Both federal and resistance forces are digging in for a lengthy battle in Ethiopia’s Tigray region. Conditions for civilians are dire, with famine a growing danger. Outside powers should urge Addis Ababa to let more aid into the war zone, while maintaining pressure for talks.
In his introduction to this month’s CrisisWatch, Interim President Richard Atwood reflects on the pandemic’s impact one year after Crisis Group published its first report on COVID-19 and conflict.
A rebellion in Equatoria, South Sudan’s southernmost region, is undermining the already troubled peace between the main belligerents in its civil war. Mediators should push for a wider compact that accommodates Equatorian grievances and includes the insurgent general in talks about the country’s political future.
The October 2020 accord between rebels and Sudan’s transitional government is a big step forward. But difficulties remain. External powers should help Khartoum broaden the deal to include holdouts, reform the security sector and keep promises to invest in the country’s long-neglected peripheries.
War has devastated Ethiopia’s northernmost region. Pending comprehensive national dialogue, Addis Ababa should ease Tigray’s immediate predicament, engaging elements of the authorities it unseated to govern the area and ensure that aid reaches the millions in need.
Ten years after independence, South Sudan is faring poorly, beleaguered by political and socio-economic ills. The civil war’s two main antagonists have an uneasy peace, but others fight on. The country needs a reset rooted in power sharing and devolution of authority from the centre.
The Al-Shabaab insurgency is in attack mode as elections draw near in Somalia. To stop the militants from disrupting the vote, federal and regional authorities should bolster security measures around polling stations and prepare impartial means of resolving disputes that may arise over the outcome.
Because of improving relations, the Eritrean government has gained more ability to influence the Ethiopian government not to be a host for dissidents.
The military [...] simply has not had the time nor shown the will to address violence in the way that many rural Sudanese would need to see in order to put down their weapons.
Sudan’s economy is in freefall and there has been limited international assistance.
Ethiopia will not be deterred from finishing GERD by U.S. aid cuts and nor will it change its negotiating stance.
Sudan has been pretty isolated for a long time. It is very keen to get off this [terror] list. This is the carrot.
Ethiopian political leaders should consider appealing to a third party to mediate, should they have exhausted all other opportunities.
This week on The Horn, Alan Boswell is joined by Tanzania’s main opposition leader, Tundu Lissu, to discuss the late President Magufuli’s legacy, the challenges ahead for the newly sworn-in President Samia Suluhu Hassan, and the future of democracy in the country.
This week on The Horn, Alan Boswell is joined by Crisis Group’s Senior Analyst for Gulf States, Elham Fakhro, to discuss what the recent accord between the Gulf countries means for their geopolitical rivalries in the Horn of Africa.
Few nations have seen their dreams and hopes dashed as quickly and ruthlessly as South Sudan. As the country approaches its 10-year anniversary, the risk of a return to full-blown conflict is never far away.
Originally published in World Politics Review
Clashes in Mogadishu following the expiry of the president’s term highlight the risks of the standoff between the federal government and the opposition over electoral preparations. To avert a further breakdown, the African Union and UN should quickly step in to mediate.