A key aspect of Colombian President Gustavo Petro’s ambitious “Total Peace” plan is resuming negotiations with the largest remaining rebel group in Colombia—the ELN. Warming ties between Colombia and Venezuela remove one obstacle to that objective. But other remaining challenges mean that progress will be slow and difficult.
Diplomacy & Politics Archive
Given the threat that Jair Bolsonaro represented to the democracy of Latin America’s largest country, the whole region should feel some relief that Lula da Silva defeated him in Brazil’s presidential election. And yet, there are many pro-democracy activists in Latin America for whom Lula returning to office is a cause for anxiety.
Brazilians go to the polls Sunday in a presidential election pitting left-wing former President Inacio Luiz “Lula” da Silva against the far-right incumbent, President Jair Bolsonaro. The contest has become a poster child of the “democracy versus autocracy” narrative, given Bolsonaro’s populist, authoritarian brand of politics.
Nigeria’s worst flooding in at least a decade has overrun hundreds of communities across the country. Sporadic floods have been occurring locally for months, but they intensified in September and have since spread. The flooding is expected to end in the coming weeks, but its impact will take much longer to repair.
The latest row between Washington and Riyadh over the decision by OPEC+ to cut oil production is not just a dispute over oil prices. It is a more fundamental divide between the U.S. and most of its Middle East security partners over what’s at stake in the war in Ukraine, and how each side sees the current geopolitical map.
In the upcoming midterm U.S. congressional elections, Republicans are expected to regain control of the House of Representatives and possibly the Senate, which would put them in position to undermine U.S. efforts to support Ukraine militarily. However, concerns that Republicans will do so are unfounded for three reasons.
A leadership void created by German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s passive approach to continental affairs has now seeped into the Franco-German relationship, threatening to destabilize the central motor of European integration. Scholz visited Paris yesterday in what appears to be a failed attempt to patch up tensions.
Giorgia Meloni became Italy’s new prime minister and the first woman to hold the position on Friday, ushering in a new era in which she will be the conductor of Italian politics’ cacophonous chorus. The drama already promises to be intense, even as the country braces itself for ferocious economic headwinds.
On Oct. 6, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Prague, as part of a new effort to normalize relations. A changed geopolitical landscape in the region has removed some obstacles to a rapprochement, but the current efforts could still be derailed by other stumbling blocks.
Chinese President Xi Jinping’s selection of a new politburo at last week’s 20th party congress set the tone for the next five years and sent a message: that loyalty trumps competence, and security—in its many dimensions, for both Xi and China—must be a top priority. Two events at that congress also stood out as indicative of the trends taking shape under Xi’s rule.
Despite global attention on Taiwan, the state in the Indo-Pacific region facing the most difficult security dilemmas with regard to a more aggressive China under Xi Jinping is Vietnam. Hanoi is struggling to manage the adverse effects of a deterioration in bilateral relations that began when Xi first took power a decade ago.
Israel’s Targeting of Palestinian Journalists Is Only Getting Worse
The killing of Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh by the Israeli military in May has been widely reported and denounced internationally and regionally. But there has been little international media and public attention paid to the broader problem of intimidation, threats and targeting faced by Palestinian journalists.
More than 7.1 million Venezuelans have now fled the country, making the exodus the largest migration crisis in the world. But while most Venezuelan migrants had previously sought a safe haven in other countries in South America, migration patterns have shifted toward the U.S. under the false hope that things will be better there.
Iran’s sale of drones to Russia and reported engagement on the ground in Ukraine could further complicate its already rocky relationship with the West. But despite this, Iran and Russia still stand to gain geopolitically and economically from an expansion of their collaboration, even if it is a partnership of convenience.
Among the many concerns raised about Russia’s war in Ukraine is that it is using tactics that constitute genocide. But when human rights advocates focus so much on the genocide label, they risk drawing attention away from actions that are as bad or worse, but also easier to punish when called “crimes against humanity.”
“The worst is yet to come.” That’s the message from the International Monetary Fund about what to expect in 2023. For Latin America, the IMF’s bad news about the year to come will add to a pile of years’ worth of other economic and political problems and will be critical to every political story in the region for the year to come.
The results of Brazil’s first-round presidential election were an unpleasant shock for the left, even if Lula da Silva of the Workers’ Party, or PT, finished first and remains the frontrunner against Jair Bolsonaro on Oct. 30. The PT is now a diminished political force, due as much to its own mistakes as the rise of the far right.