Foreign Policy Blogs

African Union

African Regimes at a Crossroads

African Regimes at a Crossroads

New hope is blowing across the African continent against the backdrop of toppled heads of government and state in South Africa and Zimbabwe and a rejuvenated government that is pursuing ambitious reforms in Ethiopia. Other recent examples of transitions from long-sitting governments have also played out in Burkina Faso and The Gambia where the sitting […]

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5 Africa stories to watch in 2018

5 Africa stories to watch in 2018

From widely known, to worrying to weird, here are five developing stories to watch in Africa as we kick off 2018. The fall of Mugabe (Grace Mugabe that is) The ageing Robert Mugabe’s departure was only a matter of time. It was accelerated by the very public factionalism and succession squabbling within ZANU-PF – and […]

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Nairobi – A Hard Road to Travel?

Nairobi – A Hard Road to Travel?

Tourism floundered in the aftermath of the notorious 2013 attack at Nairobi’s Westgate Shopping Centre, carried out by Al Qaeda’s affiliate in neighbouring Somalia, Al Shabaab; but now a series of international conferences during 2016 has raised hopes for a successful year for the city’s tourism industry.

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Meet the African Union Chair Madame Zuma

Meet the African Union Chair Madame Zuma

Call it the century of African women! First, there was the Nobel winner Ma Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the current president of Liberia. Then, there was the grassroots women’s rights activist Joyce Hilda Banda, who was sworn in April 2012 as the president of impoverished Malawi after the death of wa Mutharika . And now, the […]

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Africa Roundup

Africa Roundup

Here are a few stories that have caught my eye of late, with brief commentary as apt: In an interesting (but probably passing) change of direction, China is putting pressure on Sudan “to seek urgently the release of 29 Chinese workers held by rebels in the border state of South Kordofan.” China traditionally sees national […]

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UN Peacekeeping Again Under Fire

UN Peacekeeping Again Under Fire

If reports coming out of South Sudan are true the United Nations may be facing its biggest embarrassment since its missteps in the Democratic of Congo. The New York Times reports that UN Peacekeepers stood by idly while Nuer tribesman massacred fleeing Murles. Unconfirmed reports suggest that over a thousand men, women and children were […]

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Social Media and Social Menacing…

Social Media and Social Menacing…

And you thought your biggest social media worry was being defriended. Last week, the New York Times published an interesting piece on the use of social media by terrorist groups.  They focused on a recent Twitter battle instigated by the Somalia-based, loosely al-Qaeda linked, al-Shabab.  Their target…African Union peacekeeping forces and the Kenyan army.  The […]

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News Roundup

News Roundup

Here are a few stories that I’ve been thinking about in recent days: A new report from the Africa Center for Strategic Studies (ACSS), Africa and the Arab Spring: A New Era of Democratic Expectations, the first volume of the Africa Center’s new Special Report series, uses the Arab Spring as a lens through which […]

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Election Watch: Liberia

Election Watch: Liberia

On Tuesday, October 11, 2011, Liberians will go to the polls to choose the country’s next president from a pool of 16 aspiring presidential candidates, which includes the incumbent Ms. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. The election comes a few days after President Johnson Sirleaf and another Liberian women’s activist Leymah Gbowee were awarded the Nobel Prize […]

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African Union Rejects TNC and Instead Calls For an All-Inclusive Post-Ghadafi Era, But…

African Union Rejects TNC and Instead Calls For an All-Inclusive Post-Ghadafi Era, But…

Do I see a little bit of an irony here? Let’s do a count: how many of the current AU member countries have inclusive governments? How many of the current AU member governments came to power through coups? Until now, the sad truth is that, all along, the AU (and its predecessor the OAU) did […]

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The African Union’s Indifference on Libya

The African Union’s Indifference on Libya

Yes, you heard it right, the AU’s Peace and Security Council reportedly failed on Monday to agree on a common position on Libya. Instead the body has deferred the decision to a Friday meeting of the AU’s heads of states’ leadership meeting. Frankly, I am not surprised and do not expect the 15 heads of […]

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Africa Links Deluge

Africa Links Deluge

Lots of stories have been cavorting around my head, with commentary as I see fit: The disaster in the Horn of Africa represents what the Mail & Guardian calls “a crisis in slow motion.” The perfect storm of famine and the political chaos in Somalia has led to a humanitarian nightmare. The west (ie the […]

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India Boosts Ties with Africa, AU

India Boosts Ties with Africa, AU

This week the second ever Africa-India Summit took place, with New Delhi signaling that it was committed to doing business with the continent and supporting both national and regional development. Trade between India and Africa amounted to roughly $46 billion in 2010, but the partners aim to increase that number to $70 billion by 2015. […]

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Africa Day

Africa Day

“This conference cannot close without adopting a single African Charter. We cannot leave here without having created a single African organization…. If we fail in this, we will have shirked our responsibility to Africa and to the peoples we lead.” So said Ethiopia’s Emperor Haile Selassie at a Pan-African summit  in 1963 at which the […]

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U.S.-AU Disconnect on Libya

U.S.-AU Disconnect on Libya

Top officials from the African Union visited Washington last week to discuss relations between the U.S. and the emerging pan-African body. It was the second such meeting, and a joint statement was released outlining the “full range” of U.S.-Africa priorities, including democratic governance, economic development, health and peace and security issues. On democratic governance, always […]

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