemen

    As Yemen’s Constitution Drafting Committee (CDC) begins to work out the details of the country’s proposed federal system, the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East launched “The Challenge of Federalism in Yemen,” an issue brief by nonresident fellow Rafat Al-Akhali. Al-Akhali traveled from Sana’a, Yemen to Washington for a discussion on May 28, 2014 on this next critical phase of the transition. The panel included the author and Paul R. Williams, adviser to the CDC and president and cofounder of the Public International Law & Policy Group. Hariri Center acting director Danya Greenfield moderated the discussion.
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  • Transition to Federalism in Yemen Hopeful but Not Without Challenges

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    A new Atlantic Council issue brief maps key considerations as Yemen embarks on the next stage in its political evolution—the transition from a unitary to federal state system, as outlined by the final agreement from the multistakeholder National Dialogue Conference.

    In “The Challenge of Federalism in Yemen,” Rafat Al-Akhali, nonresident fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East based in Sana’a, Yemen, explains that a decentralized system of authority could address the core challenges of corruption, poor social services, and lack of accountability. Yet, the author notes that the most critical issues were not decided during the National Dialogue, such as how natural resources and revenues will be managed, which now falls to the newly established constitution drafting body to determine. While the broad outlines of a six-region federal system was agreed upon by the primary political powers, the real challenge lies in the practical implementation of a new multistate and multitier system of government and how to divide authorities among local, state, regional, and federal government levels.

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  • The Challenge of Federalism in Yemen

    The Challenge of Federalism in Yemen,” the latest issue brief from the Atlantic Council's Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East, maps key considerations as Yemen embarks on the next stage in its political evolution—the transition from a unitary to federal state system, as outlined by the final agreement from the multistakeholder National Dialogue Conference.

    pdfRead the Issue Brief (PDF)

    Author Rafat Al-Akhali, a nonresident fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East based in Sana’a, Yemen, explains that a decentralized system of authority could address the core challenges of corruption, poor social services, and lack of accountability. Yet, the author notes that the most critical issues were not decided during the National Dialogue, such as how natural resources and revenues will be managed, which now falls to the newly established constitution drafting body to determine. While the broad outlines of a six-region federal system was agreed upon by the primary political powers, the real challenge lies in the practical implementation of a new multistate and multitier system of government and how to divide authorities among local, state, regional, and federal government levels.


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  • Atlantic Council Launches Network of Middle East-based Fellows

    The Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East launched this spring a network of nonresident fellows. Based in the Middle East and North Africa, the network brings to the Council new perspectives and locally driven analysis on the processes of change and transition in the Arab world. 
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  • What Yemen's Youth Got Out of the National Dialogue Conference

    After ten months of extensive negotiations and discussions, Yemen’s National Dialogue Conference (NDC) concluded on the January 21, 2014. It is critical to analyze the NDC outcomes and assess whether it addresses the calls for change that Yemeni youth initiated in 2011.
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  • Al Akhali on Yemen's Transition

    Rafik Hariri Center Nonresident Fellow Rafat Al Akhali joins Al Jazeera English’s The Stream to discuss the transition in Yemen:

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  • Will Decentralization in Yemen Marginalize Citizens?

    With the National Dialogue Conference (NDC) in Yemen concluded on 25 January 2014, the constitution-drafting period will focus on incorporating the outcomes of the NDC discussions into the new national charter. A close examination of the outcomes of the NDC may help address any shortcomings in the NDC agreements during the constitution-drafting process.
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