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News Roundup: 10 November – 16 November By: SSR Resource Centre | SSR Weekly | Nov 17, 2014

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Security Sector Reform Resource Centre

America’s Chamberlain? Obama and the Challenge of American Power

If we are honest about our efforts to prevent serious conflict, our track record is weak, to say the least. We fail to prepare for strategic discontinuities. We embrace deals that rest on sand. We often only seriously begin to address threats to our country’s population and material wealth when we no longer have the capacity to do so. –David Law

Note—Measuring Security Progress: Politics, Challenges and Solutions

The Secretariat of the Knowledge Platform Security and Rule of Law, run jointly by the Hague Institute for Global Justice and the Conflict Research Unit at Clingendael, is organizing an Expert Meeting on Thursday, November 20 to examine the issue of measuring security in the context of fragile states, in cooperation with The Netherlands Permanent Mission to the United Nations. Titled “Measuring Security Progress: Politics, Challenges and Solutions,” this event will look at ways to properly design security measurements and also showcase examples of innovative practices from the field.

Note—Georgia’s Security Sector Review Project Final Report 2014

The Atlantic Council of Georgia has just published the Final Report of its Georgia Security Sector Review Project, with the support of the US Agency for International Development (USAID). The report offers a “review of the institutional, functional and legal aspects of the Georgian security sector,” in particular its ministries of defence, internal affairs, as well as its intelligence agencies.


Centre for Security Governance

CSG Executive Director Mark Sedra has a new article in Stability Journal, titled “An Uncertain Future for Afghanistan’s Security Sector.”



UN envoy seeks cease-fire, end to ‘carnage’ in Aleppo

The United Nations Special Envoy for Syria arrived in the country last week to pursue a renewed ceasefire, and promote the need for urgent humanitarian relief in the embattled city of Aleppo. –Edward Dark, Al-Monitor

Turkey: New Domestic Security Reform Package Details Revealed

Turkey’s Ministry of the Interior has released the details of its incoming domestic security package. The new law has been the subject of substantial discussion and debate in the country. –Daily Sabah

Ban appoints envoy for UN Burundi office ahead of country’s elections

Ahead of the country’s upcoming elections, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has appointed a new envoy to head up the UN mission in Burundi. There are increasing concerns about Burundi’s stability and the potential effects of a fractious election campaign. –UN News Centre

Israel: IDF begins enlisting women for second mixed-gender combat battalion

Female soldiers will be joining a new mixed gender battalion, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) announced last week. The new unit will be the second of its kind in Israel, joining the Caracal battalion, the first mixed-gender IDF unit. –Gilli Cohen, Haaretz

Central African Republic (CAR): USAID Sustains Commitment to Peacebuilding in the Central African Republic

Last week USAID, the United States international development agency, announced a new peacebuilding partnership with the Central African Republic (CAR). The new program comes with an additional $7 million in funding. –All Africa

Iraqi PM removes dozens of commanders

In a move seen widely as his boldest since being elevated to the role in September, Iraq’s Prime Minister dismissed several of his top military commanders last week. The dismals came in the wake of a recent probe into allegations of corruption in Iraq’s armed forces. –Aljazeera

Delay Looms for CAR Elections Next Year

Elections scheduled for February 2015 in the Central African Republic (CAR) will likely not be held, according to a spokesman for the International Contact Group for the CAR. Despite recent progress toward stability and a peaceful resolution of the country’s political and security crisis, representatives of the contact group believe that maintaining the current schedule would be “technically unachievable.” –Nick Long, Voice of America

Jobs in Cyber Security Double as Businesses Come to Terms with Online Hacking Threats

Newly released data shows that there is increasing demand for professionals who have experience with or expertise in cyber-security. In the UK, for example, the demand for cyber-security professionals has risen by over 100 per cent in the past year. –Thomas Wadlow, Europe Business Review

Sudan launches demobilization for ex-rebels in Darfur

A new disarmament campaign was initiated last week in Sudan, by the government’s Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration Commission. The campaign, which take place over the next month, is already responsible for the disarmament of over 700 rebels. –Radio Dabanga

Britain to introduce tough new foreign fighter laws

Britain has introduced an aggressive new reform package to deal with foreign fighters. Amongst the tough new measures being debated, are provisions that would prevent foreign fighters from being able to return home. –Reuters



How the war on drugs perpetuates violence in Latin America

Recent discoveries of mass graves in Mexico, linked to drug-related violence, have raised fresh questions about the war on drugs. This new backgrounder takes a deeper look into the war on drugs, and how it perpetuates many of the issues it aims to resolve. –German Lopez, Vox



Backgrounder: The Russian Military

This new backgrounder, released by the Council on Foreign Relations, provides a comprehensive overview of the Russian military, including its budget, strategic objectives, and conventional military capabilities. –Council on Foreign Relations

Security Sector Reform and the Arab Spring

The security sector played an undeniably important role in the Arab Spring in almost every country where it unfolded. This new publication explores the role of the security sector in prompting the Arab Spring and the current challenges facing reform efforts across the region. –Omar Ashour, SETA