Suez Canal Crisis: National Sovereignty versus International Access to Waterways
On July 26, 1956, Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Nassar nationalized the Suez Canal, intending to take control of the canal’s operation and its revenue.
The country of Budan has passed a law forbidding the Rubits, a minority group, to worship according to their traditions. The Rubits have long been subject to societal and institutional discrimination, but the new law and an increase in violent incidents have led to rising tensions between the Rubits and the Budanese government. Thousands of Rubits have crossed the border into neighboring Gilbia. Unable to access accounts in Budan and often without passports, most of these Rubits are unable to travel further. They are now residing in a large makeshift camp near the Budan-Gilbia border. Sympathetic to the Rubits, the Gilbian government has allowed them to remain and provided some basic assistance, but Gilbia does not have the resources to care for the growing number of people leaving Budan and settling in the camp. It has asked for a meeting with Budan, the United States, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees, and the Association for Refugees and Minorities to discuss the issue.
In this hypothetical simulation, students will take on the roles of key stakeholders as they negotiate a diplomatic resolution to the current crisis and the factors that led to it. The exercise will develop skills in critical thinking, collaboration, problem-solving, persuasive communication, and global competence.
As of June 2022, at least 100 million people around the world had been forced to flee their homes as a result of persecution, conflict, violence, human rights violations or events seriously disturbing public order. Among them are nearly 32.5 million refugees. Refugees are people who have fled their home countries to escape persecution. They often face dangerous journeys to safety, and their lives and freedom are at risk. Meanwhile, the flow of refugees places a strain on receiving countries, which may not have the resources to provide assistance alone. While some migrants are fleeing conflict and persecution, others, known as economic migrants, are fleeing poverty, hunger, and lack of opportunity. How can the United States and other global leaders work to protect migrants and prevent future migration crises?
The United States Department of State provides aid and sustainable solutions for refugees, victims of conflict, and stateless people around the world. It works to deliver life-sustaining assistance, build global partnerships, promote best practices in humanitarian response, and ensure that humanitarian principles are thoroughly integrated into U.S. foreign and national security policy.
Please find below a playlist of short videos from experts in the field to aid discussion and exploration of the topic. [Transcript]