Tareck El Aissami has resigned as Venezuela’s oil minister after a wave of arrests for alleged corruption at the state-owned oil company. It’s unclear whether the arrests signal an internal power struggle within the regime. But El Aissami, an influential confidant of Nicolas Maduro, likely is an important piece of the puzzle.
Last week’s congressional hearing on the alleged security risk posed by TikTok put into stark contrast the gap between the app’s fans and critics. The push in Washington to ban the social media app comes against the backdrop of increasing U.S.-China tensions over technology and the economic and political influence it generates.
The European Union and U.S. often fixate on democratic elections as the basic foundation of political legitimacy. But in West African states such as Mali and Guinea, elections have led to contested outcomes or enabled authoritarian power grabs, profoundly unsettling the hopes of many in and outside the region for a more stable future.