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Bi-weekly Press Review 1-15 April 2014

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Review no. 66
Press Review
1—15 April 2014
Table of Contents
Pages
African Union
- The African Union welcomes the commencement of the Sudan National Consultative Dialogue
- Press statement of the PSC at its 426th meeting on the human rights situation in Mali, during the
- period of the occupation of the three northern regions of Timbuktu, Gao and Kidal in January 2012
- Communiqué de presse du CPS en sa 426ème réunion sur la situation des Droits de l’Homme au Mali ,
au cours de la période d'occupation des trois régions du nord du pays, Tombouctou,
Gao et Kidal en janvier 2012
- Note d’Information de la Commission de l'UA sur l’incident survenu à Bangui le 29 mars 2014
et le retrait par la République du Tchad de son contingent au sein de la MISCA
- Information Note of the AU Commission on the incident that took place in Bangui on 29 march 2014
and the ithdrawal by the Republic of Chad of its contingent from MISCA
- The AU High-Level Panel for Egypt undertakes a mission to Cairo
- Le Groupe de haut niveau de l’UA pour l’Egypte entreprend une mission au Caire
- The AU welcomes the launching of the SPLM Intra-Party Dialogue Forum
- L’UA se félicite du lancement du Forum du SPLM pour le dialogue interne
- MISCA remembers victims and survivors of Rwanda Genocide
- L’Union Africaine réitère son appréciation au Tchad pour sa contribution inestimable aux
efforts de paix en République Centrafricaine
- MISCA Head of Mission discusses peace with CAR Women Leaders and calls for more
Cooperation from Elites
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Terrorism in Africa
- Transport aérien et terrorisme aérien en Afrique
- Does al-Qaeda Control Its Affiliates?
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Burundi
- US, UK team up, prepare Burundi soldiers for civil affairs in Somalia
33
Egypt
- Egypt passes new anti-terrorism law
- Egypt election race will test Sissi's leadership
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38
Eritrea
- Eritrean Refugees at Risk
41
Ethiopia
- Ethio-Djiboutian Relations: towards African economic integration
46
Kenya
- Kenya’s anti-terror strategy begins to emerge
50
2
Libya
- Libya and Syria fuel jihadi activity in the Maghreb
- Libyan south could destabilize northern Chad, Niger
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Mali
- Controverse sur les raisons de la démission du Premier ministre
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Nigeria
- Rethink Nigerian Borders Security Doctrine and Operations
- Nigeria Ranks High On Global Deaths from Insurgency in 2014
- Cinq mots pour comprendre: Nigeria 101
- Goodluck Jonathan : 5 ans pour réduire les inégalités au Nigéria
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South Sudan
- South Sudan conflict and Egypt’s hydro politics
82
Terrorism in the World
Afghanistan
- The ‘Talibanization’ of Insurgency
86
Syria
- Syrie/Afghanistan/Afrique: regain d'activité des bandes terroristes (FSB)
99
USA
- Analysis - Troubled Mideast peace effort compounds U.S. policy woes in region
- Islamophobia, Extremism, and the War on Terror: Arun Kundnani
- As al Qaeda quarrels abroad, we must be vigilant at home: Opinion
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African Union
The African Union welcomes the commencement of the Sudan National Consultative Dialogue
Addis Ababa, 9 April 2014: The Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union (AU), Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, welcomes the formal commencement of
the Sudan National Consultative Dialogue through the convening of a National Political Parties Summit, which was chaired by President Omar Hassan al Bashir, on 6
April 2014.
The Chairperson of the Commission acknowledges that this first meeting is an important step aimed at transitioning Sudan into a new political dispensation where
the issues of democracy, constitutional reform, economic stability, peaceful resolution of conflicts and diversity are effectively addressed. She recognizes the need for
Sudan to undertake a comprehensive and holistic national dialogue amongst the
people of Sudan and congratulates all the political parties which took part in this
first meeting for their constructive and candid inputs, which will guide the national
dialogue process and will help focus the work of various committees to be established
The Chairperson of the Commission also encourages the Government of Sudan to
engage in some immediate national reforms and confidence-building measures, as
announced by the President of the Republic during his meeting with the leaders of
the political parties, stressing that this would facilitate genuine participation of all
the sectors of society in the national dialogue. She urges all the political and other
stakeholders to heed the call to take part in this national process to ensure that it
encompasses broad views of the Sudanese Nation and to seize this opportunity to
advance the democratization agenda in their country and end the suffering of their
people.
The Chairperson of the Commission reiterates the AU’s continued commitment to
assist Sudan, through the AU High Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP), and calls
on the international community to stand ready to support the Sudanese in the pursuit for a new political dispensation.
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Press Statement of the The Peace and Security Council of the African
Union (AU), at its 426th meeting on the human rights situation in Mali, during the period of the occupation of the three northern regions of
Timbuktu, Gao and Kidal in January 2012
The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 426 th meeting held
on 7 April 2014, was briefed by the Commissioner for Political Affairs of the AU on
the human rights situation in Mali, during the period of the occupation of the three
northern regions of Timbuktu, Gao and Kidal of the country by armed separatists in
January 2012.
Council welcomed with appreciation the Report of the African Union Commission
on the human rights situation in Mali elaborated on the basis of information gathered by the AU Human Rights Observers deployed in Mali, in implementation of the
Communiqué PSC/AHG/COMM/2.(CCCLIII) of the Peace and Security Council adopted at its 353rd meeting held on 28 January 2013.
Council noted with deep concern the cases of human rights violations and abuses in
Mali during the period of the occupation, which were characterized by acts of murder, amputations, violence against women and children, rape, floggings and damage of private and public properties, as well as the destruction of cultural heritage
sites.
Council commended the Malian authorities for their commitment to fight against
impunity and for the consolidation of peace and national reconciliation. Council
urged the Malian authorities and other relevant stakeholders to take necessary
steps to implement the recommendations contained in the Report.
Council requested the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights, as well as other relevant AU Organs to
engage with the Department of Political Affairs of the AU Commission in support of
the implementation of recommendations contained in the Report.
Council further requested the Commission to regularly update the Council on the
status of implementation of the recommendations contained in the Report.
Council agreed to remain seized of the matter.
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Communiqué de presse du Conseil de paix et de sécurité de l'Union
africaine (UA), en sa 426ème réunion sur la situation des Droits de
l’Homme au Mali , au cours de la période d'occupation des trois régions du nord du pays, Tombouctou, Gao et Kidal en janvier 2012
Le Conseil de paix et de sécurité de l'Union africaine (UA), en sa 426 ème réunion tenue le 7 avril 2014, a suivi une communication faite par le Commissaire aux Affaires
politiques de l'UA sur la situation des Droits de l’Homme au Mali , au cours de la
période d'occupation des trois régions du nord du pays, Tombouctou, Gao et Kidal,
par les séparatistes armés en janvier 2012.
Le Conseil s'est félicité du rapport de la Commission de l'Union africaine sur la situation des Droits de l’homme au Mali élaboré sur la base des informations recueillies par les observateurs des Droits de l’Homme de l'UA déployés au Mali, dans le
cadre de la mise en œuvre du Communiqué PSC/AHG/COMM/2.(CCCLIII) du Conseil
de paix et de sécurité adopté en sa 353ème réunion tenue le 28 janvier 2013.
Le Conseil a noté avec une profonde préoccupation les cas de violations des Droits
de l'Homme et les abus au Mali au cours de la période d'occupation, qui ont été
caractérisés par des actes d’assassinat, des amputations, de violence contre les
femmes et les enfants, des viols, des flagellations et de destruction de biens publics
et privés, ainsi que de destruction de sites du patrimoine culturel.
Le Conseil a félicité les autorités maliennes pour leur engagement à lutter contre
l'impunité et à consolider la paix et la réconciliation nationale. Le Conseil a exhorté
les autorités maliennes et les autres parties prenantes à prendre les mesures nécessaires pour mettre en œuvre les recommandations contenues dans le rapport.
Le Conseil a demandé à la Commission africaine des Droits de l’homme et des
peuples, la Cour africaine des Droits de l’homme et des peuples, ainsi qu’aux autres
organes compétents de l’UA d’interagir avec le Département des Affaires politiques
de la Commission de l'UA en appui à la mise en œuvre des recommandations contenues dans le rapport.
Le Conseil a également demandé à la Commission d’informer régulièrement le Conseil sur l'état de mise en œuvre des recommandations contenues dans le rapport.
Le Conseil a décidé de rester saisi de la question.
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Note d’Information de la Commission de l'UA sur l’incident survenu à
Bangui le 29 mars 2014 et le retrait par la République du Tchad de son
contingent au sein de la MISCA
I. INTRODUCTION
1. Lors de sa 426ème réunion tenue le 7 avril 2014, le Conseil a suivi une communication du Commissaire à la Paix et à la Sécurité sur les derniers développements
intervenus en République centrafricaine (RCA), y compris la décision du Gouvernement de la République du Tchad de retirer son contingent de la Mission internationale de soutien à la Centrafrique sous conduite africaine (MISCA). A cette occasion,
le Conseil a exprimé le souhait de pouvoir disposer d’éléments d’information supplémentaires sur la situation, afin de lui permettre de prendre les mesures qui seraient requises.
2. La présente Note d’information fait le point des incidents survenus à Bangui le
29 mars 2014 et des développements intervenus subséquemment. La Note se conclut par des observations sur la marche à suivre.
II. SITUATION SÉCURITAIRE D’ENSEMBLE
3. Depuis son déploiement, le 19 décembre 2013, la MISCA a enregistré des progrès remarquables dans la mise en œuvre de son mandat, tel que fixé par le Conseil
dans son communiqué du 19 juillet 2013 [PSC/PR/COMM.2(CCCLXXXV)] et le Conseil de sécurité des Nations unies dans sa résolution 2127 (2013) du 5 décembre
2013. Dans le rapport soumis au Conseil lors de sa 416ème réunion tenue au niveau des chefs d’État et de Gouvernement, le 29 janvier 2014, la Présidente de la
Commission a fourni des informations détaillées sur le déploiement de la MISCA et
ses opérations [PSC/AHG/4(CDXVI)]. Ces informations ont été actualisées à l’occasion du premier rapport intérimaire sur la situation en RCA et les activités de la
MISCA, soumis par la Commission au Conseil de sécurité des Nations unies, confor-
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mément au paragraphe 32 de la résolution 2127 (2013).
4. La MISCA, qui a atteint l’effectif autorisé de 6 000 personnels en uniforme tel que
prévu dans le communiqué PSC/PR/COMM.2(CDVIII) adopté par le Conseil lors de
sa 408ème réunion tenue le 13 décembre 2013, est déployée non seulement à Bangui, mais aussi à l’intérieur du pays. Grâce à l’action de la Mission, avec le soutien
de l’Opération Sangaris, l’environnement sécuritaire a connu une amélioration considérable, particulièrement au regard de la situation qui prévalait après l’attaque
lancée par les éléments du groupe anti-Balaka contre la capitale Bangui, au début
du mois de décembre 2013. À Bangui, la vie a repris un cours quasi-normal, ainsi
que l’attestent la réouverture des établissements scolaires et universitaires, la reprise du fonctionnement des administrations publiques et des activités économiques formelles et informelles, ainsi que la réduction de l’horaire du couvre-feu,
qui est maintenant en vigueur de 23 heures à 5 heures du matin, au lieu de 18
heures à 6 heures du matin, au début du mois de décembre 2013. La situation à
l’intérieur du pays s’est aussi significativement améliorée. Du point de vue sécuritaire, l’on est entré dans une phase de normalisation.
5. Un des résultats les plus tangibles de l’action de la MISCA porte sur la sécurisation du corridor qui relie la frontière camerounaise à Bangui, qui est vital non seulement pour l’acheminement de l’aide humanitaire, mais également pour le fonctionnement de l’économie centrafricaine. La MISCA a mis en place un dispositif d’escorte pour les véhicules empruntant cette voie. A ce jour, la MISCA a escorté environ 3 050 véhicules de transport de marchandises et de biens humanitaires, sans
compter les véhicules de particuliers qui ont bénéficié de ces missions d’escorte.
6. Toutefois, au cours des dernières semaines, la situation sécuritaire a connu une
dégradation en certains endroits. Des attaques ont été menées contre des civils,
ainsi que contre le personnel de la MISCA. Il convient de mentionner ici l’attaque à
la grenade perpétrée à Bangui, le 27 mars 2014, qui a fait plusieurs morts et blessés, ainsi que nombre d’autres incidents. Après l’explosion de la grenade, la CroixRouge centrafricaine s’est dépêchée sur les lieux pour porter secours aux blessés et
ramasser les corps des victimes décédées. Mais, elle n’a pas pu le faire, car des
jeunes du quartier et des anti-Balaka avaient érigé des barricades, refusant que
toute personne étrangère accède au lieu de l’incident. De même, le groupe antiBalaka a multiplié les attaques contre la MISCA tant à Bangui qu’à l’intérieur du
pays. Le 23 mars 2014, des assaillants armés ont attaqué un véhicule de la MISCA,
blessant trois des éléments de la Mission, dont deux membres de son personnel
médical grièvement. Le 24 mars 2014, un véhicule de la MISCA a été attaqué à Boali, à environ 80 km au nord de Bangui, faisant un mort. Depuis son déploiement, la
MISCA a enregistré 21 pertes dans ses rangs, cependant que 141 soldats ont été
blessés.
III. INCIDENT DU 29 MARS 2014 ET DÉCISION SUBSÉQUENTE DU TCHAD DE RETIRER
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SON CONTINGENT
7. Le 29 mars 2014, vers 15:00, heure locale, un convoi de soldats tchadiens de la
MISCA, qui retournait au Quartier général de la Force à M’Poko, à Bangui, et transportait des armes saisies de groupes de miliciens dans et autour de la ville de Kanga
-Bandoro, au nord de la RCA, est tombé dans une embuscade tendue par des éléments armés au niveau du PK 12. Le point kilométrique douze (12), ou PK12 est un
quartier situé au nord de la ville de Bangui. Le cœur du quartier se situe à la jonction entre la route vers Boali (reliant Bangui au Nord-Ouest) et celle vers Damara
(reliant Bangui à l’Est). Le point de convergence de ces deux routes est le lieu d’un
marché très animé. Ayant essuyé une attaque à la grenade et étant pris sous le feu
nourri des assaillants, qui opéraient à partir de zones d’habitation civile, les éléments tchadiens de la MISCA ont retourné le feu contre les assaillants et tiré en
l’air pour se dégager de la zone d’embuscade. Les premières évaluations ont fait
état de quatre morts et de 21 personnes blessées. Deux soldats tchadiens ont été
blessés et les véhicules du contingent ont subi de dommages sérieux causés par des
tirs de mitraillettes. Pour sa part, une équipe d’experts des droits de l’homme des
Nations unies a annoncé que les soldats tchadiens avaient délibérément, sans provocation aucune, tiré sur un marché bondé de civils non armés, tuant environ 30
personnes et faisant 300 blessés graves, dont des femmes enceintes, des enfants,
des handicapés et des personnes âgées.
8. Par la suite, l’équipe des observateurs des droits de l’homme de la MISCA a conduit une investigation qui a fait ressortir les éléments suivants:
- le contingent tchadien de la MISCA est tombé dans une embuscade tendue par
des éléments des anti-Balaka, qui avaient préalablement pris position dans le secteur avant l’arrivée du convoi militaire. Les anti-Balaka ont délibérément tiré sur les
éléments tchadiens, qui ont riposté en légitime défense pour se protéger; et
- les estimations, s’agissant du nombre des personnes décédées, sur la base d’informations recoupées de diverses sources, varient entre 6 et 13.
9. La présentation sensationnelle et inexacte par l’équipe des observateurs des Nations unies de ce qui s’est passé et la reprise par les grands médias de cette relation
des faits, sans aucune vérification des informations, ont accru le climat d’hostilité à
l’encontre du contingent tchadien et, plus globalement, à l’encontre des populations tchadiennes et musulmanes vivant en RCA. En vérité, le contingent tchadien
fait l’objet d’une campagne de stigmatisation systématique depuis plusieurs mois.
Lors d’une visite effectuée en décembre 2013 à Bangui, les Ministres des Affaires
étrangères de la République du Congo et du Tchad, le Ministre congolais de la Défense et le Commissaire à la Paix et à la Sécurité de l’UA avaient mis en garde
contre cette stigmatisation et ses conséquences.
10. C’est dans ce contexte que le Gouvernement tchadien, dans un communiqué
publié le 3 avril 2014, a annoncé sa décision de retirer son contingent de la MISCA,
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et ce après avoir informé la chef de l’État de la Transition en RCA, la Présidente de
la Commission de l’UA et le Secrétaire général des Nations unies. Dans ce communiqué, le Gouvernement tchadien a souligné que malgré les sacrifices consentis, le
Tchad et les Tchadiens font l’objet d’une campagne gratuite et malveillante tendant à leur faire porter la responsabilité de tous les maux dont souffre la RCA. Le
communiqué a réitéré la solidarité du Tchad avec la RCA et son engagement à continuer à soutenir ce pays sous d’autres formes, afin qu’il recouvre la paix, la sécurité et l’unité, et réalise la réconciliation entre ses fils et ses filles. Enfin, le Gouvernement tchadien a indiqué que les modalités pratiques du retrait seraient arrêtées de
commun accord avec l’UA et que, dans l’intervalle, le Tchad assumera sans faille sa
mission de paix dans les zones relevant de sa responsabilité en RCA.
11. La Présidente de la Commission a immédiatement réagi à cette situation. Dans
un communiqué publié le même jour, elle a pris acte de la décision du Gouvernement tchadien; souligné qu’au cours des semaines écoulées, les contingents de la
MISCA, en particulier celui du Tchad, avaient été la cible d’attaques répétées perpétrées par des éléments anti-Balaka et d’accusations infondées de la part d’un
certain nombre d’acteurs; et noté que la stigmatisation par certains du contingent
tchadien a contribué à créer un climat d’insécurité et d’hostilité dont les ressortissants tchadiens ont été particulièrement victimes. Dans ces conditions, et tout en
regrettant le départ envisagé du contingent tchadien, la Présidente de la Commission a indiqué en comprendre parfaitement les raisons. Elle a exprimé la pleine solidarité de l’UA avec le Gouvernement et le peuple tchadiens. La Présidente de la
Commission a relevé la contribution inestimable du Tchad aux efforts de paix et de
réconciliation en RCA, mettant en relief les efforts soutenus du Président Idriss Déby Itno pour faciliter l’aboutissement de la transition en cours ; la contribution du
contingent tchadien à la stabilisation de la situation; et le généreux soutien financier que le Tchad a apporté à la RCA, malgré les défis auxquels il est lui-même confronté, faisant ainsi montre d’un sens élevé de solidarité africaine.
12. Le Secrétaire général de la CEEAC, dans un communiqué publié le 3 avril 2014, a
indiqué comprendre la frustration du Tchad face à la non appréciation à leur juste
valeur de ses efforts et sacrifices. Il a regretté le retrait du contingent tchadien, qui
risque d’handicaper la MISCA. Il s’est félicité de la réaffirmation par le Tchad de sa
solidarité envers la RCA et de son engagement à continuer à soutenir ce pays sous
d’autres formes. Pour sa part, le Représentant spécial du Secrétaire général des
Nations unies et chef du Bureau intégré des Nations unies en RCA (BINUCA), le Général Babacar Gaye, dans une déclaration aux médias, a affirmé que les troupes
tchadiennes ayant été prises à partie lors de l’incident du 29 mars 2014, au PK12,
étaient bel et bien des contingents de la MISCA et qu’elles avaient réagi à une embuscade.
IV. MESURES PRISES PAR LA COMMISSION À LA SUITE DE L’ANNONCE DU RETRAIT
DU CONTINGENT TCHADIEN ET RENFORCEMENT DE LA MISCA
13. La Commission travaille à l’identification de troupes qui pourraient remplacer le
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contingent tchadien. Celui-ci comprend 830 militaires et 34 policiers, et est déployé dans le secteur nord et nord-est qui couvre les préfectures suivantes de la
RCA: Ouham, Nana-Gribizi, Bamingui-Bangoran et Vakaga. La MISCA a organisé
une sortie harmonieuse des éléments tchadiens de la ville de Bangui, qui s’est
déroulée le 6 avril 2014 sans aucun incident.
14. Parallèlement, la Commission a pris les mesures requises pour le suivi du
communiqué du Conseil du 7 mars 2014, autorisant le déploiement d’éléments
de police additionnels, ainsi que de capacités spécialisées. Dans ce cadre, le Burundi a offert deux Unités de police constituées (UPC) de 140 personnels chacune. Une visite de pré-déploiement a été entreprise par la Commission. Le transport de ces UPC vers la RCA sera assuré par l’Algérie, et devrait avoir lieu dans les
jours à venir. Le déploiement imminent des UPC du Burundi permettra à la Mission de réarticuler son dispositif de déploiement de manière à faire face à l’impératif de continuer à assurer la protection des populations civiles dans des localités
hautement sensibles comme Bossangoa, où la présence du contingent tchadien a
permis de mettre fin aux confrontations violentes entre communautés. En outre,
Djibouti, après une requête de la Commission, a indiqué être en mesure de déployer une UPC de 140 gendarmes.
V. OBSERVATIONS
15. La décision du Gouvernement tchadien de retirer son contingent de la MISCA
va incontestablement poser de nouveaux défis à la Mission, en même temps
qu’elle aura un impact négatif sur la situation humanitaire. En effet, les éléments
tchadiens ont joué un rôle crucial dans la stabilisation du nord du pays. Grâce à
leur présence, la sécurité des populations vivant dans ces zones a pu être assurée. La Commission, en consultation avec le Tchad, ne ménagera aucun effort
pour assurer un retrait ordonné et combler au plus vite le vide qui sera créé. La
Commission apportera également l’assistance requise au Gouvernement tchadien, pour faciliter le retour de ses ressortissants se trouvant encore en RCA, et
ce en raison des menaces qui pèsent sur leur sécurité.
16. La décision du Gouvernement tchadien est parfaitement compréhensible. Au
cours des mois écoulés, le Tchad a fait l’objet d’une campagne hostile et tendancieuse, qui a grandement contribué à l’intensification des attaques contre ses ressortissants, la communauté musulmane centrafricaine et contre la MISCA ellemême. La relation inexacte et sensationnelle de l’incident survenu le 29 mars
2014 a davantage aggravé la situation. Dans ce contexte, il importe que le Conseil
marque sa pleine solidarité avec le Gouvernement et le peuple tchadiens; réitère
son appréciation de l’engagement soutenu des autorités tchadiennes, en particulier le Président Idriss Déby Itno, en faveur de la paix, de la sécurité et de la stabilité en RCA; et se félicite de l’engagement du Tchad à continuer à appuyer les
efforts de paix en RCA. Le Conseil pourrait également réaffirmer son soutien à la
MISCA dans la mise en œuvre de son mandat, notamment la protection des populations civiles, et mettre à nouveau en garde tous les fauteurs de troubles en
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RCA, en particulier les éléments anti-Balaka qui sont devenus la principale menace à la paix, à la sécurité et à la stabilité en RCA.
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Information Note of the AU Commission on the incident that took
place in Bangui on 29 march 2014 and the withdrawal by the Republic
of Chad of its contingent from MISCA
I. INTRODUCTION
1. At its 426th meeting held on 7 April 2014, Council was briefed by the Commissioner for Peace and Security on the latest developments in the Central African Republic (CAR), including the decision of the Government of the Republic of Chad to
withdraw its contingent from the African-led International Support Mission in the
Central African Republic (MISCA). On that occasion, Council expressed the wish to
have additional information regarding the situation, in order to be in a position to
take the required measures.
2. This Information Note provides an update on the incident that took place in Bangui on 29 March 2014 and subsequent developments. The Note concludes with observations on the way forward.
II. OVERALL SECURITY SITUATION
3. Since its deployment on 19 December 2013, MISCA has made remarkable progress in the implementation of its mandate, as determined by Council in its communiqué of 19 July 2013 [PSC/PR/COMM.2(CCLXXXV)] and the United Nations (UN)
Security Council in its resolution 2127 (2013) of 5 December 2013. In the report
submitted to Council at its 416th meeting held at the level of Heads of State and
Government on 29 January 2014, the Chairperson of the Commission provided detailed information on the deployment of MISCA and its operations. The information
contained therein was updated in the first progress report on the situation in the
CAR and the activities of MISCA submitted to the UN Security Council, pursuant to
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paragraph 32 of resolution 2127 (2013).
4. MISCA, which has reached its authorized strength of 6,000 uniformed personnel
as provided for in communiqué PSC/PR/COMM.2(CDVIII) adopted by Council at its
408th meeting held on 13 December 2013, is not only deployed in Bangui, but also
in the countryside. Thanks to the action of the Mission, with the support of the
Sangaris Operation, the security environment has considerably improved, particularly when compared to the situation that was prevailing after the attacks carried
out by elements of the anti-Balaka group in Bangui, in early December 2013. In
Bangui, life has more or less returned to normalcy, as evidenced by the reopening
of schools and universities, the resumption of public administration and formal and
informal economic activities, as well as by the reduction of the duration of the curfew from 11:00 p.m. to 05:00 a.m., instead of 18:00 to 06:00 a.m., at the beginning
of December 2013. The situation inside the country has also significantly improved.
From a security point of view, it has entered a normalization phase.
5. One of the most tangible results of MISCA’s action relates to the protection of
the corridor that connects the border with Cameroon to Bangui, which is vital not
only for the delivery of humanitarian aid, but also for the functioning of the country’s economy. MISCA has put in place an arrangement to escort vehicles using this
route. To date, MISCA has escorted about 3,050 vehicles carrying goods and humanitarian aid, as well as cars belonging to individuals taking advantage of this arrangement.
6. However, in recent weeks, the security situation has deteriorated in some locations. Attacks have been carried out against civilians, as well as against MISCA personnel. It is worth mentioning, in this regard, the grenade attack perpetrated in
Bangui on 27 March 2014, which resulted in several deaths and injuries, as well as a
number of other incidents. Following the grenade attack, the CAR Red Cross dispatched a team to the area to assist the wounded and collect the bodies of the deceased. However, it could not do so as some youth and anti-Balaka elements erected barricades and refused to allow anyone to access the area. Similarly, the antiBalaka group has intensified its attacks against MISCA, both in Bangui and in the
countryside. On 23 March 2014, armed assailants attacked a MISCA vehicle,
wounding three elements of the Mission, two of them belonging to its medical
component seriously. On 24 March 2014, a MISCA vehicle was attacked in Boali,
about 80 km north of Bangui, killing one soldier. Since its deployment, MISCA has
sustained 21 losses of life, while 141 other uniformed personnel were wounded.
III. INCIDENT OF 29 MARCH 2014 AND SUBSEQUENT DECISION OF CHAD TO WITHDRAW ITS CONTIGENT
7. On 29 March 2014, around 15:00 local time, a convoy of Chadian soldiers from
MISCA, who were returning to the Force Headquarters in M'Poko, in Bangui, and
were transporting weapons seized from militia groups in and around the city of
Kanga-Bandoro, in the northern part of the CAR, fell into an ambush by armed ele-
14
ments at PK 12. The twelve kilometer point (12), or PK12, is a neighborhood located to the north of the city of Bangui. The heart of the district is located at the junction of the roads to Boali (linking Bangui to the North-West) and to Damara (linking
Bangui to the East). The junction between these two roads is the scene of a bustling market. Having sustained a grenade attack and caught under heavy fire from
the attackers, who operated from civilian residential areas, the Chadian elements
of MISCA had to fire back against the assailants and to shoot into the air to be able
to extricate themselves from the area of the ambush. Initial assessments reported
four dead and 21 injured. Two Chadian soldiers were wounded and the vehicles of
the contingent sustained heavy damages as a result of machine gun fire. For its
part, a team of UN human rights experts announced that the Chadian soldiers had
deliberately, without any provocation, fired on a crowded market of unarmed civilians, killing 30 people and leaving about 300 seriously injured, including pregnant
women, children, disabled and elderly people.
8. Thereafter, the MISCA team of human rights observers conducted an investigation which revealed the following:
- the Chadian contingent of MISCA fell into an ambush by members of the antiBalaka group, who had taken position in the area before the arrival of the military
convoy. The anti-Balaka elements deliberately fired on the Chadian elements, who
responded in self-defense to protect themselves; and
- estimates provided as regards the number of the deceased, on the basis of information from various sources, indicate between 6 and 13 deaths.
9. The sensational and inaccurate reporting by the team of UN observers of what
happened and the wide dissemination of that account by the mainstream media,
without any verification, have increased the climate of hostility against the Chadian
contingent and generally against Chadian and Muslim populations in the CAR. In
fact, the Chadian contingent has been the victim of a sustained stigmatization campaign for several months. During a visit in Bangui in December 2013, the Ministers
of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Congo and Chad, the Minister of Defence of the
Republic of Congo and the AU Commissioner for Peace and Security had warned
against this stigmatization and its consequences.
10. It is against this background that the Government of Chad, in a statement issued on 3 April 2014, announced its decision to withdraw its contingent from MISCA, after having informed the Head of State of Transition in the CAR, the Chairperson of the Commission and the UN Secretary-General. In the statement, the Chadian Government stressed that, despite the sacrifices made, Chad and Chadians were
victims of a baseless and malicious campaign to present them as being responsible
for all the ills affecting the CAR. The statement reiterated the solidarity of Chad
with the CAR and its commitment to continue supporting the country in other
ways, so that it recovers peace, security and unity, and ensure reconciliation
among its sons and daughters. Finally, the Government of Chad indicated that the
15
practical modalities of the withdrawal of its contingents would be determined in
coordination with the AU and that, in the meantime, Chad would continue to assume its mission in the areas under its responsibility in the CAR.
11. The Chairperson of the Commission immediately reacted to this situation. In a
statement issued the same day, she took note of the decision of the Government of
Chad; stressed that, over the past weeks, MISCA contingents, particularly that of
Chad, had been the target of repeated attacks by anti-Balaka elements and unfounded accusations from a number of actors; and noted that the stigmatization of
the Chadian contingent had contributed to a climate of insecurity and hostility
against Chadian nationals. Under these conditions, while regretting the departure
of the Chadian contingent, the Chairperson of the Commission stated that she fully
understood its rationale. She expressed AU’s full solidarity with the Chadian Government and people. The Chairperson of the Commission acknowledged the invaluable contribution of Chad to peace and reconciliation in the CAR, highlighting the
sustained efforts of President Idriss Deby Itno to facilitate the completion of the
transition process; the contribution of the Chadian contingent to the stabilization
of the situation; and the generous financial support that Chad extended to the CAR,
despite the challenges it faces itself, thus displaying a strong sense of African solidarity.
12. The ECCAS Secretary-General, in a statement issued on 3 April 2014, expressed
understanding for the frustration of Chad due to the lack of appreciation of its
efforts and sacrifices in the CAR. He regretted the withdrawal of the Chadian contingent, as it may negatively impact on MISCA. He welcomed the reaffirmation by
Chad of its solidarity with the CAR and its commitment to continue to support that
country in other ways. For his part, the Special Representative of the SecretaryGeneral and Head of the UN Integrated Office in CAR (BINUCA), General Babacar
Gaye, in a statement to the media, affirmed that the Chadian troops which were
attacked during the incident of 29 March 2014 at PK12 belonged to MISCA and that
they reacted to an ambush.
IV. MEASURES TAKEN BY THE COMMISSION FOLLOWING THE ANNOUNCEMENT OF
THE WITHDRAWAL OF THE CHADIAN CONTINGENT AND FOR THE STRENGTHENING
OF MISCA
13. The Commission is working to identify troops that can replace the Chadian contingent. This contingent includes 830 military and 34 police personnel, and is deployed in the North and North-East Sector, which covers the following CAR administrative areas: Ouham, Nana-Gribizi, Bamingui-Bangoran and Vakaga.
14. At the same time, the Commission has taken the necessary measures in followup to Council’s communiqué of 7 March 2014, authorizing the deployment of additional police elements, as well as that of specialized capabilities. In this context, Burundi has offered two Formed Police Units (FPUs) of 140 personnel each. A predeployment visit has already been undertaken by the Commission. The air lifting of
these FPUs to the CAR will be provided by Algeria, and is expected to take place in
16
the coming days. The imminent deployment of the Burundian FPUs will enable
the Mission to adjust its deployment in order to ucontinue to ensure the protection of civilian populations in highly sensitive areas, such as Bossangoa, where the
presence of the Chadian contingent has brought an end to violent confrontations
between communities. In addition, Djibouti, following a request from the Commission, has also confirmed its willingness to deploy an FPU of 140 gendarmes.
V. OBSERVATIONS
15. The decision of the Chadian Government to withdraw its contingent from
MISCA will undoubtedly pose new challenges to MISCA, while at the same time
impacting negatively on the humanitarian situation. Indeed, the Chadian elements have been playing a crucial role in the stabilization of the northern part of
the country. Thanks to their presence, the safety of the people living in these areas has been guaranteed. The Commission, in consultation with Chad, will spare
no effort to ensure an orderly withdrawal and speedily fill the resulting vacuum.
The Commission will also provide the necessary assistance to the Government of
Chad to facilitate the return of its nationals who are still in the CAR, because of
threats to their safety.
16. The decision of the Chadian Government is perfectly understandable. In recent months, Chad has faced a hostile and biased campaign, which has enormously contributed to the escalation of attacks against its citizens, the CAR Muslim community and against MISCA itself. Inaccurate and sensational reporting on
the incident of 29 March 2014 has further aggravated the situation. In this context, it is important that Council expresses its full solidarity with the Government
and people of Chad; reiterates its appreciation for the continued commitment of
the Chadian authorities, particularly President Idriss Deby Itno, in favor of peace,
security and stability in the CAR; and welcomes Chad's commitment to continue
supporting peace efforts in the CAR. Council may also wish to reaffirm its support
for MISCA in the implementation of its mandate, including the protection of civilians, and to again warn all spoilers in the CAR, especially the anti-Balaka elements, who have become the main threat to peace, security and stability in the
CAR.
17
The African Union High-Level Panel for Egypt undertakes a mission to
Cairo
Addis Ababa, 6 April 2014: As part of the implementation of its mandate, the African Union (AU) High-Level Panel for Egypt is undertaking a visit to Cairo from 6 to 9
April 2014. During this visit, which follows the missions undertaken from 27 July to
5 August 2013 and from 28 August to 5 September 2013, the Panel will meet with
the relevant Egyptian government officials and other stakeholders.
It should be recalled that the AU High-Level Panel for Egypt was established on 8
July 2013 by the Chairperson of the Commission, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, following the communiqué on the situation in Egypt adopted by the AU Peace and
Security Council (PSC) on 5 July 2013. It is led by former President Alpha Oumar
Konare of Mali and comprises former President Festus Gontebanye Mogae of Botswana and former Djibouti Prime Minister Dileita Mohamed Dileita.
The Panel submitted a progress report to the 416th meeting of the PSC, held on 29
January 2014 in Addis Ababa. The PSC, in turn, adopted a communiqué in which it
expressed its full support to the Panel and requested it to actively pursue the implementation of its mandate.
18
Le Groupe de haut niveau de l’Union africaine pour l’Egypte entreprend une mission au Caire
Addis Abéba, le 6 avril 2014: Dans le cadre de la mise en œuvre de son mandat,
le Groupe de haut niveau de l’Union africaine (UA) pour l’Egypte entreprend une
mission au Caire du 6 au 9 avril 2014. Au cours de cette visite, qui fait suite à
celles conduites du 27 juillet au 5 août 2013 et du 28 août au 5 septembre 2013,
le Groupe rencontrera les responsables gouvernementaux égyptiens concernés,
ainsi que d’autres parties prenantes.
Il convient de rappeler que le Groupe de haut niveau de l’UA pour l’Egypte a été
créé le 8 juillet 2013 par la Présidente de la Commission, Dr. Nkosazana DlaminiZuma, dans le prolongement du communiqué sur la situation en Egypte adopté
par le Conseil de paix et de sécurité (CPS) de l’UA le 5 juillet 2013. Le Groupe est
dirigé par l’ancien Président Alpha Oumar Konaré du Mali et comprend l’ancien
Président Festus Gontebanye Mogae du Botswana et l’ancien Premier ministre
djiboutien Dileita Mohamed Dileita.
Le Groupe a soumis un rapport intérimaire à la 416ème réunion du CPS, tenue à
Addis Abéba, le 29 janvier 2014. Le CPS a, à son tour, adopté un communiqué
dans lequel il a exprimé son plein appui au Groupe et lui a demandé de poursuivre activement la mise en œuvre de son mandat.
19
The African Union welcomes the launching of the SPLM Intra-Party
Dialogue Forum
Addis Ababa, 6 April 2014: The Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union (AU), Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, welcomes the launching, yesterday, in Addis Ababa, under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn of
Ethiopia, Chairperson of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development
(IGAD), of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) Intra-Party Dialogue
Forum. She commends the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front
(EPRDF) and the African National Congress (ANC) for having accepted to facilitate
the Forum.
The Chairperson of the Commission underlines the importance of this process,
which should enable the SPLM leadership to examine in-depth the underlying
causes of the crisis facing their party and of the conflict in South Sudan. She urges
all the stakeholders to take advantage of the intra-party talks, which are expected
to run concurrently with the IGAD-led mediation efforts, to advance the cause of
peace, security, stability, reconciliation and good governance in South Sudan.
The Chairperson of the Commission seizes this opportunity to reiterate AU’s deep
concern at the continued conflict in South Sudan and the untold suffering inflicted on the civilian population. She renews AU’s full support to the IGAD mediation, and, once again, appeals to the parties to the conflict to put the interest of
their country and people above any other consideration and to extend unreserved cooperation to the team of Special Envoys led by Ambassador Seyoum
Mesfin.
20
L’Union africaine se félicite du lancement du Forum du SPLM pour le
dialogue interne
Addis Abéba, le 6 avril 2014: La Présidente de la Commission de l’Union africaine
(UA), Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, se félicite du lancement, hier, à Addis Abéba,
sous la présidence du Premier ministre Hailemariam Dessalegn de l’Ethiopie, Président en exercice de l’Autorité intergouvernementale pour le Développement
(IGAD), du Forum du Mouvement populaire pour la libération du Soudan (SPLM)
pour le dialogue interne. Elle félicite le Front démocratique révolutionnaire du
peuple éthiopien (EPRDF) et le Congrès national africain (ANC) pour avoir accepté
d’animer ce Forum.
La Présidente de la Commission souligne l’importance que revêt ce processus, qui
devrait permettre à la direction du SPLM d’examiner de façon approfondie les
causes sous-jacentes de la crise à laquelle leur parti est confronté et celles du
conflit au Soudan du Sud. Elle exhorte toutes les parties prenantes à tirer profit
de ces pourparlers internes, qui devraient se dérouler parallèlement à la médiation conduite par l’IGAD, pour faire avancer la cause de la paix, de la sécurité, de
la stabilité, de la réconciliation et de la bonne gouvernance au Soudan du Sud.
La Présidente de la Commission saisit cette opportunité pour réitérer la profonde
préoccupation de l’UA face à la poursuite du conflit au Soudan du Sud et aux
souffrances indicibles infligées à la population civile. Elle renouvelle le plein appui
de l’UA à la médiation de l’IGAD et en appelle, encore une fois, aux parties au
conflit pour qu’elles placent l’intérêt de leur pays et de leur peuple au-dessus de
toutes autres considérations et apportent leur entière coopération à l’équipe
d’envoyés spéciaux dirigée par l’Ambassadeur Seyoum Mesfin
21
MISCA remembers victims and survivors of Rwanda Genocide
Bangui, 07 April 2014: The Rwandan contingent in the African-led International
Support Mission in the Central African Republic (MISCA), today, organized in Bangui a memorial service for the victims of the 1994 Rwanda Genocide against the
Tutsis. The event was attended by the MISCA Head of Mission and Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Gen. Jean Marie
Michel Mokoko, the MISCA Force Commander, Brig. Gen. Martin Tumenta, half a
dozen members of the Transitional Government of the Central African Republic
(CAR), including the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Toussaint Kongo Doudou,
who represented the Prime Minister as Chair of the event. Under the
theme “Remember, Unite, Renew,” the 20th anniversary service included a documentary on the Rwanda Genocide, video testimonies of survivors, the laying of a
memorial wreath and a minute of silence in honor of the victims which was synchronized with the live-streamed main memorial service in Kigali.
Speaking on the occasion, the CAR Minister of Foreign Affairs challenged Central
Africans and all of humanity to ensure that Genocide never happens again. The
Minister added: “It is our responsibility as Central African citizens to build peace
and learn the lessons of history, so that we do not repeat the mistakes and
atrocities of the past. Rwanda inspires us in the Central African Republic to believe that we can overcome the challenges of the moment and rebuild our coun-
22
try.”
On his part, the MISCA Head of Mission commended the Rwandan Battalion for
organizing the memorial service at this time in Bangui. He further stated: “This
event is of high symbolic value universally, to MISCA and to the Rwandan
Battalion. It is an opportunity for us all to stop and ponder human folly in the
name of which many atrocities have been committed. Rwanda is an example of
revival and renewal and the participation of Rwanda in MISCA is very important; it should inspire and encourage the Central African people to believe
that reconstruction and revival are indeed possible.”
23
L’Union Africaine réitère son appréciation au Tchad pour sa contribution inestimable aux efforts de paix en République Centrafricaine
L’UA prend acte de la décision du Tchad de retirer son contingent de la MISCA
Addis Abéba, le 3 avril 2014: La Présidente de la Commission de l’Union africaine
(UA), Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, prend acte de la décision du Gouvernement
tchadien, annoncée ce jour, de retirer son contingent de la Mission internationale
de soutien à la Centrafrique sous conduite africaine (MISCA).
La Présidente de la Commission souligne qu’au cours des semaines écoulées, les
contingents de la MISCA, en particulier celui du Tchad, ont été la cible d’attaques
répétées de la part des éléments anti-Balaka et d’accusations infondées de la part
d’un certain nombre d’acteurs. Elle note que la stigmatisation par certains du
contingent tchadien a contribué à créer un climat d’insécurité et d’hostilité auquel les ressortissants de ce pays ont payé un lourd tribut. Dans ces conditions, et
tout en regrettant le départ envisagé du contingent tchadien, la Présidente de la
Commission en comprend parfaitement les raisons et voudrait, à cette étape cruciale des efforts de paix en République centrafricaine (RCA), exprimer la pleine
solidarité de l’UA avec le Gouvernement et le peuple tchadiens.
La Présidente de la Commission relève la contribution inestimable du Tchad aux
efforts de paix et de réconciliation en RCA, tant dans le cadre de la Communauté
économique des États de l’Afrique centrale (CEEAC), dont le Tchad assure la présidence en exercice, que de l’UA. Elle note les efforts soutenus du Président Idriss
Déby Itno pour faciliter l’aboutissement de la transition en cours, la contribution
du contingent tchadien à la stabilisation de la situation et le généreux soutien financier que le Tchad a apporté à la RCA, malgré les défis auxquels il est lui-même
confronté, faisant ainsi montre d’un sens élevé de solidarité africaine.
La Présidente de la Commission note avec satisfaction l’engagement exprimé du
Tchad à continuer à faire preuve du même élan de solidarité envers la RCA pour
l’aider à surmonter les graves défis auxquels elle est confrontée. Elle souligne que
cet engagement s’inscrit dans la droite ligne de la contribution du Tchad à
d’autres entreprises africaines de paix, ainsi que l’a éloquemment illustré le rôle
crucial joué par le contingent tchadien lors de l’opération de libération du nord
du Mali, il y a de cela un peu plus d’un an.
La Présidente de la Commission réitère la forte conviction de l’UA que le règlement de la crise centrafricaine requiert une implication continue et forte de la
région, notamment à travers le Président en exercice et le Médiateur de la
CEEAC, les Présidents Idriss Déby Itno et Denis Sassou Nguesso de la République
du Congo. L’UA, qui réitère son plein soutien à leur rôle, forme l’ardent espoir
que le Conseil de sécurité des Nations unies, dans la résolution qui autorisera la
transformation de la MISCA en une opération onusienne, reconnaîtra pleinement
ce rôle et en affirmera le caractère central. Elle forme également l’espoir que les
autres préoccupations de l’UA seront adéquatement prises en compte.
24
La Présidente de la Commission exprime à nouveau la reconnaissance de l’UA au
contingent tchadien de la MISCA pour son professionnalisme, et s’incline devant
la mémoire des soldats tchadiens et des autres contingents tombés sur le champ
d’honneur. Elle se félicite de l’engagement du Tchad à continuer à assumer pleinement sa mission de paix dans les zones relevant de sa responsabilité dans le
cadre de la Mission et à poursuivre activement ses efforts de promotion de la
paix et de la sécurité dans la région.
25
MISCA Head of Mission discusses peace with CAR Women Leaders
and calls for more Cooperation from Elites
Bangui, 1 April 2014 : In implementation of UN Resolution 1325 and the conclusions of the workshop for women leaders of the Central African Republic (CAR)
held in Bangui on 12-14 March 2014, the Human Rights Protection and Gender
Unit of the African-led International Support Mission in the Central African Republic (MISCA), in collaboration with the UN Integrated Office in the CAR
(BINUCA), yesterday organized an open forum for CAR women leaders and the
Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission
and Head of MISCA, Gen. Jean Marie Michel Mokoko. Under the umbrella of the
Coalition of Central African Women for Peace and Reconstruction, the women’s
delegation represented a cross section of CAR civil society, including political
leaders, women in the media, representatives of Muslim and Christian organizations, and leaders of women’s peace building groups.
The women said that they had come as mothers, grandmothers, wives and sisters
who are part of a society that is suffering in the current crises, to discuss with the
Special Representative the situation in the country and jointly explore ways and
means to get more CAR women involved in peace building. They expressed appreciation to the AU for its support to the efforts of the CAR people towards resolving the current crises and offered their condolences for the MISCA peacekeepers who have lost their lives on Central African soil.
The almost three-hour interactive session, which took the format of a Town Hall
meeting, offered the MISCA Head of Mission an opportunity to brief the women
on the mandate, achievements and challenges of the Mission. He urged all Central African women to use their influence within their families and communities
26
to promote inclusive dialogue with a view to achieving sustainable peace, security, stability, democracy, Human Rights and development in the CAR.
The MISCA Head of Mission further stated: “The crises in this country are deep
and multi-faceted. Security alone cannot resolve all the problems of the country.
The people of the CAR need to think seriously about what kind of society and
nation they want to build for their children. The elites of this country must rise
to the call of history and make their voices heard, so that peace and security can
quickly be restored and Central Africans with the help of the international community can begin to focus on the bigger developmental challenges of education,
employment, healthcare, security sector reform, infrastructure development,
governance and building state institutions and a democratic political culture.
The international community is here to assist the Central African people. Therefore, all Central Africans, especially the elites, have a moral responsibility to actively support the international community’s efforts to help the CAR. This is
your country and we are here to help you save it.”
27
Terrorism in Africa
Transport aérien et terrorisme aérien en Afrique
10 April 2014
Vers la recherche de solutions contre le terrorisme aérien en Afrique - Le président du bureau africain du Conseil international des aéroports (ACI-Afrique),
Komlan Kowu Pascal, a indiqué ce mercredi à Dakar, à l'ouverture de la conférence régionale sur la sûreté de l'aviation en Afrique, que des solutions intelligentes seront prises contre les menaces terroristes et attaques que subit le secteur de l'aviation sur le continent.
'Nous sommes ensemble avec l'Organisation internationale de l'aviation civile
(OACI) pour réfléchir et échanger sur les voies et moyens que nous pouvons utiliser
pour faire face aux menaces contre la sécurité de l'aviation civile. Nous allons revoir la réglementation et appliquer les mesures de mise en œuvre pour protéger
l'aviation civile contre les actes d'intervention illicites', a souligné M. Kowu, qui déplore un manque de collaboration étroite entre les Etats africains dans le domaine.
'Mais avec la collaboration de l'OACI et notre détermination, nous allons pouvoir
faire face et réussir notre objectif. Car les terroristes ont une longueur d'avance et
nous sommes vigilants, nous adaptons des appareils de filtrage, des mesures de
contrôle et de fouilles avec des outils plus performants', a-t-il soutenu.
Cette conférence de trois jours sera une occasion pour les participants et les organisateurs de discuter des sujets complémentaires tels que la technologie de la sûreté aérienne, les facteurs humains dans la gestion de la sûreté et la culture organisationnelle en matière de sûreté.
Au niveau du Sénégal, le directeur général des aéroports du Sénégal, Maêl Diop, a
indiqué que la sécurité de la clientèle du transport aérien a été très tôt comprise
par les autorités aéronautiques nationales qui ont entrepris dès 2005, de restructurer le secteur en autonomisant la gestion de la sûreté par la création d'une 'Haute
autorité de l'aéroport international Léopold Sédar Senghor'.
'Nous serons ainsi à l'écoute des experts de haut niveau qui, à l'occasion de ces travaux, ne manqueront pas de formuler des recommandations pour renforcer davantage en termes de moyens, le dispositif national de sûreté mis en place aussi bien
par les autorités nationales que par nos partenaires internationaux, afin d'améliorer la sécurité en général et le confort des usagers', a-t-il précisé.
28
A la fin de la rencontre, il est prévu un séminaire de formation de haut niveau initié
par le programme d'assistance aux aéroports des pays en voie de développement
(ACI/DNA), pour contribuer au renforcement des capacités des acteurs impliqués
dans la gestion de la sureté de l'aviation civile.
La conférence sur la sûreté de l'aviation a été ouverte officiellement ce mercredi à
Dakar pour une durée de 3 jours sous la présidence du ministre sénégalais du
Transport aérien et du Tourisme, avec la collaboration du Conseil international des
aéoroports de la région Afrique (ACI-Afrique), l'Agence des aéroports du Sénégal
(ADS) et le Conseil international des aéroports du monde (ACI-monde).
Elle a vu la participations de plusieurs gestionnaires des aéroports d'Afrique et d'ailleurs, des experts aéronautiques et des organisations non gouvernementales.
L'ACI-Afrique rappelle-t-on, fait partie des membres du Conseil international des
aéroports (ACI), qui a pour objectif principal de favoriser la coopération entre ses
membres et avec d'autres partenaires dans le monde de l'aviation, y compris les
organisations gouvernementales, les compagnies aériennes et les constructeurs
d'avions.
Il compte 59 membres gérant 250 aéroports dans 47 pays et représente trois pour
cent du trafic mondial, avec son siège à Casablanca au Maroc, et est dirigé par un
conseil d'administration de 15 membres, dont fait partie l'Agence pour la sécurité
de la navigation aérienne en Afrique et à Madagascar (ASECNA).
http://www.afriquejet.com/actualite/5042-transport-aerien-et-terrorisme-aerienen-afrique.html
29
Does al-Qaeda Control Its Affiliates?
by Pawel Wilkos | April 10, 2014
Introduction
In the last decade, the role of the “original al-Qaeda”[1] in a jihadi decision making
process over its affiliated groups[2] has noticeably declined. Moreover, along with
the expansion of operational independence of al-Qaeda’s affiliated and inspired
terrorists, al-Qaeda Central (AQC)[3] has been unable to exert full control over
those who call themselves al-Qaeda or who pledge the loyalty to the organization.
[4] It can be claimed that al-Qaeda reinforced its presence and expanded its operational access across Muslim world relying on its affiliates.[5] It was feasibly due to
al-Qaeda’s innovative approach which drummed up fundamentalists working on a
license in the system of franchise.[6] However, over time it turned out that alQaeda’s affiliates have their own local goals and are barely focused on the Western
targets.[7] Thus, this paper argues that the emergence of al-Qaeda affiliates paradoxically caused strains for the core leadership and instead of consolidating the position of al-Qaeda as a brand among Muslims, affiliates tend to be out of control
hampering the achievements of the original al-Qaeda.
Cognitive Obstacles
When exploring the insubordinated activities of al-Qaeda affiliates, it seems necessary to understand the relationship between the core leadership and affiliates, because the qualities of al-Qaeda membership remain elusive.[8] As al-Qaeda
“confidential secretary” Harun described in his manuscripts,[9] collaboration with
al-Qaeda did not indicate membership; in practice, collaboration often has been
based on mutual agreement to conduct joint actions.[10] He explained that not all
jihadist bodies met the required standards by al-Qaeda: “we (original al-Qaeda) do
not accept those who are intent on sullying jihad with their unlawful actions”; and
he underlined that “most of the operations that have been carried out following
the 9/11 attacks lack the authorization of Sheikh Osama (bin Laden) or the central
leadership of al-Qaeda”.[11] Furthermore, “Letters from Abbottabad”[12] and Harun’s manuscripts have revealed that al-Qaeda leaders preferred dedicated and
disciplined jihadists and “did not wish to cede control of their brand” to those “who
did not share their worldview and could not be controlled”. In effect, bin-Laden
and Ayman al-Zawahiri were not exhilarated witnessing the spread of regional jihadist bodies and the employment of operational methods.[13] It can be argued
that the abovementioned statements present cognitive difficulties according to the
al-Qaeda recognition and hamper an exact explanation of the affiliated group’s.
Tense Relations
Unfortunately for the original al-Qaeda, the organization became a victim of its
affiliates, exerting little control over them. Despite the fact that AQC did not encourage bloodshed among Muslims, there have been ascribed ruthless actions to
30
the brand of al-Qaeda. The most striking example of disobedience comes from Iraq,
where al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI, nowadays known as the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria,
or ISIS) has damaged the organization as a brand which in perception of Iraqis has
been responsible for sectarian violence.[14] The lack of control over al-Zarqawi’s
[15] escalated violence risked in alienating organization from the Muslim world and
gaining more enemies.[16] A fact of great importance is that al-Zarqawi’s group
was the only regional body admitted by bin-Laden. Nevertheless, in 2007 bin-Laden
announced severance of himself and al-Qaeda “from any unlawful acts in Iraq”.[17]
Moreover, after bin-Laden’s death, al-Zawahri failed to nullify the influence of alBaghdadi (the ISIS leader) in Syria to sustain Jabhat al-Nusra as a preferred actor.
[18] After the brutal campaigns of ISIS in Syria, al-Zawahiri disowned this organization affirming it “is not a branch of the al-Qaeda group” and “does not have an organizational relationship with it”.[19]
Another revelation demonstrating indocility towards the original al-Qaeda derives
from Somalia and Kenya, where al- Shabab “acting on the basics of their own judgments and initiatives” is not claimed as an organic group to al-Qaeda but as a
“undisciplined imitator”.[20] According to Harun’s account, the al-Shabab members
took orders from its commanders not from Sheikh Osama (bin-Laden), who couldn’t supervise the process of al-Shabab emergence and influence it.[21] Justification
for this may be seen in the lack of funds from leadership, not to mention the limited contact with the al-Qaeda leaders.[22] Furthermore, due to rigid administration and political immaturity of al- Shabab, al-Qaeda leaders hesitated to embrace
this organization publicly.[23] In 2010 bin-Laden in a letter to the leader of alShabab ordered to stop killing Muslims.[24] Consequently, bin-Laden denied alShabab courtship from the union with al-Qaeda and later on ordered Harun to depose al-Shabab’s leaders and replace them.[25]
It can be argued that AQC always had tenuous relationship with North Africa affiliates. Bin-Laden was reluctant to recognize and ally with the prior body of al-Qaeda
in Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat, whereas
al-Zawahiri having better interaction with this organization was a keen supporter of
emergence of AQIM.[26] Despite that fact, Ayman al-Zawahiri did not hesitate to
set limits on where AQIM is allowed to operate.[27] Al-Qaeda’s disaffection towards AQIM was caused by a “kidnap-for-ransom strategy” and executed attacks
with no previous approval from the core leadership. Nonetheless, Camille Tawil argues that leadership of al-Qaeda requested AQIM to a play greater role in North
Africa.[28]
Recent reports[29] suggests that the original al-Qaeda with al–Zawahiri “still exerts
something like control over the organization’s Yemeni affiliate, AQAP”[30]—alQaeda in Arab Peninsula. Nevertheless, in the past Harun was disturbed by series
of attacks in Saudi Arabia and emphatically claimed that the original al-Qaeda had
not issued authorization of internal fighting in Saudi Arabia.[31] Moreover, he also
maintained that Yemeni jihadists were completely independent in their decision
making.[32] Despite that fact bin-Laden complimented Abu Basir, the leader of
AQAP, as a “qualified and competent”, he advised (again by letter) him to target US
31
instead of Yemeni security forces or government.[33]
Furthermore, the leader of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) was chastised for ruthless actions against Muslims, which hold “clear legal errors and dangerous lapses”.
[34] In private letters, al-Qaeda leaders forcefully encouraged TTP’s leader to suspend group’s campaigns of indiscriminate attacks on “mosques and markets, which
was killing hundreds of Pakistani civilians”.[35] American al-Qaeda spokesman Adam Gadahn incisively criticizes the tactics of TTP and ISIS and keenly encourages al-Qaeda to separate itself from those groups.[36]
In contrast to the abovementioned affiliates, Jabhat al-Nusra “doesn’t tarnish the al
-Qaeda brand by using brutal tactics against fellow Muslims”.[37] This organization
has learned from mistakes of AQI and is devoted to al-Zawahiri. Al-Nusra allows the
original al-Qaeda to remain germane at a global level, but it is vague who exactly
hold the reins in the linkage between AQC and al-Nusra. One can say that Jabhat alNusra without the al-Qaeda can achieve its goals in its own way; a good example is
providing a social service (bread and electricity) to Syrian civilians, in a Hezbollahlike manner. Those measures undoubtedly underpinned al-Nusra’s position among
Syrians. Therefore, as Berger claims, “al-Nusra doesn’t really need al-Qaeda, but alQaeda desperately needs al-Nusra”—to strenghten its position in Syria and the
Muslim world.[38]
Conclusions
The above analysis proves that the original al-Qaeda exerts little control over its
affiliates which due to the local goals and gained autonomy frequently act against
the core leadership, tarnishing al-Qaeda’s eminence. As demonstrated in this paper, bin-Laden and the people close to him were aware of the extreme approach of
its affiliates and strongly disapproved vicious attacks causing unnecessary deaths of
innocent Muslims. Floundering into regional jihad was seen as an enormous mistake which has distorted “the image of the jihadists in the eyes of the umma’s general public”.[39]
Nevertheless, due to increasing operating independence and operational capabilities of its affiliates the original al-Qaeda was obliged to make concessions. As it was
proved, even for bin-Laden it was hard to guide and convince al-Qaeda allied
groups regarding Global Jihad, especially when he was forced to rely on letters
when he was trying to contact with affiliates. Today, al-Zawahiri is losing control
over the organization and the movement even further. He has no leverage to enforce his ideology, and it is hard for him to stop morphing terrorist attacks into
overt military campaigns on local grounds. As it was shown, local objectives of affiliates has remained in contradiction to the global goals of the original al-Qaeda. In
conclusion, al-Qaeda’s affiliates’ activities set an evident example of disobedience,
it can be argued that the original al-Qaeda has lost control over them and that they
now represent autonomous bodies being merely affiliated with al-Qaeda by name.
http://www.foreignpolicyjournal.com/2014/04/10/does-al-qaeda-control-itsaffiliates/
32
Burundi
US, UK team up, prepare Burundi soldiers for civil affairs in Somalia
4 April 2014
U.S. Army Maj. Jeremy Mitchell, left, reviews notes with a Burundi National Defense Force soldier and his interpreter following a practical exercise during a 10day civil-military co-operation course (CIMIC) course in Bujumbura, Burundi, March
20, 2014. Members of the U.S. Army and British army instructed the CIMIC course
for 35 BNDF soldiers. The soldiers are preparing for a deployment to Somalia, in
support of the African Union Mission in Somalia, a regional peacekeeping mission.
(U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Christopher Gross)
BUJUMBURA, Burundi – Members of the U.S. Army and British army instructed a 10
-day civil-military co-operation course (CIMIC) for 35 Burundi National Defense
Force (BNDF) soldiers in Bujumbura, Burundi, March 12-21, 2014.
As another battalion of BNDF soldiers prepares to deploy to Somalia, the course
taught them how to engage effectively with people in the villages they’ll be patrolling. The deployment is in support of the African Union Mission in Somalia
(AMISOM), a regional peacekeeping mission operated by the African Union with
the approval of the United Nations.
The senior representative for the British army was Maj. Mark Thompson, he is also
33
part of the British Peace Support Team for Eastern Africa. Thompson has trained six
battalions during the past two years and said he believes the training has had a major impact on operations in Somalia.
“By working with the Burundians and showing them what they can do with limited
funds, it helps them build rapport,” Thompson said. “(It shows them how to) work
with the civilian population and understand counter insurgency and peace-keeping
fundamentals.”
Thompson said what the BNDF were taught went beyond the normal boundaries of
CIMIC. “It’s a bigger package,” he said. “It’s understanding the political sphere, negotiation, mediation and a lot of encompassing things.”
It encompassed counter improvised explosive devices, how to conduct effective
nighttime operations, and how to operate in rural areas alongside the civilian population.
According to U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Lucas Velmer, a civil affairs team sergeant,
those tools are vital in the fight against violent extremist organizations (VEO). He
said it’s very important for BNDF soldiers to gain the support of Somali citizens and
have them back their government in an effort to defeat al-Shabaab.
Velmer said instructors keyed off other pre-deployment training the BNDF soldiers
had received and took it from a macro level to a micro level. They reinforced
“bottom-up operations and reporting feeds.” Expressing the importance of minor
details the soldiers should clue in on during their patrols to make an analysis of the
bigger picture.
Part of making that analysis is having an understanding of the Somali culture,
Thompson said. It’s important to know their culture to open up doors and make
their mission effective.
Thompson said he was pleased with how far the soldiers had come in grasping the
importance of effective civil affair operations. Toward the end of the course, the
soldiers took a written test followed by a practical exercise.
During the exercise BNDF soldiers went through several scenarios where they put
new tools to use. They had to assess a health clinic and negotiate for information,
they did a key leader engagement with a village elder, followed by a battle assessment on a truck, and they had to engage the media.
“We’re trying to put all the skills that they’ve learned over the last two weeks into a
test scenario with hands-on practical application,” Velmer said.
34
Aside from the satisfaction of watching the soldiers succeed during the course,
Velmer said it was also a great opportunity to work with coalition partners and felt
the soldiers benefited from it.
“They get two different perspectives which are how the U.K. conducts stabilization
operations and how the U.S. conducts civil affairs operations,” Velmer said. “All of
it (falls) under civil military … the overall concept still remains the same.”
“We found it was a good opportunity to get involved with both, the Burundi National Defense Force and the United Kingdom. To further enhance what we were
trying to do as far as building partner nations in a capacity to defeat violent extremist organizations in the future,” Velmer said.
Thompson said the key behind the joint course was to create consistency and familiarity in the way the course is instructed. The way forward will be for the U.S.
and U.K. to alternate training BNDF battalions, preparing them for deployments to
Somalia.
Read
more:http://www.dvidshub.net/news/124228/us-uk-team-up-prepareburundi-soldiers-civil-affairs-somalia#.U0VOUPmSySo#ixzz2yOdt8YDN
35
Egypt
Egypt passes new anti-terrorism law
4 April 2014
© WikiMedia (user)
[JURIST] The Egyptian government approved a new anti-terrorism law on Thursday in response to an attack on Cairo University [Al Ahram report]. The new law is
aimed at deterring the recent escalation of terrorist violence in Egypt during its
transition following the ouster of former president Mohammed Morsi [BBC profile; JURIST news archive]. Included in the amendments to the law are provisions
increasing the penalties for those acts deemed as "terrorist acts" as well as provisions broadening the scope of the law itself. The Muslim Brotherhood[JURIST
news archive], Morsi's political party, was designated a terrorist organization
after being accused of several deadly attacks. The specific details of the law have
not yet been released, but they reportedly include the death penalty for those
36
found guilty of terrorism and strengthen the punishments for those who promote
terrorist acts. The bill has been sent to interim President Adly Mansour[BBC profile]
for final approval.
Political conflict in Egypt has been ongoing since the 2011 Egyptian Revolution [JURIST backgrounder] that ousted former president Hosni Mubarak from
power. Much of that conflict has occurred recently between supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood and supporters of the new government in place in July, especially
since the Brotherhood's formal ban [JURIST reports] in September. Last month an
Egyptian court sentenced [JURIST report] 33 Morsi supporters to six years in prison
for protesting without a permit. Death sentences have been handed out to 531
Morsi supporters in March in one mass trial for attacking policemen and one trial of
a small group [JURIST reports] for murdering supporters of the new government. In
March an Egyptian court sentenced[JURIST report] four police officers for their role
in the deaths of 37 Islamists. Opponents have criticized the light sentences handed
down to the officers. A day earlier an Egyptian prosecutor referred [JURIST report]
Morsi's youngest son, Abdullah Morsi, to trial on allegations of drug use and possession. In February the Cairo Criminal Court convicted [JURIST report] 26 people of
forming a terrorist group with intent to attack the Suez Canal.
http://jurist.org/paperchase/2014/04/egypt-approves-new-anti-terrorlaw.php#.U0pj9vmSySo
37
Egypt election race will test Sissi's leadership
1 April 2014
Egyptian Defence Minister Field Marshal Abdel Fatah El-Sissi yesterday made the
long-awaited announcement that he would contest the country's upcoming presidential election. Sissi's announcement was no surprise. Over the past months, he
and sources close to him have signalled his presidential plans, but he had been
waiting to resign from his ministerial post before making a public announcement.
Sissi will introduce himself as a civilian to the Egyptian people for the first time during the campaign. His popularity and the weakness of his challengers give him a
very strong chance of winning the election, expected in the second half of May. If
he wins, he will have to run a country with huge political and economic problems.
He will need to combine his popularity with concrete achievements to lift Egypt
from its current problems.
Impact





A Sissi presidency would consolidate the military's power, while allowing it to
withdraw from front-line government.
The next government will face the same economic problems that confounded
its predecessors -- and will have limited means to address them.
Radical steps to cut the budget deficit and put Egypt on a path to fiscal sustainability would prompt serious unrest in the short term.
Any dialogue with the Muslim Brotherhood would depend on how willing the
movement was to engage in the process, and on what terms.
Israel would be reassured by the return of a strong, military figure to the helm
of Egyptian government.
What next
With no heavy-weight challengers in the field, Sissi stands a strong chance of winning the presidential election. However, the campaign will put him to the test, exposing him to political attacks he was not accustomed to as defence minister, and
compelling him to reveal his leadership style, political skills and agenda. Sissi will
unveil a detailed election manifesto in the coming days -- according to the few signals made public so far, his presidency would prioritise tackling the security situation, poverty, and water and energy shortages.
Analysis
Although recent polls indicate that Sissi could score a first-round win, neither the
fight nor his first months in office (assuming he wins) will be very easy.
38
Election campaign challenges
During the campaign, Sissi will have to talk about many issues he never had to
address as defence minister. These include:




outlining his plans to tackle energy shortages;
the crisis over Nile water with Ethiopia;
the budget deficit that reached 13.8 of GDP in 2013; and
unemployment and public sector wage strikes.
Some of his opponents will also raise politically thorny questions, such as his military background, an apparent lack of election neutrality from state institutions
and the fact that many former National Democratic Party figures (the ruling party
of former President Hosni Mubarak) support his camp.
Sissi is on course to win the election in the first round
Although addressing all these issues convincingly will be difficult, Sissi's considerable personal popularity means that he does not have to outperform and increase his lead in order to secure a significant share of the votes. Instead, he just
needs to avoid making damaging mistakes. The media's extensive and positive
coverage of him will also be an asset, and one which other candidates will not
enjoy.
Main contender
There is only one declared challenger to Sissi in the presidential race: left-wing
politician Hamdeen Sabahi, who came third in the 2012 presidential election with
20 of the votes.
One of the greatest threats to Sissi's campaign is a Sabahi withdrawal that would
leave the former army chief as the only candidate. Such a scenario would turn the
poll into a referendum-style election on Sissi, hurting his image abroad and at
home by reviving some memories of the Mubarak era. So far Sabahi has given no
strong indication that he will quit the race. Yet he has voiced concerns over
amendments made to the presidential election law, especially its failure to allow
candidates to dispute Election Commission decisions before the judiciary.
Sissi's presidential agenda
Many of Sissi's political and economic ideas are still unknown. Most of his public
speeches have focused on instigating patriotism and have given limited public
policy signals.
Election manifesto
39
While Sissi is yet to declare his election manifesto, some of its pillars have been
announced by Amr Moussa (Mubarak's longest-serving foreign minister and former Arab League secretary-general) who is likely to be a central figure in Sissi's
election campaign. These include:




a huge social housing programme that aims to build more than 1 million units
in the next seven years;
ensuring that long-deprived Upper Egypt governorates receive a greater share
of infrastructure projects and private investment;
some redrawing of governorate borders; and
a full commitment to the civil and political liberties enshrined in the newly
adopted constitution.
Some other leaks pointed to a rigorous fight against corruption and greater assistance to people on lower incomes.
Economy
Sissi has attempted to dampen expectations of the improvements he could deliver
Sissi has given mixed signals about his economic agenda. In a speech to young
doctors he chose to outline Egypt's financial problems in detail, including the huge
budget deficit and the record high level of debt, and thus the impossibility of
spending the amount of money people expect to improve Egypt's public services.
This might signal that he is not willing to follow expansionary fiscal policies, but
will instead prioritise tackling the deficit.
On the other hand, he has also been quoted as supporting the poor on healthcare,
social housing and subsidies. Such mixed signals could simply be an attempt to
lower expectations about his first months in office given the dire state of the country's public finances. He is in any case likely to open the country to foreign investors, especially those from the Gulf countries, with the exception of Qatar.
Political dialogue
In his televised nomination speech Sissi said that all those who were not found
guilty of wrongdoing by the judiciary would be welcome to take part in rebuilding
the country. This could open the prospect for a form of settlement with the Muslim Brotherhood if he wins office. However, in the current polarised atmosphere,
with the crackdown against the movement still in full swing, any settlement remains a distant prospect.
Source: Oxford Analytica
40
Eritrea
Eritrean Refugees at Risk
11 April 2014
Eritrean refugees face human trafficking, exploitation, and hostility throughout
North Africa and the Sahel.
Hundreds of thousands of Eritreans have fled a repressive dictatorship since 2001.
Their small northeast African country, which has a population 4-5 million and was
once touted as part of an African “renaissance,” is one of the largest per-capita producers of asylum seekers in the world.
Many languish in desert camps. Some have been kidnapped, tortured, and ransomed—or killed—in the Sinai. Others have been left to die in the Sahara or
drowned in the Mediterranean. Still others have been attacked as foreigners in
South Africa, threatened with mass detention in Israel, or refused entry to the United States and Canada under post-9/11 “terrorism bars” based on their past association with an armed liberation movement—the one they are now fleeing.
It’s not easy being Eritrean.
The most horrifying of their misfortunes—the kidnapping, torture, and ransoming
in Sinai—has generated attention in the media and among human rights organizations, as did the tragic shipwreck off Lampedusa Island. But the public response,
like that to famine or natural disaster, tends to be emotive and ephemeral, turning
the refugees into objects of pity or charity with little grasp of who they are, why
they take such risks, or what can be done to halt the hemorrhaging.
This is abetted by the Eritrea government, which masks the political origins of these
flows by insisting they are “migrants,” not refugees, and no different from those of
other poor countries like their neighbor and archenemy, Ethiopia. It is a fiction
that’s convenient for destination countries struggling with rising ultra-nationalist
movements and eager for a rationale for turning the Eritreans (and others) away.
But this is not a human—or political—crisis amenable to simplistic solutions. Nor is
it going away any time soon.
The Source
Eritrea’s history has been marked by conflict and controversy from the time its borders were determined on the battlefield between Italian and Abyssinian forces in
the 1890s. A decade of British rule was followed by federation to and then annexation by Ethiopia. Finally in the 1990s, after a 30-year war that pitted the nationalists, themselves divided among competing factions, against successive U.S.- and
Soviet-backed Ethiopian regimes, Eritrea gained recognition as a state.
41
Since then Eritrea has clashed with all of its neighbors, climaxing in an all-out border war with Ethiopia in 1998-2000 that triggered a rapid slide into repression and
autocracy. It has survived by conscripting its youth into both military service and
forced labor on state-controlled projects and businesses, while relying on its diaspora for financial support, even as it has produced a disproportionate share of the
region’s refugees. This paradox underlines the strength of Eritrean identity, even
among those who flee.
Eritrea is dominated by a single strong personality: former rebel commander, and
now president, Isaias Afwerki. He has surrounded himself with weak institutions,
and there is no viable successor in sight, though there are persistent rumors of a
committee-in-waiting due to his failing health. Meanwhile, the three branches of
government—nominally headed by a cabinet, a National Assembly, and a High
Court—provide a façade of institutional governance, though power is exercised
through informal networks that shift and change at the president’s discretion.
There is no organizational chart; nor is there a published national budget. Every important decision is made in secret.
The ruling People’s Front for Democracy and Justice (PFDJ), a retooled version of
the liberation army, functions as a mechanism for mobilizing and controlling the
population. No other parties are permitted. Nor are non-governmental organizations—no independent trade unions, media, women’s organizations, student unions, charities, cultural associations, nothing. All but four religious denominations
have been banned, and those that are permitted have had their leaderships compromised.
Refugees cite this lack of freedom—and fear of arrest should they question it—as
one of the main reasons for their flight. But the camps in Ethiopia and Sudan reflect
a highly unusual demographic: Most such populations are comprised of women,
children, and elderly men, but UNHCR officials in Ethiopia and Sudan say that
among those registering in the camps there, close to half in recent years have been
women and men under the age of 25. The common denominator among them is
their refusal to accept an undefined, open-ended national service. This, more than
any other single factor, is propelling the exodus.
The UN refugee agency (UNHCR) has registered more than 300,000 Eritreans as refugees over the past decade, and many more have passed through Ethiopia and Sudan without being counted. The UNHCR representative in Sudan, Kai Lielsen, told
me last year that he thought 70-80 percent of those who crossed into Sudan didn’t
register and didn’t stay. Thus, a conservative estimate would put the total close to
a million. For a country of only 4-5 million people, this is remarkable. And it is the
combination of their vulnerability and their desperation that makes them easy
42
marks.
The Trafficking
For years, the main refugee route ran through the Sahara to Libya and thence to
Europe. When that was blocked by a pact between Libya and Italy in 2006, it shifted
east to Egypt and Israel. Smugglers from the Arab tribe of Rashaida in northeastern
Sudan worked with Sinai Bedouin to facilitate the transit, charging ever-higher fees
until some realized they could make far more by ransoming those who are fleeing.
The smugglers-turned-traffickers eventually demanded as much as $40,000-50,000,
forcing families to sell property, exhaust life savings, and tap relatives living abroad.
As the voluntary flow dried up, they paid to have refugees kidnapped from UN-run
camps after identifying those from urban, mostly Christian backgrounds (those
most likely to have relatives in Europe and North America).
I spoke with one survivor in Israel last year whose story was typical. Philmon, a 28year-old computer engineer, fled Eritrea in March 2012 after getting a tip he might
be arrested for public statements critical of the country’s national service. Several
weeks later, he was kidnapped from Sudan’s Shagara camp, taken with a truckload
of others to a Bedouin outpost in the Sinai, and ordered to call relatives to raise
$3,500 for his release. “The beatings started the first day to make us pay faster,” he
told me.
Philmon’s sister, who lived in Eritrea, paid the ransom, but he was sold to another
smuggler and ransomed again, this time for $30,000. “The first was like an appetizer. This was the main course,” he said. Over the next month, he was repeatedly
beaten, often while hung by his hands from the ceiling. Convinced he could never
raise the full amount, he attempted suicide. “I dreamed of grabbing a pistol and
taking as many of them as possible, saving one bullet for myself.”
Early on they broke one of his wrists. Later, they dripped molten plastic on his
hands and back, during many of his forced calls home to beg for money. After his
family sold virtually everything they had to raise the $30,000, he was released. But
his hands were so damaged he could no longer grip anything. He couldn’t walk and
had to be carried into Israel. Because he was a torture victim, he was sent to a shelter in Tel Aviv for medical care. In this regard, he was one of the lucky ones.
For some 35,000 Eritreans who came to Israel since 2006, each day is suffused with
uncertainty, as an anti-immigrant backlash builds. The government calls them
“infiltrators,” not refugees, and threatens them with indefinite detention or, what
many fear most, deportation to Eritrea. Philmon has moved on to Sweden where
the reception was more welcoming, though there, too, a virulent anti-immigrant
movement is growing.
Last year, the Sinai operation began to contract due to a confluence of factors: increased refugee awareness of the risks, the effective sealing of Israel’s border to
43
keep them out, and Egyptian efforts to suppress a simmering Sinai insurgency
among Bedouin Islamists. But this didn’t stop the trafficking—it just rerouted it.
What I found in eastern Sudan last summer was that Rashaida tribesmen were paying bounties to corrupt officials and local residents to capture potential ransom victims along the Sudan-Eritrea border—and even within Eritrea and Ethiopia—and
were holding them within well-defended Rashaida communities there. Such captives would not be counted by government or agency monitors and would not
show up at all were it not for the testimony of escapees and relatives.
Last fall, Lampedusa survivors revealed that Libya is becoming another site for ransoming and kidnapping, illustrating that as one door closes, new opportunities arise
across a region of weak states and post-Arab Uprising instability. What Sudan and
Libya have in common is not the predators but the prey. And the practice is expanding as word spreads of the profits to be had, much as with the drug trade elsewhere. And it will continue to expand as long as there’s a large-scale migration of
vulnerable people with access to funds and no coordinated international response
to stop it.
Eritrean refugee flows today run in all directions. They’re facilitated by smugglers
with regional and, in some cases, global reach. The gangs behind this engage in a
range of criminal activities, within which human trafficking is just a lucrative new
line of business. Some have ties to global cartels and syndicates. Some have political agendas and fund them through such enterprises. Most are heavily armed.
Under such conditions, a narrowly conceived security response can quickly spin out
of control and escalate into a major counterinsurgency, as in Sinai in Egypt. For
weaker states across the Sahel, the risks of ill-thought-out action are infinitely
greater.
What Needs to Happen
An effective approach to this crisis would start with education and empowerment
of the target population and involve efforts to identify and protect refugees
throughout their flight. A key step is the early, uncoerced determination of status
according to international standards. This could be coupled with an expansion of
incentives to deter onward migration, including education, training, employment,
and, where appropriate, integration into host communities. But none of this can
work without refugee engagement in the process itself.
Then, and only then, would a security operation targeted at the smuggling and
trafficking have a chance of success. But it, too, needs to be multidimensional in
substance and regional in scope. Each state in this network is acting independently
of the others. Sudan has arrested individuals implicated in trafficking, including one
police officer, but has not cracked down on corrupt officials or gone into Rashaida
communities to take down the ring leaders. Ethiopia has instituted security
measures within the refugee camps on its northern border but is not working with
Sudan on cross-border movement. Egypt has launched military operations in the
44
Sinai where the torture camps are situated, but the announced aim is to break up
an Islamist insurgency—the government denies there is trafficking taking place. A
coordinated initiative would start with a conference of affected states, and it would
have to be supported by donor states and appropriate agencies (Interpol among
them), not only in terms of aid but also intelligence, logistics, coordination, and
communication.
But if the trafficking operations are truly to be rolled up, the marginalized populations from which they arise and on which they depend need to be offered sufficient
incentives to withdraw support for the criminals. This means access to resources,
economic alternatives to off-the-books trading, involvement in the local political
process, education for their children, and more. These people need to be made
stake holders in the states where they live, which is not the case today for the Sinai
Bedouin or the Sudan-based Rashaida or most of the other groups involved in
Trans-Sahel smuggling.
Meanwhile, to dry up this particular supply of prey, political change is needed at
the source, in Eritrea. That means at a minimum opening up the political system
and the economy, limiting (not necessarily ending) national service, releasing political prisoners, implementing the long-stalled constitution, and ending controls on
travel so those who do want to go abroad as migrant workers can do so without
illegally crossing borders and going through illicit smuggling networks.
The most important thing the United States can do to facilitate this process is convince Ethiopia to back off the border dispute that centers on a frontier town,
Badme, and accept in practice—not just rhetorically—the 2002 Border Commission
ruling that went in Eritrea’s favor.
Ethiopia’s intransigence on this issue—and U.S. inaction—has long been the Asmara regime’s most powerful argument for keeping the lid on all forms of dissent. Eritreans will simply not trust Washington—or Addis Ababa—until they see some evidence of good faith.
Dan Connell is a senior lecturer at Simmons College, Boston and a visiting scholar at
the Boston University African Studies Center who has been writing about Eritrea for
nearly 40 years. He is a contributor to Foreign Policy In Focus.
http://www.asmarino.com/news-analysis/2060-eritrean-refugees-at-risk
45
Ethiopia
Ethio-Djiboutian Relations: towards African economic integration
12 APRIL 2014
April 11, 2014 - Coming from the uprooted communities in the New World and Europe, the ideology of Pan-Africanism has been triumphant as a libratory force in
freeing the people of Africa from the dungeons of European imperialism, colonialism, and neo-colonialism. Some posit that Pan-Africanism has succumbed as an integrative force in rejuvenating African countries through regional economic blocs
aiming at regenerating the economic and political enterprise of the continent by
replacing the colonial and neo-colonial methods.
In this regard, Professor Ali A. Mazuri asserts that Pan-Africanism as a revolt against
white domination and damnation of the so-called hopeless continent succeeded by
crushing the heels of exploiters with the independence of African nations along with
the emancipation of black Diaspora in the New World. He goes on to say that Pan
Africanism as an economic integrative force towards the unity of Africa has been
kept at bay.
Although the said assertion seems appealing as African countries were vehemently
concentrating on political considerations from the dawn of independence until the
1990s, many African countries have been thriving to combine their efforts to reach
the apex of interdependence through regional economic communities so as to disengage themselves from dependency, suffering, indignity, hunger, instability, violence and other harrowing realities in every villages of Africa over the past decade.
In the mean time, the leadership of Africa attaches special importance to economic
considerations not to bend its knees to outsiders. This kind of move is now being
reflected in the continent as many African countries are carrying a torch for a call
for change-African Reawakening.
Meaningful progress has been made in harmonizing and integrating regional economic communities in the continent in various fields including trade liberalization
and facilitation (the West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA), and the
Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA)), free movements of
people (the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)), infrastructure
(the Inter Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), Southern African Development Community (SADC), and the East African Community (EAC)), and peace and
security (IGAD, ECOWAS and SADC).
One crystal clear example is the ongoing Ethio-Djiboutian all-rounded relations that
have proved the assertion wrong. Pan-Africanism still holds a presence in the making of Africa’s tomorrow. Pan African interdependence as an integrative force in the
46
eastern part of Africa under the institutional framework of IGAD is best explained
by Djiboutian Ambassador to Ethiopia, Mohamed Idris Farah. He said that “Ethiopia
and Djibouti are inseparable; they are linked forever through their collaborative
progress.” He symbolized Ethio-Djiboutian relations as a body system, saying that
“the rail is like an umbilical cord; electricity, the heart; and water is blood.”
In deed, the two friendly countries have prioritized on the pivotal importance of
enhanced regional integration to eradicate poverty and promote African Rebirth.
Both sides have gone a long way in their economic partnership for mutual progress.
One area is investing in infrastructure to combat the existing deficit and its implication on trade, businesses and investment. For instance, Prime Minister Hailemariam and President Guelleh embarked on 7 July, 2013 the construction of the new
Addis Ababa-Dewele-Djibouti rail route. Both sides are committed to fast-track the
construction of a new Tadjourah-Mekele rail corridor. When completed, this rail
line would facilitate potash exports from the Denakil depression to the international market. Upgrading and maintaining of the Djibouti-Ethiopian Railway is also underway. A railway network from Juba-Addis Ababa-Djibouti is considered.
With reference to road transportation, Djibouti-Dire Dawa highway is being rehabilitated and the Dorra-Balho Northern Corridor is being constructed. Another area is
power trading. Both sides have agreed on the 2nd electrical power system interconnectivity to work on a 230 kv power transmission project in addition to the already existing 35 MW power supply. Both sides are working on a project of supplying 100, 000 cubic meters of drinking water daily to Djibouti through a pipeline
which will be completed this year. Ethiopia provides food, fruits and other natural
resources to Djibouti.
The Government of Djibouti, on the other hand, has been dedicated to the expansion and rehabilitation of port facilities, conventional cargo and container capacity
managed by Dubai Ports World (DPW) to provide adequate services to Ethiopia’s
increased trade volume. The construction of the Horizontal Oil Terminal at Doraleh
was completed in 2005 to supply all fuel imports for Djibouti and Ethiopia on the
one hand, and provide fuels for French, American and other aviation, maritime and
military forces, on the other.
The enhanced interconnectivity in hydropower, road, rail, port, water and other
resources helps the two countries intensify trade, businesses, investments and other benefits and eradicate poverty, unemployment and other threats. This opens the
way for cooperative partnership in jointly rooting out problems and having consultations on regional and global issues of common concern aiming at securing the
peace and stability of the region for the betterment of the peoples of the Horn of
Africa. One indispensable testimony is Ethio-Djiboutian ardent support to the warring parties of South Sudan to end the carnage through genuine discussion and
constructive dialogue under the shade of IGAD mediation. Another compelling ex-
47
ample is Ethio-Djibotian commitment to assist the people of Somalia in their search
towards a peaceful, cohesive, prosperous country. Both countries have deployed
their troops within the auspices of AMISOM to help the Somali National Army fight
against Al-Shabab and eliminate the insurgents from the country. Again, both countries have consented in 2013 to cooperate on judicial matters, education, health,
and sharing information as well as partner in the fight against illegal migration, human trafficking, disease (polio), criminals and other emerging threats.
This has resulted into the economic transformation of Ethiopia witnessing a meaningful economic, social and human development. Infrastructure development, increased foreign direct investment inflows and the acceleration of trade and business with the outside world have impacted in promoting and sustaining the economic growth over the last decade. Djibouti has also benefited in gaining cheap
electricity for its industry and business, drinking water, increased revenues, development of port and other benefits. The Ethio-Djibouti belt has helped, according to
David Styan, lecturer at the University of London, cement Ethiopia’s economic
growth and transformation upon trade via the port of Djibouti and increased acceleration of regional interdependence in infrastructure development through energy,
rail, and road.
The results are rooted from Ethiopia’s foreign policy direction and its ardent commitment to the realization of oneness, unity and solidarity in the continent as well
as Djibouti’s Strategic Integration Plan to accelerate the regional economic union
between the two countries and beyond. Ethiopia’s foreign policy is crafted with the
firm conviction that the development of Ethiopia is intertwined with the fate of its
neighbors. That means, embracing the arms of shared vision and win-win approach, Ethiopia’s march towards peace, prosperity and its ultimate survival encompasses the lives and livelihoods of the peoples of neighboring countries. This
policy suggests that, according to the late Prime Minister, Meles Zenawi, “you cannot have a desperate ghetto next door to a prosperous safe haven.”
As a beacon of hope for African liberation and independence, Ethiopians have
come to the fore in the theatre of participating in designing regional economic system to end Africa’s marginalization through power trade, rail and road networks.
As they were the beacon of hope and symbol of liberty, freedom and independence for blacks and Orientals of the East in winning a resounding victory over foreign powers in Adowa in 1896, they are now enthusiastically demonstrating their
efforts to the continuation of a historical responsibility to commit to regional integration and to the ultimate success of African Renaissance.
Under the institutional framework of IGAD, Ethiopia and Djibouti along with other
neighboring countries are devoted their energy and efforts to regional integration
to integrate in the international trade, prevent the challenges of globalization, efficiently and swiftly reduce the threats emerging from the volatility and uncertainty
48
of the changing world environment, fill the unbridgeable gulf of the technologydivide, and level the unfair playing field of the international political economy.
This will unquestionably create an enabling situation where sustainability, increased investment, the consolidation of economic and political reforms, increased competitiveness, the promotion of public goods including water resources, and the avoidance of violence cling to the continent’s political and economic machinery in making the region the coming growth frontier. The way forward is clear. Ethio-Djiboutians and their fellow Africans will not perish as a result
of economic disintegration rather prosper on the hemisphere of the booming
economies and the emerging of the Africa Rising narrative.
An independent researcher on African and Middle Eastern Affairs.
http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50611
49
Kenya
Kenya’s anti-terror strategy begins to emerge
9 April 2014
It’s precisely a year to the day since the Jubilee alliance took control of Kenya’s government under a cloud of controversy over a flawed election and uncertainty about
how the world would respond to a government led by suspected war criminals. At
the time, the President, Uhuru Kenyatta, and Vice President William Ruto were
awaiting trial at the International Criminal Court and western governments warned
of “consequences” for Kenya if it elected the two leaders suspected of inciting the
previous poll violence in 2007 and claimed to be preparing for a diplomatic relationship limited to “essential contacts”. A year on, the front page of last weekend’s
leading newspaper, The Nation carried a photo of a smiling Kenyatta relaxing in
State House receiving the envoys of the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada
and Australia in a joint visit to pledge moral and material support for Kenya’s war
on terrorism. What a turnaround.
It’s been a good year for Kenyatta and Ruto. In part the change in their fortunes is
due to the natural hypocrisy of high-handed western governments whose foreign
policy is always subordinate to interests rather than values. But in large part their
luck has been self-made. Witnesses in the case before the International Criminal
Court have withdrawn at a rapid rate causing the prosecutor to cry foul and to ask
for more time. And although the Kenyan government fell short of its goal to get the
cases dismissed, Kenyatta’s case has been postponed several times, now until October 2014. It has pursued the defence of its leaders with such vigour that the coalition has come to be seen by many Kenyans as a one-issue government.
This week, however, on the anniversary of their accession to power, the Jubilee
alliance seems to have found another raison d’être: terrorism. The response to the
Westgate attack last September was bungled and embarrassing. The main thrust of
policy following the attack was to hound the media that exposed the truth of the
cock-ups, looting and friendly fire and to scapegoat Kenya’s large ethnic Somali
community as well as Somali refugees – the difficulty of distinguishing the two appearing to be of little concern to the police that conducted round-ups in the Eastleigh area of Nairobi.
But now, six months after the attacks and one year into their tenure, a strategy is
beginning to emerge. In response to a recent spate of violent attacks, (six people
killed in a church shooting in Mombasa, 3 grenade attacks in Eastleigh in Nairobi
50
killing another 6 and two further grenade attacks in the Dadaab refugee camp), the
government appears to have found its feet and is responding with force. The police
have been issued with shoot-to-kill orders, 4000 people have been arrested in
Mombasa and Nairobi. All urban refugees have been ordered to return to the
northern refugee camps of Kakuma and Dadaab. And police are going house to
house in Muslim and Somali neighbourhoods in the main towns doing what they do
so well: beating, looting and ransoming people without proper ID cards, or, in many
cases, even those with proper papers. The newspapers are awash with vitriol
against Somalis and ethnic Somali MPs who have made public statements questioning the utility and manner of the crackdown have been branded traitors.
The violence that preceded this enormous response was, by Kenyan standards, normal. Similar attacks of lesser scale have taken place since Kenya invaded Somalia
purportedly in pursuit of al-Shabaab in October 2011. The killing of two of the
church suspects by police five days after the original attack and the execution, on
April 1 of the controversial cleric, Abubakar Sharrif, better known as
“Makaburi” (‘graveyard’ – in Swahili) were also not unprecedented.
Painstaking work is not one of the Kenyan police’s strong suits. Makaburi was the
fifth outspoken cleric to be assassinated in murky circumstances since 2012. A report by the Kenyan pressure group, Muslims for Human Rights and the Open Society Justice Initiative, released earlier in the month, pointed the finger for a range of
killings and disappearances firmly at the state. The report’s eerie title, a quote from
a police officer, said it all: “We are tired of taking you to court.” What is new
though is the defiant tone and language of the government in justifying its potentially illegal actions (even going so far as to appear to claim the right to have killed
Makaburi, even as it disavows doing so).
On the eve of the government’s one-year anniversary, the Inspector General of Police, Kimaiyo, issued a legally questionable directive to shoot-to-kill, telling officers:
“you are justified to use your firearm effectively. You have no control over where
the bullet will hit. It can hit the head or heart even when your aim is to disable.”
The week before, the day after the church shooting, the Cabinet Secretary for the
Interior ignored a High Court ruling that had quashed an earlier attempt to relocate
refugees to camps and announced that all urban refugees should relocate forthwith or be forced to do so. The attempt to cleanse the cities of nomads had a kind
of Biblical resonance, but nothing at all to do with the crimes at hand. In Dadaab,
where I was on the day of the order, no one believed that the urban refugees
would actually arrive. But this week, people had begun to trickle in, scared by the
actions of the government, by the state-sponsored terror in Eastleigh and the high
prices being charged by police for ransoming relatives from custody. Its worth re-
51
Westgate: le commando est passé par l’Ouganda
12 avril, 2014
Des ruines du centre commercial de Westgate
Les islamistes auteurs de la mort de 67 personnes en septembre dernier à Nairobi
sont entrés au Kenya par l’Ouganda voisin, selon le gouvernement ougandais.
Le centre commercial Westgate de Nairobi, situé dans la capitale kényane, avait été
attaqué en septembre dernier.
Le commando islamiste aurait transité par l’Ouganda, a déclaré samedi le porteparole du gouvernement ougandais, Ofwono Opondo, en citant les services de sécurité de son pays.
"Des renseignements indiquent que les agresseurs du Westgate sont passés par
l'Ouganda", a-t-il indiqué, en précisant tenir l’information du chef de la police, le
général Kale Kayihura.
"L'Ouganda est utilisé comme une route de transit par les terroristes qui posent
des bombes au Kenya", a-t-il ajouté, estimant que "nous devons nous assurer qu'il
n'y ait pas de troubles à Kampala".
Les insurgés islamistes somaliens shebab, liés à Al-Qaïda, ont revendiqué l'attaque
du Westgate, expliquant qu'il s'agissait de représailles à l'intervention militaire kényane contre eux dans le sud somalien.
Les quatre membres du commando sont présumés avoir été tués par les forces de
sécurité kényanes quand elles ont pris d'assaut le centre commercial.
52
En 2010, les shebab avaient revendiqué un double attentat spectaculaire à Kampala, qui avait tué au moins 76 personnes.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/afrique/region/2014/04/140412_ouganda.shtml
53
Libya
Libya and Syria fuel jihadi activity in the Maghreb
10 April 2014
Libyan former Prime Minister Ali Zeidan warned yesterday that Libya could become
a base for terrorist operations in Europe and neighbouring Maghreb countries. Jihadist operations across North Africa are expanding, despite the pressure from the
French-led military intervention in Mali in early 2013 and more focused local counterterrorism tactics. Militants have adapted by consolidating their brigades, widening their area of operations into Tunisia and Libya, and increasing the frequency
and lethality of attacks. Renewed activity in the Maghreb itself, in addition to the
lure of thousands of young North Africans to the jihad in Syria, is fuelling extremism
in the region.
Impact
Returning fighters from Syria could threaten the economic and political development of vulnerable states such as Tunisia and Libya.
Heavy-handed counterterrorism approaches could lead to abuses against salafis
and Islamists, radicalising a new generation of young men.
Regional governments will expand their defence budgets and seek greater cooperation with Europe and the United States on counterterrorism.
What next
Libya's abundance of weapons and porous borders provide a fertile ground for jihadists. Its role as a logistics hub also boosts militant capabilities and networks
across the region. Coupled with the increased experience of North African fighters
returning from Syria, the risk of significant terrorist attacks in the region is rising.
Analysis
Jihadist movements have taken advantage of political uncertainty and porous borders created in the aftermath of the 2011 Arab uprisings to recruit new members,
bolster their arsenals, and expand their operations. Having primarily focused on the
Sahel in 2011-12 and building support networks and capabilities in Tunisia and Libya, jihadists have now turned to the Maghreb.
Jihadists use a number of different tactics with the same overarching goal of establishing states governed by Islamic law. Three main trends coexist and overlap
across the Maghreb, employing:
direct violence against the state -- mainly an al-Qaida strategy;
salafi-jihadi ideology, often combined with criminal activity; and
religious outreach (or dawa), aimed to reach more mainstream audiences.
54
All three trends have adapted to new state responses, primarily greater AlgerianTunisian security cooperation and more coherent Tunisian counterterrorism
measures.
Consolidation and expansion
AQIM's broad strategy is to link jihadists across Algeria, Tunisia, and Libya
Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) in January announced its intention to coordinate operations between militants based on the Tunisian-Algerian border and
militants in Libya fighting under the Ansar al Sharia banner. The new AQIM branch
is reportedly headed by Khaled Chaieb (aka Lokman Abou Shakr), an Algerian
wanted by Tunisian authorities for attacks against security forces.
Source: Oxford Analytica
55
Libyan south could destabilise northern Chad, Niger
31 March 2014
Libya's sparsely populated south has a long border with Sudan, Chad, Niger and Algeria. Since the 2011 Libyan revolution, border control has weakened, allowing the
relatively unhindered movement of arms, goods and people. European countries
have sought tighter controls in Libya on the flows of migrants across the Mediterranean, many of them coming to Libya from sub-Saharan Africa, while government
officials in Chad and Niger have repeatedly claimed that terrorist groups are sheltering and training in southern Libya. The government declared southern Libya a
"closed" military area in 2012, but this has done little to stem the flow of illicit
trade and migrants.
Impact
Local groups will continue to vie for control of profitable positions such as border
and customs checkpoints, and oilfield guarding.
Lack of government control over the borders will prolong Libya's position as a logistics hub for extremists.
EU border assistance will have limited effects if it focuses on the Mediterranean
alone.
What next
The Libyan government, local authorities and mediators will continue to make ad
hoc responses to outbreaks of unrest in southern towns, but without addressing
deeper issues of rights and reconciliation. The drafting of the new constitution will
antagonise Tuareg and Tebu groups unless their interests are addressed fairly.
Chad and Niger will continue making claims about the threat of extremist and terrorist groups in order to try to bolster state control of northern regions, where minority groups could make greater demands for autonomy.
Analysis
Southern Libya is linked to northern Chad and Niger by economic, political and social factors that drive much of the region's dynamics.
Economic links
The wide economic gap between Libya and countries south of the Sahara is a basic
driver of mass migration of sub-Saharan Africans into Libya. Tripoli's efforts to stem
migrant inflows and outflows have been ambivalent and haphazard: the country's
need for migrant workers and the opportunity to profit from those who travel on
towards Europe have outweighed xenophobic and racist attitudes towards Africans
and efforts to expel migrants who lack the correct documentation.
Trade
56
The border regions are host to a transit trade of migrant workers, fuel, cigarettes,
consumer goods, drugs and arms. Some of this could be called illicit trade and
smuggling, but much of it is just unregulated trade. The border transit economy is a
source of employment as well as crime.
Kin connections
Kin connections reach between southern Libya and the countries to the south of it.
The prime examples are the nomadic Tebu and Tuareg, who are concentrated in
the south of Libya (the former mostly from Kufra to Sabha and Awbari, the latter
from there through to Ghat and Ghadames), and in northern Chad and Niger. Some
Arab groups, such as the Awlad Suleiman, also have historical kin connections
across the region, but these are not as strongly maintained.
Southern Libya
The south of Libya comprises four provinces -- Kufra, Murzuq, Sabha and Ubari -which represent the southern halves of Fezzan and Cyrenaica. The population of
the south is small -- Sabha, the largest town, has only about 140,000 inhabitants.
Murzuq is host to the Elephant oil fields, linked by pipeline to Zawiya on the coast;
Ghat is a small town on a remote route into southern Algeria; Kufra is the key town
on the route to Jebel Uweinat and the triple border with Egypt and Sudan.
Post-2011 changes
The 2011 revolution transformed local politics in Libya's south. It boosted the Tebu,
who had been marginalised in the past, but who sided from early on with the revolution and played an important military role. In contrast, Tuareg were seen to have
57
been unfairly favoured by Muammar al-Qadhafi and to have resisted the revolution, giving some local Arab communities a reason to push them aside in the new
order.
Since then, some Arab communities that were initially marginalised because of
their links to the former regime (for example the Zwai) have also been trying to reassert themselves politically and economically, such as in Local Councils, security
forces and state companies. Meanwhile, in the national government in Tripoli, both
the Tebu and the Tuareg have found themselves repeatedly sidelined.
Violence
Post-2011 local politics fuel violence
Sabha has seen outbreaks of fighting, as former regime loyalists have tried to reassert themselves over the local groups who were active in the 2011 revolution. In
mid-January, army reinforcements from Misrata and Zintan were sent to quell the
latest disturbances. Kufra has also experienced similar outbreaks of violence, with
local communities settling scores and fighting for position in the local postrevolution order.
Responses
Tripoli officially designated southern Libya a closed military area in December 2012.
However, this designation has had no real impact as the government has been preoccupied with internal politics and the task of integrating security forces in the
more-populated north.
Representatives of key parties -- mainly from the Sabha area -- signed a
"reconciliation charter" for Fezzan in April 2013. However, this has not yet been
followed by adequate steps to generate actual reconciliation and to reduce the risk
of inter-communal conflict in Fezzan or more widely in the south.
Chad and Niger
For the governments of Chad and Niger, the chief concern about southern Libya is
that disaffected Chadian and Nigerien groups (Tebu and Tuareg) will draw enough
advantages from the changed situation in Libya to organise new rebellions and demands for autonomy in their northern areas. This is essentially what happened
with Tuareg rebel groups in northern Mali in 2012 (and which local militant groups
then took advantage of, copying the model of al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb).
Chadian and Nigerien state control of their northern regions could be at risk
Niger has a history of poorly resolved rebellions in the north, which are likely to
recur at some point. Equally, the Chadian government's failure to develop the
Borkou, Ennedi and Tibesti regions, and the increased Tebu confidence in southern
Libya, likewise points to risks for Chadian state control in the north.
Natural resources
58
N'djamena and Niamey have economic reasons to worry about the control of their
northern regions. Niger has four oil exploration blocks in its northern desert regions -- the Kafra block adjoining the Algerian border, and the Agadem, Bilma and
Tenere blocks in the north-east, where some modest finds are being developed by
the China National Petroleum Corporation. More important at present for Niger's
economy is uranium ore mining, which is concentrated in the north, just west of
the Air Mountains.
In Chad several oil blocks just north of Lake Chad have been licensed for exploration, and Chad and Niger have agreed in principle to build an export pipeline from
the Agadem field through to the pipelines in southern Chad. Further areas in the
far north of Chad, on the border with Libya, have been marked for exploration but
have not been licensed.
Military support
Both the Nigerien and Chadian governments have been receiving military assistance from France. They have an interest in delegitimising northern groups, for example by playing up the threat from terrorist groups in southern Libya.
Source: Oxford Analytica
59
Mali
Mali : controverse sur les raisons de la démission du Premier ministre
Le départ du Premier ministre malien Oumar Tatam Ly, intervenu samedi, suscite des déclarations contradictoires à Bamako. Alors que M. Ly
publie sa lettre de démission, un conseiller à la
présidence de la République malienne affirme en
termes à peine voilés qu'il s'agit d'un limogeage.
Dans sa lettre de démission adressée au président
malien Ibrahim Boubacar Kéita, Oumar Tatam Ly
explique que sa décision est basée sur "des dysfonctionnements et des insuffisances" qu'il a
"relevés dans la marche du gouvernement" et qui "réduisent grandement sa capacité à relever les défis". "Je n'ai pu vous convaincre de la nécessité de ces évolutions, lors de nos entretiens des 2, 3 et 16 mars ainsi que du 4 avril 2014", indique
la lettre dont une copie est parvenue à Xinhua. "En conséquence, en considération
de ces vues différentes qui ne me mettent pas dans la position de remplir la mission que vous m'avez confiée, je suis au regret de vous présenter ma démission du
poste de Premier ministre", a-t-il écrit dans la lettre.
Aussitôt rendue publique la lettre de démission, un conseiller du président malien
a adressé des documents à des journaux locaux pour apporter un démenti. "Les
vraies raisons de la démission du Premier ministre, aux allures de limogeage doivent être recherchées à d'autres niveaux" parmi lesquels, cite-t-il, le "manque de
visibilité du Premier ministre", son "inexpérience politique", ses rapports
"exécrables" avec la classe politique notamment la majorité, son "incapacité à
s'imposer". L'équipe gouvernementale sous direction de Tatam Ly "est une faillite
en perspective où la désarticulation côtoyait l'indigence des initiatives et les résultats (quelques ministres tirent épinglent du jeu), les querelles intestines faisaient
oublier l' essentiel". "Les conseils des ministres ne se tenaient pas fréquemment,
parce qu'en absence du président de la République, il n'était pas évident qu'il
puisse en imposer au collège par son charisme ou son autorité"! affirme le conseiller. La même source met en évidence le "manque de résultats et la faillite" du PM
sortant et explique que "le choix porté sur Moussa Mara signe bien le retour du
politique à la Primature par la grande porte". Un retour qui "s'analyse bien comme
la faillite du technocrate sur lequel le président IBK avait misé pour réaliser son
programme ", selon ce conseiller à la présidence malienne.
A son avis, "on ne peut raisonnablement pas compter sur lui ( Oumar Tatam Ly) ni
pour monter aux fronts face au MNLA (groupe rebelle touareg) au nord, ni monter
sur les remparts face aux conspirateurs qui se liguent au sud". C'est pourquoi, dit-
60
il, "il fallait débarquer Tatam pour un Premier ministre politique qui connaît le
Mali", "un Premier ministre de mission, de croisade et de prospective". Dans les
documents envoyés à la presse locale par le même conseiller du président malien, on retient que le nouveau Premier ministre Moussa Mara est âgé de
"seulement 39 ans, mais a déjà un parcours de dinosaure politique". Icône du landerneau politique malien, le nouveau Premier ministre fait figure de leader des
"jeunes premiers" de la politique malienne tant par son "charisme que sa popularité qui lui ont valu d'être maire de la Commune IV du District de Bamako", indique la même source. Chef de file des "jeunes candidats" à la dernière présidentielle, Moussa Mara devient ainsi le plus jeune Premier ministre de l'histoire du
pays. M.Mara est le président du parti Yéléma, membre à part entière de la
"Coalition Mali d'abord" de la majorité présidentielle qui a porté au pouvoir le
président Kéita. Cet expert comptable était avant sa nomination ministre de la
Ville et de la Politique urbaine.
http://www.radio-kankan.com/_
61
Nigeria
Rethink Nigerian Borders Security Doctrine and Operations
INTRODUCTION
Nigeria is passing through tough security challenges masterminded by activities Islamic terror groupJama’atuAhlisSuna Lid Da’awatiWal Jihad (a.k.a BOKO HARAM).
The sole mission of the dreaded gang is establishment of an Islamic theocracy pillared on the 7thCentury Wahhabist philosophy through forceful overthrow of the
State. Boko Haram’s first open confrontation took place town called Kanammain
the country’s north-eastern State of Yobe(Adeniyi,2011). Other lethal clashes were
staged between the group and Nigeria Armed Forces which resulted to annihilation
of their spiritual leader Sheik Mohammadu Yusuf along with his top spiritual comrades (Gorman, 2009). Sheik Yusuf’s killing by men of Nigeria Armed Forces after
capturing and parading him hands tied to his back before cameras has been labelled by the country’s Human Rights Community and a section of the press as extra judicial killing. Calls have been made for a full investigation of this allegation,
the Federal Government responded by forming a committee to look into claims of
the group and their supporters in the Human Rights Community( PressTV,5th August 2009 ).
The bloody encounter that annihilated the Sheik and other top commanders inflicted a temporary set-back to Boko Haram and forced them to change their strategy
and tactics of warfare. Their delusional and phantom tantrum of believing that they
can square off with the country’s Armed forces frontally and directly bowed to real-
62
ity of existing disproportionate might and combat experience between them and a
force that once fought a 30 months civil war and participated in many successful
peacekeeping operations in the continent and beyond (Agbese,2013). The forces
the terrorist challenged are one of a few in the black world with the robustness and
capability of projecting their national forces to other countries without the support
of any known force in the world.
Surviving commanders of the terror group went underground for a while and reappeared with a multifaceted strategy of suicide bombings of worship centres, selected military zones, buildings and public squares, and highway banditry in tandem
with modusoperandi of terrorists’ campaigns (Meehan and Spier 2011). Introduction of these guerrilla tactics of hit-and-run and bombings caught Nigeria Armed
Forces off guard because it was something outside the bracket of their training and
imagination. This gave the enemy an advantage and chance to execute their heinous acts of terror on their targeted victims with impunity. Within this period of reemergence of an Improved Boko Haram brigade, both military and civilian zones
were not immune; Nigeria Police Headquarters, Nigeria Command and Staff CollegeJaji, and others became easy targets and were successfully attacked( Vanguard
25th November 2012).
Other features of Boko Haram’s campaign are banks and highway robberies. Many
banks in the north especially in north eastern cities of Nigeria were robbed and millions of local and international currencies carted away. Similarly, some of their combatants blocked highways and international tracks linking the country and neighbouring countries and robbed commuters engaged in intra and inter Statescommerce. Because of poor and inadequate banking system in the country, most of
these businessmen shuttle with large sums of local and foreign currencies for their
trading. Both the highways and banks robberies are to provide financial support for
their Holy War against the state and believers of other faiths. This became necessary because of the need to fund their Jihad and also support their large families
they left in cities and villagesfor Allah’s service and propagation of his will in Nigeria
through force(Sahara Reporters 6th July 2013).
Efforts were made by notable Islamic clerics and senior citizens to broker peace between Boko Haram and the Federal Government to no avail. All through, Nigeria
Government expressed willingness to sit on the table and talk with the group. The
Federal Government unilaterally declared amnesty and formed a committee to
work out the modalities of an amnesty programme like what was done for the Niger
Delta Militants (News Express, 4th April 2013). Imam Shekau via a YouTube message refused the Federal Government’s carrot dangling policy and vowed to continue with his campaign against the State (Vanguard Newspapers 11th April 2013). His
refusal message, continued terror activities, and supplanting of their flag in remote
Local Governments along Nigerian borders with Chad and Niger pushed the back of
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Nigerian Government to the wall. On 4th April 2013 the President and Commanderin-Chief of Nigeria Armed Forces declared a State of Emergency on three north
eastern State of Borno, Yobe and Adamawa and ordered the Armed Forces to
cleanse up the states of Boko Haram insurgents (News Express 4th April 2013). The
Presidential emergency declaration marked the beginning of another phase of
open military confrontation with the group. Terror combatants have been flushed
out of their training camps and bases in the three States; they are now over borderlines of neighbouring countries and sneaking in through thousands of illegal entry points to hit targets and dash back to their bases across the borders.
As the war against terror progresses, a rather strange phenomenon appeared,
which is; the presence of foreign fighters among the ranks of the Jihadists. This was
confirmed by surviving victims of their highway banditry and banks robbery who
saw their distinct biological features and heard their different ascent of Hausa language while on operations. Hausa language is spoken in all the neighbouring countries and in most of the West African countries,but there are minor differences in
pronunciations. The version of Hausa used in Nigeria is the Kano version. Other dependable sources that gave support to this claim of the presence of foreign jihadists were captured combatants and dead bodies seen in theatre of war. Nigeria
Armed forces have severally paraded live combatants or dead bodies that are not
Nigerians(Nigerian Tribune 19th September 2011). It is difficult to ascertain the
number of foreign combatants involved in planning and execution of their assaults
and confrontation with the armed forces in the north-eastern Nigeria and other
spots in other northern parts of the country because of the unconventional nature
of how they conduct their affairs (National Mirror 27th February 2013).However,
this brought the issues of bordersmanagement by agencies charged with manning
the country’s legal and illegal borders to the fore.
Complete defeat of Boko Haram Jihadist by Nigeria Armed Forces despite presidential orders to use all necessary might to liquidate them is proving a hard nut to
crack because of the porous nature of the country’s borders and thousands of illegal entry points with neighbouring countries like Cameroon, Chad and Niger Republics. Apart from operational quandaries these poorly demarcated borders are posing, international protocols prohibiting sending forces in pretext of hot pursuit beyond a certain limit into neighbouring territories are yet another cluster of quagmires. It is a tight rope to walk because if not properly done, it can lead to clashes
with forces of neighbours in their own territories. If that happens, Nigeria Armed
forces will face two foes, simultaneously. And that again could ruin bi-lateral relations existing with neighbours that their complete cooperation is highly desirable in
the war against Jihadists operating across the borders.
FEATURES OF NIGERIA BORDER
There is no universally acceptable definition of borders because of its concomitant
perspectives and connotations and typology. Much of the difficulties associated
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with definitions originated from varieties of borders and contextual usage at any
point in time. There are administrative, economic, social-cultural, national, international, regional, military,and sub-regional borders. In this study, we are focusing on
international separating lines or zones between sovereign States. A border is a demarcating line or zone between two or more independent states and these borders
can be categorised into sea, air and land borders. Nigeria is one of the luckiest
States in Sub-Sahara Africa to have sea, air and land borders. Sometimes rivers,
valleys, oceans, and some distinct geographical features are used as demarcating
lines of the end and beginning of territories of States.
Nigeria is a West African State with a vast expanse of land covering an area of
923,768 square kilometres with about 13,000 square kilometres of water stretching
from the coastal city of Lagos up to the semi desert state of Maiduguri to the North
-East and Sokoto to the North West. Nigeria shares common boundaries with BeninRepublic (773 kilometres), Cameroon (1,690 kilometres), Niger Republic (1,497
kilometres), and Chad Republic(87 kilometres) and Islands Sao Tome and Principe.
Some areas in the southern part are bounded by the Atlantic Ocean, the rest are
land borders.Nigeria’s Coastline along the Gulf of Guineatotals 853 kilometres.
(www.mongabay.com/reference/new_profile/183ng.hmtl). Through nature and
mans’ scientific knowhow the country has sea, air and land borders with land entry
points constitutes over 99 of the borders, and followed by airports.
Like most borders created by Europeans imperialist in the Black World, they are
poorly demarcated with titanic quagmire of comprehending and accepting where
the dividing contours falls and which settlement belongs to State A or B. Division of
conquered territories among great European powers of 17th, 18th, and early 19th
centuries in 1884 BerlinGermany did not take cognisance of many variables, and
that has created a major source of inter-states skirmishes in post-colonial era in
Africa(Dahou, 2004). It has been reported that many houses or settlements along
inter-States borders often have some sections in one State and some in another. A
clear example of this mix-up is the BankiMosque on Nigeria-Niger Republic border,
the Southern entrance is within a portion recognised to be within Nigeria territorywhile the Northern entrance is in Niger Republic (Achibong, 2012). This scenario
of settlements in two States through building on borderlines is not peculiar with
Niger-Nigeria borders but in all other borders shared with neighbouring States.
Borders along the Riverine State ofBayelsa are characterized with rivers, streams
and the ocean. Crisscrossing them is more herculean than other land borders.
Settlements and moving pattern is quite different and difficult because of the geography which has more water than land. The many rivers, streams and ocean provided a clearer demarcation line between Cameroon Republic and Nigeria. This also
made movement of goods and persons low due to factors like climate and lack of
advanced means of water transports in the areas. Transportation is still done with
local canoes, on foot, and small bridges linking various parts. In situations of heavy
rains the rivers overflow thereby denying dwellers of such areas the capacity to
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cross to either side.
Nigeria borders are centres of trans-borders trades where nationals of Nigeria and
bordering States import and export goods with minimal restrictions. Most of these
entry points are big settlements with two tolls checking entries and exits of persons
and goods. Currencies of the two States and others are exchanged without regard
to existing currency policies of the nations or regions. Demand and supply dictates
the value of all currencies on exchange in these borders (Nte, 2011). Currency traders in these borders are competing with many banks situated along the borders for
such and allied services. Legal and illegal businessmen finds going to the banks unpalatable and inimical to their businesses due to protocols and security measures
demanding full disclosures of the nature of their activities and appropriate taxation. Where customers have a large quantum of money they cannot handle, currencies traders help them by crossing over with the cash to any side of the border
desired. Legal and illegal businesses along Nigeria and its neighbours borders runs
into hundreds of millions of dollars annually (ThisDay Live, 27th October 2013).Yet,
very little taxes are accruing to public treasuries of the States.
Another feature of Nigeria borders is its thousands of entry routes and few legal
points. The federal government of Nigeria admitted this fact through a press interview the minister of Internal Affair on 5th January 2013, the Minister estimated
these illegal routes to 1,497(National Mirror 6thFebruary 2013) . Internal Affairs
disclosurecomplimented official reports of Nigeria Immigration Service which had a
figure a bit higher than what their supervising minister said. Lt. Col Sagir Musa a
Joint Task Force officer fighting insurgents in North East piqued “there are well
over 250 footpaths from Damaturu/Maiduguri axis that link or lead direct to Cameroon, Chad, or Niger” (Musa, 2013). There are less than one hundred legal entry
routes alongside over fifteen hundreds illegal posts. Goods and persons move in
and out of these on foot, on bicycles, motorcycles, donkeys, boats, and small ships.
And means enumerated above constitutes major avenues where legal and illegal
goods and persons slip in and out of Nigeria (Nte, 2011).
NIGERIA BORDERS MANGEMENT
Traditionally, Nigeria Immigration Services (NIS), Nigeria Customs Services (NCS),
National Drugs Laws Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), and Nigeria Police (NP) are bodies constitutionally charged in Nigeria 1999 constitution and other acts of parliament with the task of manning and monitoring entry and exits of goods and persons in Nigeria. NCS was established in 1959 through Customs and Exercise Act CAP
C45 and amended in 1979(www.customs.gov.ng). They have a total Staff strength
of 19000. NDLEA created by Decree No 48 of 1989 as amended by decree No 33 of
1990 now Act ofparliament.NDLEA has total staff strength of 5070
(www.ndlea.gov.ng).NIS was set up by an Act of parliament CAP 171 LFN of 1963
(www.interior.gov.ng/immigration-service). NP has a long history of starting as colonial masters’ instrument of forcing law and order in the colony. But the last law
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regarding their functions and structure was in section 194 of 1979 constitution. They have staff strength of 371,800(www.npf.gov.ng).
However, thedeadly terroractivities of Boko Haram jihadists and unprecedented
preponderance of cross- borders criminalities has added the phenomenon of Special Task Forces of Nigeria Army (NA), Nigeria Air Force (NAF), State Security Services(SSS), and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corp (NSCDC) to forces overseeing Nigeria borders. The involvement of bodies without traditional mandate in borders management was masterminded by the desire to compliment paramilitary
forces charged with manning the country’s borders and securing the country from
terror and crime.
Each of thesebodies conducts its activities within the jurisdiction permitted by legal
frameworks establishing them, constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria and International, regional, and sub-regional protocols. The chain starts with Immigration, customs, Drugs laws enforcers, and finally Nigeria Police. Nigeria Immigration
handle matters related to entry and exits of persons and papers related to residency and duration of stay of such aliens in the country. Immigration also scrutinise
travelling documents of Nigerians exiting to other countries to ascertain the validity
of their visas and other travelling documents. Nigeria Customs Service’sprincipal
schedule is checking goods, and classified their legality or otherwise. They confiscate contraband and tax others placed under the list of non-essential goods. Nigeria Drugs Law Enforcement Agency also screen travellers and their goods to see
that no globally banned substances are allowed to come in or go out of the country. Nigeria Police helps in maintaining law and order, the also have stations along
the borders. All the four key agencies in borders management have powers of arrest and prosecution of Nigerians and aliens that crossed the red line of the law
through illegal entry or importation ofcontraband goods. These layers of checks
form the back bone of Nigeria borders management in all the legal entry points
erected by the government of the country.
Apart from this routine conducted within zones demarcated as entry posts, these
forces embark on patrol of long porous borders in an attempt to keep faith with
legal frameworks that established them and duties assigned by Nigeria constitution. Patrol vehicles, boats, foot are major means of their patrol of Nigeria Sea and
land borders. Nigeria Police have helicopters but they are for internal security surveillance and transporting of their men and officers.
CHALLENGES OF BORDER MANGEMENT IN NIGERIA
Border management in Nigeria is surrounded with multifaceted quagmires that
have made effective management a tall dream or a mountain climbing endeavour.
The features of the borders, inadequate manpower of Para-military bodies charged
with manning borders, poor training of personnel, lack of modern equipment, and
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presenceof international and sub-regional protocols of free movement of persons
constitutes a cog in the wheel of effective management of land, sea, and air borders in Nigeria.
Nigeria shares common borders with four Republics and a coastline area of 853 kilometres along the Gulf of Guinea with rough demarcated edges that made claims
of many by settlementsdifficult. These borders are porous with almost One Thousand Five hundred (1500) illegal entry and exit routes and less than one hundred
official entry tolls. Some of these borders are in very difficult terrains like the water
and mountains and deserts which are hard for movement and survival of human
beings. More to this problem is the settlement pattern along the borders which
made knowing which area falls within Nigeria territory or that of neighbouring
states hard like rocket science. This uniquenessconstitutes a gargantuan hurdle in
effective management and securing of the borders by institutions on which responsibility of managing them is rested.
Para-military forces lack equipment to effectively discharge their duties. Most of
them are forces saddled with obsolete working tools or gadgets in tandem with the
global trend. There is no denying the fact that they still move around in old trucks
that are not roadworthy talk less of plying difficult and dangerous terrains on patrol
or pursuit of trans-borders criminals cutting corners to evade them and the law. A
clear example of lack of modernization of the force is their inability to maintain
functional websites where basic information about their organisations can be
found. Another case is poor documentation of passports by NIS of which people
often found their names totally missing from their data bank. In extreme cases, you
find people with two or three passports issues by the same department of immigration in the same branch or regional office. Surveillance cameras, speedboats, body
scanners, helicopters, motor bikes, automatic rifles, communication gadgets, are
modern laboratories are either in short supply or non-existence. Very easy cum
cheap means of transportation like donkeys, patrol dogs, and bicycles are also
scarce commodities these bodies are incapable of acquiring or keeping. This is contributing heavily to lack of efficiency and effectiveness in managing and securing
Nigeria borders from influx and exit of criminals and illicit traders.
Lack of adequate training of personnel of these Para-Military agencies has been
identified as another problem making border managers walk the tight rope while
executing their duties. Most of them are defective in modern techniques of effective patrol, investigation of crimes, and other professional activities. This is denying
them the knowhow of coping with rising trans-borders criminal activities taking
place in both legal and illegal routes. Lack of training is also linked to existence of
low morale and character in these institutions, men and women of the Paramilitary units don’t give in their best because they believe they deserved a better
working condition and equipment. Year in year out local and international training
and re-training appeared in their appropriations but is either they run short of cash
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backing or corruption amongst the top brass hinders such trainings from happening. Problem of training has internal and external dimension.
It is also evident that there is gross shortage of manpower considering the nature
of the long borders and difficult terrain. As stated in the first section of this discourse, some of these forces have less than six thousand men and women. The
largest force is Nigeria police with a total force of over three hundred thousand
officers. Without any serious analysis it is clear that they have staff strength that is
not sufficient to adequately tackle their administrative routines in their headquarters and regional offices. Nigeria Police which is the largest and with the principal
schedule of maintaining and enforcing law and order are short of officers to man
streets not to even think of sending sufficient number to secure the country’s long
and difficult hilly, swampy, forests, and Sahara desert bounded borders. This shortage of manpower is showing in their incapability to discharge their duties of securing the borders and taming illegal entry and exit of goods and persons in Nigeria
effectively.
NEW MEASURES AND OPERATIONAL STRATEGIES
Little effort is needed to know that agencies bestowed with the onerous task of securing Nigeria difficult borders are besieged with multidimensional quandaries. If
they must effectively and efficiently discharge their constitutionally assigned duties,
a holistic overhaul of their modes of operation is necessary.
A. Recruitment and Training of these agencies is essential because they are grossly inadequate and poorly trained to meet up with the growing security challenges
emanating from Nigeria porous borders. There is no stressing the fact that they are
short of personnel, heads of NCS and NIS had on separate occasions confirmed this
through their requests of the need to recruit more personnel to their supervising
ministry. There should be a Special Border Corps of 20,000 men and woman, whose
duty is manning the borders independently of NCS and NIS. Closely related to this
is training of existing personnel to avail them with the knowhow of combating illegal activities of trans-borders criminals and gun runners. In 2013, only 20 personnel
were sent to Italy for training with 8 from NCS, 8 from NIS and 2 from the office of
National Security Adviser (ISSTODAY 28th May 2013). With the growing challenges
of how can training of 20 staff make a difference? It should involve upgrading of
their training curriculum through binging of experts to join their local instructors in
their various training centres in Nigeria. The training must focus on modern global
practices of intelligence gathering and pre-emptive risk management. This will create a positive impact in their entire forces. After a period of graduating many
batches, the experts can withdraw back to their countries, and allow local trainers
to carry on with subsequent trainings.
B. It is an open secret that these parastatals are saddled with the burden of operating with outdated and inadequate equipment and gadgets. A good case of this
69
was told by NIS Boss that in the entire Taraba State, only one patrol vehicle was
used functional in 2013. Government must procure patrol vehicles, bi-cycles, donkeys, patrol dogs, speed boats, unmanned aerial Vehicles, and helicopters. They
should also procure digital infrared cameras, Personal Identification Secure System and other latest gadgets needed for effective and efficient border management. Presently, the immigration service has only one aircraft which is poorly
equipped and NCS have a few helicopters cooling their wings down because of
lack of proper maintenance and management. NDLEA is not credited to have any
flying object. NP have a few helicopters but they are not even adequate to discharge their routine duties within the country talk more of hovering them along
the borders.
C.
All agencies responsible for border patrol and management are operating
under national, sub-regional, regional and global protocols. A good case of this is
the Economic Community of West Africa Community ECOWAS protocol on free
movement of persons within the members of the community. There are provisos
that guaranteed free movement once persons have identification of their countries and they can reside for a period of six months before registering their presence with their host country’s immigration body and they can keep renewing
their stay ab infinitum. This practice is not healthy for Nigeria now because of the
reality that most of the arms and combatants of Boko Haram are coming from
neigbouring countries. Nigeria must pull out of that arrangement to enable it
tackle her growing security challenges occasioned by this free movement of persons. Nigeria should also work out bi-lateral agreements with neighbouring countries that will give it the powers to pursue criminals and terrorist beyond the
country’s borders and pull back immediately after the operations. That will help
in curbing the menace of pursuing terrorists and stopping at some points for fear
of being accused of aggression or invasion of neighbours’ territories.
D. Light wire fences should be constructed along the borders with monitoring
post via censors placed on the wire fences. This will enable them monitor movement of persons and goods shuttling across the borders. Light wire technology is
in use in many advanced and developing countries of the world and has proved
effective in monitoring cross borders activities of both legal and illegal persons.
Light wire fences will supplement shortage of manpower bedevilling bodies traditionally charged with border management. Research shows that the technology is
not too expensive and very easy to manage. Abundant sunlight in most of the
border areas will make powering them with solar energy easier and cheaper. Constructing will definitely take time due to difficulties associated with the
terrain but its capacity to serve the intended purpose after completion is not in
doubt.
E. Supervising ministry should review these bodies yearly budgets to meet up
with their expanded needs of personnel welfare and other administrative routines. Problems associated with lack of modern patrol equipment are also thick
70
within the administrative headquarters of these bodies. Most of them are still
moving with hardcopies files through low ranking officers or causal staff like what
was obtainable in four decades ago. Their activities are not computerise that is
giving room for abuses and unholy practices like missing files and duplication of
procurement invoices and other contract papers, and insertion of ghost workers
into their salaries vouchers. Many audit reports discovered the presence of ghost
workers and terrible duplications of invoices that are corruptly milking away billions of naira annually.
F.
A large quantum of Nigeria Army, Navy and Airforce should be incorporated
in border management as a matter of routine not as an interim measure. Most of
them have enough helicopters in their fleets that are not serving any tangible purpose except occupying spaces in their bases. And it is evident that year in and out
defence budgets capture services and upgrading of their helicopters, jets and
speed boats own by these forces. Most of the men and officers of these three
forces are not performing any significant role due to lack of any serious threat
from neighbouring State warranting theiractive engagement. It is also clear that
their communication systems are the best in the country, this has a long history.
More to this, they are more professional and serious in carrying out assignments
than their Para-military counterparts. Their joining the team of border manager in
conjunction with parastatals managing the borders now.
G. So far the country has less than a hundred official entry points of airports,
seaports and land. They are quite inadequate compared to the size of the nation
and area shared as common borders with neighbouring States. There should be a
conscious effort towards quadrupling these toll plazas in a year or two. This will
address to a level the problem of illegal entry and exit that terrorists and other
criminals are using to import and export terror or crime out of the nation. It will
also improve the revenue base of the nations because the multi-billion naira illegally businesses taking place in most of the border settlements.
CONCLUSION
For Nigeria to win its present war against Islamic terror group Boko Haram, the
country’s borders must be tightly manned to hinder illegal influx and exit of insurgents through usage of over a thousand unofficial routes bordering four different
countries. If Nigeria’s borders are not properly secured, the war with Boko Haram
will linger for an unforeseeable period because of challenges associated with their
cross-borders activities because they will continue to use their bases outside the
country to hit and run back to their save havens.
Another way that will make the war on terror in the North-Eastern corner of the
country effective is through initiating bi-lateral protocols that will permit Nigeria
Armed Forces to go on hot pursue that will allow them cross the border lines into
neighbours divide in the process of fighting. The protocol should also solicit help
71
from forces of the neighbours through manning their borders and helping when
Nigeria armed forces cross borderlines in pursue of Boko Haram.
War on terror is by all means not a tea party and a war very difficult to fight by
even the most advanced nations with robust forces, effective intelligence gathering, and modern tracking gadgets. It is also too costly for nations to prosecute because of other competing needs. However, survival of the nation and wellbeing of
million is citizens is paramount and far above any other national need.
REFERENCES
Adeniyi, O. (2011); Power, Politics and Death.A Front Row Account of Nigeria under
Late President Yar’adua. Lagos. Prestige
Agbese, D. (2013): IBRAHIM BABANGIDA: The Military, PoliticsAnd Power In Nigeria. Publisher: Adonis Abbey ISSN: 9781906704971
Dahou, K. (2004): Towards an Euro-African Dialogue on Cross Border Cooperation:
A Study Completed for the Secretariat of the Sahel and West Africa Club
Gorman, G. (2009): Islamist Violence Grips Northern Nigeria: in the Long War Journal
Meehan, P Speier, J (2011): Boko Haram: Emerging Threat to the US Homeland? :
US House of Representative Committee on Homeland Security and Sub-Committee
on Counter Terrorism and Intelligence.
Musa, S. (2013): Border Security, Arms Proliferation and Terrorism in Nigeria. An
Article
Published
in
Sahara
Reporters,
April
20,
2013
Nte, N.D. (2011): Transnational Threats and National Security Concerns; A Study of
Nigeria-Benin Republic Border in International Security Journal. No. 1, Issue 1,
2011.
Danfulani presented this paper on 8th April, 2014 in Viena, Austria at the ongoing
conference of International Journal of Arts and Sciences
http://www.spyghana.com/rethink-nigerian-borders-security-doctrine-andoperations/
72
Nigeria Ranks High On Global Deaths From Insurgency in 2014
6 APRIL 2014
With the death of over 1,200 Nigerians from January to March 2014 as a result of
insurgency and counter-insurgency measures by the military, Nigeria now ranks
high among the countries with high rates of deaths from insurgency in the world,
Sunday Trust data analysis has revealed.
Only last week, Amnesty International came up with a report which said over 1,500
Nigerians have been killed in the first three months of this year. A collation of reported deaths done by this newspaper from January to March puts the death toll at
about 1,200, across four states and the Federal Capital Territory. In January, there
were 16 incidents in which 229 civilians were killed, 98 insurgents died and five soldiers/policemen lost their lives. In February, there were 13 attacks, which left 338
civilians dead, eight insurgents killed and nine soldiers/police also killed. In the
month of March, there were a total of 13 attacks, which left 219 civilians dead; 290
insurgents killed while 23 soldiers/policemen were also killed. In total, there were
43 incidents, 786 civilians killed, 396 insurgents eliminated, while 37 soldiers/
policemen lost their lives.
These figures may actually be conservative, as the military has continued to conceal
the numbers of its men who lost their lives in encounters with insurgents. Also, if
the allegation by Amnesty International that hundreds of suspected Boko Haram
members detained in Giwa barracks in Maiduguri were killed during the insurgents
attempt to free them last month, the death toll would be much higher than 1,200
figure we obtained from newspaper reports over the last three months.
From the above figures, Nigeria has suffered the highest number of deaths from
January to March in countries where al-Qaeda-kind of insurgency has been prevalent in the last few years. These countries include Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.
We did not include Syria and the Central African Republic (CAR) because the violence there may be considered as civil war. In Syria, anti-government elements are
pitted in a bloody and destructive attempt to overthrow the government in power,
while in the Central Africa Republic (CAR), the conflict is an offshoot of a political
face-off which has tailed into a religious battle.
In Iraq, for instance, 227 persons were killed in January from various attacks and
counter-attacks by Shiite and Sunni sects. The highest number of deaths occurred
on January 15, 2014, when 40 persons were killed in a series of car bombs in Central Iraq. In the month of February, the number of persons killed in Iraq was put at
185, while in March, 147 persons were killed. On March 9, 2014, the highest number of persons was killed. On that day, at least 45 persons were killed when a suicide bomber detonated an explosives-rigged mini-bus at a crowded checkpoint
73
south of Baghdad. In all, a total of 559 deaths were recorded and reported in the
international media.
In Pakistan, where the Taliban are fighting the authorities and rival sects, the reported death toll from January to March is put at about 122, with the highest incidence of violence occurring in February. At least 56 persons were killed in the
month of February. However, the incident which claimed the highest number of
deaths occurred on January 19, which led to the death of 20 persons. According to
Financial Times online publication, on that day, "a powerful bomb ripped through a
Pakistan army truck in the country's northern city of Bannu near the Afghan border
on Sunday, killing at least 20 soldiers, according to senior intelligence and army officials. The explosion led to one of the largest number of casualties in a single Taliban
strike against Pakistan's army." A month-by-month analysis by our reporter indicated that in January, 38 persons were killed; February, 56 were killed; while in March,
30 persons lost their lives. The government of Pakistan has been involved in a longdrawn battle against the Taliban, which is linked to the sect that has its root in Afghanistan.
In Afghanistan, where the Taliban has been at war with American forces and the
local authorities over the years, the reported death toll from attacks by insurgents
is put at about 93. In January, 28 persons were killed; in February, the number of
deaths was 14, and in March, the country witnessed the highest number of deaths
since the beginning of 2014, with as many as 47 being killed. The highest number of
deaths during the period under review occurred on January 17 in which 21 persons
were killed. In the January 17 attack, "the head of the International Monetary Fund
(IMF) in Afghanistan and four UN staff members were among as many as 21 people
killed when a Taliban suicide squad burst into a Kabul restaurant on Friday evening
and gunned down the diners. Two Britons were among the dead after the unusually
violent attack at the heart of the heavily fortified diplomatic quarter," according to
The Guardian of UK. The next in the rank of grievous attacks and deaths occurred
on March 18, 2014, when "a suicide bomber riding a rickshaw blew himself up outside a checkpoint near a market in northern Afghanistan... killing at least 17 civilians," according to TIME magazine online.
Though attacks by Boko Haram on villages and other locations in cities have led to
multiple deaths, experts have said the high rate of deaths in Nigeria is as a result of
military operations. Amnesty International's 32-page report on deaths in Nigeria
from January to March 2014 blamed insurgents and the military for impunity. The
report said, "In 2014, as attacks by Boko Haram intensified, the military has responded by stepping up its operations against Boko Haram camps in Borno state. In
the first three months of the year, over 400 suspected Boko Haram members were
killed in JTF raids and in firefights during Boko Haram attacks on towns. Thirty-Eight
(38) civilians have also allegedly been killed by the military this year. In addition, at
least 150 detainees died in military custody. On 19 March 2014, Amnesty Interna-
74
tional received information that the military had bombed Kayamla village, killing 10
civilians. According to one staff at the State Specialist Hospital who spoke to six
wounded people from the village, the fighter jet launched series of bombs on the
village after community people had given information to the army that some Boko
Haram fighters fleeing Maiduguri after the attack on Giwa barracks had passed
through the village. Many villagers sustained injuries. When Amnesty International
spoke to the hospital staff on Wednesday March 26, 2014, he reported that two of
the six wounded people had died in hospital from injuries sustained by fragments."
The organisation added that, "On Friday, 14 March, at 7 am, Boko Haram members
attacked the Giwa barracks in Maiduguri, Borno State and opened the cells to release the more than 1,000 detainees, who were arrested under suspicion of being
members or sympathisers of Boko Haram. A video released by Boko Haram shows
gunmen entering the Giwa military barracks, setting ablaze scores of vehicles in the
compound, before releasing hundreds of people, including women, children. Many
of those released looked frail and were barefooted.
"Eyewitnesses told Amnesty International that the attackers came from a nearby
village and crossed the Yedzaram River. A human rights defender interviewed by
Amnesty International said the detainees told him that after their cells were
opened by Boko Haram, the detainees were given the option of either joining the
attackers or going home. Many of the detainees decided to go home. Boko Haram
is said to have taken some of their members who were detained and then left Maiduguri."
Last week, a new group called Borno-Yobe Peoples Forum addressed a press conference, in which it raised the alarm over civilian casualties in the attacks in the
month of March. Some of the prominent sons and daughters of the area who
attended the occasion include, Ambassador Babagana Kingibe, Ambassador Dauda
Danladi, General Saleh Maina (rtd), Alhaji Haruna Imam, Dr. Shettima Mustapha,
Adamu Ciroma, Senator Ahmed Zanna, Senator Ali Ndume, Alhaji Abubakra Mamu
and Air Marshall Al-Amin Dagash, among others.
The group stated that, "In the last one month, Kawuri, Konduga, Izge, Bama,
Michika, Buni Yadi, Mafa, Mainok, Jakana, Auno, Shuwa, Madagali, Malari, Wajonkoro, Ajigin, Benishiekh, Gamboru, Kalabalge have been attacked with heavy
civilian casualties".
As it were, these communities are a mixture of Christians and Muslims, hence the
victims cut across the two major faiths in the North-East. The Borno-Yobe Peoples
Forum, which called for an end to emergency rule even claimed that some 17,000
lives had been lost as a result of the insurgency over the years. It therefore made a
14-point recommendation to government. Among them is a demand that government should address the security and welfare of citizens, quoting Section 14(2)(b)
of the 1999 Constitution, which says, "the security and welfare of the people shall
75
be the primary purpose of government." The group also appealed to government
not to renew the state of emergency, which is billed to expire on April 19, 2014. It
also challenged government to un-mask the sponsor of the Boko Haram insurgents; thoroughly investigate human rights abuses, including alleged extrajudicial killings; expedite the trial of the security agents that were implicated in
the extra-judicial killings of Mohammed Yusuf; security of borders with Cameroon, Chad and Niger; investigate the violation of the Nigerian airspace, among
many other recommendations.
As it were, the military has said it would investigate allegations of extra-judicial
killings. According to a statement signed by Major-General Chris Olukolade at the
weekend, the army was looking into the allegations contained in Amnesty International's report, saying, "The claim contained in the Amnesty International's report attributing gross abuse of human rights of Nigerians to both the terrorists
and the security forces is quite confounding. Notwithstanding the fact that the
report is not consistent with the actual situation on ground, the security authorities will ensure that the allegations as it affects the government forces are duly
investigated. This will be with a view to taking necessary action to address any
case of human right breach on the part of troops.
Meanwhile, Nigerians are once again assured that while carrying out the mandate
of ridding the country of any vestige of terrorism, necessary efforts will continue
to be made to respect the fundamental rights of all citizens."
Achieving this would require a new approach to the fight against insurgency in
Nigeria.
http://allafrica.com/stories/201404071937.html?viewall=1
76
Cinq mots pour comprendre: Nigeria 101
le 12 avril 2014 à 10h01
Des réfugiés fuient les combats entre les forces armées et les rebelles islamistes.
Le Nigeria a fait cette semaine une annonce peu banale : il a devancé l'Afrique du
Sud pour devenir la plus importante économie de toute l'Afrique. Une occasion
de braquer les projecteurs sur un géant méconnu qui connaît sa part de problèmes... mais recèle aussi des réalités étonnantes. Survol du pays en cinq mots.
Démographie
C'est la puissance démographique de l'Afrique. Avec ses 175 millions d'habitants,
le Nigeria est le pays le plus peuplé du continent et le septième du globe. Un Africain sur six y habite. Et on n'a encore rien vu. Avec une moyenne de 5,25 enfants,
la femme nigériane est l'une des plus fertiles de toute la planète. Résultat: les Nigérians seront 300 millions en 2035, selon le US Census Bureau. Lagos, une mégapole chaotique, a probablement déjà surpassé Le Caire au titre de ville la plus populeuse d'Afrique. Le dernier recensement de 2006 fait état de 9,1 millions d'habitants, mais certaines estimations récentes vont jusqu'à 21 millions.
Jumeaux
Les Nigérians considèrent les jumeaux comme un cadeau de Dieu, et ils sont servis: il en naît plus là-bas que partout ailleurs. Rien, évidemment, pour ralentir la
pression démographique. Le record absolu revient au groupe ethnique des Yoruba, où il naît une centaine de jumeaux pour 1000 accouchements - environ quatre
77
fois le taux naturel des femmes caucasiennes. Les scientifiques invoquent à la
fois la génétique et l'alimentation. Les Yoruba consomment beaucoup d'igname,
sorte de tubercule, et en mangent la pelure. Or, le légume contient des phytoestrogènes, qu'on soupçonne de favoriser les ovulations multiples.
Malédiction
Le Nigeria est le plus gros producteur de pétrole d'Afrique. Mais le pays est cité
par les économistes comme l'exemple parfait de la «malédiction des ressources
naturelles». En clair: l'exportation du pétrole fait grimper le taux de change... ce
qui plombe la compétitivité des autres secteurs, notamment l'agriculture.
«Victimes de la malédiction des ressources naturelles et de la corruption rampante, la plupart des Nigérians sont plus pauvres aujourd'hui que lors de l'indépendance du pays en 1960», écrit l'International Crisis Group ce mois-ci dans un
rapport qui souligne à grands traits l'incapacité du gouvernement àfournir eau
potable, routes, électricité et infrastructures de santé et d'éducation à sa population.
Boko Haram
Ce groupe islamiste radical qui sème la terreur dans le nord du pays a fait plus
de 4000 morts et un demi-million de déplacés depuis quatre ans, selon l'International Crisis Group. Lié à Al-Qaïda, Boko Haram multiplie les attentats afin de
déstabiliser le pays et instaurer un État basé sur la charia dans le nord musulman. Pour l'instant, la réponse militaire du gouvernement de Jonathan
Goodluck ne produit guère de résultats. Les experts avertissent que les organisations terroristes seront en terreau fertile tant que les injustices et la pauvreté
extrême prévaudront au Nigeria.
Nollywood
Après Hollywood et Bollywood, voici Nollywood - la florissante industrie cinématographique du Nigeria. Avec 872 productions majeures en 2006, Nollywood
produirait davantage de films qu'Hollywood, selon un rapport de l'UNESCO dont
les chiffres ont été contestés. Au-delà des statistiques, un fait demeure: le cinéma, au Nigeria, c'est du sérieux. Oubliez les grandes salles: les productions, souvent à petit budget, sont gravées sur des CD et vendues pour l'équivalent de 1$.
Selon les autorités nigérianes, l'industrie cinématographie génère aujourd'hui
1,4% du PIB.
Quand le PIB bondit de 90%
Sur papier, c'est sans doute la croissance économique la plus spectaculaire de
l'histoire. Le Nigeria a annoncé cette semaine que son PIB a bondi de 90 entre
2012 et 2013 pour atteindre 510 milliards US. Miracle économique? Non. Le
bond s'explique par le fait que le Nigeria a changé sa façon de mesurer son économie pour y inclure plusieurs secteurs - télécommunications, industrie aérienne, musique, cinéma - qu'il omettait auparavant de comptabiliser. On sait
78
donc maintenant ce qu'on aurait dû savoir il y a probablement plusieurs années:
le Nigeria a devancé l'Afrique du Sud pour s'imposer comme la plus importante
économie d'Afrique.
http://www.lapresse.ca/international/afrique/201404/12/01-4756911-cinq-motspour-comprendre-nigeria-101.php
79
Nigeria – Goodluck Jonathan : 5 ans pour réduire les inégalités au Nigéria
12/04/2014
Le Nigéria est devenue la plus grande économie du continent africain. Le pays est
fondamental pour l’avenir de l’Afrique et a le potentiel pour devenir une puissance
économique mondiale. Mais le chômage, la pauvreté, la violence menacent d’entraîner le pays vers le bas. Goodluck Jonathan, le président du Nigéria est l’invité de
‘Global conversation’.
Economie
“La croissance économique dans la plupart des pays africains ne se traduit pas directement dans l’amélioration des conditions de vie de la population et je crois que
l’une des questions clés est celle de l’exclusion financière. C’est pourquoi nous
mettons l’accent sur le concept de l’inclusion financière . Et c’est la seule façon
pour créer un environnement économique qui redistribue les richesses.”
Infrastructures
“L’idée est de créer des infrastructures, un véritable réseau ferroviaire ou routier à
travers l’Afrique. Ainsi on pourrait transporter des biens d’un pays africain à un
autre. On pourrait fournir des services d’un pays africain à l’autre, ce serait moins
cher et plus facile. Si nous étions capables d’attirer les investisseurs et certains de
nos partenaires pour le développement tels que l’Union européenne et d’autres
organisations pour nous aider, nous serions en mesure de construire un réseau ferroviaire africain solide et moderne”.
80
Corruption
“La corruption existe. Je ne peux pas dire qu’il n’y en a pas dans le pays. Mais la
corruption passive est plus importante que la corruption active. La corruption ne
signifie pas seulement attendre avec un bâton que quelqu’un vole de l’argent et le
frapper à la tête. Nous voulons mettre l’accent sur le renforcement des institutions
pour empêcher qu’il y ait une occasion de voler (…) Je ne peux rien promettre. Et
aucun président dans le monde ne peut promettre un niveau zéro de corruption.
Tout comme les médecins disent qu’il est difficile de trouver quelqu’un totalement
en bonne santé, ce qui implique d’accepter un certain niveau de morbidité. Mais
personne n’accepterait cela, tout le monde veut être à 100 en bonne santé . Et ce
que je dis, c’est qu’il est difficile d’être à 100 bien”.
Terrorisme
“La question du terrorisme et de l’unité du Nigeria sont des choses différentes.
Le terrorisme n’existait pas Afrique. Après une certaine période, il s’est progressivement manifesté. Oussama ben Laden l’a exalté, maintenant l’ensemble de la région arabe, l’Afrique. Même si parfois, ils affirment vouloir islamiser le Nigeria, ils
ne disent pas qu’ils veulent diviser le Nigeria. Ils veulent que le pays tout entier soit
islamisé (…) Les terroristes ne viennent pas pour améliorer la société humaine, ils
sont diaboliques, ils veulent destabiliser les sociétés. Mais ce que je peux vous promettre, sur cette question, c’est que nous travaillons très dur.”
http://www.camerpost.com/
81
South Sudan
South Sudan conflict and Egypt’s hydro politics
April 9, 2014- The recent media hype regarding military cooperation between
South Sudan and Egypt grab the attention of those who closely follow developments in the region.
This is mainly because of the central role South Sudan is playing in the region’s
peace and security and Egypt’s vested interest in relation to Nile water vis-a-vis the
Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam.
South Sudan’s relative peace and stability only lasts for three years after it gained
its independence in July 2011. The newest nation’s peace thrown in to abyss in December 2013, after the country’s president first sacked his entire cabinet and second tried to imprison his political rivals alleging them of conspiring for Coup d’état.
He also relieved around 170 army generals from active duty. Some of the officials
were jailed while the main opponent, former vice president Dr. Reik Machar, escaped and waged a rebellion. The war continued along with mediation effort sponsored by the Inter Governmental Authority for Development (IGAD) and other partners like Norway, the UK, US, China, the AU, EU and the UN. The mediation effort
leaves much to be desired as far as bringing peace and order in South Sudan is concerned.
South Sudan is a country endowed with resources such as oil, water, fertile land,
livestock, wetland and wildlife. Among these resources, rarely discussed, however,
is that right to water and sharing the resource to the benefit of the society. The
Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between Sudan and South Sudan did not
include an agreement on South Sudan’s rights to the Nile water after independence
even though both parties rely on the Nile as their principal water source. South Sudan’s independence from Sudan in July 2011, however, directly impacts the water
scarce Nile basin’s legal framework.
Initially, South Sudan’s independence, for Egypt, presented great opportunity;
namely the prospect of resuming the longstanding plan to increase the Nile flows
by means of river engineering in South Sudanese wetland, as envisaged by the
1959 agreement, which Egypt hopes South Sudan would accept.
On the contrary, until the aftermath of the December 15, 2013 conflict, it was very
much likely for South Sudan to align itself with the upstream Nile riparian states
that have always contested the 1929 and 1959 colonial agreements as valid and
acceptable. Even, the country declared its intension to sign the new Comprehensive Framework Agreement. This position made Egypt nervous.
82
Geo-political developments following the crisis in South Sudan gives an opportunity
for Egypt as the countries in the IGAD Sub region witness presumable different positions as to how the crisis should be approached and solved.
Some regional and international players also involved overtly or covertly in the conflict to exploit the opportunity for their own political and economic advantages.
Uganda said based on the bilateral military pact it has and with the invitation of the
government of South Sudan it intervened militarily and backs president Kirr while
other IGAD members prefer to advance only with the mediation effort. As the issue
of South Sudan goes complicated, time will tell which approach prevails. Be this as
it may, nevertheless, the government of President Kiir is trying every avenue to galvanize any political, diplomatic as well as military support to defeat its arch-enemy
and its main ethnic rival, a rebellion led by former vice president Dr. Reik Machar.
The president was not as pleased as expected by the second group of country’s approach to the conflict. He expressed his discontent through various means. He is
also trying to play different cards to arm twist countries that are not directly support his "coup" version of the crisis, condemn the "unconstitutional change of government" and throw their support even by putting their arm-boots into the country, like Uganda did.
One such country is Ethiopia and the card against it is rapprochement with Egypt.
This approach for Egypt, otherwise, gives an opportunity to influence the government of Khartoum on various issues.
For Egypt, South Sudan’s conflict represents a greater opportunity. On the one
hand, Egypt is more interested in preserving the waters of the Suud, the immense
wetland that dominates South Sudanese territories crossed by the Nile.
As the White Nile makes its journey from its source in the equatorial Africa, it forms
the Suud Wetlands in Southern Sudan, which stretches for 450 Kms. Historically the
Suud has been vital to the pastoral economy and livelihoods of South Sudanese.
Historical accounts documented that Britain, which was the colonial power ruling
Sudan jointly with Egypt, proposed building the Jonglei canal in the 1930s that
would deliver around 7bn m3 of water annually, seeking to provide the Egyptian
people with increased water for agricultural use. According to these accounts, a
second phase for the project was also planned, which would completely dry up the
wetlands.
The canal project never materialized under the British rule, but was resurrected in
the 1970s by the Nimeri Military regime of Khartoum. The Nimeri government
sought to share the increased Nile flow with Egypt and claimed that the canal
would facilitate national development in the South. Work proceeded until the civil
war resumed in South Sudan in 1983 and SPLA missiles destroy the canal project.
83
After South Sudan’s independence, by agreeing to share the water that the Jonglie
canal would transport equally with South Sudan, Egypt was hopeful that this hydrodiplomacy would cement its ability to exert influence in the new nation. However,
this strategy seemed failed as South Sudan was attracted towards the upstream
countries that have always contested the colonial water agreement.
Why renewed interest on cooperation with South Sudan?
Egypt renewed its interest to forge cooperation with South Sudan at a time of shifting alliances and changing geo-political balance in the region.
The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) project became inescapably a reality
for Egypt to contest. Khartoum, the other signatory of the 1959 agreement, gives
its diplomatic backing to the construction of the GERD after the study of the International Panel of Experts (IPOEs) report concluded the Dam would not cause significant harm to the downstream countries (Egypt, South Sudan and Sudan).
Since December 15, 2013, South Sudan has lost its peace and different actors in the
country compete for power. It also lost its strength to endorse the Comprehensive
Framework Agreement. By backing whom who has the means of coercion, through
its special need of military cooperation, Egypt gambits on the one hand to proceed
with harnessing what it sees as alternative source of water, the Suud Wetland and
on the other hand, exert its influence on Addis Ababa as well as Khartoum. President Kirr might also seal a deal with Egypt to save his government from collapsing.
Until recently, Khartoum and Juba were at loggerheads over alleging one another
of supporting groups who oppose central governments in their respected territories. The Nuba Mountains and South Kordofan conflicts are serious threats for
Khartoum along with the contested area of Abiye and the disruption of the oil revenue that flows from Juba through its port. The resurrection of the recently resolved
conflict in eastern Sudan via Eritrea’s manipulation might also be another fear for
Sudan. These are the weakest links of Khartoum to think of whatever decision it
takes in relation to South Sudan. South Sudan knows this very well and so does
Egypt. Hence, Egypt sees an opportunity in South Sudan conflict to arm twist the
decision of Khartoum while cooperating militarily with Juba, and this includes Khartoum’s GERD position.
The recently publicized military agreement between South Sudan and Egypt also
presents a real danger to Ethiopia’s Grand Renaissance Dam. To think of the worst
and as it is repeatedly pronounced by Egyptian scholars and politicians, South Sudan and Sudan are the best launching pads for Egypt to disrupt the stability of Ethiopia and sabotage its peace and development. Sudan, as it has shifted its alliance
vividly, became a disappointment to Egypt to use it as a play ground, while South
Sudan seems offers the best opportunity for this destabilizing act.
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The way forward?
As a sovereign nation, South Sudan has every right, offered to it by international
law, to be party to any cooperation agreements with another country. Hence, the
military cooperation agreement between South Sudan and Egypt can be seen in
light of this international norm.
However, for Ethiopia, such an agreement should be a red light to be crossed as it
would present a real and present danger. The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam is
a national project, one of Ethiopia’s greatest achievements, but seen by Egypt as a
cause for its embarrassment. The Project as well as the national development endeavors should be protected at any cost and South Sudan should clearly be told not
to play dangerous games against the survival of Ethiopia.
Ethiopia, time and again, accuses Egypt as it works tirelessly to destabilize its peace
and security through various means, one of which is through proxy conflicts. There
are also reports that implicate Egypt supporting extremist groups like Al-Shabab in
Somalia and spreading terrorism in the Horn of Africa region to weaken Addis Ababa and halt construction of the Dam. Eritrea is another front for Egypt for its ploy
against Ethiopia. According to media reports, Egypt also offered its interest to mediate the conflict in South Sudan, the old tactic it has used for Somalia since 1991 in
organizing proliferation of initiatives to counter Ethiopia’s effort. Egypt’s intention
to involve in South Sudan will give the conflict a regional nature that will have a
dangerous spillover effect on the preservation of international peace, as Ethiopia
will not see it as an easy matter. This is what Egypt really wants; hence it seeks the
intervention of the collective body of the international community, aka, the United
Nations in regard to the construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam vis-a
vis South Sudan conflict.
Everything, in this regard, needs great caution from Ethiopia and the IGAD countries. IGAD decided to deploy Monitoring and Stabilization Force in South Sudan
and facilitate "progressive withdrawal of allied forces from the theater of the war."
Simultaneously, the organization intensifies its effort to find political solution for
the conflict. South Sudan along with Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda and Sudan should see
the Nile water as a bond for stability and development in the region and work together for mutual benefit. The government of President Kirr should not be a victim
for short sighted political benefits vis-a-vis Egypt’s hegemonic policy against the
Nile water, and should refrain from opening a space for destabilizing forces that
would have a spillover effect to regional peace, stability and development. Weather Egypt’s intention is to harness the Suud Wetlands or deter Ethiopia; South Sudan
would not be beneficial either way.
The writer is a political and security analyst trained in political science and with over
10 years of experience in analyzing African affairs. He can be reached at
[email protected]
http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50596
85
Terrorism in the World
Afghanistan
The Talibani ation’ of Insurgency
2 April 2014
By Prem Mahadevan for Center for Security Studies (CSS)
Should we expect radical Islamists in other parts of the world to copy the tactics
used by the Taliban? es, says Prem Mahadevan. Those who have studied the
insurgency in Afghanistan have learned a
blatant truth – persistent subversion coupled with steady battle eld attrition can
nudge outside powers into strategic retreats.
This chapter of Strategic Trends 2014
As Western troops continue their withdrawal from Afghanistan, the stage is being
set for the emulation of Taliban insurgent tactics elsewhere. Having tested the lim
its of Western military power, radical Islamists are encouraged by the proposition
that persistent subversion, coupled with steady a rition through direct and indirect
combat – the la er primarily involving improvised explosive devices – shall exhaust
the West into strategic retreat. Although no insurgent group has the capacity to
prevent the entry of Western forces into a combat theatre, denying such forces the
tactical ability to operate freely shall grow easier.
A member of the US Army’s 52nd Ordnance Group prepares confiscated improvised explosive devices (IEDs) for detonation near Combat Outpost Hutal in Maiwand District, Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, 21 January 2013
The withdrawal of International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) troops from Afghanistan will have important implications for the military credibility of the North
Atlantic Treaty Organization, as well as the European Union’s political authority in
the developing world. As far as radical Islamists are concerned, Western power is
diminishing. For them and their supporters, proof of this decline can already be
seen in Iraq, where more than a decade of counterinsurgency has brought no
lasting result. Rather, Al-Qaida-linked militants have seized control of some of
Iraq’s most important cities, such as Fallujah and Ramadi, which were bitterly
fought over by US troops less than a decade ago.
86
As Michael Haas notes in the next chapter, the development of anti-access/area
denial doctrines has reached an unprecedented level of intensity in many nonWestern countries. These states are trying to ensure that the world’s preeminent
military power, the United States, cannot interfere with their regional agendas. The
same applies to non-state actors, which are now likely to learn from the Afghanistan example. The Taliban could not prevent US forces from entering Afghanistan
in 2001; they had (and still have) no capability for implementing an anti-access
strategy. However, their insurgency since 2001 has proven that even a non-state
actor can pursue the modest goal of area denial against vastly superior conventional armed forces, via asymmetric warfare. Even if Western troops enter an insurgency-affected region, they can be deprived of the freedom to operate at will within it.
Although the Taliban model of insurgency has yet to be exactly replicated in other
contexts, some aspects can already be noticed elsewhere. Suicide bombings in Mali, ‘swarming’ assaults in Iraq and the tactical innovativeness of jihadist groups in
Syria all point to battlefield lessons being transmitted along a knowledge chain originating in Afghanistan. The operators of this chain might be Al-Qaida or its affiliates,
or even the Taliban themselves. For over the last decade, the insurgents in Afghanistan have developed a distinctly pan-Islamist worldview, partly out of a desire to
mobilize resources from the wider Arab and Islamic community against Western
troops in Afghanistan.
This chapter will highlight the main characteristics of ‘talibanized’ insurgency. In so
doing, it will provide a checklist of tactics and techniques that Western militaries
will have to watch for in the future, when operating overseas against Islamist guerrillas. Beginning with the strategic developments that allowed the Taliban to recover from the overthrow of their regime in 2001, the chapter will examine the innovative methods by which the Taliban have enhanced their military, psychological
and economic clout and illustrate how other groups are copying these methods.
Finally, the chapter will offer some reflections on what the ISAF withdrawal might
signify for Western military interventions elsewhere.
Strategic development of talibani ation
The Taliban insurgency has been a tactically decentralized affair that has retained a
surprising degree of strategic coherence.
Therein lies the first clue to its success: the
existence of a layered organization that
functions as a loose network while preserving the unity of purpose that comes with
hierarchical structures. Any insurgent leader who was co-opted by the West or the
87
eography of Terrorism
Afghan government was swiftly labelled a renegade and deprived of the credibility
that would have created a split in the insurgent movement. Throughout, the power centre of the insurgency lay in its leadership’s continuing close ties with Pakistani intelligence, and the strategic advice it seems to have received therefrom.
Western analysts have noted that the Taliban have long had an innate understanding of guerrilla tactics at the field level, based on the accumulated wisdom of three
decades of civil war in Afghanistan. However, in strategic terms the insurgency of
2002 – 14 was markedly different from any kind of campaign that the Taliban had
ever waged before. This has given rise to speculation that after 2001 the Taliban
leadership was following a blueprint for Maoist-style protracted warfare, provided
by extraneous actors. Its own leadership showed no particular gift of generalship
either before or during the 2001 invasion by US forces, thus raising the question of
how Taliban leaders could have had the vision to organize a long-term resistance
movement.
Calibrating operations with subversion
Evidence of such a capacity for longterm planning has increasingly come to light. It
is known that the Taliban spent the years 2002 – 05 infiltrating large numbers of
cadres into Afghanistan, from safe havens in Pakistan. These cadres, some crossing
the international boundary in groups of 100 or more, avoided carrying out the
largescale attacks which were well within their means. Instead, they focused on
quietly subverting the populations of remote rural areas, which could serve as bases for the coming insurgency.
During this period, other Taliban forces kept Afghan and ISAF troops preoccupied
along the international boundary with low-level irritants such as rocket fire and
shallow penetration raids. Distracted from the Afghan interior, and subjected to a
policy downgrade back home caused by preoccupation with the war in Iraq, ISAF
units were unable to organize for counterinsurgency.
Airpower was a powerful tool for both sides, but in very different ways. ISAF used
it to great effect while carrying out area dominance missions and decapitation
strikes. The Taliban used it to showcase the ‘foreignness’ of their enemy and discredit the country’s proWestern leadership for not resisting the use of vastly superior force against Afghan civilians. Thus, the operational contribution of airpower
in support of ISAF offensives was balanced out by the psychological boost that it
gave the insurgent recruiting apparatus, largely because the insurgents did not
have any ability to compete with this instrument. Since they could not be blamed
for civilian lives lost in airstrikes, the Taliban used airpower (or rather, the lack of
it) to justify their own resort to terrorist tactics.
Fusing terrorism and insurgency
88
Talibanized insurgency combines tactics of terrorism and guerrilla warfare. Thus,
insurgents in Afghanistan have developed an operational model that is resistant to
‘conventional’ counterinsurgent measures such as winning hearts and minds
among local populations. Unless first provided with security, few rural communities
will be willing to cooperate against the insurgents. Yet blanket security coverage
cannot be extended throughout the countryside, due to the need to protect infrastructural targets, particularly in a rugged landscape where connectivity is poor.
Counterinsurgent commanders are then caught up in the dilemma of how best to
use their limited forces efficiently. Both politically and doctrinally, Western militaries are better suited to short-duration counterterrorism missions than longduration counterinsurgency, with its attendant task of state-building. Force structures differ dramatically between the two types of mission. Counterterrorism requires the use of stand-off firing platforms and lightly equipped helicopter-mobile
special operations troops. Counterinsurgency requires an extensive on-ground infantry deployment and sustained investment in community liaison and trustbuilding through civic action. It also has a strong civilian component, in the form of
both developmental work and political negotiation.
Keeping an eye on the prospect of eventually returning to power, the Taliban have
avoided resorting to methods which would lose them popular support within their
already finite, Pashtun-centric power base. Thus, they have not carried out frequent rocket attacks on population centres, as the Afghan mujahideen did during
the 1980s and the subsequent civil war. In areas where they have a strong support
infrastructure, they have provided advance warning to the population before
launching attacks on ISAF troops. This allows the locals to escape military retribution and bolsters the Taliban’s image as a people-friendly force. However, in areas
where the ISAF presence is stronger and popular support for the insurgency is not
as pronounced, the insurgents have been happy to carry out provocative attacks.
They hope that by doing so, they can engineer a security backlash that would fall
upon the locals, who would then either support the insurgency or at least suffer for
not having done so.
Exploiting local tensions
The Taliban have been especially shrewd in identifying local faultlines and grievance narratives, which they can capitalize on for recruitment. In remote villages,
they begin the process of subversion by approaching influential community leaders.
Th insurgents have a good idea of who these individuals are, thanks to cells of
‘spotters’. If the community leaders do not respond favourably, the Taliban simply
go around them and appeal directly to village youth. Another recruitment tool is
the insurgents’ shadow justice system. In southern Afghanistan, which is the Taliban heartland, they have installed non-local judges who arbitrate on disputes. The
rulings handed out are backstopped by the clear threat of violence for noncompliance. Given the slow pace of the government judicial system, it is unsurpris-
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ing that many Afghans perceive Taliban courts as a better alternative. In this way,
the Taliban can claim that they are already governing large parts of the country and
therefore cannot be excluded from political office in the event of a negotiated
settlement to the conflict.
In areas where they have neither a support infrastructure nor scope for arbitrating
local disputes, the Taliban use assassination as an instrument to shape power dynamics. They kill a government official, triggering a war of succession among various tribes who all vie to get their own candidate appointed to the vacant post. In
the process, the Taliban offer their services to one of the factions, thereby introducing themselves into a political landscape from which they had previously been
excluded. On other occasions, they have assassinated key individuals in order to
weaken the constituency that they represent. Thus, the killing of the Pashtun leader Hamid Karzai’s half-brother in 2011 weakened the Karzai clan, while that of
Burhanuddin Rabbani, a former Afghan president, weakened the Jamaat-e-Islami.
Both political groupings could have stood in the way of the Taliban’s ambitions to
capture power in the central government once the ISAF withdrawal is complete.
The Taliban as a proliferator of tactical innovations
There is, as yet, no combat theatre where the talibanized style of insurgency has
been imported in its entirety as a composite model. However, elements of this
style have surfaced in regions across the world where radical Islamists are active.
Often, there is a direct link with Afghanistan, in the form of transnational jihadist
networks forged by Al-Qaida. The Taliban themselves have contributed to the formation of these networks: Over the past decade, from being a purely local movement, the insurgents have evolved into a success story of the global jihadist community for having stood firm against Western forces. The Taliban have learnt to appreciate the value of Arab support in particular, since it has enhanced their military
effectiveness by opening new channels of funding and skill-sharing.
IEDs begin to fundamentally influence war costs
The most potent weapon wielded by the Taliban has been the improvised explosive
device (IED). In previous conflicts, IEDs were a means of tactical attrition. With the
recent insurgencies in Iraq and Afghanistan, they have transformed into instruments of strategic coercion. Their usage is characterized by a double asymmetry
which works in favour of insurgents and terrorist groups. First, the time required to
develop new IED designs is less than the time required to develop countermeasures. The pace of technology change thus allows insurgents to dictate the pace of
operational activity, since military commanders are compelled to focus on force
protection until counter-IED systems become available. Second, there is an asymmetry of costs: Afghan IEDs can be built for as little as $ 265 apiece. The US government, in contrast, spent $ 18 billion on designing and manufacturing bombdetection equipment. There have been further costs, amounting to $ 45 billion in
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mine-proof vehicles.
This double asymmetry skewers the cost-benefit ratio of waging counterinsurgency
far from Western borders, with all the
attendant difficulties of arranging force
logistics overseas. Governments are not
keen to bear the expense of fighting
technologicallyadvanced guerrillas. Insurgents on the other hand have few inhibitions about projecting their power
through foreign training missions: As early as 1991, Hizbollah operatives taught Al
-Qaida how to assemble large vehicleborne IEDs. Al-Qaida eagerly absorbed
IE atalities in Afghanistan
these lessons because it wanted to emulate Hizbollah’s area denial success in
driving out US and French military forces from Lebanon in the 1980s – a feat that
Osama bin Laden was determined to surpass in his own fight with the West. Likewise, the Taliban acquired their competence in IED-manufacturing through
knowledge transfer from Iraqi jihadist trainers in 2004 – 05.
There is little reason to believe that the insurgents in Afghanistan, having benefited
from foreign assistance, will not now engage in skill-sharing themselves, and arm
jihadist groups elsewhere with the technical knowledge to mass-produce antipersonnel and anti-vehicle mines. The Taliban have already demonstrated the capacity to build 8000 IEDs annually, or a little more than 22 per day. This is more
than the British army faced in over 30 years of insurgency in Northern Ireland,
where the IED first made its appearance as a tool of guerrilla warfare in the early
1970s.
Cultural norms no barrier to adaptation
Sceptics may argue that cultural differences will limit the widespread emulation of
Taliban-style IED attacks in other theatres. The historical record is not promising in
this regard. Traditionally, Afghan Islam has been more tribalist than fundamentalist. Suicide bombing in particular was frowned upon. Although the first such bombing occurred in May 2003, it was not until 2006 that suicide attacks became a regular feature of Taliban operations. The attitudinal shift occurred because Iraqi insurgent trainers, based on their own experience of combat against US troops, advised
the Taliban that regular use of this tactic would help in eliminating the focal points
of Western counterinsurgency efforts.
Despite being initially reluctant to break the Islamic taboo against suicide, Afghan
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insurgents were eventually won over by operational logic. Assassinations which had
previously been difficult to carry out became easy; in just one year (2005 – 06), success rates shot up from 40 to 85 . Initially sourced from among foreign militants
fighting in Afghanistan, suicide bombers were soon coming from communities who
had suffered from ISAF counterinsurgency operations. Not content with just this
source of recruits, the Taliban also abducted children from remote areas and indoctrinated them for suicide attacks. Knowing that women and children are less likely
to be screened at security checkpoints, the Taliban have used girls as young as
eight years as human bombs. In a similar vein, they have pioneered the use of
‘turban bombs’. Many Afghan men wear turbans and consider it an insult if asked
to remove these for security screening. Through experimenting with such tactics,
the Taliban have found that breaking societal norms and resorting to underhand
methods of attack (even by local standards) pays handsome military dividends that
offset the cost to their public image.
Since 2007, it appears that Chechen militants have made the same discovery in the
South Caucasus. The socalled ‘Caucasus Emirate’, a network of local jihadists with
pronounced sympathy for Al-Qaida, has carried out an unrelenting war of attrition
against Russian security forces and civilians. Unlike the early Chechen separatists of
the 1990s, these jihadists do not care about international opinion. They are not interested in appealing to the out-groups that they are fighting, but only in winning
the respect of their relatively small in-group. As a result, since 2009 they have been
carrying out provocative attacks on soft targets, in part because they are competing
alongside regional franchises of Al-Qaida to attract fresh funding and volunteers
from the global jihadist community. Jihadists in Syria and Mali currently have an
edge in the race for resources. Since these are ‘new’ conflict areas – the jihadist
equivalent of emerging markets – improvisation of weaponry and especially IEDs
has been noticeable as a result of advice received from foreign militants. The appearance of suicide bombings targeted at peacekeeping forces in Mali is an example.
Strategic communication as part of the battlespace
Another field in which the insurgents have been surprisingly adept is propaganda,
or what is known as ‘strategic communication’. Aimed at influencing perceptions
that are held by the adversary as well as neutral observers, strategic communication is a tool used to wear down the adversary’s morale and raise doubts about the
legitimacy of his cause. The war in Afghanistan has seen this tool becoming ever
more potent. For a group whose ideological slant once opposed digital entertainment, the Taliban have had few qualms about waging digital insurgency. Radio
broadcasts and DVDs of the insurgents’ recruiters delivering fiery sermons are
widely accessible in Afghanistan. The Taliban even operate websites expounding on
their vision of an Islamic state. Knowing that doctrinaire ideas about banning female education would not go down well with the populace, the insurgents have
moderated their rhetoric. They now claim to have no objection to girls’ schooling,
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but oppose the ‘Westernization’ of school curricula and mixed-gender classes.
These are issues that most Afghans find no quarrel with.
Most impressive of all has been the insurgents’ ability to shape perceptions of the
actual conduct of operations on the ground, and the results achieved. Contrary to
notions of the group’s strong motivation levels, evidence from the field suggests
that violent coercion plays a part in driving Taliban fighters into battle. Insurgent
campsites raided by ISAF have yielded signs of drug use, in the form of used syringes, while defectors have spoken about fratricidal killings as a result of harsh discipline. Analysis of the insurgency’s micro-politics reveals a fragmented structure,
with considerable autonomy being granted to subordinate commanders. Yet none
of this has dispelled the notion that the Taliban are a rigidly hierarchical entity with
the capability to significantly influence violence levels in Afghanistan. This ability to
appear far more motivated and capable than they really are has been a key component of the insurgents’ psychological warfare campaign.
Several commentators have remarked on the speed with which the Taliban contacts the international media and disseminates its own version of a story, leaving
ISAF and Afghan government forces with the burden of establishing the actual facts
and issuing a rebuttal. The insurgents can plant a story in the Western media within
an hour of a newsworthy incident occurring. In contrast, ISAF and Afghan spokesmen almost never possess the full facts at short notice. This breeds a crisis of credibility and confidence as far as larger audiences are concerned, since they extrapolate the military situation based on the public relations performance of government
officials.
The Taliban can also provide subversive entertainment, in the form of social media
duels with NATO spokesmen. Though amusing to read, the exchanges serve to
equate the insurgents with the Western forces who are fighting them. Every propaganda point made by the latter is swiftly met with a riposte from the Taliban, thus
weakening the overall impression of progress that is crucial to maintaining public
support for counterinsurgency. In this regard, the Somali group Al-Shabaab seems
to be copying the Taliban. During its September 2013 attack on the Westgate Mall
in Nairobi, Al-Shabaab kept up a running commentary via Twitter. Seeking to ridicule the Kenyan government, the group was successful in creating a widespread
impression of tactical incompetence on the part of Kenyan security forces. Interestingly, both the Taliban and Al-Shabaab seem to have begun using Twitter as an
instrument of psychological warfare at exactly the same time, in September 2011.
Complex ambushes despite Western air supremacy
Western militaries are reliant on airpower when operating overseas. This is both an
asset and a liability. On the one hand, airpower provides a supply lifeline as well as
badly-needed fire support during combat engagements. On the other, its importance to the effectiveness of counterinsurgency makes guerrillas highly adaptive
to the threat it poses. This has been seen in Afghanistan, where the Taliban have
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learnt to live with the limitations that hostile
airpower usage poses to their operations in
a relatively open, arid region. Other insurgent groups will not be far behind in learning
that Western airpower threats can indeed
be circumvented, even as attacks on ground
forces continue unabated.
Initially the Taliban targeted heavy vehicles,
hoping that such attacks would cause more
casualties. Subsequently they shifted to
smaller IEDs, which were intended only for
use against foot patrols. By doing this they
nullified the counterinsurgency policy being
employed by Western units, that of trying to
build good relations with Afghan villagers
through directly engaging with them. Antiinfantry IEDs ensured that patrols avoided
staying in any one locality long enough to be
Social Media Warfare
ambushed. In the process, villagers understood the larger message: Western soldiers
were worried for their own safety, and could not be counted on to provide protection against the insurgents for any length of time. Many villages thus avoided sharing intelligence with ISAF troops, and some even prepared to reach an accommodation with the insurgents, as and when the ISAF would eventually leave.
During this phase (2007 – 09) Western forces still maintained a high rate of operational activity, compelling the insurgents to do battle whenever they were discovered. In one 14-month period, 3000 engagements took place between the Taliban
and security forces in just two provinces of southern Afghanistan, while another
1300 occurred in the east. During these engagements the Taliban would concentrate fire onto the enemy’s communications equipment and heavy weaponry. The
insurgents had learned from experience how long it took ISAF airpower to deploy in
support of ground forces, and tried to ensure that they could break off contact before it arrived. Recently, French troops in Mali recovered documents suggesting
that the lessons learnt by the Taliban are being disseminated widely to other jihadist groups. The documents captured in Mali included an exhaustive list of suggestions for avoiding contact with Western air forces, and focused especially on the
risk of drone strikes.
The tactical sophistication of Taliban operations increased in 2009. The guerrillas
fought pitched battles in which they used mortars to get foreign troops to take cover, and then hit them with rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) and automatic fire.
Firing positions were changed often. Radio discipline – a key weakness which had
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often been exploited in the past by Western signals intelligence capability – was
better maintained while on the move. As a precaution against bombardment, the
insurgents learned to water down the ground, to prevent dust from being kicked
whenever a mortar was used and thereby giving away their location. They also
showed good fire control, launching RPGs in coordinated attacks from different directions onto individual targets. Their fields of fire interlocked, with machine guns
being used to continuously suppress targets even as mortar and RPG teams set up
new firing positions. RPGs were used to disable armoured vehicles rather than destroy them outright, since the crew members became vulnerable to small arms fire
in any case when they attempted to exit the vehicle. Irrigation ditches were a favourite firing position for Taliban machine gun and mortar teams, since they provided effective cover while manoeuvring away from an essentially road-bound enemy. Given the similarities between Afghanistan and the tactical topography of Mali
– large arid expanses with scattered communities – French and United Nations
forces might expect to encounter similar tactics in the future. The fact that jihadists
in North Africa openly fight under the Al-Qaida franchise suggests that if and when
Al-Qaida’s core leadership acquires a safe haven in post-ISAF Afghanistan, the fallout will not be long in appearing across other conflict zones where Islamist insurgencies are being waged.
Tactical deception and counterintelligence
Insurgencies are, to a large degree, a game of intelligence and counterintelligence.
The Taliban have shown a strong understanding of Western counterintelligence
techniques, using this to plan attacks that leave a small logistical footprint. With
few leads to follow, investigators have difficulty in identifying the persons behind a
terrorist incident in an urban area. The attack methods used by the insurgents are:
cross-networking (deploying cadres from multiple area commands, or even loaned
from other militias) and suicidal assaults conducted in security forces uniforms.
The Taliban have been helped by the virtually non-existent capability of Afghan officialdom to regulate the manufacture and sale of security forces uniforms. On numerous occasions, insurgents have used police and army uniforms to attack protected locations or otherwise engage in ‘black’ operations – killing civilians and
attributing responsibility to the security forces. In yet another ploy, they have infiltrated sympathizers into the security forces as bona fide recruits. These ‘sleeper’
agents remain dormant for months, learning weapon drills and winning the trust of
their colleagues, before carrying out surprise attacks, usually in the form of
shooting rampages. ISAF troops have been badly hit by such encounters, which understandably lead to tensions between the Afghan and foreign troops and greatly
reduce their ability to operate jointly. Considering that much of the Western effort
in counterinsurgency campaigns consists of local capacitybuilding, the risk of insider attacks in other combat threats is only likely to grow. European training missions
in northern and central Africa, if deployed for any length of time, could be especial-
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ly vulnerable to such attacks unless strict personnel vetting standards are maintained for recruits to the local police and military.
Organi ed crime as a funding source
Talibanized insurgency is a lucrative business opportunity for criminal entrepreneurs. Anecdotal evidence suggests that insurgents in Afghanistan cooperate with
the private armies of drug lords. Besides taxing the drug trade, in the form of extracting hard cash and/or material goods such as vehicles, the insurgents offer
physical protection for drug convoys. On occasion, they have even been suspected
of staging attacks to draw away security forces’ attention from border crossing
points where traffickers were moving drugs. If these reports are accurate, the personnel losses suffered by the Taliban would still be worthwhile. Although authoritative estimates are impossible to come by, it has been speculated that the Taliban
receive about 40 of their funding from the Afghan drug trade.
ISAF and Afghan government efforts to curtail the trade have backfired. First, opium eradication was seen as an assault on the already impoverished Afghan peasantry. The Taliban were quick to offer monetary support to affected farmers, asking
in return that they assist the insurgency. Many were happy to do this. Meanwhile,
the destruction of opium farms in government-controlled territory had the unforeseen side-effect of driving up prices in territory controlled by the Taliban, thus
strengthening the insurgency’s financial base. In recognition of their mistake, ISAF
commanders thereafter attempted to pursue the traffickers directly. However, almost all trafficking syndicates had a measure of local government protection, in
some cases extending to the authorities in Kabul.
Besides drugs, the Taliban also generate revenue by extortion. Shopkeepers are
expected to pay 10 of their earnings to the insurgents, while trucks plying the
national highways have to pay ‘road taxes’. Since Afghan security forces also engage in such practices, which are blatantly illegal, the Taliban are not perceived any
worse than the police as far as economic predation goes. Rather, the relatively disciplined manner of their cadres generates a favourable impression upon most Afghans.
The criminal dimension makes Talibanstyle insurgency more resilient to action by security forces. It may also
make insurgent factions more volatile
and prone to competitive extremes of
violence. The January 2013 assault upon a gas field in Algeria was partly
caused by a disagreement over the
division of proceeds from cigarette
smuggling. A local commander, upon
being accused of paying more atten-
Poppy ultivation in Afghanistan
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tion to his personal racketeering business than to waging jihad, decided to prove
his critics wrong by carrying out a major terrorist attack on Western workers at the
gas field. In a slightly different vein, drug cartels in Mexico have become far more
violent as a result of combat skills introduced by deserters from the Mexican army
and police. Lured by salaries that are twelve times higher than what they could
earn in government service, many combat specialists have joined the drug cartels
as mercenaries, ratcheting up violence levels in gang warfare. It is interesting to
note that certain Mexican drug lords have been openly compared to the Taliban,
due to their penchant for mutilating and beheading victims and displaying the severed body parts in public spaces.
Curtailing Western interventionism
The Taliban insurgency in Afghanistan has managed to withstand the best prescriptions of counterinsurgency theory and practice. Its resilience has encouraged other
jihadist movements elsewhere in the world in the belief that Western military forces can be defeated over time. Although there exist no insurgent groups with the
capacity to prevent a modern Western army from entering their territory, preventing such an army from operating freely is an easier task. Anti-access would not
be a threat to Western force projection efforts in such a scenario, but area denial
very likely would be.
Given that Western militaries are being forced to economize, it is safe to suggest
that talibanized insurgency offers a model that other Islamist guerrillas would study
carefully. There are already worrying signs in Mali, where the initial success of
French military intervention bears some resemblance to the immediate aftermath
of the 2001 Afghanistan invasion. Instead of staying to fight, the bulk of the Malian
rebels have scattered to cross-border sanctuaries in Libya and Chad. If they now
build up a capability for political subversion, using the highly organized, Maoistlike
strategy developed by the Taliban, the Malian rebels could eventually hope to regain much of what they have lost. The Taliban are already getting close to doing so,
despite having fought a numerically much stronger force than has so far been deployed in North Africa. With the French military component being downsized and
United Nations peacekeeping troops currently functioning at half their sanctioned
strength, the operational environment in Mali is favourable to a Taliban-style insurgency.
History shows that international terrorism received a major boost following the US
withdrawal from Vietnam. A belief that strong military powers can be humbled
through terrorist tactics runs through much of Al-Qaida’s ideological and operational thinking. With the war in Afghanistan now close to ending on less than favourable terms for the West, it is necessary to anticipate the fallout that this conflict
could have upon other regions in the developing world, where Western interests
are threatened. Following a decade of unsuccessful efforts to reshape attitudes and
societies in regions where Islamist insurgencies are active, Western societies have
97
grown more preoccupied with domestic affairs and have little appetite for sustained foreign interventions. Knowing this, insurgent leaders are likely to continue
waging regional conflict without concern for Western military power. In short, the
West may leave Afghanistan, but Afghanistan will not leave the West for several
years to come
http://www.isn.ethz.ch/Digital-Library/Articles/Detail/?lng=en id=178192
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Syria
Syrie/Afghanistan/Afrique: regain d'activité des bandes terroristes
(FSB)
09/04/2014
Les bandes terroristes en Syrie, à la frontière afghano-pakistanaise et en Afrique
ont redoublé d'activité et renforcé leur potentiel de combat avec de nouveaux
adeptes de l'islam radical, a indiqué mercredi le directeur du Service fédéral de sécurité (FSB) de Russie Alexandre Bortnikov.
"Malgré une certaine baisse d'activité du noyau d'Al-Qaïda, des groupes terroristes
affiliés agissent de façon autonome et agressive, de sorte que le conflit armé en
Syrie a éveillé les forces destructrices dans l'ensemble du Proche-Orient", a déclaré
M.Bortnikov lors d'une réunion de chefs des services secrets, des organes de sécurité et de l'ordre des Etats étrangers partenaires du FSB qui se déroule à Sotchi.
Et d'ajouter que de nouveaux adeptes de l'islam radical venus d'Europe, d'Asie centrale, de Transcaucasie et de Russie complétaient les rangs de la clandestinité terroriste en Syrie.
"Après un stage d'entraînement, ces commandos s'engagent dans les hostilités", a
indiqué le directeur du FSB.
Selon lui, une situation similaire s'observe à la frontière afghano-pakistanaise où
des structures terroristes, notamment les Talibans, le Parti islamique du Turkestan
et le Mouvement des talibans pakistanais ont notablement renforcé leur potentiel
99
de combat.
"Compte tenu du retrait des forces de coalition d'Afghanistan cette année, le risque
de déstabilisation des pays limitrophes augmente. Dans certains pays, notamment
en Asie centrale, on constate un regain d'activité des bandes islamistes internationales", a souligné M.Bortnikov.
http://fr.ria.ru/world/20140409/200936337.html
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USA
Analysis - Troubled Mideast peace effort compounds U.S. policy woes
in region
April 9, 2014, 10:46 am
ReutersProtesters wave Palestinian flags towards the Israeli border during a protest
marking Land Day at the border between Israeli and Gaza Strip March 30, 2014.
REUTERS/Suhaib Salem
By Matt Spetalnick and William Maclean
WASHINGTON/RIYADH (Reuters) - Addressing the United Nations General Assembly
in September, President Barack Obama declared the pursuit of Israeli-Palestinian
peace one of the two main U.S. foreign policy priorities for his second term.
Fast-forward to today, the Obama administration faces a stark choice: expend
more energy on a faltering peace process or absorb the hit to an already-troubled
record in the Middle East and walk away from negotiations.
Secretary of State John Kerry, who met Obama on Tuesday for a "reality check,"
says he hopes both sides will work with U.S. mediators to "find a way back." But as
optimism fades, many inside and outside the Middle East warn now is not the time
for a U.S. diplomatic failure in the region.
"A collapse of the peace process would only add to the perception that we really
don't know what we're doing," said Aaron David Miller, a former U.S. peace negotiator.
101
Asked to what extent U.S. credibility would be damaged if the peace process failed,
Mustafa Alani, a senior adviser at the Gulf Research Center think tank who has
close ties to Saudi security officials, suggested Arab expectations of Washington
were already about as low as they could get.
"That's because Arabs never trusted this administration as a peacemaker," he said.
But a senior U.S. official insisted any decision on Middle East diplomacy would
hinge not on U.S. prestige but on whether it serves national interests and aids regional stability.
While successive administrations have come up dry in decades of Israeli-Palestinian
peacemaking, the latest initiative faces trouble at a delicate time as Washington
seeks to weather criticism for not doing enough to curb Syria's civil war and engages in high-stakes nuclear talks with Iran.
On top of that, U.S. inaction over the military's tightening grip in Egypt, upheaval in
post-Gaddafi Libya and renewed sectarian bloodshed in Iraq have raised questions
about the administration's broader Middle East agenda.
Polls show attitudes toward the United States languishing in much of the Arab
world, where Obama once promised a "new beginning" in relations with Washington after his predecessor, George W. Bush, was widely reviled because of the Iraq
war.
Doubts about the Obama administration's ability to broker Israeli-Palestinian peace
and an overall lack of confidence in its leadership in the region appear widespread,
even though U.S. officials insist that Washington's influence remains solid.
Even among Israelis, who count on the United States as their closest ally, Kerry's
peace bid continues to be a tough sell.
"John Kerry took this issue very seriously," said Moshe Arens, a former Israeli foreign and defence minister who also served as ambassador to Washington. "But my
guess is he did not really understand the reality of the area."
Kerry faced an even harsher assessment when he testified on Capitol Hill on Tuesday. "You can't help but get the impression that our foreign policy is simply spinning out of control," Senator James Risch, an Idaho Republican, told Kerry, who
gave an impassioned defence of the administration's record.
BIG ROLLOUT, THEN SCALED-BACK EXPECTATIONS
When Kerry convinced Obama to push Middle East peace toward the top of his second-term foreign policy agenda last year, the strategy was cast as a way to create
102
goodwill toward the United States in a region where Arab Spring popular revolts
were toppling long-time rulers.
The idea was not only to win credit for tackling the decades-old Arab-Israeli conflict
but also to rob Islamist groups like al Qaeda of a recruiting tool and take away one
of Iran's main arguments for supporting anti-Israel militants.
But Kerry's peace drive was met with deep scepticism from the start, and over the
course of more than eight months of tireless diplomacy neither side has been willing to make the tough compromises needed to achieve a peace deal.
That has prompted Kerry to steadily scale back his ambitious goals - to the point
where now even getting talks extended beyond an April 29 deadline would qualify
as an achievement.
Negotiations plunged into crisis last week in a series of tit-for-tat moves by Israelis
and Palestinians.
By stepping away for now, Kerry has reminded the parties that he can ill-afford to
focus endlessly on a fruitless peace process when other pressing international issues, such as the crisis in Ukraine, demand his attention, U.S. officials say.
Israel and Palestinians were quick to restart discussions and the administration says
it has not thrown in the towel, but the outlook remains bleak and Kerry can be expected to take a lower-profile role even if the peace process survives.
Despite having prioritized Israeli-Palestinian peace along with an Iran nuclear deal
in his U.N. speech, Obama has mostly kept his distance from the nuts and bolts of
the Middle East negotiations, seemingly wary that the effort could suffer the fate of
his own failed first-term initiative.
But seeking to tamp down speculation that Obama might pull the rug out from under Kerry, a White House aide said the president told his national security team on
Friday: "I see a lot of senior officials quoted about Kerry and Middle East peace. But
I'm the most senior official, and I have nothing but admiration for how John has
handled this."
Washington is clearly mindful that abandoning the peace effort now would carry
risks, including reinforcing the image of an administration seeking to disengage
from the Middle East.
"There's tremendous up
103
heaval in the region and internationally right now. Do you want to add to it?" said
Dennis Ross, Obama's former top Middle East adviser. "We don't need to see
something we've been investing in collapse."
With the administration moving only haltingly on limited arms shipments to Syrian
rebels, some analysts believe a breakdown in the peace process could embolden
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad by showing U.S. weakness in the region.
U.S. allies Israel and Saudi Arabia already fear Obama's failure to strike Assad over
chemical weapons use last year suggests that war-weary Washington would not
have the stomach to use force to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons.
There are also concerns in the region that Iran could see troubles in the peace process as a sign that the Obama administration might be desperate for a diplomatic
success and that Tehran could then take a tough line against concessions in nuclear
talks.
But a senior U.S. official said the administration saw no link between Middle East
diplomacy and the Iran or Syria issues.
Even so, fallout for the United States may be limited because Arab leaders and
their nations are now more focused on their own internal problems and less so on
the Israeli-Palestinian issue once seen as the region's core conflict.
"All Arabs are preoccupied with calls for revolutions and reforms," Joseph Kechichian, a Beirut-based historian, said of the Gulf Arab states who are close to the
Saudi ruling family.
But he added: "The Palestinian question will not go away."
https://au.news.yahoo.com/world/a/22492820/analysis-troubled-mideast-peaceeffort-compounds-u-s-policy-woes-in-region/
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Islamophobia, Extremism, and the War on Terror: Arun Kundnani
3 April 2014
Subjects Discussed: How Islamophobia came to be, how the Obama Administration
has continued an Islamophobic policy, the good Muslim and bad Muslim framework, Bernard Lewis’s “The Roots of Muslim Rage” as one of the key foundational
Islamophobic texts, bogus terrorist studies that reinforce counterterrorism studies
within the national security apparatus, flawed FBI radicalization models, how philosophical academics are making ideology virulent, Faisal Shahzad’s attempts to
bomb Times Square, the Boston Marathon bombing, the NYPD’s“Radicalization in
the West” study used to justify its Muslim surveillance efforts, Minority Report, zero tolerance, whether society or specific individuals should be blamed for Islamophobia, societal culpability in policy changes, changing the conversation about terrorism, the need to get out of 9/11 s shadows to address present realities, why
Muslims who make any political statement are categorized as terrorists, fear in the
Muslim community, Edward Snowden, how surveillance affects specific communities, the death of Fred Phelps, whether some over-the-top extremism is necessary
to galvanize a civil rights movement, Martin Luther King’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” when notable figures for justice embrace extremist labels, the queer
movement, Malcolm X, the sudden transformation of Muslims into the “enemy”
after 9/11, class distinctions and Islamophobia, the Prevent program adopted in the
UK, New Labour’s culpability in misidentifying Muslims as “radical,” the Salafi
movement, failed efforts to promote a counterextremism narrative, Homeland‘s
Nick Brody and the inability of contemporary narratives to allow for a Muslim character to have a political voice that isn’t extremist, the vicious campaign to paint AllAmerican Muslim as propaganda and the conservative effort to shut the show
down, the Somali population in the Twin Cities, the al-Shabaab ring in Minneapolis,Congressman Peter King’s Islamophobic statements about mosques, when
attempts
to
preserve
constitutional
rights
are
reframed
as
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“noncooperation,” Operation Rhino, St. Paul’s AIMCOP program funded by a
$670,000 DHS grant, law enforcement tenor dictated by power and money, the arrest of Najibullah Zazi, hyperbolic clampdowns on Islamic communities after an
attempted plot is thwarted, financial incentives by local police departments to continue flawed counterterrorism strategies to receive federal grant money, fusion
centers, why so much of surveillance and prosecution rationale is rooted in Muslim
stereotypes, what can be done with the wasted resources, the Muslim Brotherhood’s fluctuating status as movement and terrorist organization by U.S. authorities, Mohamed Morsi, whether or not Western nations can view organizations in
subtle terms, comparisons between the Cold War and ongoing American foreign
policy ideas about Islam, the Egyptian revolution, the sharia conspiracy theory
adopted by neoconservative Islamophobes that Islamic terrorism is the beginning
of a hidden jihad, why Islamophobes like Robert Spencer and Frank Gaffney are
able to infiltrate the mainstream, conspiracy theories and racist discourse, the English Defence League, Islamophobia promulgated by David Cameron, the lack of selfawareness among far-right groups, how Islamophobic groups have adopted the
media strategies of the Left, neo-Nazis who rebrand themselves, positive developments, New York Muslims protesting NYPD surveillance programs, and how the
generation of young Muslims can change present intolerance.
E CERPT FROM SHOW:
Correspondent: So let’s go ahead and start off with why Islamophobia exists. The
first and most obvious question is why any political strand of Islam, any vocal element that objects to an attack has come to be associated with terrorism. So I have
to ask. Why has this continued twelve and a half years after September 11th? Why
are all Muslims roped up into this misleading category?
Kundnani: One of the interesting things I think is that we had that early period in
the War on Terror under the Bush years where we had this quite intense narrative
of a clash of civilizations between Islam and the West. And Obama came in, trying
to have a different kind of analysis. And actually what’s interesting is that the kind
of popular Islamophobia in the media, the amount of racist violence against Muslims in the United States, it all went up under Obama. So in my analysis, what’s going on here is, as well as the kind of neoconservative narrative of a clash of civilizations, we also need to think about the liberal Islamophobia that’s been much more
powerful under the Obama administration over the last few years.
Correspondent: What do you think the ultimate appeal of the Obama trigger effect
here is for Islamophobia? Why have liberals fanned the flames here, do you think?
Is it just a misunderstanding of policy? I can get into this further later on in this, but
I wanted to get a general idea here.
Kundnani: I think, at root, what’s going on here is a kind of flawed analysis of what
the causes of terrorism are. There’s a liberal analysis that says, basically, that some
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kind of religious extremism causes terrorism. And therefore you need to intervene
in Muslim populations to make sure that people have the right interpretation of
Islam. That’s actually the kind of basic analysis that we’ve had in this kind of later
period of the War on Terror. Which means that you’re associating some interpretation of Islam with terrorism, right? And then from that flows all kinds of other
things. So, for example, then you get the idea of the good Muslim and the bad
Muslim, right? Because the bad Muslim is the one who interprets the religion in the
wrong ways. So you want to put Muslims under surveillance to check that they
have the right interpretation of their religion, etcetera, right? So I think a lot of
what we’ve seen under Obama flows from that fundamental analysis, which actually doesn’t stand up to scrutiny.
Correspondent: If it’s so flawed and it does not stand up to scrutiny, why then does
it continue to perpetuate?
Kundnani: Well, one of the reasons is because from the liberal point of view, it
seems like a better way of doing things than the kind of neoconservative clash of
civilizations model, right? It has certain practical benefits from the point of view of
managing this issue, right? This kind of fraught issue with all this fear ground up in
the popular mind. So it enables you to say, “Well, you know, we’re partnering with
Muslim communities to tackle extremism” and so forth. That sounds quite nice.
That sounds quite effective. Even though the basic assumptions behind it don’t
stand up to scrutiny.
Correspondent: You identify two strains of thinking about Islamic extremism in
your book. The culturalists, who believe that Muslim communities are incapable of
adapting to modern life because their Islamic culture essentially is extreme and is
therefore incompatible, which leads to extremism. Then you have the reformists,
who look not to Islamic teachings but ideologues who reinterpret Islam for violent
and nefarious purposes. How could one article — Bernard Lewis’s “The Roots of
Muslim Rage” in 1990 — be so prominently responsible for the development of
these two ideas? Why do they continue to endure? Why do they continue to be so
compelling? I mean, it seems to me that there are so many arguments against
them. Yet these two ideological strains continue.
Kundnani: Right. Intellectually, the argument has been discredited time and time
again. And so the reason that these ideas continue to circulate has nothing to do
with their intellectual merit. But it’s more about the political convenience of those
ideas. So we find it much easier to think about why people want to direct violence
against our society. We find it much easier to answer that question by saying it’s
their culture rather than, at least in part, our politics. And so I think because it’s uncomfortable for us to think about what the alternative to these narratives would be
— the alternative to these narratives which involve us thinking about our foreign
policy and the political effects of that in creating contexts within which terrorism
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becomes more likely — it’s much easier, rather than having that difficult conversation, it’s much easier to say it’s their culture, right? Or it’s not their culture, but it’s
a minority who have adopted this ideology of extremism and that’s what causing it.
Correspondent: But we’ve had twenty years of this strain in both British and American society. Surely that’s enough time for people to perhaps call it into question or
to actually think about it more sophisticatedly. And I’m wondering why — I keep
going to the question “Why?” But I am trying to get something a little more specific
over why this is still of appeal.
Kundnani: Some of the answers to that are about the ways in which it’s been institutionalized in various settings, right? So for example, since 9/11, we’ve had terrorism studies departments created with government funding in the United States and
in Britain. And those terrorism studies departments have a set of incentives in
terms of the funding and so forth to produce certain kinds of knowledge that serve
the interests of the national security apparatus. So they will tend to avoid asking
deeper questions about what lies behind violence, what is the politics of that, and
instead try and deliver policy solutions that have embedded within them all kinds
of assumptions about what they call radicalization. So that kind of institutionalizes
these ways of thinking in a whole set of academic departments. Then you have
these ways of thinking being institutionalized in the national security agencies. The
FBI, for example, has a radicalization model. It’s an analysis of how someone goes
from being an ordinary person to becoming a terrorist. Embedded within that is
these same ideas of some kind of religious ideology driving it. The New York Police
Department does the same thing. So all these ways of thinking are not just kind of
free-floating in some kind of intellectual depaint. They are embedded in policy and
practice in institutions.
Correspondent: Would you say that academics have essentially been influencing
this interpretation for the last twenty years? I mean, there was a strain of articles
recently about academics complaining about how they don’t actually get through
to the masses. But this would seem to suggest that they are in a very nefarious
way.
Kundnani: Absolutely. If you’re an academic and you want to be influential in government policy, be an academic in terrorism studies. Because that’s where you’re
in and out of government departments. But what you have to give up is actually
quite a large degree of scholarly independence. Because you’re effectively serving
the intellectual needs of the government rather than any kind of idea of an objective independent study of what causes terrorism. That doesn’t really happen. So I
think academics have been influential. Both the terrorism studies academics and
the other ones — like Bernard Lewis and Samuel Huntington — some of those folks
who are more on the philosophical level and geopolitical level who are thinking
about these issues.
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Correspondent: So if you get a philosophical academic, it could essentially activate
a strain of virulent ideology.
Kundnani: Absolutely. Ultimately, all our kind of different forms of racism and so
forth have some kind of intellectual history. They go back to people who innovate,
who come up with new ways of being racist in an intellectual setting. And then that
filters down to the streets over time. That’s how racism originates.
Correspondent: Sure. So you point to a time in the United States when this nation
was considered more tolerant and inclusive towards Muslims. Immune from Muslim radicalization because of the apparent belief that a free market society was
better at absorbing Muslims. That changed in 2009. There were a number of violent
incidents that were believed to be associated with Islam, including Faisal Shahzad’s failed efforts to detonate a car bomb in Times Square. You point to a 2010 Bipartisan Policy Center report which concluded that the American melting pot had
not provided protection against Muslim radicalization. Why were the government,
the pundits, and the policy people so willing to change their tune in so short a
time? Because that seems to me also a big part of this problem as well.
Kundnani: Right. So something interesting happens in the first few years of the
Obama Administration, where you find that you do have one or two attempted terrorist plots that were serious plots, like the attempted car bombing in Times Square
by Faisal Shahzad and one or two others. You also have a set of developments that
happen in the FBI, where they’re starting to change how they do counterterrorism
and becoming much more pro-active in sting operations, in bringing charges to
some of the material support for terrorism, which involves criminalizing people’s
ideological expressive activities rather than actual terrorist plots. So those kinds of
things from the FBI drive up the numbers in terms of the kind of annual statistics on
a number of attempted terrorist acts.
Correspondent: Drive up the numbers exactly how?
Kundnani: Well, because one of the things that we’ve seen is the FBI doing something when they have someone who seems to have what they would call an extremist ideology. Put informants in that person’s life and use these tactics of trying
to pressurizing that person into being involved in an imaginary plot that would
probably not have been something that they would have been predisposed to were
it not for the FBI coming in and creating that environment around that person’s life.
And this is something that the RAND Corporation has a very good phrase to describe. They call it “lubricating that person’s decision making” through government
intervention. So I think the FBI started to put a lot more resources in doing those
kinds of operations. Then the numbers come up. So it looks like we’ve got this objective increase in attempted terrorist plots, but actually it’s at least to a large degree the result of a change in FBI strategy around that time.
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Correspondent: So you’re saying that the FBI essentially was cooking the books to
get higher crime statistics. Is that what you’re basically saying?
Kundnani: Well, in effect, that’s what happened. I’m not sure that it’s some kind of
conspiracy by senior leaders in the FBI to…
Correspondent: It’s a policy change.
Kundnani: It’s a policy change. And obviously you can see an incentive structure
there where the FBI, as a result of doing that, seems like it’s a very efficient counterterrorism organization. Because it’s got all these terrorist plots happening in the
United States and every single one of them is getting a conviction and that looks
good on the annual report to Congress. What you won’t know unless you look in
more detail is the fact that most of those plots are ones that the FBI itself has invented.
Correspondent: I’d like to get into the fine details of the radicalization model that
the FBI was using in just a bit, but I want to actually ask did they essentially have
this policy change before they had the radicalization model? What does your research suggest here?
Kudnani: The radicalization model goes back to the early years after 9/11. The policy shift, I mean, we don’t know what caused it. It may be that there had been a
number of changes in legislation that came through in that period and it may be
that new options were created for that. It may be that if you look at the data for
terrorism convictions around that time, sort of 2008 and 2009, a big chunk of the
people who were getting prosecuted is Somali Americans, who are traveling to Somalia to fight with al-Shabaab, which is designated a terrorist organization shortly
before that moment. And so therefore, traveling over there becomes a felonious
act. So that also becomes another of these kind of scare scenarios around that
time, that maybe we’re going to have a huge problem of American Somalis going
off to fight for al-Shabaab and coming back and committing acts of violence here,
which actually never happened.
Correspondent: I will get into the Somali situation in just a sec, but I want to actually unpack the radicalization model a bit. You cite this 2006 memo from the Counterterrorism Division which suggests anger, watching inflammatory speeches
online, an individual identifying with an extremist cause, Internet interaction with
extremist elements, and acceptance of radical ideology, and eventually terrorism.
What is the academic basis for this model? You also mention this 2007 NYPD study
called “Radicalization in the West” that adopted a simplified version of models that
were adopted by Quentin Wiktorowicz and Marc Sageman. What has made these
specific ideas stick? Why hasn’t law enforcement passed a wider research net before adopting these models? Why are these radicalization models in place? They
seem to me to be more like a sudoku puzzle.
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Kudnani: Right. I mean, these radicalization models have come from — you mentioned the two key people here, Marc Sageman and Quentin Wiktorowicz, both of
whom have a history within the intelligence world as well as in the academic world.
They kind of cross those divisions. I think the reason those models have been used
to the exclusion of any other kind of analysis and the reason that they’ve stuck is
because they do something very important for the FBI and the NYPD — at least at
first glance, which is they give them a tool for prediction.
Correspondent: Precog. Minority Report.
Kundnani: Right. This is Minority Report. It’s a way of saying, “We have a way of
knowing who’s going to be a terrorist tomorrow. Even though they’re not a terrorist today.” And so having that claim to predictive power is what lies beneath the
appeal of these studies.
Correspondent: And the problem with this is that they wake up from the amniotic
fluid and instead of crying “Murder!” they say “Muslims!” So that’s problematic.
Kundnani: And they don’t stand up in terms of having that predictive capability.
And that’s kind of obvious when you think it through. It would be ridiculous to think
that someone growing a beard, which is one of the indicators, is a predictor of
someone on the way to becoming a terrorist. Or someone wearing traditional Islamic clothing or joining a pro-Muslim social group. These are the various things
that these studies talk about. So they don’t have this predictive power. But because
they’re perceived as doing so, they become very important in these institutional
settings and enforcement agencies.
Correspondent: Perceived by who?
Kundnani: By law enforcement agencies and by policy makers in DC. So the FBI has
been instructed by the federal government since very soon after 9/11 to adopt
what is called a preemptive approach to counterterrorism, right? Which means
don’t wait until someone’s committing a crime. Go back to some point before that
person’s committed a crime and arrest them there or intervene in their lives there.
So from the point of view of the FBI, there’s a dilemma there. How on earth do you
criminalize someone who hasn’t committed a crime yet but you think may do in the
future? You have to have some kind of analytic way of predicting behavior. And so
that’s the dilemma for them.
Correspondent: But if it’s a corrupted analytical model, surely there’s someone inside the FBI or even the NYPD who is basically saying, “You know, this doesn’t really
cut mustard. We’re actually only doing this to get our numbers up.” Were you able
to uncover…
Kundnani: I spent a bit of time interviewing a number of different FBI agents who
work in counterterrorism and I put that question to them as well. And their answer
was, “Well, if you think this radicalization model doesn’t work,” which they were
111
open to that possibility that it doesn’t stand up in terms of its academic merits,
“then give us another model that will do the same job.”
Correspondent: So they just need some kind of model.
Kundnani: Yeah. Because they’ve been told you need to predict. You can’t just go
on what someone’s done. You need to go on what they’re about to do. That’s how
counterterrorism works in the United States post-9/11. So for them, it’s not an option to say, “Okay, let’s just focus on who is actively involved in preparing a terrorist plot, who’s inciting terrorism, and who’s financing terrorism.” That would be my
argument. What we should be doing here is focusing on that. And that gives us
enough to be getting onward and has the advantage that we don’t widen our
search to this kind of vague notion of ideology, which gets messy and uses up our
hard-earned resources on things that we shouldn’t be worried about. Now that is
not an option for the FBI. Because that’s what we as a society have told them that
we don’t want. We don’t want them to wait. We want them to be preemptive.
Correspondent: We as a society? I mean, that seems really amorphous. Isn’t there
some specific person who we can identify and say, “That is the person who caused
this requirement, that the FBI…”
Kundnani: I don’t think so.
Correspondent: Really?
Kundnani: I think if you look at — for example, early on in the Obama Administration, there was the so-called underwear bomber. And if you talk to people in the
Obama Administration, they will talk about that being a very scary moment for
them because they felt for a moment, in the aftermath of that attempted attack,
they lost the narrative. They were very much on the defensive. And for a moment,
they thought, “We’re going to have this thing hanging over us that we weren’t
tough enough on terrorism and we almost let this guy through.” And then they basically made the decision thereafter that we can’t allow that to happen again. Because if that hangs over us, we lose the political capital to do all the other things we
want to do. So even if you convince people in the Obama Administration to do
things a different way, they would say, “Our hands are tied by what society expects
of us.” The fear in society around these things. The fact that we have now created a
society in which it’s not enough to say we will minimize the risk of terrorism.
Correspondent: You have the zero tolerance thing.
Kundnani: Right. What society expects is absolutely no terrorist attacks of any kind
at all and do everything possible with unlimited resources to deal with this problem. Even though we’ve had the Boston Marathon last year, dozens of people in
jail, and three people killed. But we have 15,000 murders every year in the United
States. So in terms of an objective assessment of the amount of harm that counterterrorism does to U.S. society, it would not be our top priority. But it has become
our top priority. Half of the FBI’s budget is dedicated to counterterrorism.
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Correspondent: But I don’t know if that’s really — that’s an answer that just
doesn’t sit well with me. The idea that society is the one to blame when you’re using a flawed radicalization model to enforce counterterrorism, which actually isn’t
true based off of some of the findings in your book, and you’re reinforcing stereotypes and you’re also disseminating further fear into the American clime, it seems
to me that you’re the one responsible for generating the way that people react,
that is this very society that people point to…
Kundnani: Sure. Sure.
Correspondent: I mean, I’m asking for some….there needs to be some person.
Some kind of element here.
Kundnani: I think there’s all kinds of different agencies and individuals that are culpable here. No doubt. From the top down. From Obama, the leadership at the FBI,
the whole national security apparatus. All of these different agencies and individuals are bound up in a set of practices that are causing great harm to our fellow citizens in the United States. But I would also say it’s a little bit too easy just to stop
there. I would say we have all kind of got sucked into this culture of counterterrorism. The word “radicalization” is not just a word that you see in academic studies
and police reports. It’s the word that is now in our everyday language, in how we
talk about terrorism. We didn’t need the word “radicalization” fifteen years ago to
talk about terrorism. But now it’s the normal way that we do it. So, for me, it’s a
little bit too neat to pin the blame on government agencies. We need to
acknowledge that there’s a cultural change we need in society more widely.
http://www.edrants.com/
113
As al Qaeda quarrels abroad, we must be vigilant at home: Opinion
April 06, 2014
Yemeni forces are deployed at the main gate of a Yemeni Army base that came under attack by suspected al Qaeda militants in the southern port city of Aden, Yemen, last week. (European Pressphoto Agency)
It is nice to receive public recognition — except when al Qaeda gives it. Seeing my
picture in the latest edition of an English-language digital publication from al Qaeda
in the Arabian Peninsula gave me a moment of pause.
A recurring feature in the "magazine," Inspire, is a list of pictures and quoted material from Western government officials and counterterrorism experts, framed to
support the al Qaeda message. (Terrorists can do P.R., too.) Reading mention of my
analysis on homegrown extremism is a reminder that our adversaries monitor the
security conversations we have in this country. But the latest edition of Inspire reveals something else: al Qaeda Co. are not getting along.
Less than a week before Inspire hit the jihadist online forums, as-Sahab, the media
network that spreads propaganda from Ayman al-Zawahiri (successor to Osama bin
Laden), posted a promotional video for Resurgence, the group’s "first-ever Englishlanguage" magazine. This is precisely how Inspire has branded itself since launching
almost four years ago. And while Zawahiri’s core al Qaeda promoted its new publication, the makers of Inspire pushed out their latest, beating Resurgence to press.
That smacks of competition, not coordination.
114
Al Qaeda has never been a homogenous organization. There are terrorist groups
spread throughout the world that share similar ideologies and operate under the
traditional black banner of al Qaeda. This gives them legitimacy and, in some cases,
access to core al Qaeda assets and operational intelligence. But whereas bin Laden
was a lethally effective rallying figure for these disparate groups, core al Qaeda under Zawahiri appears emasculated and unable to lead anyone. We see this not only
in a petty race to publish propaganda but also in countries around the world.
In February, in a statement posted on jihadist websites, Zawahiri and others denounced the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), which is currently engaged in violent tactics in those war-torn countries. Apparently, ISIS refused to follow Zawahiri’s order to limit operations in Iraq, and in Syria to defer to the Nusra Front (the
"official" al Qaeda affiliate in that country). Ignoring this feeble command, ISIS continues to operate.
U.S. intelligence agencies have determined al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb
(AQIM)is providing funding and leadership for extremists groups in Africa. Financial
and strategic direction has traditionally been the province of core al Qaeda. With
AQIM taking the lead in North Africa, ISIS refusing to follow orders in Iraq and Syria,
and al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) stealing the thunder from the forthcoming Resurgence, it seems al Qaeda is drifting ever further from the bin Ladenled coordination that made the organization famous.
Yet, even as core al Qaeda loses some of its transnational authority, the United
States is fertile soil for the growing threat from domestic terrorism. Part of my
quote that the Inspire editors printed was from an interview regarding my
book, "Homegrown Violent Extremism" (Anderson, 2013), stating that,
"Homegrown actors can successfully attack a U.S. target with little or no resources.
We have always known this was a possibility, but Boston reminded us of the adaptive nature of the threat we face."
It is no accident that the release of Inspire (and potentially Resurgence) roughly
coincides with the first anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing. Tamerlan
and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who perpetrated that heinous attack, grew up in the United States, engaged in self-radicalization in this country, and plotted and launched
their attack without funding or orders from a group based abroad. They were a
clear case of homegrown extremism, and the bombs they detonated in Boston evidenced the threat the United States faces from its own citizens.
Many of the violent ideologies in the United States have nothing to do with the
twisted interpretation of Islam championed by al Qaeda. America is home to antigovernment militias, to racial hate groups targeting people of all ethnicities, to eco-
115
terrorists who are prepared to use violence to further their goals, and to many other groups embracing violent ideas that lead to terrorism. While al Qaeda fights
amongst itself in the backwater, lawless regions they tend to inhabit, dangerous,
capable groups are growing here at home.
The U.S. counterterrorism community and our international allies are right to monitor al Qaeda’s activities and look for opportunities to halt them, but in the ongoing
effort that is homeland security, we must not ignore the growing threat from the
vast array of American extremists. We should take every opportunity to counter
and control their narrative and to empower and educate our communities.
Al Qaeda grows demonstrably weaker through internal disputes, but its propaganda reminds us that potentially the greatest threat is not "over there." It’s right here,
in our backyard.
Erroll . Southers, a New Jersey native and Scotch Plains- anwood High School
graduate, is a former BI special agent who is the associate director of research
transition at the epartment of Homeland Security’s National enter for Risk and
Economic Analysis of Terrorism Events and an adjunct professor at the University of
Southern alifornia.
http://www.nj.com/opinion/
116
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