The Ukrainian government has announced that it will mount a full-scale military operation to regain control of the east of the country and has set a deadline of 6am on Monday morning for occupied government buildings to be evacuated by armed protesters. An emergency session of the United Nations Security Council late on Sunday night failed to calm a situation that has significantly deteriorated over the past few days.
The widespread lack of peace and security is not the only problems that Africa faces, but they are at the heart of them: development and good governance cannot thrive in situations of violence and instability. As such, the very theme of the summitâ€“Peace and Security in Africaâ€“is very aptly chosen. It is a reflection of the challenges for Africa, as well as of the concerns and self-interests of its international partners.
What we see in Syria now illustrates the inability of global leaders to lead and offer strategic vision of engagement with each other that would enable a more constructive and pragmatic approach to problem-solving. Not only does this harm great power interests but with a look at the ever worsening humanitarian crisis in and around Syria it also makes a mockery of the values they purport to defend.
Military action, limited or otherwise, is not the answer to the much more fundamental problems that the region faces and poses. It is likely not even part of that answer. The quicker we move beyond the narrow debate over military responses to a more comprehensive strategy, the better for Syria, the Arab Spring, and ultimately for us.
The key challenge for the rival factions in Egypt is to learn the right lessons from its so-far disastrous post-Mubarak transition and find the courage to right the wrongs committed by both sides.
The current rank of being the fourth most failed state in the world that South Sudan occupies on the state failure index does not come as a tremendous surprise and there is little reason to celebrate this second anniversary of South Sudan’s statehood. At best, it is an achievement that the situation has not deteriorated further into civil war or an all-out military confrontation with Sudan.
The announcement by the United States that it intends to enter into direct negotiations with the Afghan Taliban represents a significant opportunity to manage the Western ‘exit’ from the country by the end of 2014.
The White House announced that the US would start providing military aid to some of the rebel groups, but it remains unclear whether arming rebel groups in Syria will contribute to achieving the stated aims of US and UK policy: to save lives, to pressure the Assad regime to negotiate seriously, and to prevent the growth of extremism and terrorism.
President Obama’s confirmation that the United States would begin arming Syrian rebels has prompted an urgent debate about both the legality and the effectiveness of the decision.