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Title: Saudi Arabia and the Yemeni struggle for the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) membership, 1979-2014
Author: Aldossari, Mubarak Mohammed Rajis
ISNI:       0000 0004 7225 5635
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2018
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Upon the British withdrawal in 1971 from the Arabian Gulf region, three powerful states (Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Iran) were left competing among each other to gain influence. Accordingly, that competition transformed the region’s dynamic into something of a RSC (Buzan and Wæver, 2003 p. 187) – to be more precise, the Gulf became a distinct sub-complex of the Great Middle East RSC. After the Gulf War II (1990-1991) and even more so following the U.S invasion of Iraq in 2003, this RSC was defined by the competition between Saudi Arabia and Iran, as each sought to expand their influence over the other regional states. Consequently, the region was divided in two camps: first, the multilateral security and political organisation of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (usually alluded to as the Gulf Cooperation Council or GCC), including Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Oman; and second, Iran and its proxies in the region. Yemen and Iraq occupied a shifting and unstable space in between these two camps, with the latter oscillating between quiet recipient of GCC assistance and outright hostility to the GCC states, and the former relying heavily on GCC assistance and gaining partial membership in the GCC Secretariat in 2001. This paper asserts that the GCC approach to regional politics and security has been largely determined, whether passively or actively, by the policies and threat perceptions of Saudi Arabia. At the same time, Saudi Arabian policy has been tempered by the interaction of other actors behaving within Security Complexes at the global, regional and domestic levels. By extending the RSC framework to the case of the Gulf region, this thesis examines the degree to which the nature of cooperation and conflict among the AGC shapes their interactions with external powers, including Iran and Iraq, but especially with their southern neighbour Yemen. The importance of this project is that it should add to the ongoing debate on the importance of Yemen’s security and stability for Saudi Arabia and the other GCC members. It concludes that at the core of Arabian Peninsula security dynamics, Saudi Arabia’s relationship with Yemen impacts other regional relations with the smaller Gulf states and Iran, even at the same time that it is conditioned by those same relationships.
Supervisor: Kraetzschmar, Hendrik Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available