On 24 December, the International Crisis Group's Board of Trustees appointed Dr. Comfort Ero as the organisation's President & CEO. In this inaugural message, she lays out her vision, goals and a personal vocation that underpins her career in preventing deadly conflict.
Cameroon will shortly begin hosting the biggest Africa Cup of Nations in history. Eight games will be held in Anglophone regions riven since 2016 by conflict between the government and separatists. Internal and external actors should seize the opportunity to broker a football truce.
Tigray’s leaders have withdrawn their forces from neighbouring regions and called for a cessation of hostilities followed by negotiations. Ethiopia’s federal government should grasp this opportunity to end the fighting, while international actors should step up to provide support for talks.
In this statement, Crisis Group corrects the record regarding William Davison, Senior Analyst for Ethiopia.
Federal forces have recorded gains in recent weeks but Ethiopia’s brutal civil war may well grind on without a winner. Addis Ababa must let more aid into blockaded Tigray and the region’s dissident leadership should recognise the federal government’s legitimacy pending detailed ceasefire talks.
A draft UN Security Council resolution would increase the United Nations’ attention to the effects of climate change on war and peace. Member states should back this initiative – notwithstanding a possible veto – to encourage odds of passage and promote international discussion of this vital subject.
The Sudanese military has ousted civilian leaders in a power grab that leaves the country’s transition in limbo. Led by the African Union, external actors should pull out all the stops to reverse a coup that could tip Sudan into sustained unrest and chaos.
Rival security forces came close to blows in Mogadishu amid a clash between the president and prime minister. These tensions are blocking the path to elections. International actors should name spoilers and wield sanctions against those who keep pushing Somalia to the edge of conflict.
Ethiopia’s military withdrew from Tigray’s capital on 28 June, having suffered a string of battlefield reversals. Addis Ababa and Tigrayan leaders should now work on extending immediate aid to a population at risk of famine. They should also pursue political reconciliation in due time.
A series of gestures from Caracas suggests that President Nicolás Maduro’s government might be more willing to negotiate with rivals and enact partial reforms. Washington should respond in kind with phased sanctions relief and diplomatic gestures that can be reversed if Venezuela backslides.