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News Roundup: 30 March - 5 April 2015 By: SSR Resource Centre | SSR Weekly | Apr 6, 2015

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Security Sector Reform Resource Centre

Publication Summary: Building the capacity of the Malian police: Why MINUSMA needs to think outside the box

Margarita Yakovenko discusses the Institute for Security Studies’ policy brief  “Building the capacity of the Malian police: Why MINUSMA needs to think outside the box”, noting both the challenges faced by MINUSMA forces and its overall shortcomings. She highlights that the identification of these challenges, and ways in which to address them, is vital for continued progress.

Insider attacks – A Persisting Afghan Threat and Lessons for the Future

Ryan Meeks explores the phenomenon of ‘insider attacks’ in Afghanistan, a term for when a member of the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) attacks a member of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) amid ongoing withdrawal of Western forces from the country. 



EU warns security measures must adhere to universal human rights

The European Union has criticized Turkey’s recent controversial internal security law, further emphasizing the government’s legislation must adhere to “universal human rights, freedoms and European standards.” — Today’s Zaman

Polls: Security Agencies Got It Right on National Security – NSCDC Boss

Commandant General of Nigeria’s Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC), Prof. Ade Abolurin has said Nigeria’s security agencies are “getting the balance right” on national security reforms. Specifically he notes the security measures put in place surrounding the elections. — Christina Nwaogu, Leadership

Ocalan asks PKK fighters to end armed struggle against Turkey

In a message during the traditional Kurdish New Year, jailed PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan called for a spring PKK congress to discuss ending the decades-long armed struggle against the Turkish state. —  Kurdish Globe

Aid must be smarter to stop conflict and end poverty, report says

New York University’s “States of Fragility 2015” notes many countries throughout the world will not be able to eradicate poverty if state fragility is not immediately addressed. — Clár Ní Chonghaile, Guardian

President Attends Ceremony Where Govt, Rebels Signal Support for Draft Nationwide Ceasefire

Myanmar’s President Thein Sein attended a ceremony with government negotiators, army commanders, lawmakers and ethnic armed group representatives, in support of a draft for a nationwide ceasefire. — Kyaw Myo Tun and Lawi Weng, The Irrawaddy

Yemen minister calls for Arab ground push “as soon as possible”

Yemen’s Foreign Minister Riyadh Yasseen called for an Arab ground intervention “as soon as possible” following the Houthi takeover and the recent escalation of conflict. —  Reuters

Ukraine: The President has signed the Law on Judicial Reform

Ukrainian President Poroshenko has signed a law on judicial reform. The law aims to guarantee the right to a fair trial by improving accessibility to the Supreme Court of Ukraine, among other measures. — European Business Association

Obama administration ends long hold on military aid to Egypt

The U.S. has agreed to resume suspended military aid to Egypt to aid stem instability in the region, despite expressed concerns over the government’s stance on human rights. —  Missy Ryan, Washington Post

Saudi-caused chaos continues in Yemen

Maysaa Shuja al-Deen discusses ongoing conflict and chaos in Yemen following the Saudi-Arabian intervention against Houthi forces in the country. — Maysaa Shuja al-Deen, Al Monitor

Security Council authorizes further downsizing of UN peacekeeping force

The UN Security Council adopted a resolution to authorize a further drawdown of the UN peacekeeping mission in Liberia, adding the Mission’s mandate would no longer include electoral support. —  UN News Centre

Kenya troops storm university campus held by al-Sabab

Kenyan troops stormed a dormitory held by Al-Shabab militants attacking a university in the town of Garissa in northeast Kenya. —  Al Jazeera

Chad says hundreds of Boko Haram militants, 9 soldiers killed in clash

The Chadian army announced its forces have killed hundreds of Boko Haram militants in clashes in northern Nigeria. —  Reuters

Nigeria: Buhari issues Boko Haram Vow, Says Sect Will ‘Soon Know Our Strength’”

Nigerian President-elect Buhari vowed to crush the jihadi Boko Haram insurgency that has devastated the country’s north. —  Premium Times

Congo-Kinshasa: Obama Demands Answers From Kabila over FDLR

U.S. President Obama called on the Democratic Republic of Congo’s President Joseph Kabila to cooperate with the UN stabilization mission (MONUSCO) to disarm FDLR rebels. —  News of Rwanda

Critics fear shift from martial law to Section 44

Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha announced the lifting of martial law, but foreign diplomats and international activists continue to express concern over arbitrary powers and the role of military courts. —  Bangkok Post

Obama lifts block on delivery of F-16s to Egypt

U.S. President Obama approved the delivery of a dozen F-16 aircrafts to Egypt. National Security Council spokesperson Bernadette Meehan stated the decision would help “create a U.S.-Egypt military assistance relationship that is better positioned to address the security challenges of the 21st century.” —  Al Arabiya

Police detain 22 people in raid against DHKP-C in southern Turkey

Turkish police detained some 22 people in Antalya in an operation against far-left Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C), following a the hostage-taking by two of the group’s militants in Istanbul. —  Doğan News Agency

Conference and Workshop on Gender Equality in Security Sector

A conference held in Georgia on Gender Equality Principles in the Security Sector aimed to implement the UN Security Council resolution on Women, Peace and Security at a national level. — The Messenger



Houthi and the Blowback

Bilal Y. Saab discusses Saudi Arabia’s recent intervention in Yemen, the geostrategic reasons behind, and the implications for regional and global stability. — Bilal Y. Saab, Foreign Affairs

Iraq Isn’t the Right Front

Hassan Hassan discusses the ongoing fight against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIL) arguing that while forces continue to be concentrated in Iraq, shifting battlefield focus to Syria would better help the campaign to destroy IS. — Hassan Hassan, Foreign Affairs

Can this joint Arab military force succeed where others have failed?

Bruce Riedel discusses the possibility and feasibility of the creation of a unified Arab command for a joint Arab military force following a recent decision on its establishment at the Arab summit in Sharm el-Sheikh. — Bruce Riedel, Brookings

Algeria’s Army: On Jihadist Alert

Florence Gaub explores the history of the Algerian army’s domestic counter-terrorism strategy, arguing the army will likely adopt the same strategy to address today’s jihadist threat in the region. — Florence Gaub, European Union Institute for Security Studies (EUISS)

Burma’s Military Milestone

David Scott Mathieson discusses the Burmese military’s 70th Armed Forces Day as an emblem of the slow pace of change and reform in the country. —  David Scott Mathieson, The Irrawaddy

Nearly 20 years after peace pact, Guatemala’s women relive violence

The Security Sector Reform Resource Centre is quoted in this article discussing the increased levels of violence, particularly against women, in Guatemala twenty years following the end of conflict. —  Julie Guinan, CNN

Nigerians the winners in tense election

Obinna Anyadike discusses the recent elections in Nigeria, noting the positive step towards establishing democracy in the West African state. —  Obinna Anyadike, IRN

Karimov’s Crumbling Kleptocracy

Alisher Ilkhamov and Jeff Goldstein discuss the autocratic nature of Uzbekistan’s political system and its uncertain survival amid economic recession and growing Islamic extremism in the region. —  Alisher Ilkhamov and Jeff Goldstein , Foreign Affairs

Nigeria 2015 presidential election: Significant and challenges ahead

Mwangi S. Kimenyi discusses the significance of the recent and successful democratic elections in Nigeria, as well as the formidable challenges the state still faces following this watershed election. —  Mwangi S. Kimenyi , Brookings

Tunisia’s difficult road to security and diversity

Marc Pierini discusses the challenges face by Tunisia’s post-Arab Spring government, made all the more relevant following the 18 March Bardo National Museum terrorism attack. — Marc Pierini, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

After Boko Haram: How to Rebuild Nigeria

Jason Warner and Michael W. Baca discuss the challenge of post-war reconstruction in northeastern Nigeria amid the ongoing fight, and relative success of Nigerian and regional forces in pushing out the militant group. —  Jason Warner and Michael Baca, Foreign Affairs

Zimbabwe: South Sudan – Where Does Durable Peace Lie?

Brian Adeba argues the failure of security sector reform in South Sudan resulted in the degeneration of political conflict into an ethicized civil war in the country.  —  The Herald

A house divided in Burundi: rifts at the heart of the ruling party

Yolanda Bouka discusses current political tensions in Burundi, notably the divisions within the current ruling party exemplified by the 20 March letter demanding President Pierre Nkurunziza respect the constitution and refrain from running for a third term. — Yolanda Bouka, ISS Today

A Secure Iraq Won’t Come from a Military Solution

In an interview with Deutsche Welle, Renad Mansour discusses ongoing instability and violence in Iraq. —  Renad Mansour, Deutsche Welle

Dim prospects for Arab military unity

Sahrif Nashashibi argues the prospects for a functional Arab military union are dim given current regional tensions and divisions. —  Sharif Nashashibi, Al Jazeera

US support to peshmerga : Too little, too late?

Michael Knights discusses the US support to the Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga force, and the challenges associated with the current provision of material support. — Michael Knights, Al Jazeera

Arab nations just created a joint military force. Why now?

Shibley Telhami discusses the decision and timing of the creation of a joint Arab military force in response to escalating conflict in Yemen. —  Shibley Telhami, Reuters



Death penalty 2014: Alarming rise in death sentences

In their annual review of the death penalty worldwide, Amnesty International notes a sharp increase in the practice, with particular spikes in cases in Nigeria and Egypt. —  Amnesty International

The Changing Security Balance in the Gulf

Anthony H. Cordesman discusses the balance of conventional forces, asymmetric warfare forces, missile forces, nuclear forces and paramilitary and non-state forces in the Gulf. —  Anthony H. Cordesman, Centre for Strategic and international Studies

The Ukraine Crisis: Risks of Renewed Military Conflict after Minsk II

This new Crisis Group briefing discusses ongoing crisis in Ukraine, and the possibilities of renewed conflict after the signing of the Minsk II agreement. —  International Crisis Group

The Reckoning: Tunisia’s Perilous Path to Democratic Stability

This Carnegie Endowment brief discusses the challenges faced by Tunisia’s government, namely the generation gap and regional inequality fueling instability and violent extremism in the country. — Carnegie Endowment for International Peace