Fighting the first corona war: The securitisation of the coronavirus in the Middle East

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This article is featured in the ORIENT III 2020

As the coronavirus spread across the Middle East, many states and non-state actors securitised the corona crisis: that is, used warlike rhetoric to frame the pandemic as a national security issue or mobilised the state’s military and security services in the country’s fight against COVID-19. This article examines the government’s responses to the coronavirus in Israel, Jordan, and Egypt, as well as the securitised responses to the pandemic by lebanese Hezbollah and Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

Adam Hoffman is a Junior Researcher at the Middle East Network Analysis Desk at the Moshe Dayan Center, Tel Aviv University, and a lecturer at the Rothberg International School of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His research interests include the ideology and political behaviour of salafi-jihadi groups, the evolution of the global jihad movement, states responses to foreign fighters and securitisation in the Middle East. He holds an M.A. in political science from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

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