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July 11, 2019

West Africa
West African Governments Lack Commitment to Reduce Soaring Inequality

Oxfam and Development Finance International (DFI) have developed the Commitment to Reducing Inequality Index (CRI). The index ranks 157 countries by their commitment to reducing inequality through increased spending on health and education, taxing the rich more than the poor, and paying a living wage.

A slum with a bridge, electric transmission lines, and a high-rises in the background.

May 24, 2019

Islamic State
Where Exactly is the Islamic State in West Africa?

The Islamic State in West Africa (ISWA) claimed a May 16 attack near Tongo Tongo, Niger, killing more than 20 soldiers not far from the Malian border. In March it issued a photo of its members in Burkina Faso and in April it claimed an attack on a militia in Mali. But, it is not clear that the ISWA group based primarily in Nigeria is behind those attacks. 

Cameroon-Boko-Haram-Islamic-State-Terrorism-West-Africa

July 9, 2019

Zimbabwe
Wildlife Conservation in Africa, Outrage in the West, and Cecil the Lion

Four years ago, on July 2, 2015, a Minneapolis Dentists killed a well-known Lion, Cecil, in a Zimbabwe trophy hunt with a bow and arrow. Cecil was something of a star in the developed world.

A man dressed as Cecil the Lion on a subway platform in New York.

September 13, 2018

Sub-Saharan Africa
The Risks of Reducing U.S. Special Operations in Africa

The Pentagon plans to withdraw its special operations forces in Africa, but major cutbacks could threaten recent efforts to counter terrorism threats across the region.

Chadian soldiers take a break during Operation Flintlock, U.S.-led military exercises, in Diffa, Niger.

July 23, 2019

Democratic Republic of Congo
Absent More International Support, Ebola Will Continue to Spread Beyond Congo

Disease outbreaks in states with weak governance and high rates of poverty often spread to other countries. With respect to eastern Congo’s Ebola outbreak, they highlight the fact that the disease has spread out of eastern Congo to the border with Rwanda and into Uganda. The World Health Organization has designated the outbreak as a “public health emergency of international concern.” 

Congolese health workers sit at a long table.

July 18, 2019

Democratic Republic of Congo
Ebola Reaches DRC Border City of Two Million, WHO Responds

The recent designation of Ebola as a “public health emergency of international concern” by the World Health Organization (WHO) is a positive development in efforts to contain the disease. The decision highlights the importance of containing the disease to an international audience; the WHO’s designation is being widely carried by the international media. 

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus sits in front of a World Health Organization sign.

July 18, 2019

Public Health Threats and Pandemics
The World Health Organization

Since its postwar founding, the UN agency has garnered both praise and criticism for its response to international public health crises.

Health-care workers treat Ebola patients at a Doctors Without Borders clinic in Liberia.

July 16, 2019

Nigeria
The Post-Presidential Legacy of Nigeria’s Goodluck Jonathan

Former Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan’s international reputation has improved since conceding the presidency in 2015. What does that say about democracy in the country?

Former Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan speaks to the media as part of the National Democratic Institute's election monitoring delegation in Liberia on December 26, 2017.

July 10, 2019

Nigeria
More Trouble Between Nigeria’s Shia Minority and the Police

The principal Shiite movement in Nigeria, the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN), “stormed” the National Assembly in Abuja on July 7. In the resulting melee, two people may have been killed and eight injured. As is so often the case, there are few details, with claims and counter-claims.

A woman walks by police at a barricade in Abuja, Nigeria.

July 2, 2019

Oil and Petroleum Products
OPEC in a Changing World

Western leaders have long criticized OPEC’s power to raise oil prices, but the bloc’s influence is on the wane as U.S. oil production has soared and alternative energies have come to the fore.

OPEC