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November 19, 2020

Nigeria
Nigerian Security Forces and the Dangers of a Violence-First Approach

On October 20, 2020, Nigerians watched in horror on social media as men suspected to be members of the military opened fire on peaceful #EndSARS protesters—a movement responding to a litany of abuses by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).

A pair of military officers are seen walking towards a group of young men on the street in Nigeria. One man has both arms raised.

October 14, 2020

West Africa
Anti-Police Demonstrations in Nigeria

Protests in Nigeria against police are being supported by the Nigerian diaspora, which is linking them to Black Lives Matter demonstrations in the United States and Europe. The focus of the current demonstrations is the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).

An armored police vehicle shoots a water cannon at protesters in the streets of Abuja, Nigeria.

September 2, 2020

Nigeria
Nigerian Atheist Arrested and Disappeared

The arrest and subsequent disappearance of Mubarak Bala, an avowed atheist from a prominent Muslim family, illustrates the fragility of human rights and the rule of law when an individual directly challenges the norms of conservative society in Nigeria.

Male protestors in Lagos protest against the government. The front sign reads "It is not a 'my religion or tribe is better than yours' matter. All our blood is red."

July 23, 2020

Nigeria
Not All Violent Problems Require Violent Solutions: Banditry in Nigeria’s North-West

For more than two years, northwestern Nigeria has faced devastating attacks from armed bandits, particularly in the states of Zamfara, Katsina, Kaduna, Niger, and Sokoto. But violent military operations are half-baked peace plans are not the answer.

A young man in a white tunic robe carries handmade guns. He is flanked by a soldier in camouflage fatigues and a rifle.

June 9, 2020

Mali
French-Led Decapitation Strike on AQIM in Mali

On June 5, France announced that its forces killed Abdelmalek Droukdel and many in his inner circle. Droukdel was the "emir" or leader of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM). The attack took place…

Dust is whooshed into the air as a military helicopter prepares to land. A soldier in desert camouflage kneels on one knee as he signals the helicopter. The sky, obstructed by the dust, is otherwise a dull, clear blue.

May 22, 2020

Cybersecurity
Cyber Week in Review: May 22, 2020

The FBI unlocks iPhone of Pensacola shooter; German court extends right to privacy to foreign internet users; Trump to withdraw from Open Skies Treaty; Japanese Ministry of Defense investigates Mitsu…

U.S. President Donald Trump makes a statement to reporters.

May 22, 2020

United States
Remembering Those Memorial Day Honors

The United States has fought twelve major wars and numerous smaller skirmishes in its history. Memorial Day is how we honor the soldiers, sailors, airmen, airwomen, and marines who did not return hom…

Memorial Day

May 6, 2020

Cybersecurity
New Entries in the CFR Cyber Operations Tracker: Q1 2020

An update of the Council on Foreign Relations' Cyber Operations Tracker for the period between January and March 2020.

Cyber Operations Tracker

April 10, 2020

Nigeria
Case Not Quite Closed on the Assassination of Nigerian Salafi Scholar Shaikh Jaafar Adam

While at prayer on April 13, 2007, the prominent Salafi scholar, Shaikh Jaafar Mahmud Adam, was assassinated at his mosque in Kano. At the time, the murder made a deep impression on mainstream Muslims, many of whom revered Adam. The murder took place in the final days before the 2007 presidential elections, and many observers, including those at the U.S. embassy, thought that the murder was somehow related. But it now seems more likely that Adam was assassinated by a vengeful former member of the Nigerian Taliban. His murder was an early manifestation of the deadly battles among Boko Haram’s competing factions that continue up to the present.

A man cycles past the Al Ansar mosque in Maiduguri. Four red and white minarets are visible around a green dome topped with gold. Person-sized arches line the one-story building around the dome and minarets.

March 6, 2020

Cybersecurity
New Entries in the CFR Cyber Operations Tracker: Q4 2019

An update of the Council on Foreign Relations' Cyber Operations Tracker for the period between October and December 2019.

Cyber Operations Tracker