Analysis

UAE: Opposition Arrests Reflect Political Volatility
The USS George Washington arrives at the Jebel Ali port in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Jebel Ali is crucial for the US Navy since it is the only harbor in the Gulf deep enough to berth an aircraft carrier. (August 2000 photo. US Navy/Getty Images)
January 3, 2012
| Security, Energy
| Middle East and North Africa
Summary
With the rise of Islamist groups in Egypt and the rest of the Arab world, leaders of Persian Gulf states are using both intimidation and appeasement to maintain their power. Being all things to all interests, however, is becoming ever more difficult, as the case of the United Arab Emirates demonstrates.

Earlier this year in the UAE, five Emirati men were arrested for slander for comments they posted about the government on an Internet forum. They were found guilty and sentenced to prison. After an international outcry by human rights groups condemning the trial as a gross violation of international law, the sentences were commuted by President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahayan.

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