Foreign Policy Blogs

Horn of Africa

It is Crucial to “De-Nairobify” Somali Affairs

It is Crucial to “De-Nairobify” Somali Affairs

For a number of years, Nairobi (Kenya) has been the de facto capital of Somalia after the State has disintegrated into anarchy. It has been where Somalis sought refuge, re-started their lives, and networked with the rest of the world. By the same token, it has been where almost all of the eighteen or so […]

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The Enigma of the London Conference on Somalia

The Enigma of the London Conference on Somalia

If there is any consensus on the nature and the outcome of the London Conference on Somalia – that brought together representatives of over 50 nations that included a number of Muslim nations – it must be the fact that it was a puzzling event that raised much speculation. Now that the fanfare has ended, […]

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The London Conference on Somalia

The London Conference on Somalia

  [Map of Somalia — EthanZuckermann.com] Leaders from across the globe are gathering today with various leaders in Somalian civic society at the London Conference on Somalia. The goal of the conference is to develop a new international approach to Somalia that nonetheless keeps Somalians in the center of the dialogue and thus of viable […]

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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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Understanding the Afar Saga

Understanding the Afar Saga

Last week as I was scanning the paper, I came across the tragic news coming out of Ethiopia, a country I deeply indebted to. In the Afar region, gunmen have killed five foreign tourists for unknown reasons. The Ethiopian government’s quick and inaccurate placement of blame is cause for concern. It is, of course, bad […]

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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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The Murle and The Nuer

The Murle and The Nuer

The scenes coming out of Jonglei state of South Sudan are troubling. According to United Nations sources, more than 3,000 people have died and more than 60,000 have fled their home in the two week long ethnic clashes between Murle and Nuer tribes. The scope and the magnitude of such clashes make them unique in […]

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CPJ and Amnesty Blast Zenawi and Ethiopian Government Over Sentencing of Swedish Journalists

CPJ  and Amnesty Blast Zenawi and Ethiopian Government Over Sentencing of Swedish Journalists

Ethiopia and Eritrea raely have things in common but this week they now rank 1 and 2 as Africa’s worst jailers of journalists. In a move that many observers have called politically motivated an Ethiopian Court has handed down an 11-year sentence to two free-lance Swedish journalists, Johann Personn (left, below) and Martin Schibbye, who […]

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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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Fresh challenges in the region

Fresh challenges in the region

Ali Abdullah’s continuous refusal to step down is costing Yemen and its neighbors. The tenacious leader’s action is exporting the disaster, living conditions, threat to safety, health and livelihood of refugee from East Africa. According to the United Nations and the International Organization for Migration sources from the region, thousands of Africans continue to seek […]

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Somalia and Somalis

Somalia and Somalis

It is tragic to see the continuing violence and instability in Somalia. It is not clear to me if the recent development is an opportunity or a start of another cycle of violence and the displacement of millions of Somalis. In fact, what is happening today in Somalia and in the sub region as a […]

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The FPA Great Decisions National Opinion Ballot: On Somalia

The FPA Great Decisions National Opinion Ballot: On Somalia

The Foreign Policy Association has released the results of its National Opinion Ballot in which highly-informed participants in the Great Decisions (GD) program, the centerpiece of the FPA, weigh in on the various issues that GD covers in a given year.  Among the issues that this year’s poll respondents addressed was the instability in the […]

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The Ibrahim Index

The Ibrahim Index

The Mo Ibrahim Foundation has just released its 2011 Index of African Governance. I’d encourage you to follow the link and download to your heart’s content. For most of you the Summary will be more than sufficient. On the whole Ibrahim himself argues, “The findings of the 2011 Index present a complex yet hopeful picture […]

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Ethiopia’s anti-terror law and freedom of expression

Reporters Without Borders voiced concern today for the safety of Ethiopia’s journalists after a long-time government critic was arrested along with four opposition party members on 15 September in Addis Ababa, becoming the latest in a series of local and foreign reporters to be held on “terrorism” charges. Ethiopia’s 2009 “anti-terrorist” law has today become […]

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