Implementation of the Minsk ceasefire agreement remains deadlocked. Russia’s first proposal of a UN peacekeeping force in Ukraine’s breakaway eastern regions cannot work, but it opens a much-needed window for diplomacy.
CrisisWatch is a monthly early warning bulletin designed to provide a regular update on the state of the most significant situations of conflict around the world.
Relations between the African Union (AU) and European Union (EU) reached a nadir in 2016 following serious disagreements over European payments to AU peacekeepers in Somalia. The fifth AU-EU summit in November presents a chance to reinvigorate the partnership if both sides can deal openly with disagreements, address deep-seated mutual frustration and agree to tackle the root causes driving migrants toward Europe.
With his seven-year term set to end in 2020, uncertainty is growing over whether Tajikistan’s long-time ruler President Rahmon will handpick a successor or continue his reign. Growing troubles at home and abroad ensure both scenarios are fraught with risk and must be managed prudently, lest the country become another source of regional disorder.
China and Russia’s separate visions for Central Asia could transform the region’s political and economic landscape as well as relations between the two Eurasian giants. To the smaller, embryonic Central Asian nation states, the new geopolitical realities could offer both economic prosperity as well as worsening instability and conflict.
Armenia and Azerbaijan are once again on collision course along increasingly active front lines in and around Nagorno-Karabakh. Mediators Russia, France and the U.S., should pressure Yerevan and Baku to tone down inflammatory rhetoric, agree to talks and take steps towards peace.
The Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and its Syrian affiliates face a stark choice: risk their gains in northern Syria through continued prioritisation of the PKK's fight against Turkey, or pursue local self-rule in the area they have carved out of the chaos of the Syrian war.
[French President Macron] sees the dangers of being absent from the world stage, and sees [the absence of a strategy and U.S. diplomacy] as a way of raising the profile of France.
Turkey will seek a prominent role in coordinating Muslim reactions to the U.S. move.
The new Kazakh military doctrine is a clear reference to Ukraine. The Kazakh doctrine is very similar to the doctrine Belarus adopted in 2016, but Minsk was more explicit about learning lessons from Ukraine.
[For the heads of state attending the Sochi summit], one of the principal [questions] is what form the Kurdish participation in Geneva will take. I do not see the Turks making progress on this point.
The [Armenian] government generally supports a deeper militarization of society. The reforms discussed plan to merge everyday life with military service – the so-called 'army-society' model.
Originally published in Turkish Policy Quarterly
On 11 December 2017, the European Council established a new defence pact known as the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO). In this interview, International Crisis Group's President & CEO Jean-Marie Guéhenno explains how it gives signatory states a new chance to work towards more strategic autonomy and the ability to react quickly to pre-empt regional crises.
Originally published in Eurasianet
Originally published in The New York Review of Books
To calm citizens’ fears, Europe is ready to invest in better governance in Africa.
Originally published in POLITICO