The pace of Tunisia’s democratic backsliding under President Kais Saied has accelerated in recent weeks. As part of Saied’s increasing curbs on freedom of expression, three more people who have publicly criticized Saied were arrested in the past week, bringing the total number of critics who have been jailed to 12.
Over the past year, the implications of the war in Ukraine have been the subject of much analysis and debate. It has been a war between two armed forces, but also between two diametrically opposed systems of values. It has been an economic war and a war of competing narratives. But above all, it has been a war of contradictions.
On Saturday, voters in Nigeria will decide who will succeed President Muhammadu Buhari as the leader of Africa’s most populous country and largest economy. While eighteen candidates are running, there are three top contenders, all of whom are wealthy, card-carrying members of the political establishment.
Capitals in Europe are observing a grim anniversary this week. Tomorrow marks one year since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine pushed the continent overnight into a new reality. With no end to the war in sight, the big discussion in European capitals now is how to sustain Ukraine’s war effort over the long haul.
As search and rescue operations in the aftermath of the devastating earthquakes in Turkey and Syria wind down, there has been widespread criticism of the Turkish state’s response. Nevertheless, for all the shortcomings in the government’s response to the earthquakes, it is miles ahead of how the Syrian state responded.
Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva’s recent meeting with U.S. President Joe Biden was framed as a reaffirmation of the two countries’ recently battered democracies. But if Lula seems like a good fit for Biden’s narrative of a global battle between democracy and autocracy, he also underscores the limitations of this narrative.
This weekend’s African Union leaders’ summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, will be Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari final one ahead of his departure from office in May. Haunting Buhari’s final AU summit, and his last months in office, is a grim reality: Nigeria’s continued decline as a continental power.
The European Union got a welcome bit of good news this week with a surprise revision to the European Commission’s economic outlook, which now predicts the union will narrowly avoid a recession and has already passed peak inflation. The forecast, though, stands in stark contrast to recent predictions for the United Kingdom.
Two earthquakes on Feb. 6 have so far killed more than 35,000 and injured tens of thousands more in southern Turkey and northwestern Syria. But while the disasters were natural, not all of the fallout was: The humanitarian catastrophe caused by the earthquakes has been worsened by corruption, politics and geopolitical rivalries.
Why we pay so much attention to some tragedies, like this week’s earthquake in Turkey and Syria, and not others is bound up in questions of cause and effect. There is nothing political about an earthquake, we tell ourselves. There are no perpetrators, only victims. But politics always plays a role in the impact of a natural disaster.
East African leaders held a summit last weekend in Burundi, where they discussed efforts to contain the escalating conflict in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. The bloc’s leaders also explored potential ways to defuse tensions between Congo and neighboring Rwanda, which have flared due to the resumption of violence.
EU leaders gathered in Brussels today, hoping to devise a response to protectionist subsidies included in the U.S. Inflation Reduction Act, or IRA, a topic that is becoming increasingly important to trans-Atlantic relations. Instead, they found themselves occupied with a surprise guest: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
The government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has gotten off to a difficult start. The weeks since his Cabinet was formed saw the worst escalation in violence between Palestinians and Israelis since 2008. Meanwhile, Netanyahu’s proposed reforms to the judiciary have been met with intense protests.
Since succeeding Donald Trump, Joe Biden has sought to repair the damage Trump did to a wide range of traditional U.S. foreign policy objectives, particularly when it came to reassuring U.S. allies and partners around the world. But Biden has left one thing he inherited form Trump relatively untouched: trade policy.
Pope Francis is in the final stretch of a six-day trip to the Democratic Republic of Congo and South Sudan that was framed as an opportunity to bring more international attention to the many challenges faced by the two neighbors and to deliver a message of peace, reconciliation and an end to conflict in the two countries.
Many in Ukraine watched the Czech presidential election closely as a bellwether for whether European public opinion would continue to support the delivery of military aid to Kyiv. The success of Petr Pavel over far-right populist Andrej Babis signaled the country’s desire to stick by its NATO allies.
Lebanon’s ongoing political and economic crises took more dramatic turns last week, beginning with a sit-in inside parliament by some of the body’s members to protest the failure to elect a president, and continuing with extraordinary developments linked to the stalled inquiry into the August 2020 Beirut Port explosion.