Africa Center for Strategic Studies 

Media Review for November 14, 2011  

Report: Sudan Upgrading Air Bases On Border
A U.S. satellite monitoring group said Friday that Sudan's military is upgrading air bases near the border with South Sudan and building up air resources in what could be a precursor to a widened aerial bombing campaign. NPR


Major Humanitarian Group Leaves a South Sudan Region
Growing violence along the border between Sudan and South Sudan caused a major humanitarian aid group to withdraw over the weekend. The group, the British humanitarian agency Oxfam, pulled its staff from South Sudan's border region beginning late Friday. It issued a statement that said, "New bombing raids and a buildup of troops along the border of Sudan and South Sudan over the past few days threaten to escalate what is already a significant humanitarian crisis in the newest country in the world." The New York Times


Sudan rebels form alliance to oust president
Rebels in Sudan's Darfur region and in the troubled border states of Blue Nile and South Kordofan have formed an alliance to overthrow the government of President Omar al-Bashir, a statement released by the rebels said. The alliance, called the Sudanese Revolutionary Front, is bent on "toppling the regime of the [Sudan's ruling] National Congress Party with all possible means" and replacing it with a democratic system, the groups said in the joint statement sent to the Reuters news agency on Saturday. Al Jazeera


Ambassador Susan E. Rice: emarks on Sudan at a Security Council Stakeout
"I wanted to say a few words about Sudan, which we are discussing this morning in the Council. The United States is very gravely concerned about the escalation in tensions between the government of Sudan and the Republic of South Sudan.".


Uganda: Museveni in Surprise Visit to Israel
President Museveni yesterday met Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem as it emerged his trip took Foreign Affairs ministry officials in Kampala by surprise. Daily Monitor


After Kenya, Amisom will still need troops
Having initiated the military option to get rid of Al Shabaab, Kenya as the frontline state must now start the process of political settlement in Somalia. The mandate of the weak Transitional Federal Government ends in August and no election plans are in sight. East African


AU troops in Somalia facing funding shortfall
African Union troops fighting al-Qaida-linked Islamists in the failed state of Somalia have a $10 million funding gap which has delayed the deployment of reinforcements and lifesaving equipment, officials said. Senior commanders said Saturday that the lack of cash is hampering recent advances against the Islamists, discouraging countries from sending troops and may have cost lives. eTaiwan


Kenya: Perfect breeding ground for Al-Shabaab terrorists
Rasna Warah cautions that, if Kenyans cannot see the link between government failure and the rise of home-grown terrorism, then the military project of eliminating Al-Shabaab in the country and across the border in Somalia will go nowhere. Pambazuka News


Uganda: Ulterior US motives in LRA fight
The deployment of US troops to fight a rebel group that once terrorized northern Uganda has raised concerns among Ugandans who suspect the Americans are here on a different - and more complex - mission. The US is pursuing Joseph Kony, whose Lord's Resistance Army has raped and murdered its way through the East African region for more than two decades. At the same time, however, Ugandans say the US is interested in establishing a greater footprint in the region amid the rise of terror group Al Shabaab in Somalia and newly discovered oil resources. Globalpost


Africa: America's Role in Continent's Strife
As Kenyan troops push their way into Somalia's hinterland in pursuit of Al-Shabaab militants, several security analysts and observers allege an unseen hand behind Operation Linda Nchi. The allegations have been riding on the wave of unconfirmed reports in the early days of the incursion that claimed that unmanned American drones had attacked several targets inside the lawless nation. Both countries denied the reports, with Washington insisting that it had no plan of being actively involved in the war on Al-Shabaab. allAfrica


Deadly factional clashes erupt in Libya
At least two men have been killed in a second day of clashes as fighters from Zawiya set up roablocks to prevent rivals from the nearby town of Wershefana entering their territory. There are conflicting reports about what triggered the confrontation on Saturday near a military camp. Al Jazeera


Niger to Grant Asylum to One of Gadhafi's Sons
Niger has announced that it will grant the fugitive son of former Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi asylum. Niger President Mahamadou Issoufou said Saadi Gadhafi, who fled Libya in August, will be given asylum for humanitarian reasons. VOA


E Guinea votes to limit presidential terms
More than 99% of Equatorial Guineans in votes counted so far have backed constitutional changes to limit presidents to serving two terms in a referendum dismissed by the opposition as a sham. News 24


Nigerian election court sacks northern state governor
The Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal in northern Nigeria's Kebbi State has nullified the election of Governor Sa'idu Dakingari and directed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to conduct a fresh election within 90 days. Xinhua


Liberia opposition calls for mass rally over election
Liberia's main opposition has called for a mass rally for the funerals of victims of pre-poll violence amid demands that a presidential election won by incumbent Ellen Johnson Sirleaf be rerun. The Telegraph


Zuma's gamble against Malema
The president's decision to act against the ANC Youth League will cost him some support and has created divisions within the ruling party. But there are still powerful interest groups behind him The ANC Youth League has changed the debate on Zuma's leadership of the ANC and of the country. The Africa Report


Maghreb unity, a bulwark against al-Qaeda
Al-Qaeda is desperate to build up its numbers. The organisation is scrambling to attract Arab youths, extend its network and carry out attacks in lands that have long been immune to the development of terrorist cells. Magharebia


Sahel ministers meet in Washington
Government ministers from Algeria, Mauritania, Mali and Niger met in Washington this week to further their new multilateral approach to Sahel security. The two-day meeting, which wrapped up on Tuesday (March 9th), was a "qualitative step" in establishing the regional counter-terror partnership proposed at the Sahel security summit in Algiers, Algerian Minister for Maghreb and African Affairs Abdelkader Messahel said. Magharebia


Security and Insecurity in Niger
When they left, they were leaving behind famine and a military junta, seeking jobs and security in a wealthy, stable country. When they returned, they were fleeing a conflict where they faced persecution and violence as potential mercenaries, and entering a newly-awakening democracy about to begin capitalising on its oil reserves. The irony of the Libya conflict is that even as the victors celebrate the downfall of Gaddafi, the fallout could destabilise one of Africa's newest and most promising democracies in neighbouring Niger. Think Thank Africa


Egyptian political groups set deadline for army rulers
Egyptian political groups on Sunday gave the ruling generals until Wednesday to withdraw a constitutional proposal that shields the army from oversight in parliament, saying they would otherwise hold an anti-military protest on Friday. Al Arabiya


Too Many Loopholes: Smuggling Human Beings in Southern Africa
Human migration in Africa has a long and complex history, and predates the drawing of national boundaries and the formation of the state. Migration has always been a survival strategy in response to social, economic and environmental necessity. Only with the hardening of borders has migration been considered a crime, in turn making human smuggling a profitable criminal economy. Given the uneven geographical development of Africa, smuggling routes have been formed from the horn of Africa to Southern regions, with workers traveling long distances in search of economic opportunity. ISS


UN Piracy Resolution Faces Significant Hurdles
UN Security Council Resolution 2015 calls on Somalia and its neighbors to take urgent steps to address legislative and judicial shortcomings that make it difficult to deal with growing maritime insecurity in this region. The resolution mandated the UN Office on Drugs and Crime and UN Development Programme to consult with national and regional authorities in the Horn of Africa to determine what is needed to promulgate the requisite laws, establish capable courts, enhance prison capacity and provide technical assistance. The resolution targets those who plan, organize, facilitate, finance or profit from maritime crime. Conceptually, this is clearly an important step in the right direction. Operationally, it is fraught with a number of difficulties.


Sierra Leone's success story
Countries emerging from conflicts often face huge development challenges. With support from the UN Peace building Commission, Sierra Leone is a showcase of how a country can transit from peacekeeping to peace building. Africa News


India beats China to top trading spot with Kenya
India has reclaimed its position as the second largest exporter of goods to Kenya, signalling that it is gaining momentum in the race with China for control of Africa's fast-growing consumer markets. Business Daily

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Please note: The following news items are presented here for informational purposes. The views expressed within them are those of the authors and/or individuals quoted, not those of the Africa Center for Strategic Studies, the National Defense University, or the Department of Defense.
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