Crisis Group

Nota: Este archivo abarca los artículos publicados a partir del 1 de abril de 2009.

The latest edition of Crisis Group’s monthly conflict tracker highlights dangers of escalating conflict in DR Congo, Yemen and Bangladesh. CrisisWatch also notes a conflict resolution opportunity in Yemen.

In November, Yemen’s brutal war continued to threaten its people with famine, while talks planned for early December offer a glimmer of hope for reprieve. Boko Haram’s insurgency in north east Nigeria gained intensity, as suspected jihadist groups stepped up attacks in Burkina Faso’s north and east and across the border in south west Niger, and in Mozambique’s far north. In Somalia, Al-Shabaab upped its campaign of violence, while territorial clashes flared between the country’s semi-autonomous Puntland region and Somaliland.…  Seguir leyendo »

Mexican President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador addresses the troops at Military Camp 1 in Mexico City, Mexico, 25 November 2018. REUTERS

What are the main challenges facing López Obrador?

Andrés Manuel López Obrador inherits several deepening crises. The first is crime: at least 200,000 people have been killed or disappeared since Mexico’s “war on drugs” began in late 2006, and the violence is getting worse. 2018 has already surpassed 2017 as the year with the largest number of homicides on record in the country. Behind the higher murder rate is a cycle of failed efforts to reform state institutions – above all, to curb corruption and police collusion with organised crime – and the metastasis of organised crime itself.

Ten years ago, there were a handful of criminal organisations dedicated to drug trafficking in Mexico.…  Seguir leyendo »

U.N. envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths speaks to the media during a visit to the Red Sea port of Hodeidah, Yemen November 23, 2018. Picture taken November 23, 2018. REUTERS/Abduljabbar Zeyad

Preliminary peace consultations on Yemen are scheduled to start in Stockholm on 6 December. This is the second attempt in three months to jump-start talks. Crisis Group consultant Peter Salisbury explains why the Sweden talks are so important and what could go wrong.

What are the talks in Stockholm expected to achieve?

In September, the UN envoy to Yemen, Martin Griffiths, failed to bring the parties to the table in Geneva after last-minute wrangling. This time he hopes to have better success. The Huthis arrived in Sweden on 4 December, with the internationally recognised government due to arrive the next day.…  Seguir leyendo »

Life Under Gang Rule in El Salvador

Over the last three years, gang violence has killed nearly 20,000 people in El Salvador, propelling tens of thousands northward in search of safety. With U.S. help, the Salvadoran government should try to counter gangs with crime prevention as much as with law enforcement.

Nearly 20,000 Salvadorans were killed from 2014 to 2017. That’s more violent deaths than in several countries that were at war during those years, such as Libya, Somalia and Ukraine. The murder rate – an astonishing 103 per 100,000 inhabitants in 2015 – is still sky-high at 60 per 100,000 in 2017. The culprit in most of these murders is the maras, the country’s powerful, pervasive criminal gangs.…  Seguir leyendo »

Mexican President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador addresses the troops at Military Camp 1 in Mexico City, Mexico, 25 November 2018. REUTERS

What are the main challenges facing López Obrador?

Andrés Manuel López Obrador inherits several deepening crises. The first is crime: at least 200,000 people have been killed or disappeared since Mexico’s “war on drugs” began in late 2006, and the violence is getting worse. 2018 has already surpassed 2017 as the year with the largest number of homicides on record in the country. Behind the higher murder rate is a cycle of failed efforts to reform state institutions – above all, to curb corruption and police collusion with organised crime – and the metastasis of organised crime itself.

Ten years ago, there were a handful of criminal organisations dedicated to drug trafficking in Mexico.…  Seguir leyendo »

Lawmaker of the Venezuelan coalition of opposition parties (MUD) Henry Ramos Allup, Venezuela's opposition leader Henrique Capriles and Lilian Tintori, wife of opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez attend a meeting in Caracas, Venezuela, on 8 March, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello

¿Qué hay de nuevo? La oposición venezolana está dividida en facciones aparentemente irreconciliables que no se ponen de acuerdo sobre la estrategia a seguir para acabar con la crisis de su país. Discrepan sobre si deberían participar en las elecciones y cuándo hacerlo, sobre si deberían negociar con el gobierno, y sobre si deberían apoyar la posible intervención militar planteada implícitamente por potencias extranjeras.

¿Por qué importa? Sin unidad entre al menos las principales facciones opositoras, las perspectivas de resolver la crisis son escasas, ya que esto exige negociaciones genuinas entre la oposición y el gobierno y probablemente algún tipo de autoridad transicional que incluya elementos de ambos.…  Seguir leyendo »

People stand next to Venezuelan soldiers, as they wait for information about the deaths in a remote illegal mine where seven people were killed in Tumeremo, Venezuela, on 17 October 2018. REUTERS/William Urdaneta

¿Qué ha pasado?

Una avalancha de asesinatos masivos está despertando preocupación internacional mientras la crisis política y económica del país continúa alimentado el éxodo migrante. El 14 de octubre, al menos siete mineros fueron asesinados en enfrentamientos entre facciones armadas no estatales cerca de Tumeremo, estado Bolívar, hacia la frontera con Guyana. Tres semanas después, el 4 de noviembre, guerrilleros del Ejército de Liberación Nacional (ELN) de Colombia emboscaron a una tropa de la Guardia Nacional venezolana, matando a tres e hiriendo a diez personas, en inmediaciones de Puerto Ayacucho, capital del estado Amazonas, cerca de la frontera con Colombia. Estos ataques se dieron en retaliación al arresto del comandante Luis Felipe Ortega Bernal, conocido como Garganta, por parte de la Guardia Nacional.…  Seguir leyendo »

Les élections parlementaires américaines de mi-mandat ont livré leur verdict, mais pas encore toutes leurs implications concernant la politique étrangère des Etats-Unis. Conquise par les démocrates, la Chambre des représentants n’a qu’une influence partielle en ce domaine. Elle pèse sur les questions budgétaires, et donc sur les dépenses militaires.

Elle peut créer des commissions d’enquête et examinera sans nul doute les accointements particuliers de la famille Trump avec certaines puissances étrangères – la Russie en premier lieu, mais aussi l’Arabie saoudite et d’autres pays du Golfe ; les complaisances qui semblent en avoir découlé ; les possibles connivences électorales avec Moscou ; et le meurtre de Jamal Khashoggi, pour n’en mentionner qu’une poignée.…  Seguir leyendo »

In this photo taken on 7 October 2018 Cameroon's incumbent President Paul Biya looks on as he votes at the polling station in Bastos neighbourhood in the capital Yaounde during Cameroon's presidential election. ALEXIS HUGUET / AFP

On 22 October Cameroonian authorities declared incumbent Paul Biya winner of the presidential election with a score of 71 per cent. What happened?

The presidential election was held amid the worst insecurity since 1992. In the Far North, Boko Haram continues small scale attacks, and the fallout from nearly five years of conflict continues with 240,000 currently displaced. Violence by armed groups from the Central African Republic is affecting the East. In the Anglophone Northwest and Southwest regions, a growing insurgency has seen almost daily fighting with security forces.

On the day of the vote, no major security incident was reported in Francophone areas, where about 55 per cent of registered voters cast ballots.…  Seguir leyendo »

Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei looks through binoculars during the test firing of short- and medium-range missiles, on 18 September 2004. AFP PHOTO/Str

The re-imposition of U.S. sanctions against Iran’s banking and energy sectors on 5 November is a key element of Washington’s “maximum pressure” campaign against Tehran. President Donald Trump’s decision to pull out of the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in May presaged a more ambitious strategic objective: to substantially recast not only Tehran’s nuclear activities, but its domestic and regional policies as well. The result arguably is one of the most audacious U.S. policy plays toward Iran since the 1979 revolution, playing out across a fractured and fragile region.

President Trump’s hostility to the JCPOA was evident on the campaign trail, and his administration adopted a hard stance against Iran from its early days: National Security Adviser Michael Flynn put Iran “on notice” in February 2017, and Trump himself castigated Iran during his May 2017 visit to Saudi Arabia.…  Seguir leyendo »

A member of the Tunisian security forces stands guard at the site of a suicide attack in the Tunisian capital Tunis on 29 October, 2018. AFP/Fethi Belaid

What do we know about what happened, and who was behind the attack?

On 29 October, a suicide bomber set off an improvised explosive device in her backpack on Habib Bourguiba Avenue in downtown Tunis – the city’s best-known thoroughfare, a few hundred metres from the ministry of interior and the French embassy. The explosion killed her and wounded twenty bystanders, including fifteen policemen who appear to have been the intended target. For now, no group has claimed responsibility for the bombing. The 30-year-old woman – an unemployed graduate with an English degree from a small village near Mahdia, on the Mediterranean, who occasionally worked as a shepherdess – left no indication as to her motive.…  Seguir leyendo »

Soldiers of the Chinese Battalion of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), in Juba, South Sudan. China routinely deploys a squad of female peacekeepers with every infantry battalion. The PLA says the largest has been a group of 19 deployed to Mali. UN Mulitmedia

China’s growing engagement with African countries got a publicity boost on 3-4 September with the latest Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC). The triennial event brought leaders and officials from 53 African countries and the African Union (AU) to Beijing for meetings that culminated in a resolution to continue strengthening ties and a renewed pledge of billions of dollars in Chinese loans, grants and investments. Over the past decade China’s role in peace and security has also grown rapidly through arms sales, military cooperation and peacekeeping deployments in Africa. Today, through FOCAC and support to the AU and other mechanisms, China is making a growing effort to take a systematic, pan-African approach to security on the continent.…  Seguir leyendo »

Guatemala's former Vice-President Roxana Baldetti arrives to a hearing at the Supreme Court of Justice in Guatemala City, Guatemala, on charges of conspiracy, customs fraud and bribery charges, on 28 March 2016. REUTERS/Josue Decavele

El presidente Jimmy Morales ha prometido que pondrá fin el próximo año al mandato de la Comisión Internacional Contra la Impunidad de Guatemala apoyada por la ONU. La comisión, que es enormemente popular, ha ayudado a reducir las terribles tasas de homicidio en el país. Para mantenerla, sus simpatizantes deben reenfocarse en combatir los crímenes violentos más graves.

¿Qué hay de nuevo? La investigación realizada por International Crisis Group ha cuantificado por primera vez el impacto positivo de la Comisión Internacional contra la Impunidad en Guatemala (CICIG) de la ONU. Este informe muestra cómo las actividades de reforma a la justicia de la CICIG contribuyeron a una reducción promedio anual del 5 por ciento en las tasas de homicidios en el país.…  Seguir leyendo »

A Turkish-Russian agreement last month forestalled a potentially disastrous Syrian military attack on the country’s northwestern Idlib governorate, the Syrian opposition’s last major stronghold. Yet the agreement also required Turkey to “remove” the Syrian jihadist group Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and other hardliners from much of the northwest, a possible first step toward separating them from the rest of the opposition. So far, results are reportedly mixed. Whether the group continues to comply, and how it resolves its own dual transnational-local identity, could be a matter of life or death for the northwest’s nearly three million residents.

A recent video release from Tahrir al-Sham, or HTS, helps show how it has integrated into Syria’s opposition, and how it translates its ideological worldview into the language of Syria’s war.…  Seguir leyendo »

Libya’s Economic Reforms Fall Short

Libya has seen two major confrontations in recent months: a standoff between the east-based Libyan National Army and the west-based internationally-recognised government over the control of revenues from oil installations in the Gulf of Sirte in June-July, and recurrent attacks on Tripoli by militias from outside the capital since August. Both were sparked by conflict actors’ desire for greater control over economic institutions and the perception that a handful of militias and interest groups in the capital have disproportionate access to the country’s wealth. Though in September, the Government of National Accord.

adopted the first economic reform package since the Qadhafi regime fell in 2011, the fight over resources will remain a central feature of the crisis.…  Seguir leyendo »

Afghan General Abdul Raziq (C), police chief of Kandahar, poses for a picture during a graduation ceremony at a police training centre in Kandahar province on 19 February, 2017. JAWED TANVEER / AFP

What happened?

At least one gunman attacked a gathering of Afghan and U.S. officials inside the Kandahar governor’s compound on the afternoon of 18 October. The shooter, believed to be one of the governor’s guards, killed the most powerful man in southern Afghanistan, Kandahar Police Chief Abdul Raziq. The provincial chief of the National Directorate of Security, the Afghan intelligence service, was also killed. Kandahar Governor Zalmai Wesa was wounded but survived. The NATO-led mission said that three of its personnel were wounded but that the top U.S. commander in the country, General Austin Miller, who was in the meeting with Raziq, escaped unharmed.…  Seguir leyendo »

People gather in Ahvaz for the funeral of those killed during an attack on a military parade in the city, on 24 September, 2018. ATTA KENARE / AFP

What’s at stake in the 30 September elections?

Voters in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq will choose the 111 members of the Kurdistan National Assembly, in the fourth election since the body was founded in 1992 and the first since the Kurdish independence referendum on 25 September 2017. At stake, as usual, is the equilibrium between Iraqi Kurdistan’s dominant political parties – the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK). This time, however, the fate of the PUK also hangs in the balance, as it faces a challenge from opposition rivals, the Gorran and New Generation movements.

At issue is also the relationship of the Kurdish region’s institutions – the Assembly, the judiciary and the executive, including the presidency – to the KDP and PUK.…  Seguir leyendo »

Workers inspect damage at the site of an air strike on the maintenance hub at the Hodeida port on 27 May, 2018. Abduljabbar Zeyad/REUTERS

Over the last two weeks, the latest attempt to set Yemen on the path to peace has collapsed, triggering what could become the bloodiest battle of a war approaching its fourth anniversary. In a 14 September letter to the UN Security Council, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) announced that it planned to renew its campaign to wrest Hodeida, a port city on Yemen’s Red Sea coast, from the control of the rebel Huthi movement. This came a week after precursory peace talks were meant to start in Geneva. The Huthis have pledged to battle UAE-backed forces to the last man.

Although not unexpected, the swift collapse of peace efforts is deeply disappointing.…  Seguir leyendo »

South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un attend an official welcome ceremony at Pyongyang Sunan International Airport, in Pyongyang, North Korea, 18 September 2018 yeongyang Press Corps/Pool via REUTERS

President Moon Jae-in of South Korea arrived in Pyongyang early on Tuesday for a three-day visit. The outcomes of this summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will set the tempo for the remainder of 2018 and beyond. But progress between the two Koreas is partly dependent on reversing the decline in U.S.-North Korean engagement since the 12 June meeting in Singapore between Kim and President Donald Trump.

For North Korea, the diplomatic dance began on 9 September with the 70th anniversary of its establishment as a separate state, celebrated with a military parade in Kim Il-sung Square and a revival of the country’s famed gymnastic displays, the Mass Games.…  Seguir leyendo »

Afghan residents walk near destroyed houses after a Taliban attack in Ghazni on 16 August 2018. AFP/Zakeria Hashimi

The new U.S. adviser on Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad, has a tough assignment: fostering peace between the Afghan government and the Taliban. Crisis Group’s Borhan Osman says that recent violence has soured the public mood, but that leaders on all sides still appear committed – at least rhetorically – to peace talks.

On 4 September 2018, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that former U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad would join the State Department as an adviser on Afghanistan. Khalilzad will, in the Secretary of State’s words, “assist in the reconciliation effort”; his appointment is a welcome signal of Washington’s renewed intent to find a negotiated settlement to the war pitting the Afghan government and its international allies against the Taliban insurgency.…  Seguir leyendo »