While three in four Arab youth are concerned about the rise of Daesh, just one in six believes the terrorist group will ultimately succeed. A quarter of young people believe that a lack of jobs and opportunities is the main recruitment driver for the terrorist group, although one in four of those surveyed also said they could see no reason why anyone would want to take up with Daesh.
Arab youth cite Saudi Arabia as their biggest ally for the fifth year running, followed by the UAE (28 per cent), and the United States 25 per cent. Iran’s increasing regional influence is reflected in the survey, with 13 per cent of young Arabs now viewing the country as their biggest ally.
Five years after the Arab Spring, most young Arabs are today prioritizing stability over democracy. In 2016, just 36 per cent of young Arabs feel that the Arab world is better off following the uprisings, down from 72 per cent in 2012, at the height of unrest. The majority of young Arabs (53 per cent) agree that promoting stability in the region is more important than promoting democracy (28 per cent). At the same time, two thirds are calling for their leaders to do more to improve their personal freedoms and human rights.