Regional Overview – Middle East 26 February 2018

While there was an increase in the number of reported events in several countries in the Middle East last week, including in Palestine, Syria, and Turkey, this was contrasted by a slight decrease in the number of political violence and protest events recorded across much of the rest of the region. In Palestine, the recent…

Regional Overview – Africa 26 February 2018

A drop in political violence and protest was recorded in the normally active countries of Africa last week, including Nigeria, Somalia and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Proportionally, battles between armed groups increased compared to the week beginning 11 February. Violence against civilians experienced a modest decrease. Ethiopia maintained a steady rate of protests and…

Egypt – Strategic Pivot of the Islamic State

Less than two months before the next Presidential elections, the Egyptian Armed Forces on 9 February launched a counter-militancy campaign called ‘Operation Sinai 2018’ to take on the Islamic State in the Sinai Peninsula but also to secure the border to Libya in the Western Desert. The operation involves increased air force sorties, the closure…

Mali – the “de-regionalization” of armed rebellion

Since October 2017, attacks by the Group for Support of Islam and Muslims (JNIM) on military and civilian targets increased. JNIM has officially claimed roughly twelve operations per month since that period. In the preceding six months (from March-September 2017), JNIM’s focus shifted south, especially to the Mopti region, while the number of violent events…

Yemen – The Battle of Sana’a

In December 2017, Yemeni capital Sana’a was the site of a major confrontation between pro-Houthi and pro-Saleh forces, former allies in the war against the Saudi-backed coalition. The Houthi-Saleh alliance materialized in 2014, when army units and tribes loyal to former president Ali Abdullah Saleh facilitated the Houthi seizure of Amran and Sana’a. Despite initial…