Welcome to “Global Conflict This Week,” a series that highlights developments in conflicts across the world that you might have missed this week. Stay up to date on these conflicts and others with the online interactive, the Global Conflict Tracker, from the Center for Preventive Action (CPA).
Start of Idlib Offensive in Syria Followed by Talks in Tehran
The presidents of Iran, Russia, and Turkey met today in Iran’s capital to discuss military cooperation in Syria, refugee returns, and creating a committee to investigate the fates of people who disappeared during the conflict, according to Iran’s Foreign Ministry.
Earlier in the week, Russian and Syrian strikes hit the northwest province of Idlib, killing at least ten civilians. Shortly before the strikes, the Kremlin called the province a “pocket of terrorism” and said that Syrian forces are “preparing to resolve this problem.” Nearly three million people live in the region, many of them displaced from elsewhere in Syria.
Ten Protestors Killed By Iraqi Security Forces in Basra
Ten people were killed in protests in and around the southern Iraqi city of Basra this week as security forces used live ammunition on demonstrators. Protestors in Basra have complained that oil wealth has been siphoned from their city and that power and water shortages are endemic.
Yemen Peace Talks Postponed
Peace talks in Geneva between rebels and the internationally recognized Yemeni government were scheduled for Thursday, but were postponed after Houthi rebels—citing safety concerns—failed to attend. The UN-sponsored talks would have been the first formal meeting between Yemen’s warring parties in two years.
Court Bans DRC Opposition Leader
On Monday, the top court in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) announced its ruling that former vice president and opposition leader Jean-Pierre Bemba be barred from upcoming elections in December.
CFR Senior Fellow Michelle Gavin appraises the prospects for democratic governance and stability in the DRC, and Senior Fellow John Campbell sat down with Comfort Ero, the Africa program director for International Crisis Group, to discuss the situation in the country.