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Europe Security

Jihadist Terrorism: Italy the Next Target?

An often-overlooked aspect of Jihadist terrorism in Europe is Italy’s exceptionalism in avoiding it. Does this come down to mere luck, or is Italy taking a different, more effective approach to counter-terrorism? And, most importantly, how long is Italy going to be able to keep this up?

Europe Security

Absence of an EU-Turkey strategic partnership undermines regional security

The European Council summit in December 2020 presented an opportunity for Brussels to formalise a strategic partnership with Turkey to manage the crises in the Eastern Mediterranean, Syria and Libya. Instead, it exposed divergence between France and Germany over how the EU should confront Ankara’s assertive foreign policy. Whilst French President Macron is in favour of putting strong pressure on Turkey’s President Erdogan, German Chancellor Merkel believes that it is vital to remain open to dialogue. This lack of strategic clarity puts regional security at risk given the importance of Turkish cooperation with Brussels over handling common issues in irregular migration and local conflict.

Latin America Politics Security

Forever War: The Unfulfilled Peace in Colombia

Despite the signing of a peace agreement between the Colombian government and the FARC guerrilla organization in June 2016, Colombia continues to struggle with armed violence by far-left guerrilla groups including the ELN (Ejército de Liberación Nacional) and FARC dissidents, as well as by right wing paramilitaries and criminal cartels. The causes of this continued violence are numerous and range from the attitude of the Duque administration towards the peace agreement, to the situation in neighbouring Venezuela.

Africa Security

Conflict Moves West in Mali, Towards the Senegalese Border

The Katiba Macina, a jihadist group originating in the Mopti region in Mali, has started in the recent months to settle in the Kayes region, in the West of Mali. This situation threatens to extend the Malian unrest into neighboring countries, particularly Senegal, which has been safe up to now from attacks by jihadist brigades.

Europe Security

Ethiopia – What next for Abiy Ahmed?

The apparent culmination of the Ethiopian government’s ‘law enforcement operation’ in Tigray poses a number of new questions for the future of Africa’s second-most populous country. The crisis in Ethiopia, which erupted at the start of November, is the culmination of a period of rising tensions between Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government and the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF). 

Africa Security

A Premature Decision? Assessing The Potential Impact Of Us Troop Withdrawal For The Future Of Somalia

The decision of the outgoing Trump administration to pull out US troops from Somalia by 15 January has come at a particularly critical period for the East African region. This could have broader security and humanitarian implications, threatening the progress of the past decade and leaving the country exposed to the influence of regional actors. 

Africa Security

Russia and Sudan – New Naval Base Agreement a Sea Change for the Region

Sudan and Russia have announced an agreement that will see Russia gain access to a naval base at Port Sudan. The posting of Russian troops and warships will shift the balance of power in the region, whether by permitting Russian vessels to operate in the area for far longer than before, or by requiring adaptations in procedure and behaviour by other forces.

Europe Security

A Strategic Autonomy for Europe?

Back in late September, the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, gave a speech stating the importance for the EU to move towards a strategic autonomy for Europe. This increasing cooperation is not supported by all and appears to depend on Biden’s future foreign policy for Europe.

International Security

300,000 Sailors Stranded at Sea Amid Global Pandemic

The UN has recently called for the international community to rescue the crews of commercial ships, gas and oil platforms, and other workers out at sea who have been instructed to keep working, without relief, due to Covid-19.

Europe Security

Armenia and Azerbaijan: Conflict in Nagorno Karabakh continues to erode regional security

A flare-up between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region raised concerns over the security and stability of the Caucasus for more than a month. A Russian-brokered deal between the two is highly likely to ensure the region’s security, although long-term peace is an unlikely outcome.