Migrants and refugees wave for help from inside a wooden boat 21 miles north of Sabratha, Libya, Feb. 3, 2017 (AP photo by Emilio Morenatti).

Editor’s Note: Every Friday, Associate Editor Robbie Corey-Boulet curates the top news and analysis from and about the African continent. The International Organization for Migration (IOM) says it’s “deeply concerned” about the fate of more than 200 migrants from Somalia and Ethiopia who are being held captive by criminal gangs in Libya. They were shown “huddled fearfully in a concrete room” in a video distributed widely on social media this week. In the video, members of the group complained of starvation and beatings, including having their teeth pulled out. The gangs are apparently seeking ransoms of up to $10,000 per […]

Dr. Denis Mukwege receives the 2014 Sakharov Prize from former European Parliament President Martin Schulz, Strasbourg, France, Nov. 26, 2014 (AP photo by Christian Lutz).

On Thursday, April 13, Dr. Denis Mukwege, a gynecologist renowned for treating victims of sexual violence in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, attended a meeting with Gildo Byamungo, a colleague who was running a clinic near the city of Uvira. The two men talked at one point about the lack of security in the area, and Byamungo confided that he had received multiple threats from armed groups. “He told me about his fears for his safety,” Mukwege recalls. That night, Byamungo was shot and killed at his home, becoming the latest victim of spiraling violence that Mukwege attributes to President […]

Rural midwives return home after shopping at the market in Patzun, Guatemala, Sept. 2, 2008 (AP photo by Rodrigo Abd).

In addressing the root causes of migration, building allies, developing markets and advancing U.S. interests, the Inter-American Foundation provides the best dollar-for-dollar return on U.S. investment in Latin America. Yet the Trump administration wants to end it. An independent agency of the U.S. government, the IAF has funded local development projects throughout Latin America and the Caribbean since its creation in 1969. The Trump administration’s budget proposes shutting it down to save a mere $22.5 million in appropriations this year. The administration’s budget would cut funding to the IAF to just $4.6 million in the 2018 fiscal year, with nothing […]

A protest by supporters of Albania’s main opposition party demanding a caretaker Cabinet to take the country to parliamentary elections, May 13, 2017 (AP photo by Hektor Pustina).

Albania’s “on again, off again” election is back on after the opposition ended its threat of a boycott last month. But allegations of a spiraling drug-trafficking problem, and claims and counterclaims of criminal links to politics, are still an unedifying sight in a European Union candidate state. Prolonged political deadlock over recent months is a sign not only of Albania’s deep political divisions and dysfunctions, but also of the EU’s limited ability to use its leverage in the increasingly restive Western Balkans. On May 22, Albania’s government confirmed a deal that put opposition figures into government positions, a compromise that […]

A woman sells bread near the Tawfiqia market, Cairo, Egypt, Oct. 18, 2016 (AP photo by Nariman El-Mofty).

CAIRO, Egypt—In November 2016, Egypt’s major cities experienced something that has become rare since a military coup led by then-Gen.—and now President—Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi in July 2013: protests. In the streets and at universities in Cairo, Alexandria and Port Said, Egyptians took great risks in sight of the police to gather and demonstrate against price hikes and bread shortages. Until then, the country had appeared to have settled into a period of relative calm. Five years after the uprisings that brought down former President Hosni Mubarak, and three years on from the coup that felled his democratically elected successor, Mohamed Morsi, […]

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, right, speaks with Deputy President William Ruto at a ceremony marking the opening of a railway, Mombasa, Kenya, May 30, 2017 (AP photo by Khalil Senosi).

The attacks have been small in scale, but they’ve come at a steady pace: On May 24, eight security officials were killed in a pair of roadside bombings in eastern Kenya. A week later, seven officers and one civilian died when their armored personnel carrier hit an improvised explosive device in Mangai, near the coast. And last week, the victims were four aid workers driving near the Dadaab refugee camp. In all, according to the Associated Press, at least 34 people, 20 of them police officers, have died in a recent string of explosions near the border with Somalia claimed […]

Teachers, health workers and civil servants join a three-day strike over plans to tighten spending and increase the retirement age, Algiers, Nov. 21, 2016 (AP photo by Sidali Djarboub).

Editor’s Note: This is the first article in an ongoing WPR series on social welfare policies in various countries around the world. On June 1, state media in Algeria reported that President Abdelaziz Bouteflika had ordered a 2.5 percent increase in pensions for retirees, on top of an equivalent increase awarded in 2016. According to Reuters, there are 2.8 million retirees receiving pensions in Algeria, and the decision to increase their income comes as the oil-producing country struggles to adapt to reduced oil prices and considers reforms to its broader social welfare system. In an email interview, Azzedine Layachi, a […]

The expanded meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), Astana, Kazakhstan, June 9, 2017 (Sputnik photo by Vladimir Astapkovich via AP).

For much of its 16 years of existence, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, or SCO, has carried perhaps the greatest promise of any multilateral organization in Eurasia. Made up of Russia, China and four of the five Central Asian states—Turkmenistan, characteristically, kept the organization at arm’s-length—the SCO hasn’t just provided a high-level forum for discussing regional counterterrorism efforts. It has offered an outlet for Moscow and Beijing to coordinate their security and, increasingly, economic policies without concerns of Western input. The SCO was never quite a “counterweight to NATO” as some asserted, but it provided the groundwork for cohesion to come. […]

Iranians attend the funeral of victims of last week’s attack by the self-styled Islamic State group, Tehran, June 9, 2017 (AP photo by Ebrahim Noroozi).

Last week, while a great deal of attention was focused on the aftermath of the terrorist attack in central London, another wave of jihadi killings unfolded a continent away, in the heart of the Islamic Republic of Iran. The perpetrators of the June 7 operation in Tehran struck directly at regime targets, hitting the country’s parliament and the shrine to its founder, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, killing 17 people and wounding more than 50. The so-called Islamic State quickly took responsibility for the attacks in both London and Tehran, adding evidence to the theory that as it loses ground in Syria […]

Men watch the announcement of a ruling on an appeal bid by former Liberian President Charles Taylor, Monrovia, Liberia, Sept. 26, 2013 (AP photo by Mark Darrough).

On June 2, authorities in the U.K. charged Agnes Reeves Taylor, the ex-wife of former Liberian President Charles Taylor, with torture in connection with crimes she allegedly committed during the West African nation’s prolonged period of civil conflict. The arrest makes Reeves Taylor the latest in a series of high-profile Liberians to be arrested in Europe and the United States in recent years. In Liberia, meanwhile, there has been no progress on justice initiatives under President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. Charles Taylor is serving a 50-year sentence in the U.K. for war crimes and crimes against humanity, but his trial dealt […]

The skyline of Doha’s West Bay neighborhood, Qatar, Jan. 6, 2011 (AP photo by Saurabh Das).

A ransom payment for a kidnapped royal hunting party. Hacking claims and “fake news.” A blockade that U.S. President Donald Trump appeared to take credit for, hours after his secretary of state called for it to be lifted. “The biggest bovine airlift in history.” The escalating rift between Qatar, the tiny Gulf state with a big foreign policy agenda, and its neighbors, led by Saudi Arabia, already had all the makings of a geopolitical soap opera. And the plot keeps thickening. On Monday, Qatari shipping lines were rerouted to Oman, bypassing their usual ports in the United Arab Emirates, which […]

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses members of the ruling Justice and Development Party, Ankara, June 13, 2017 (Pool photo via AP).

As the dust settles from President Donald Trump’s first visit to the Middle East, his policy in the region, such as it exists, is harkening back to the years before his predecessor, Barack Obama. Obama only sought minor recalibrations in long-standing U.S. policy toward its allies in the region, and his criticisms of them amounted to the mildest rebukes. But Trump’s visit made it clear that Saudi Arabia and Israel are, once again, the unmistakable pillars of America’s Middle East posture. Egypt also seems more firmly in the U.S. orbit than ever, given Trump and Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi’s mutual […]

British Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron leave a joint press conference at the Elysee palace, Paris, June 13, 2017 (AP photo by Thibault Camus).

The meeting yesterday between British Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron was rich in symbolism and irony. A year ago, neither could have reasonably entertained the notion that they would be leading their countries today. As recently as April, their respective positions regarding the European Union would have led a reasonable observer to assume May would enjoy the upper hand in Tuesday’s meeting. Back then, May had just triggered the EU’s Article 50 to begin the U.K.’s withdrawal from what seemed like a deeply divided—if not mortally wounded—union. Macron was still a virtual unknown, campaigning for the […]

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic inspects the Guard of Honor during an inauguration ceremony, Belgrade, May 31, 2017 (AP photo by Marko Drobnjakovic).

In late April and into May, the U.S. deputy assistant secretary of state for Europe and Eurasia, Hoyt Yee, made several visits and high-level phone calls to the countries of the Western Balkans. These states have been wracked by corruption scandals and governing standoffs that have raised questions about the effectiveness of American assistance. Yee’s efforts have yielded some positive outcomes. But they also made clear that American diplomacy alone cannot provide the longer-term solutions to the region’s nagging political and economic problems. After Yee’s visit to Skopje on April 29, Gjorge Ivanov, Macedonia’s president, finally gave the opposition party […]

Omani Minister for Foreign Affairs Yousif bin Alawi bin Abdullah, left, arrives at the Gulf Cooperation Council foreign ministers meeting in Doha, Qatar, Dec. 9, 2014 (AP photo by Osama Faisal).

The dramatic crisis pitting tiny, oil-wealthy Qatar against regional powers Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt raises the question of the survivability of the Gulf Cooperation Council, the regional organization of six Gulf states. Most likely, Qatar will make some concessions to return to the fold. But the GCC will end up weaker as a result, and Riyadh’s ambition to push for deeper unity of effort among the six states will not be realized. The political assault against Qatar has seen Saudi Arabia, the UAE and other states break diplomatic ties with Doha, as well as close their […]

Supporters of former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh attend a rally marking one year of the Saudi-led coalition, Sanaa, Yemen, March 26, 2016. (AP photo by Hani Mohammed).

In March, to mark—and taunt—the two-year anniversary of the military intervention launched by Saudi Arabia in northern Yemen, former President Ali Abdullah Saleh marched down a major thoroughfare in the Yemeni capital, Sanaa, surrounded by throngs of adoring supporters. Bodyguards cleared his path as a crowd of tens of thousands cheered him on. The Sanaanis, as the capital’s residents are called, were overjoyed to catch sight of the man they consider their leader—even though he was forced to step down as president five years prior. Saleh delivered a speech to the crowd in his clipped northern accent, triumphantly declaring that […]

Lesotho’s former prime minister, Thomas Thabane, casts his vote during a previous election, Maseru, Lesotho, Feb. 28, 2015 (AP photo).

Last week, the political party of Thomas Thabane, a former prime minister of Lesotho, won the most seats in national elections and made plans to form a new coalition. Thabane has been a central figure in his Southern African country’s political turmoil in recent years, and he now faces a host of challenges, including trying to hold members of the security forces responsible for past crimes while striking a compromise on constitutional reforms. In an email interview, Samuel Severson, who is currently on a Fulbright-Hays fellowship in Lesotho and is pursuing a doctorate in history at Yale University, describes the […]

Showing 35 - 51 of 80First 1 2 3 4 5 Last