One of the world’s worst outbreaks of COVID-19 has ravaged Brazil, one of Latin America’s most viciously polarised countries. The mishandling of the pandemic has been so severe that in mid-2020 it looked likely to result in major political tumult or social unrest. At that point, two health ministers and one justice minister had departed the administration of the unabashed right-wing populist president, Jair Bolsonaro, who had belittled the coronavirus’ dangers and botched the public health response. As the virus spread almost without impediment across Brazil’s vast territory, Bolsonaro battled with the Supreme Court and clashed with state governors while facing nearly ten impeachment requests in Congress as well as criminal investigations into his sons’ activities.… Seguir leyendo »
Nota: Este archivo abarca los artículos publicados a partir del 1 de Marzo de 2008.
Dans quel contexte politique s’inscrivent ces élections?
Le Burkina Faso et le Niger, deux pays cruciaux pour la stabilité du Sahel central, se dirigent vers des élections présidentielles et législatives, respectivement les 22 novembre et 27 décembre 2020, alors que la sous-région traverse une période d’instabilité politique – marquée notamment par le coup d’État au Mali – et de violences insurrectionnelles. Si le vote devrait avoir lieu sans trop d’accrocs dans les capitales, il sera très certainement perturbé dans certaines zones rurales où la tenue des scrutins s’inscrit dans un contexte de tensions socioéconomiques et politiques et d’insécurité chronique. Les favoris des scrutins, le président burkinabè sortant Roch Marc Christian Kaboré et l’ancien ministre nigérien de l’Intérieur Bazoum Mohamed, semblent vouloir continuer à donner la priorité aux réponses sécuritaires.… Seguir leyendo »
¿Qué hay de nuevo? La pandemia de COVID-19 tuvo un impacto inmediato en el crimen organizado en México y los países del norte de Centroamérica, por la desaceleración del flujo de personas y bienes causada por las medidas de confinamiento. Pero los grupos criminales se adaptaron rápidamente a la nueva normalidad, aprovechándola para reforzar o expandir su control sobre la población y el territorio.
¿Por qué importa? Los grupos criminales de la región, muchos de los cuales actúan en complicidad con actores estatales corruptos, son en gran parte responsables de unas de las tasas de homicidios más altas del mundo y ejercen un poder abrumador en un número cada vez mayor de comunidades.… Seguir leyendo »
What do the initial results indicate?
The full official results of Myanmar’s 8 November general elections have yet to be announced, but it is already clear that, as expected, the National League for Democracy (NLD) has scored another landslide victory. Aung San Suu Kyi’s party has not only won virtually every seat in the central Burman Buddhist heartland, which constitutes its traditional stronghold, but also increased its haul of seats in many ethnic minority areas. The main national opposition party, the military-established Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP), suffered an even more humiliating defeat than in 2015. The ethnic minority parties had mixed success in various states, but they fell far short of their aim of becoming kingmakers in the new parliament.… Seguir leyendo »
After six weeks of bloody armed conflict over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region, Russia has brokered a full ceasefire between Armenia and Azerbaijan, signed by the presidents of Azerbaijan and Russia and Armenia’s prime minister. In contrast to three prior failed humanitarian ceasefires successively negotiated with the aid of Russia, France and the United States, this one appears to be holding. Its success reflects battlefield realities: Azerbaijan was winning militarily and Armenia faced a crushing defeat. But humiliation cannot be a strong basis for sustained peace. The parties and foreign stakeholders must ensure that the ceasefire holds; they also should take steps to ensure that the new regional order has benefits for all involved.… Seguir leyendo »
Le récent référendum constitutionnel est-il un fiasco, comme l’ont écrit plusieurs médias algériens et étrangers ?
Le référendum constitutionnel organisé le 1er novembre 2020, jour du 66e anniversaire du déclenchement de la guerre de libération nationale, a été éclipsé de l’actualité par l’hospitalisation du président Abdelmadjid Tebboune et est loin d’avoir atteint le but escompté. Il était censé « codifier » les revendications du mouvement de protestation de 2019-2020 (hirak), comme l’avait promis le président durant sa campagne électorale. Il était également supposé renforcer la légitimité du chef de l’Etat, élu avec un faible taux de participation en décembre 2019, alors que le hirak battait son plein, et permettre au pouvoir de passer à d’autres chantiers, comme la dissolution de l’Assemblée populaire nationale (chambre basse) et l’organisation d’élections législatives.… Seguir leyendo »
Unless urgently halted, the ongoing armed confrontation between Ethiopia’s federal forces and those commanded by the northern Tigray region’s leadership will be devastating not just for the country but for the entire Horn of Africa. In a televised address on 4 November, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said he had ordered the military to take action against the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), the ruling party in the country’s northernmost region, in retaliation for what he described as a TPLF attack on a federal military base earlier that day. His office also announced a six-month state of emergency in Tigray. A war that many Ethiopians feared was possible but hoped would never happen appears to be under way.… Seguir leyendo »
As I write this column, the 2020 presidential elections are unfolding in the U.S. By the time you read it you may (or quite possibly may still not) know the results. Regardless of their outcome, they will have outsized implications. On the future of America’s economic and healthcare systems, its environment and immigration policies and its race relations among others. On public faith in its electoral process, the solidity of its institutions and the polarisation of its politics, as Crisis Group analysed in a recent report. But also on the rest of the world, whose denizens will be forgiven for lamenting that an event with such profound potential to affect their lives rests on a process over which they have no say, that is governed by a nearly inscrutable patchwork of rules, and that can deliver a Barack Obama one day, a Donald Trump the next.… Seguir leyendo »
In December 2018, Western and international policymakers demonstrated something that Yemenis had long suspected: when motivated by developments on the ground or at home, they can produce (some) diplomatic results, as the United States did by pressuring Saudi Arabia and by extension the internationally recognised government of Yemen into accepting the UN-brokered Stockholm Agreement. The deal, which averted a battle for the Red Sea port of Hodeida, is the signature diplomatic success story to date in the ongoing Yemeni conflict that began in late 2014. For the warring parties and to Yemeni and international observers, however, the agreement also symbolises the limits of external mediation in resolving the conflict: international pressure forced the parties to endorse the deal, but not to implement it.… Seguir leyendo »
Two weeks into a renewed war between Azerbaijani and Armenian forces over the breakaway territory of Nagorno-Karabakh and its environs, fighting appears poised to escalate. On 10 October, a Russian-brokered humanitarian ceasefire intended to enable combatants to retrieve the bodies of the dead and exchange prisoners appeared to fall apart as its ink was drying. Both sides have since struck towns and villages, with enormous damage to lives and livelihoods. While it may take time for the parties to return to peace talks, they and international actors must act to stem the mounting human toll. Whatever an eventual settlement entails, it will be closer to hand and more sustainable if the parties stop killing civilians and adding fresh grievances to an already intractable conflict.… Seguir leyendo »
The Washington Post reported on 25 September that U.S. officials are considering a potentially consequential new step in Washington’s approach to Yemen: either designating the Huthis – the term used by most Yemenis to describe the rebel group that controls the capital Sanaa and much of north-western Yemen and calls itself Ansar Allah – as a foreign terrorist organisation or naming particular Huthi leaders as specially designated global terrorists. When Washington designates a group as a foreign terrorist organisation, it makes material support for that group a crime, freezes its assets and bars its members from entering the U.S. The consequences of an individual designation are similar but slightly less onerous.… Seguir leyendo »
¿Qué hay de nuevo? Los líderes sociales en Colombia enfrentan una creciente ola de ataques en su lucha por los derechos de las comunidades afectadas por el conflicto. La violencia dirigida contra estos activistas ha aumentado a pesar de los compromisos establecidos en el acuerdo de paz de 2016 para proteger a la sociedad civil. El COVID-19 ha exacerbado la inseguridad para estos líderes ya que grupos armados han explotado las restricciones a la movilidad para consolidar su control.
¿Por qué importa? Los líderes sociales se encuentran entre los defensores más fervientes del acuerdo de paz y de las víctimas del conflicto.… Seguir leyendo »
After a bitter three-decades-long standoff marked by sporadic violence and deadlocked negotiations, Azerbaijan and Armenia have returned to war over the breakaway territory of Nagorno-Karabakh. Clashes on the front lines followed by an Azerbaijani dawn offensive on September 27 have spilled into days of fighting that have left dozens of soldiers and civilians dead on both sides. Despite international calls for restraint, the mood among both Armenians and Azerbaijanis is bellicose. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has made his own hawkish statements in support of Baku. Absent urgent international action, fighting looks set to escalate further, at terrible cost.
Russia, potentially with European support, probably stands the best chance of brokering a ceasefire.… Seguir leyendo »
As you may have read in several press reports, for the first time in its quarter-century history, Crisis Group will be turning its attention to risks of violence in the U.S. I thought it would be good to provide some background on our thinking behind this decision:
In the wake of George Floyd’s murder, Crisis Group issued a statement that concluded with these words: “Since assuming office in 2017, Trump has made much of his desire to pull the U.S. back from overseas wars. He should take great pains not to act like he wants one at home”. Since then, several things happened: first, developments in the U.S.… Seguir leyendo »
Every year Crisis Group publishes two additional Watch List updates that complement its annual Watch List for the EU, most recently published in January and May 2020. These publications identify major crises and conflict situations where the European Union and its member states can generate stronger prospects for peace. The Autumn Update of the Watch List 2020 includes entries on Afghanistan, Colombia, Kosovo-Serbia, Lebanon and Somalia.
COVID-19 is still with very much with us, but it is not too soon to draw some tentative conclusions as to its implications for global peace and security.
The virus has upended millions of lives, wrecked livelihoods and sharpened disputes between government and opposition in country after country.… Seguir leyendo »
On 24 August, two explosions in Jolo, a city in Sulu province in the southern Philippines, killed 15 and injured 74—a chilling case of déjà vu in a region that has suffered repeated attacks in recent years. The incident set alarm bells ringing in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) about the resurgence of violence. The explosions also reheated familiar media tropes of Islamic State’s perseverance amid the coronavirus pandemic and seemingly ceaseless lawlessness. But it’s important to move beyond this narrative to grasp the structural foundations of the turmoil Sulu finds itself in.
While some details remain murky, initial information put forward by authorities suggests that the perpetrators may be linked to Hatib Hajan Sawadjaan, a key figure in the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG)—a loose collection of small networks in the Sulu archipelago.… Seguir leyendo »
What took so long?
The U.S.-Taliban agreement signed in Doha, Qatar on 29 February specified that peace talks among the Afghan parties to the conflict would begin on 10 March. After months of delay, these intra-Afghan talks are finally set to commence, also in Doha, on 12 September.
A number of factors contributed to the postponement, some arising immediately after the U.S.-Taliban agreement was signed. The Afghan government showed reluctance to implement a provision calling for the release of 5,000 Taliban prisoners, for fear of losing domestic standing as well as its negotiating leverage, while the Taliban re-escalated violence across the country in hopes of maintaining theirs.… Seguir leyendo »
Much of Africa looks set to head to the polls in the coming months and many Africans, one suspects, have reason to fear. Burkina Faso, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Guinea, Niger, Somalia, Tanzania and Uganda, among others, are all scheduled to hold national elections in the remaining months of 2020 or the earlier ones of 2021. In some cases, risks of violence emanate from incumbents barred by their constitution from running, yet driven by their appetite for power to stay on. In some, they stem from highly polarised politics that winner-take-all, high-stakes elections likely will worsen. Violence can be used to ensure victory, forestall defeat, intimidate opponents.… Seguir leyendo »
After the United States experienced a rebuff at the United Nations last week – with almost the entire membership of the Security Council rejecting its attempt to re-impose UN sanctions on Iran – US officials warned that the dispute could lead to a major crisis in the Council, damaging the institution’s authority.
They are not alone in this analysis. Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, a vocal critic of the US sanctions drive, has accused Washington of risking “a very serious scandal and rift” at the UN.
But these dire predictions may prove to be exaggerated.
The argument pivots on the US claim that, acting on the UN resolution that endorsed the 2015 Iranian nuclear deal (the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA), it can demand the reactivation of UN sanctions resolutions on Iran that were terminated as part of the bargain.… Seguir leyendo »
On 13 August 2020, US President Donald Trump announced the establishment of diplomatic relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). He celebrated the development as a breakthrough that will “advance peace in the Middle East.” The two states plan to exchange ambassadors and begin open cooperation in areas of security, tourism, trade, and healthcare. The agreement makes the United Arab Emirates the fourth Arab country—after Egypt, Jordan, and Mauritania—to formally recognize Israel. In exchange, the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appeared to pledge not to move forward with annexation, with the White House declaring that Israel had agreed to “suspend declaring sovereignty over areas outlined in the [US] president’s Vision for Peace and focus its efforts now on expanding ties with other countries in the Arab and Muslim world.”… Seguir leyendo »