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News Roundup: 31 August - 6 September 2015 By: SSR Resource Centre | SSR Weekly | Sep 7, 2015

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

A sub-national approach to statebuilding and security: the role of municipal institutions in Colombia’s DDR process

This new contribution to the Academic Spotlight blog series by Francy Carranza-Franco addresses the role of local actors in statebuilding, exploring the relationship between the authorities at the national and the municipal level in the DDR process that took place in Colombia during the two terms of Alvaro Uribe’s Presidency (2002–2006 and 2006–2010). This process was built nationally, but it was at the sub-national level that it was consolidated: the Mayoral Offices of the cities of Bogotá and Medellín sustained the provision of services to assist ex-combatants and contributed to the renewal of the strategy of reintegration.


Centre for Security Governance

Publication Announcement | CSG Paper #2 |  Civil Military Cooperation and Security Sector Reform in Complex Humanitarian Emergencies

The Centre for Security Governance has just published its latest CSG Paper, “Civil Military Cooperation and Security Sector Reform in Complex Humanitarian Emergencies” written by David Last. This CSG Paper analyzes the nature of civil military relations and describes how they affect civil military cooperation, security sector reform and civil affairs in complex humanitarian emergencies.

About the CSG Papers

This peer-reviewed paper series provides a venue for comprehensive research articles and reports on a variety of security sector reform and related topics. It endeavors to present innovative research that is both academically rigorous and policy relevant.
Authored by prominent academics, analysts and practitioners, the CSG Papers cover a range of topics, from geographic case studies to conceptual and thematic analysis, and are based on extensive research and field experience.



Al-Shabab claims ‘scores’ killed in attack on AU troops

Al-Shabab fighters in Somalia have claimed the killings of “scores” of African Union troops in an attack south of capital, Mogadishu. – Al Jazeera.

Mahathir calls for ‘people power’ movement to topple Malaysian PM

Former Malaysian leader Mahathir Mohamad, called for a “people’s power” movement to topple Prime Minister Najib Razak over a financial scandal. – Editor, Asian Times.

Cameroon involved in Central Africa ‘blood diamond’ trade - UN experts

Illicit trafficking of diamonds from Central African Republic into neighboring Cameroon is helping finance the continuation of a nearly three-year conflict, says UN report. - Louis Charbonneau, Thomson Reuters Foundation.

International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called on states to end the practice of enforced disappearances. – UN.

Ukraine’s parliament backs draft law giving east special status

Ukraine’s parliament on Monday voted for constitutional changes to give its eastern regions a special status. - Natalia Zinets, Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Scores of Gulf troops killed in Yemen conflict

Forty-five soldiers from the United Arab Emirates’ military, and five troops from Bahrain, have been killed while taking part in a Saudi-led military campaign against Yemen’s Houthi rebels. – Al Jazeera.

UAE jets hit Yemen targets amid mourning for troops

The UAE has stepped up air strikes in Yemen in response to the deaths of 45 soldiers. – Al Jazeera.

South Sudan rebels say peace deal at risk from ceasefire breaches

South Sudan’s rebel leader Riek Machar accused government forces on Monday of repeatedly breaking a ceasefire, and putting at risk a peace deal just days after it was reached. – Aaron Maasho, Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Security Council adjusts Liberia sanctions; ends travel ban, keeps arms embargo in place

The United Nations Security Council has renewed an arms embargo on non-State actors in Liberia for nine months, while terminating other sanctions on the country. – UN News Centre.

Four killed in fresh Burundi unrest

At least four people have died in renewed clashes in Burundi, where tensions remain high following President Pierre Nkurunziza’s controversial re-election. – AFP, The Guardian.

Nigeria to deploy drones to fight oil theft

Nigeria’s state oil giant NNPC has announced a plan to deploy drones to monitor the movement of ships in a bid to fight oil theft on the country’s waterways. – Al Jazeera.

Iraq’s Comprehensive Security Sector Reform Phase II Launched

On Thursday, the Iraqi Government launched the implementation of the Security Sector Reform Phase II in Baghdad, with financial support from the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Denmark. – RTT News.

Congo militia chief Ntaganda says protected civilians

Militia leader Bosco Ntaganda, currently on trial in The Hague on charges of orchestrating rape and murder in a conflict in northeast Congo in the early 2000s, said he was a “revolutionary rebel” trying to restore peace in the province. – Thomas Escritt, Thomson Reuters Foundation.



Ensuring citizens are at the centre of Kenya’s devolution process

This article examines the role community groups are playing in the implementation of devolution programmes in Muhoroni, rural Kisumu, Kenya. The piece outlines how the community has mobilised to hold local authorities to account, and how this has improved community-government relations. – Saferworld.

Guinea: Excessive and lethal force by security forces must not be repeated during election period

In this article, Amnesty International calls for the Guinean authorities to ‘rein in security forces’ ahead of October elections. The article also highlights previous abuses by security forces in Guinea. – Amnesty International.

Paraguay Security Forces in Disarray Amid Guerrilla Attacks

With guerrilla groups carry out ever more high-profile kidnappings and attacks on infrastructure, this article analyzes the impact on the security services. It argues that the attacks have highlighted corruption within the forces, plunging many arms of the security services into disarray. - Arron Daugherty, InSight Crime.

Elections Offer Little Respite for Guatemala’s Corruption-Weary Public

Following the resignation of President Otto Perez Molina, Michael Lohmuller writes of why the promise of elections is not instilling hope in the Guatemalan people. Lohmuller also examines briefly how this attitude came about, and how it can be changed. – Michael Lohmuller, InSight Crime.

The Silk Road to Insecurity: Why Not Public-Private Collaboration in the Security Sector?

This article contemplates the impact of the increasing use of militias in conflicts around the world. Arguing that ‘the international community needs a better road map for the place of militias in the delivery of security’. - Sabine C. Carey, Michael P. Colaresi and Neil J. Mitchell, Political Violence @ a Glance.

Sweeping Change in China’s Military: Xi’s PLA Restructuring

Andrew S. Erickson writes of the Chinese government’s major military reform plan. While noting the reforms Chinese Premier Xi has hinted at, the piece also notes the reforms importance to Xi’s personal power and credibility. - Andrew S. Erickson, The Wall Street Journal.

Israel needs new police chief, but is Gal Hirsch the one for the job?

This article examines the appointment of Gal Hirsch as the new head of the Israeli national police force. Mazal Mualem argues that despite a thorough process of selection, Hirsch is the wrong candidate for the role. - Mazal Mualem, Al Monitor.

Record Violence and Displacement Echoes El Salvador’s War Zone Past

With El Salvador experiencing its most violent month since the country’s civil war in August, David Gagne highlights how the security situation in the country continues to worsen—leaving a bleak outlook for the country in the near future. – David Gagne, InSight Crime.

Despite Reform Pledge, India’s Military Modernization Lags Under Modi

This report by Daniel Darling examines the attempts being made to modernize the Indian military. The article pays particular attention to the importance of recent trade deals with France, allowing the purchase of French made fighter jets. – Daniel Darling, World Politics Review.

Partnerships for peace: success in Marsabit County

This article examines how Peace mediators, chosen by pastoralist communities in areas prone to outbreaks of violence in Moyale sub-county, Marsabit, have spearheaded peace and reconciliation dialogues as part of a DFID-funded ‘Drivers of Accountability Project’. – Saferworld.

My body, a war zone: breaking the silence surrounding sexual violence in conflict

This article discusses a new exhibition in Sarajevo that documents the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war. The programme aims to help survivors transform from victims, to participants in the struggle for justice. - Zuzana Pavelková and Leslie Woodward, Insight on Conflict.

Indonesia’s Modernizing Military

Evan A. Laksmana writes of the dangers facing Indonesia as the President continues to give military leaders increasing power. In particular, the role of the military in education and state building is noted. - Evan A. Laksmana, Foreign Affairs.

Political crisis threatens progress towards peace in Guinea-Bissau

This blog outlines the unfolding political turmoil in Guinea-Bissau. It also argues that lawmakers need to enact peacebuilding measures now, or risk the country falling back into violence. - Chris Walker, Peace Direct.

Lebanon’s protesters shift focus from garbage crisis to cleaning up the government

This piece outlines the reasons behind street protests in Lebanon, and argues that the protestor’s anger is now shifting towards government policies. – Jean Aziz, Al Monitor.

In Darfur, things have changed, but not for the better

This article examines a recent field mission to Darfur by the Peace and Security Council. It argues that the situationin Darfur is deteriorating, with the conflict changing and becoming ever more fractured and internecine. – Institute for Security Studies.

Syrian safe zone to provide refuge on Turkey’s border

This piece looks at the impact the establishment of a safe zone along the Turkey/Syria border will have on the conflicts evolution. – Middle East Monitor.

PKK looks to the future with creation of youth militias

This insightful article outlines the PKK’s creation of youth militias, and how these militias are spearheading an increasing campaign of urban violence. – Metin Gurcan, Al Monitor.

Women, violence and peace in the South Caucasus: a regional perspective

‘The development of women’s rights in Georgia – and across the South Caucasus – has made uneven progress since the collapse of the Soviet Union. Sinéad Walsh provides an overview of the current situation, and the role that regional and international initiatives can play in supporting grassroots organisations.’ - Sinéad Walsh, Insight on Conflict.

Philippines: New Police Chief Should Tackle Abuses

Human Rights Watch has called for the Philippines new police chief to tackle abuses by the force. He has been called upon to ‘ensure prompt, transparent, and impartial investigations of alleged police abuses, and take appropriate action against those responsible, regardless of rank’, following a spate of reports of torture and extrajudicial killings by police. – Human Rights Watch.



Preventing conflict in Central Africa: ECCAS caught between ambitions, challenges and reality

The Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) has a long way to go in preventing regional crises. This ISS report analyses these challenges, including: ECCAS’ highly centralised and state-focused structure; a narrow, militaristic approach to security issues; the wider institutional setting of Central Africa; and, matters of responsibility in relation to the African Union. - Angela Meyer, Institute for Security Studies.

PIN Policy Brief on Gender and Peace Negotiations

‘This policy brief argues that the inclusion of women and of gender issues in peace negotiations is key to the success of any subsequent process of reconciliation, because it is likely to lead to more encompassing and inclusive peace agreements. It also explores the reasons why gender has so far been largely neglected in peace processes, and proposes strategies for increasing the gender-sensitivity of peace negotiations.’ - Élise Féron, Clingendael.

New Approach in Southern Syria

This report by International Crisis Group argues that a shift in tactics is required in Southern Syria if the US is to help resolve the conflict without deeper involvement. The paper argues this can be achieved in a number of ways. Firstly, by enabling opposition groups to consolidate military control and establish governance capacity in the south. Secondly, by achieving a zone free of aerial attacks in the south the US could signal its resolve to the Assad regime’s most important backers, Iran and Hezbollah. – International Crisis Group.

‘It’s Not a Gift When It Comes with Price’: A Qualitative Study of Transactional Sex between UN Peacekeepers and Haitian Citizens

This intriguing article examines the sexual exploitation of civilians by peacekeepers, and how this undermines the fragile stability established in post-conflict settings. The article uses interviews to document the practice and its impact. - Athena Kolbe, Stability: International Journal of Security and Development.

Monitoring and Evaluation of Peacebuilding: The Role of New Media

New media is increasingly and often successfully used for needs assessments and beneficiary communication; but few examples exist in which new media are applied for improving monitoring and evaluation in peacebuilding contexts. This research paper compiles and elaborates on key challenges, opportunities and lessons for the use of new media in monitoring and evaluating peacebuilding activities, drawing upon experiences of humanitarian and development projects in which new media were used specifically for M&E purposes. – Sarah Költzow, DME for Peace, Geneva Peacebuilding Platform.

US and EU Engagement with Islamists in the MENA region

This paper investigates the origins, evolution, and future prospects of the European Union’s new religiously conscious approach to external affairs within the context of the Middle East and North Africa, with a particular emphasis on engagement with Islamist religious and political actors. – Sarah Wolff, Clingendael.

Monthly Forecast

This report by Security Council Report provides an interesting overview of the UN’s September agenda. Including, how a new Secretary General will be selected. The outlook provides and interesting glimpse at where UN priorities lie. – Security Council Report.

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