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06 Dec 2018 description

Even if key states withhold their support, the new deal will be a step forward for Africa.


The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM) is a comprehensive document that covers different aspects of migration and provides a strong basis for global migration governance.

22 Nov 2018 description

Martin Fayulu, one of the main opposition candidates in the upcoming Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) elections, arrived back in Kinshasa this week for the first time since the seven key opposition leaders met in Geneva two weeks ago to elect a unity candidate.

14 Nov 2018 description

Between August and October this year, the Peace and Security Council (PSC) held meetings on Libya, Lesotho, Guinea-Bissau, South Sudan, Burundi, the Central African Republic (CAR), Darfur and the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). Very few new initiatives, however, were launched. In some cases, such as Burundi, the PSC again called for action by the region – in this instance, the East African Community (EAC) – and in others, such as the CAR, it expressed support for the African Union (AU) initiative in the country.

12 Nov 2018 description


Restoring state authority isn’t enough to stabilise the region – local grievances and rights must be attended to.

On 15 October, 11 civilians were killed by assailants on a motorcycle in Telly in Central Mali’s Mopti region. This attack occurred barely two days after Prime Minister Soumeylou Boubèye Maïga visited the district to affirm the return of the state to this region.

01 Nov 2018 description

Specific steps are needed for the African Union’s new Youth for Peace Africa Programme to work.


30 Oct 2018 description

Preventing the spillover of violent extremism from the Sahel is better than having to counter it later.

By Michaël Matongbada,

A rising number of attacks by gunmen this year have shaken the eastern part of Burkina Faso, increasing insecurity in the area. Although no group has claimed responsibility, the attackers are believed to be linked to violent extremist groups in the Sahel.

19 Oct 2018 description

Clarifying the roles of the African Union (AU) and subregional organisations is a central element of the AU reforms. It is key in terms of managing expectations about what the AU can or cannot do, as well as coordinating Africa’s responses to avoid duplication of efforts. But this issue is also divisive, and it is unclear whether AU member states will reach a concrete decision on a division of labour at the upcoming extraordinary summit on reforms in Addis Ababa on 17 November.

19 Oct 2018 description

To withstand the inevitable natural disasters climate change will bring, better disaster risk management must start now.

Human activity has caused the temperature of the Earth and its atmosphere to rise by about 1°C above pre-industrial levels, triggering fundamental changes to the planet’s physical and social landscapes. On 8 October an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warned that temperatures were rising faster than expected, and that 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels could occur as early as 2030.

16 Oct 2018 description

The African Union (AU) has started setting up a Mediation Support Unit (MSU) at its headquarters in Addis Ababa. This is to support the various efforts across Africa to make peace. Technical obstacles, such as where the unit should be based, as well as problematic coordination between the various AU departments, are, however, slowing down its implementation.

09 Oct 2018 description

Africa needs inclusive health and educational systems that eliminate the stigma around mental illness.

By Stellah Kwasi

The negative impact of armed conflict on the mental health of combatants is well documented. But it wasn’t until about two decades ago that literature on the effect of conflict on civilians began emerging.

05 Oct 2018 description

Elections on 7 October could extend the status quo in a country that desperately needs stability.

By Mohamed M Diatta

Cameroonians will be voting for a new president this Sunday 7 October. The election comes at a critical time for the central African nation which until quite recently was a stable country in a turbulent region.

04 Oct 2018 description

This study of 133 projects shows how policy is being translated into practice and the need for evidence-based interventions.


Efforts aimed at preventing and countering violent extremism (P/CVE) have emerged onto the global stage with unprecedented speed and attracted substantial financial investment. This is unsurprising – the idea that action can be taken to eliminate the potential for devastating violence before it is perpetrated brings great hope and inspiration.

01 Oct 2018 description

The obstacles preventing the deployment of the African Standby Force (ASF) is on the agenda of the Peace and Security Council (PSC) for October 2018. This is after an earlier meeting, planned for 19 September, was postponed. Indications are that an overhaul of the ASF concept will include some elements of the now almost defunct African Capacity for Immediate Response to Crises (ACIRC), notably its flexibility.

01 Oct 2018 description

The AU has helped reduced coups, but steers clear of other tactics used to subvert democracy.


Most African countries now hold regular elections, albeit often flawed and contested. Fewer coups on the continent are largely the result of the African Union’s (AU) rejection of unlawful take-overs. And yet democracy continues to be subverted in other ways, like constitutional coups.

27 Sep 2018 description

Amanda Lucey and Liezelle Kumalo

Liberia and South Sudan represent important case studies for what sustaining peace means in practice. They provide an opportunity to interrogate how the United Nations (UN) can ensure greater inclusivity in activities carried out across the sustaining peace spectrum, including mediation, security sector reform and institution building. With the current UN focus on sustaining peace, this report provides practical recommendations for more inclusive processes.

Key findings

27 Sep 2018 description

In this issue:

Is the African Charter on democracy strong enough?

The AU’s African initiative vs. Russian/Sudanese mediation in the CAR

Looting could make South Sudan’s peace efforts impossible

Political infighting endangers SADC’s hard work in Lesotho

Discussions around the African Standby Force gain momentum

27 Sep 2018 description

Forecasting for peace

Modelling the risk of political instability can identify opportunities for investing in development and peace.

By Julia Bello-Schünemann and Jonathan D Moyer

Sub-Saharan Africa has made important peace and security gains over the past two decades. Large-scale political violence has declined and fewer people are dying in wars. But other forms of political violence have increased, and the region’s future will still be turbulent.

19 Sep 2018 description

Despite the latest agreements, foreign interests and a continued elite wealth race are still a threat.

By Duncan E Omondi Gumba and Akol Miyen Kuol

South Sudan’s government, opposition and rebel groups have signed an agreement that lays the foundation for a transition government. But many doubt that the current peace will hold.

03 Sep 2018 description

From mediation to institution building, peace processes must reflect the needs of all sectors of society.

By Lizelle Kumalo

Peace is not just about restoring stability after violence. It is also about investing in the structures and institutions that will ensure peaceful, inclusive and just societies, as new ISS research shows.

31 Aug 2018 description

In this issue:

How the latest AU decision on Western Sahara could affect other crises

The African Union and the question of LGBTI-rights

The AU will have to do more to convince SADC

Helping those affected by Boko Haram to get back on their feet

Interview with Nicholas Haysom, UN Special Envoy for Sudan and South Sudan