CrisisWatch

Tracking Conflict Worldwide

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CrisisWatch is our early warning and global conflict tracker, a tool designed to help decision-makers prevent deadly violence by keeping them up-to-date with developments in over 70 conflicts and crises, identifying trends and alerting them to risks of escalation and opportunities to advance peace.

Global Overview

Outlook for This Month September 2023

Conflict Risk Alerts

Resolution Opportunities

Trends for Last Month August 2023

Improved Situations

Conflict in Focus

Our monthly conflict tracker highlights two conflict risk alerts in September.

  • Significant clashes broke out in Mali’s north between government forces and former rebels for the first time since the 2015 peace agreement. September could see more violence and the collapse of the peace process as the UN mission’s withdrawal continues.
     
  • The West African regional bloc ECOWAS continued to threaten the use of force in Niger to restore constitutional order following the coup in July. An intervention could trigger major pushback and put Niger and the wider region at risk of war.

CrisisWatch identified eleven deteriorated situations in August. Notably:

  • Military officers seized power from President Ali Bongo in Gabon moments after authorities announced his re-election for a third term.
     
  • In Syria, a major battle broke out between the regime and the northwest’s dominant rebel group Hei’at Tahrir al-Sham as Russia renewed airstrikes, while the Islamic State killed dozens as it stepped up attacks in the country’s centre.
     
  • President Lasso declared a nationwide state of emergency in Ecuador following a spate of political assassinations in the lead-up to the presidential election.
     
  • In Cyprus, violent skirmishes between Turkish Cypriots and UN personnel in the buffer zone injured multiple peacekeepers and Turkish Cypriot police officers and sparked a strong diplomatic rebuke. 

Our tracker also assessed two improved situations.

  • The Colombian government’s landmark ceasefire with the National Liberation Army guerrilla group took effect, marking an important step forward in President Petro’s “total peace” efforts.
     
  • Guatemala’s presidential election went ahead despite judicial and other interference, resulting in a landslide victory for centre-left candidate Bernardo Arévalo endorsed by the outgoing president.

Aside from the scores of conflict situations we usually cover, we tracked significant developments in Bahrain, Nile Waters and Senegal

Latest Updates

Africa

Zimbabwe

Multiple observation missions reported widespread irregularities in general elections, casting doubt on legitimacy of vote which saw President Mnangagwa declared winner of second term.

Election authorities Mnangagwa re-elected in elections marred by irregularities. Electoral commission 26 Aug declared President Mnangagwa winner of presidential election held 23 Aug with 52.6% of vote against opposition leader Nelson Chamisa’s 44%; ruling party ZANU-PF also won 136 of 210 parliamentary seats against 73 for main opposition party Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC). Chamisa 27 Aug alleged “gigantic fraud” and 29 Aug called for elections rerun. Conduct of elections could also hamper Zimbabwe’s re-engagement drive with international partners, as most international election observers said vote was marred by irregularities and poor organisation, while pre-election environment was largely favourable to ZANU-PF. Notably, in departure from past statements on elections in Zimbabwe, Southern African Development Community (SADC) 25 Aug said elections “fell short of the requirements of the Constitution of Zimbabwe”, citing curbs on freedom of assembly and judicial capture. In response, Mnangagwa 27 Aug criticised outside observers for “interrogat[ing] institutions of a sovereign government”.

Lead-up to vote and election day marred by violence and repression. NGO Zimbabwe Peace Project recorded 84 human rights violations related to elections in first half of Aug, including arson, assaults, kidnapping threats and intimidation. Notably, suspected ZANU-PF activists 3 Aug ambushed and killed CCC supporter near campaign rally in capital Harare; police arrested 10 people in connection with case. Police 15 Aug also arrested 40 CCC members including MP candidate for allegedly blocking traffic and disrupting order during campaign event in Harare suburb. On voting day, journalist and opposition figure Hopewell Chin’ono 23 Aug accused ZANU-PF supporters and officials of intimidating voters outside polling stations, also criticised electoral commission’s lack of preparedness as authorities extended voting to 24 Aug in some wards amid delayed distribution of ballot papers. Police 24 Aug arrested 41 election monitors from civil society groups, accusing them of trying to disrupt voting process by releasing unofficial vote results from independent count.

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