Col. Assimi Goita meets with a high-level delegation from the West African regional bloc ECOWAS at the Ministry of Defense in Bamako, Mali, Aug. 22, 2020 (AP photo).

The court of the West African Economic and Monetary Union yesterday ordered that sanctions imposed on Mali by West African leaders should be lifted. Along with the Economic Community of West African States, or ECOWAS, the eight-nation grouping known by its French-language acronym UEMOA had imposed economic and financial restrictions on Mali in January, after the country’s interim military government reneged on a pledge to hold elections by February 2022 as part of Mali’s return to civilian rule.  UEMOA had instructed all financial institutions under its jurisdiction to suspend Mali immediately and cut off its access to regional financial markets. […]

Secretary of State Antony Blinken and African Union Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat speak at the State Department, Washington, March 11, 2022 (AP photo by Balce Ceneta).

The war in Ukraine might be distant from the African continent, but its effects are proving to be far-reaching. From skyrocketing fuel prices to disruptions in food supply chains, Africans are feeling the real-life consequences of a conflict many of them regard as peripheral to their concerns and believe has little to do with them. But in addition to exacerbating the myriad difficulties African populations are grappling with, the war is also threatening to hobble the international collaborations their governments are trying to develop to address those challenges. That dynamic was on display at last week’s eighth annual high-level dialogue between the […]

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa speaks via video link during the 76th Session of the U.N. General Assembly, New York, Sept. 23, 2021 (AP photo by Spencer Platt).

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and the reaction it has drawn from the United States and the European Union, has been described by many observers as having “revitalized the liberal international order,” as Kori Schake of the Washington-based American Enterprise Institute wrote in The Atlantic. Ivo Daalder, the president of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and a former U.S. ambassador to NATO, tweeted that “the West isn’t weak, divided or declining after all.” Other commentators have drawn similar conclusions following the stronger-than-expected response on both sides of the Atlantic to Russia’s incursion into Ukraine. But many observers outside the core countries of the […]

African residents in Ukraine wait at the platform inside Lviv railway station, Lviv, Ukraine, Feb. 27, 2022 (AP photo by Bernat Armangue).

Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last Thursday, major developments that will reshape global politics both immediately and for years to come have rapidly unfolded one after the other. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced that Germany would boost its defense spending this year by $113 billion and meet NATO’s target of 2 percent of GDP in the future. The U.S. and European Union announced a new round of sanctions against Russia that has sent the ruble crashing. And the EU announced that its member states will grant Ukrainians fleeing the war the right to stay and work in the bloc for […]

Colonel-Major Ismael Wague, center, spokesman for the soldiers identifying themselves as the National Committee for the Salvation of the People, holds a press conference at Camp Soudiata in Kati, Mali, Aug. 19, 2020 (AP photo).

When United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres addressed the Security Council in October, he urged it to act against the “epidemic of coup d’etats” plaguing the international community. Guterres’ warning came in the aftermath of a successful coup in Sudan—the fifth in the world that year. Though it’s just started, 2022 has brought even more coup attempts, including a successful one in Burkina Faso on Jan. 23 and a failed one in Guinea-Bissau in early February. In total, there have been nine military coup attempts since January 2021, of which six—in Myanmar, Sudan, Chad, Guinea, Mali and Burkina Faso—were successful. This recent spree has led some to suggest that, despite waning in the post-Cold War era, […]