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News Roundup: 6 October – 13 October By: SSR Resource Centre | SSR | Oct 14, 2014

Want to keep up to date on the SSR field? Once a week, the CSG’s Security Sector Reform Resource Centre project posts pertinent news articles, reports, projects, and event updates on SSR over the past week. Click here to sign-up and have the SSR Weekly News Roundup delivered straight to your inbox every week!

Security Sector Reform Resource Centre

On/Off SSR: A Crisis for EU Security Provision

On September 30, the European Union mission to support police reform in the Democratic Republic of Congo (EUPOL DRC) formally closed. This article argues that these closures highlight the failure of the EU to put its own SSR approach into practice. Further, they underscore the fundamental weaknesses of the EU as a security actor. On/off security sector reform (SSR) of this type will not – cannot – contribute to genuine reform and undermines EU engagement in the country. –Laura Davis

Too late to start worrying about the Islamic State in Africa

The specter of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria casts a long shadow. It’s clearly not just the Middle East that is in trouble; both Britain and the United States have been worried enough to dispatch fighter jets to try and contain the Islamist rebels who have carved out huge chunks of territory as their own. The aerial war has also drawn in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, while various radical Islamist groups from India to Indonesia have pledged their support for the rebels.  –Simon Allison



Somalia: Somali Forces Recapture Last Major Port Held by al-Shabab

A combined force of 1,000 African peacekeepers and Somali troops recaptured the key port city of Barawe last week. Barawe was the last significant port controlled by fighters from the Islamist group al-Shabab. –All Africa

UN envoy urges greater civilian protection as South Sudan faces daunting challenges

According to the UN’s new top official in South Sudan, the challenges facing the country are “enormous.” While there are a number of priorities facing the new envoy as she assumes her post, Ellen Margrethe Løj indicated that civilian protection will be the top priority of UNMISS, the UN mission in South Sudan. –UN News Centre

Libya: UN Ramping Up Aid Efforts Amid Deeping Crisis

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) says there are more than 331,000 Libyans in needs of humanitarian assistance, including approximately 287,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs). In order to provide much needed assistance to this population UNOCHA says it will need an additional $35 million in funding. –All Africa

Regional leaders step up Boko Haram fight with troops, command centre

A number of Nigeria’s regional partners, including Niger, Chad and Benin have agreed to increase their efforts to combat Boko Haram militants. The militant group is the midst of a 5-year fight to establish an Islamic state in Nigeria, a campaign that has seen it graduate from bombings and raids to more recent attempts to seize territory in remote areas of the country. –Reuters

Mali Prime Minister: France, UN must step up fight against Islamists in Mali

According to Mali’s Prime Minister, Islamist groups have been allowed to move back into the country’s north. The Prime Minister is urging French and UN forces to redeploy to the north and rebuff the Islamist advance. –Reuters

Myanmar Security Expo 2015 to Bring Together Government and Commercial Security Sectors

Signalling a change in its international status, Myanmar will be holdings its first security expo in 2015 to provide an opportunity for the government and commercial security sector to explore potential business opportunities. –

Thai martial law to stay until sweeping reforms in place: PM

The ruling junta in Thailand announced last week that it will remain in power until it can implement a number of reforms, despite calls from numerous actors, including those in the tourism industry, to restore the country to civilian rule. –Reuters

UN Chief Arrives in Troubled Libya for Talks

As fighting in Libya continues and the political deadlock in the country becomes even more intractable, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon arrived in Tripoli over the weekend to hold talks with rival factions. According to the UN, Ban Ki-moon was in Libya to encourage all relevant stakeholders to focus on a durable political dialogue and restore stability in the country. –Voice of America

Nine killed including UN peacekeeper in Central African Republic

According to sources from both the Central African Republic (CAR) Red Cross and the UN, a peacekeeper was killed in an ambush last week in CAR, part of a wider pattern of unrest in the country over the past several months. –Crispin Dembassa-Kette, Reuters



The US Role in Recruiting and Retaining Female Peacekeepers

At the most recent meeting of the UN General Assembly in New York this past September, 31 countries met for an international summit on strengthening peacebuilding operations, a key plank of which was a discussion on how to recruit more female peacekeepers. –Amelia Wolf, Council on Foreign Relations

Promoting active citizenship in fragile states—four lessons

Development programming in fragile states is often presented as difficult, bordering on impossible. This article, however, drawing on Oxfam’s work in South Sudan, Yemen, Afghanistan and Palestine, discusses some of the ways that development programming can actually succeed in fragile states. –Richard Chilvers, Oxfam Policy and Practice Blog

The Organized Crime—Peace Operations Nexus

Since 9/11 transnational organized crime has increasingly become a key topic on the international security policy agenda, especially in fragile states. Despite this attention there has not yet been an adequate discussion of the impact of crime on state fragility and peacebuilding operations. –Wibke Hansen, The International Relations and Security Network



Libya’s Legitimacy Crisis: The Danger of Picking Sides in the Post-Qaddafi Chaos

Though there are two parallel structures of power and administration currently in Libya, the international community would be mistaken to recognize either as the country’s legitimate government. –Frederic Wehrey and Wolfram Lacher, Foreign Affairs

Engaging the private sector in post-conflict recovery: perspectives for SADPA

Economic development is a major plank of successful peace and state-building endeavours, and as such the private sector has an important role to play in peace operations, alongside multilateral bodies, NGOs, national governments and bilateral donors. –Jolyon Ford, Institute for Security Studies



Assessing the Syrian Refugee Crisis (Video)

As the crisis in Syria continues to unfold and evolve, there are serious concerns about the long-term welfare of refugees, the burden place on host countries, and the potential instability in the region. In this video a number of experts discuss the long-term implications of the Syrian crisis. –Council on Foreign Relations