Category: Regions and Powers

What happened to Afghanistan’s Security Forces?

The Taliban have asserted control over large parts of Afghanistan within the course of a few weeks. The last international troops are departing. US President Biden and NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg have both emphasized the strength of Afghanistan’s security forces. But, encountering the Taliban, those very forces seem in many places to have evaporated. How… Read more »

Hong Kong Two Years After the Mass Protests: What’s Next?

In 2019, millions of Hong Kong citizens took to the streets to protest a proposed bill that would allow Hong Kong authorities to extradite suspected criminals to mainland China. The protests soon developed into a movement, demanding full universal suffrage, amnesty of arrested protestors, and an independent inquiry to investigate police brutality. Known as the Anti-Extradition Law Amendment Bill (Anti-ELAB) Movement, this led to a landslide victory… Read more »

Myanmar’s Pandemic: The UN Must Act!

More than 1/3 of those tested for Covid-19 in Myanmar now test positive. The crematorium in Yangon can hardly handle all the bodies. Many health workers remain on strike since the February 1 coup. When they try to help people on a voluntary basis, they risk arrest. Social media is full of desperate requests for… Read more »

Lessons from a Decade of South Sudanese Statehood

The catastrophic levels of instability that have engulfed South Sudan since 2013 demand a restructuring of governance and security institutions to alter the tragic trajectory of Africa’s youngest state. South Sudanese are observing the 10th anniversary of statehood with deeply mixed feelings. Children born during the post-independence period have seen nothing except misery and deprivation,… Read more »

Do Cease-Fires in Syria Work? We Checked the Data.

Our research looks at 10 years of truces in Syria. A missile attack last weekend in northern Syria left a hospital in ruins and further casualties in a residential area. But these types of attacks have become less common in Syria. Although this civil war remains among the most devastating global conflicts, the number of… Read more »

Russia Readying for Compromise on the UN Humanitarian Aid to Syria

The UN Security Council is due to make a decision on a particular and particularly controversial issue pertaining to the humanitarian disaster in Syria by July 10, and Russia positions itself as the key part of the problem and a necessary contributor to a solution. The discord in the UN Security Council (SC) on the… Read more »

The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: The Arab Street and Erdoğan

In a series of brief blog posts, researchers of the PRIO Middle East Centre offer their reflections on the unfolding Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. The conflict in Gaza has once again highlighted the tense relationship between Turkey and the United States with President Erdoğan using incendiary language in his criticism of Israel and its strongest ally, the… Read more »

The Pitfalls of Peacemaking

The revelations in the Norwegian financial newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN) of Terje Rød-Larsen’s links to Jeffrey Epstein are a reminder that personal goals, dreams and ambitions can become entwined in professional choices in unfortunate ways – including for well intentioned foreign policy actors. The International Peace Institute in New York, the think tank Terje Rød-Larsen… Read more »

A Forgotten Mission: Monitoring the Ceasefire in Hodeidah, Yemen

Yemen’s conflict has been described as a forgotten war. Peace, up until recently, has been even more forgotten. The new US administration has begun a new a military and diplomatic track to end the fighting. Biden has made Yemen one of his foreign policy priorities, selected veteran diplomat Timothy Lenderking as a new US Special… Read more »