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MENA Space Capabilities and Security Challenges

MENA Space Capabilities and Security Challenges: Applications to Disaster Management

Transnational - Technology & Innovation - Format: PDF - Size: 3.76 MB - Date: Oct, 2022 - Pages: - Copyright: NATO Strategic Direction South HUB - Tags: MENA, Space , Cyber

The ability to use space-based information to tackle various hazards is gaining in importance in the region, particularly due to the recent increase in both extreme natural events exacerbated by climate change and demographic developments. This intricate and specific project was aimed at enhancing NATO understanding of current MENA space capabilities and potential requirements in the field of disaster management, defense and security, particularly with a view to using space capabilities and assets to support early warning mechanisms, climate change and border security.


Over the past decade, the MENA region has invested in regional space technology and capabilities. Space technologies can play an important and significant role in the preparation, prevention, management and mitigation of disasters, thereby having direct impact on security. As an example, communication satellites can help in disaster warning, while earth observation satellites can monitor activities. MENA is an area that is both vulnerable politically and prone to natural disasters. Space technology can be one of the key tools in this domain.

Key insights

  • Space capabilities offer accurate, reliable and up-to-date information that helps improve disaster response times and allow increased capacity for policy making and informed infrastructure development.
  • MENA countries should continue developing their space capabilities, including ground segments along with updating national laws and policy.
  • Disasters and climate change are triggering security issues, like terrorism, making remote sensing data, and the framework to handle it, a security issue.
  • Emerging technologies, like artificial intelligence (AI) and quantum computing are key areas that could help with data usage from space assets.
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