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December 18, 2019

Middle East and North Africa
The Post-American Middle East

The United States has dialed down both its presence and role in a region that it has dominated for nearly a half-century.

Post-American Middle East

October 5, 2018

Ethiopia
Ethiopia: East Africa’s Emerging Giant

Ethiopia’s new leader, Abiy Ahmed, is seeking aggressive reforms to put an end to discord and build on the country’s progress in recent decades, but a towering set of challenges threatens his agenda.

Children play within the Balderas condominium in Addis Ababa.

March 6, 2020

Sub-Saharan Africa
Africa Confronts Falling Oil Prices Amid Coronavirus

The new coronavirus has led to a slowdown in economic activity in China and East Asia more broadly. The global price of oil has now fallen to $53 a barrel. This is beginning to affect the oil-exporting countries of Africa. According to Africa Confidential, three-quarters of Nigeria’s and Angola’s oil production ear-marked for export in April is unsold. Similar deficits are reported from Chad, Republic of Congo, and Gabon.

A man arranges Agip drums at an oil station and depot in Nigeria's capital Abuja, on June 19, 2009.

January 13, 2020

Middle East and North Africa
Don’t Hold Your Breath for Democratic Change in the Middle East

The region is accustomed to cycles of protest and political upheaval, so it’s better not to bank on successful revolutions.

Demonstrators carry a national flag during an anti-government rally in Algiers, Algeria January 3, 2020.

October 10, 2019

Sub-Saharan Africa
Rich People and Wealth in Africa

Rich people are everywhere, and they can have something to say about the level of economic development in their home countries. Afrasia Bank and New World Wealth have just published the 2019 Africa Wealth Report, which includes North Africa and African island states in the Atlantic and Indian Oceans. It identifies the continent’s six wealthiest cities, defined as total individual private wealth—equities, real estate, businesses—less liabilities. They are Johannesburg, Cape Town, Cairo, Lagos, Durban, and Nairobi.

Visitors walk past a reception with an electronic board displaying movements in major indices at the Johannesburg Stock Exchange building

December 17, 2019

South Africa
Shedding Light on the Iran-South Africa Relationship

South Africa has long been a cornerstone of Iran’s South-South strategy, which aims to strengthen ties with African and South American states. Strongly promoted by President Ahmadinejad, the South-South strategy intends to boost Iranian international credibility and promote trade. The Islamic Republic was one of the first countries to resume trade with South Africa following the end of apartheid, and the two countries have enjoyed strong relations ever since.

President of South Africa Jacob Zuma (L) and Iran's President Hassan Rouhani (R) are seen during their meeting at Sadabad Palace in Tehran, Iran, on April 24, 2016.

February 12, 2020

Coronavirus
The Potential for the Coronavirus in Africa

In Africa, observers are acutely aware of how ill-prepared most countries are for responding to a major pandemic. With more than a billion people undergoing rapid urbanization, weak healthcare systems, and growing economic ties with China, Africa would appear to be highly vulnerable to the spread of the coronavirus.

A female health worker in a white shirt, medical gloves, and a blue mask, uses an infrared thermometer to check the temperature of a young, male traveller who  as part of the coronavirus screening procedure at the Kotoka International Airport in Accra, Ghana, on January 30, 2020. Behind them are other passengers and health workers and a yellow "Economy" sign.

January 9, 2020

West Africa
Jihadi Violence and Terror Surging in West Africa

In a follow up to his remarks in December, Mohamed Iban, Chambas, the UN special representative sand head of the UN Office for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS) sounded the alarm on growing militant and jihadi violence. In his January 8 briefing to the UN Security Council, he said the “devastating surge” in terrorism has “shaken public confidence.” He focused on Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger, where casualties from terrorism have increased fivefold since 2016, with 4,000 deaths in 2019 compared to 770 in 2016.

Mohammed Ibn Chambas, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Office for West Africa and the Sahel, briefs the Security Council on West Africa, on January 10, 2019, in New York.

July 29, 2019

Middle East and North Africa
Europe’s Future Will Be Decided in North Africa

The United States should stop treating the region as secondary to the rest of the Middle East.

People pose for a photo with "I love Tunis" sign as a Tunisian flag flies at half-mast in honor of late Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi, in Tunis, Tunisia July 28, 2019.

September 24, 2019

Saudi Arabia
This Is the Moment That Decides the Future of the Middle East

If the United States is done fighting for Saudi Arabia’s oil, it's done fighting for the entire region.

U.S. President Donald Trump dances with a sword as he arrives to a welcome ceremony at Al Murabba Palace in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia May 20, 2017.