Young Scholars Series:

Human Rights in the Arab World: Some Arguments in Favor of a Regional Framework

June 21, 2014
Sabbagh 2

Young Scholar: Marc Sabbagh

Marc Sabbagh recently obtained his Master of Arts degree in international affairs and Middle East Studies at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).  He works as a Virtual Program Coordinator at U.S. Department of State, coordinating virtual lectures for US embassies in Armenia and Azerbaijan, and is a research and communications intern at the Arab American Institute.  He has prior experience in public policy and a research background in U.S. policy in the Middle East, and holds a B.A. in political science and history from Rice University.


Amid the recent uprisings in many Middle Eastern countries, and given the unique history of the region, experts are questioning how to ensure human rights are protected in the Arab world. Edmund Burke Fellow Marc Sabbagh argues in favor of a regional human rights framework centered around the Arab states.  Such a strategy could draw on the example of the broader Organization of Islamic Cooperation, which includes majority-Muslim countries in other parts of the world, but would benefit from greater enforcement capability by focusing on the Arab region alone.  Sabbagh also highlights important convergences between the Muslim and Catholic understanding of human rights, which is particularly important when considering the minority Christian populations living in majority-Muslim Arab countries.