A series of escalations in both word and deed have raised fears of U.S.-Iranian military confrontation, either direct or by proxy. It is urgent that cooler heads prevail – in European capitals as in Tehran and Washington – to head off the threat of a disastrous war.
CrisisWatch is our 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.
In his introduction to this month's edition of CrisisWatch, Crisis Group's conflict tracker, our President Robert Malley reflects on Sudan, Libya and Venezuela, and how fear and exploitation are increasingly complicating conflict prevention efforts.
A groundswell of popular unrest has ended Bouteflika’s twenty-year rule and brought Algeria to a fork in the road. The regime should embark on substantive reforms and enter dialogue with protest leaders in order to prevent the cycle of mass protests and repressive counter-measures spiralling out of control.
Adherents of a Salafi school, the Madkhalis, are gaining prominence on both sides of Libya’s divide, causing concerns about puritanical agendas imposed through military and religious institutions. Negotiators should ensure that rebuilt security forces are politically neutral and secure the Madkhalis’ pledge to respect pluralism.
Two successive U.S. administrations have backed the Saudi-led coalition’s intervention in Yemen, helping deepen the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. Congress should continue pressing the White House to end this support, while working to strengthen its war powers role in the future.
A standoff looms between Palestinian worshippers and Israeli police over a shuttered building at Jerusalem’s Holy Esplanade. Israel and Muslim religious authorities should reopen the building to lessen tensions at the sacred site, where small incidents have blown up into prolonged violence before.
Backlash to the 2017 independence referendum bolstered family rule within Iraq’s two main Kurdish parties. Internal democracy has eroded; ties between the parties have frayed. Only strong institutions in Erbil and renewed inter-party cooperation can help Iraqi Kurdistan to reach a sustainable settlement with Baghdad on outstanding issues.
De plus en plus clivant, le processus de décentralisation tunisien risque d’alimenter les tensions sociales et politiques. Pour qu’il tienne ses promesses de réduction des inégalités socio-régionales et d’amélioration des services publics, il doit faire l’objet d’un nouveau compromis prévoyant notamment le renforcement des services territoriaux de l’Etat.
[Iran has] plenty of options. The problem is, given that there are no off-ramps, and no channels of communication between [Iran and the U.S.], the risks of a confrontation quickly spiraling out of control are quite high.
Hamas agreed to restrain the protests in return for concessions. Those haven’t materialized.
My sense is that [Iran is] going to break out of some of the [JCPOA's] limits on research and development. It’s an escalation, but an incremental and reversible one.
Given that the PA’s main source of legitimacy is its capacity to employ a considerable proportion of the Palestinian workforce, internal discontent could challenge its ability to govern effectively.
The designation of the [Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps] as a terrorist group actually has more impact in the countries neighbouring Iran than Iran itself.
Haftar is deeply unpopular in many places and given the fragmented state of Libya and the proliferation of armed groups it’s going to be very hard to impose his rule throughout the country.
A New Trade Vehicle Could Preserve the Nuclear Deal’s Core Bargain
Originally published in Foreign Affairs
Originally published in Axios
The one thing Tehran would find more intolerable than the crushing impact of sanctions is raising the white flag because of them.
Originally published in The Atlantic
This is International Crisis Group’s eleventh regular update on the war in Yemen. This week, we focus on the first step towards force redeployments in Hodeida and the response of the UN Security Council.
Responding to the Trump administration’s “maximum pressure”, Iran has announced it will no longer respect all the limits placed on its nuclear research activities by its 2015 deal with world powers. With Washington having renounced the deal, the remaining signatories should hasten to save it.