Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Phase 2, Week 1

Welcome to Phase 2!

The primary task for this phase is weekly updates; follow the news, or updates to think tank projects, or anything else you have, and explain what's going on.

Again, these should only be about 150 words, and you have to give sources, hyperlinked at the bottom.

The secondary task is the map: Print a copy of a good, detailed map (I suggest a topographic map with place names), and mark new events each week.

We'll talk about it in class next week.
Good luck!


  1. Rémi Masia-Depardieu, Destabilization of Mali
    On November 8, Ansar Al-Dine claimed responsibility for an attack in the South of the country where they would have freed twenty-one prisoners, based on a post on a social media powered by the SITE Intelligence Groups. In addition, the justice minister Konate said that on Sunday November 6, six attackers attempted to liberate two prisoners in the town of Bamamba, around 150 kilometers away from Bamako, the capital. The group claimed it had killed a soldier and captured another one in the attack, along with three vehicles and war gear. On November 17, the islamist group also released a video of the suicide bombing of the MINUSMA (United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali) base in the region of Kidal, which had taken place in February 2016. Since May, Ansar Dine has claimed responsibility for more than sixty attacks in Mali, sometimes in areas in the South of the country, presumably safe.

  2. Israel Palestine - Delphine Chiffaudel

    Israeli army shoots at Gazawi fishing boats on Gaza coast. This occurs regularly even though there was a ceasefire accord after the war in 2014.

    Netanyahu’s right winged Likud party showed their satisfaction about Trump’s election. Netanyahu reminded Trump of his campaign promise to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem; no country has its embassy in Jerusalem --half occupied since 1967-- right now, though Israel wants it to be considered the capital city. Bennet announced that this new era of US relationship would facilitate the Israeli government’s intentions: “the notion of setting up a Palestine in the heart of Israel is a profound mistake”

    17/11-18/11 Night:
    Israeli army raided East Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Hebron, Ramallah and Jenin… searching through apartments and destroying the furniture. 18 people detained.

    Night 18/11-19/11:
    26yo Gazawi shot dead by Israeli Army during a protest in a refugee camp in Gaza against Israeli blockade since 2007. Several injured.

  3. A 48-hour ceasefire was declared by the Saudi-led coalition, beginning this Saturday at 0900 GMT. Hadi, based in Riyadh, requested it and the coalition announced the truce would be repeated if the insurgents respected it and let aid pass through to Houthi-occupied regions in the southwest. They warned they would retaliate if Saleh made moves in the area, which would be noticed as surveillance jets are still examining and flying over threatened sectors of the country. There has been no immediate word from the Houthi who have an extensive history of violating truces, which have been attempted on six previous occasions. John Kerry, the US secretary of state, initiated the most recent one on Thursday, but it only held in certain parts of the country, as 50 people were killed on Friday according to military and medical sources, most the result of a bombing in a market of Taiz.

  4. Domitille- Conflict in Ukraine

    The scheme of the “war-and-peace” situation bewteen Ukraine and Russia has not changed. Although they are not officially at war, many tensions remain. For example, two days ago, the decision was made that Russians would not be allowed to attend the UEFA Europea League game in Ukraine opposing Manchester United and Zorya. They were warned by phone that their tickets would be cancelled, recieving a text that said “The authorities of the host country recommended that we do not provide you with the tickets for the game. That is why we are nullifying your tickets”. Therefore, tensions are still present to this day between the two countries, even in a domain such as sports. Violence also remains: sheling continues, with for example a shell explosion in Verknetorets'ke on this day 19/11. The offensives are nowhere near over; Russian television showed images of “anti-personnel landmines”, used by Russian forces, still on this day 19/11.

  5. Juliette - Boko Haram
    Today, with Boko Haram somewhat contained by the African Union’s successful operations, the most critical situation at hand is the humanitarian crisis progressing at “high speed” according to UN humanitarian coordinator Peter Lundberg. In the areas most affected by the terrorist group, millions are suffering from starvation. Having killed thousands and displaced millions, Boko Haram has completely disrupted farming and trade in the north eastern region of Nigeria. Chief Humanitarian Coordinator, Dr. Ayoade Olatubosun-Alakija said that approximately 14 million are in dire need of humanitarian assistance in the north east. According to the UN OCHA, it has been three years since farmers and fishermen have not been able to return to their original workplace due to the security instability, elevating the number of IDPs (Internally Displaced Persons) to approximately 2 million. In Maiduguri alone, the population has doubled to 2 million, worsening the already spartan living conditions; water, food, shelter, sanitation, education, and health services are inaccessible or very limited. It is said that over 4 million people are in urgent need of food assistance; some analysts believe that approximately 400 000 children suffer from severe malnutrition and that 75 000 are likely to die of starvation in the following months.

  6. Ambre Perron - Civil War In South Sudan

    Today, November 19th 2016, foreign countries took renewed interest in South Sudan. According to the Sudan Tribune, the United States has “propose[d] to sanction South Sudan’s Machar, Malong and Lueth.” An arm embargo on the rebel group led by Machar as well as “impose[d] travel bans and [frozen] assets” would hopefully diminish the fighting. Light is also shone on Paul Malong, who Clemence Pinaud refers to, in an African Arguments article, as “ruling SPLA’s chief of General Staff and former governor”, but most importantly “the true power behind Salva Kiir’s presidential throne.” Today the United States seem to agree with Pinaud’s description and hold the ex-governor as responsible for “expand[ing] conflict in South Sudan and [breaking] the ceasefire deal” continues the Sudan Tribune. A week earlier, Kenya peacekeeping troops withdrew upon the discharge of Kenyan commander, Lieutenant General Johnson Mogoa Kimani Ondieki.!/conflict/civil-war-in-south-sudan

  7. Marine Tallon - South China Sea

    During the elections, Trump did not bring up publicaly his opinion on the South China Sea disputes. People who follow U.S. policy in Asia predicted Trump would take a tough but breif action against China. Indeed, on his campaign website he mentioned: “A strong military presence will be a clear signal to China and other nations in Asia and around the world that America is back in the global leadership business”.
    Analysts believe once Trump will show presence in the South China Sea, “his government will probably drop military action in favor of a practical business partnership with China”. In fact, in 2015, China was America’s 3rd biggest destination for US goods after Canada and Mexico. Lin Chong-Pin, a stragetic affaires professor stated : “When Donald Trump ascends to the presidency, he will scale back the military presence in the South China Sea for sure, and of course Beijing is silently smiling now.”

  8. India and Pakistan regularly exchange fire across the heavily militarized Line of Control, the de facto border which divides Kashmir between the two countries. In fact, on November 8 2016, three civilians and one Indian soldier were killed. Four others on the Pakistani-administered side of Kashmir (which consists of three areas known as Azad Kashmir, Gilgit and Baltistan) were severely wounded. According to a local administrator in the Pakistani-controlled part of Kashmir, Indian troops fired shells and mortars in frontier villages. The day before, Indian fire killed three civilians and wounded six others in the same region.
    Since Indian security forces killed the 22-year-old leader of Hizbul Mujahedeen -- Burhan Muzaffar Wani -- in July, violence including bombings, shootouts, and other attacks has escalated in the bitterly disputed region of Kashmir. Hizbul Mujahedeen is the largest of two militant organizations in Kashmir and represents an independent movement; the militancy has gained “widespread support from a populace that has lost faith in dialogue to resolve differences with the Indian government.”


    1. Sophie Lemmerman -- Kashmir conflict

  9. Olivine Kashmir conflict

    21/11 Lately, the non-aligned status of India has been seriously questioned because of its pro-American behavior. India has shared its newest weapon technologies and military tactics with the US as well as drastically increased its trade with America now exchanging over 100billion dollars per year with the US which is now even more than India’s annual trade with China. This promises India a stronger grip on Kashmir as this promises to strengthen India military power. Despite the Indian army’s demonstration of violence toward peaceful protesters in Kashmir last summer(Guardian), maybe this development is not only negative for kashmiris. The new monetary interest of American investors in the region will no doubt push to resolve this conflict in a peaceful manner as lobbies will do everything to convince the white house to keep the region stable. Taking into account the US’s and India’s close ties of late, this may actually work.

  10. Emma Ghafari – Conflict in Ukraine
    With as many as 18 ceasefire violations before 6 pm in Eastern Ukraine on November 20 2016, the Ukraine conflict is far from being resolved. On November 18, president Poroshenko was actually questioned for six hours on the 2013 protests as “prosecutors are conducting an investigation into the events of the Euromaidan revolution”. Shelling has been incessant all over the country, in places like Volnovahka, Olenivka, Zaitseve and Krasnohorivka, just to name a few. Again on November 18, European leaders and Obama agree to keep up sanctions over Russia and on November 15, Poroshenko even reportedly invited Donald Trump to visit Ukraine. Protests continue as they take place near the National Bank of Ukraine on November 17. It is clear that the country is nowhere near escaping its stalemate situation.


  11. Pierre-Malo Vienney -- Violence in Democratic Republic of Congo

    This Thursday, Kabila, the current president, has appointed opposition politician Samy Badibanga as prime minister. This move was part of an agreement between the government and the opposition groups in October. Even though we could think this announcement could appease the tensions between the political parties, it was largely criticized by the main opposition coalition because Badibanga does not have much backing from the opposition. Many people thought that the prime minister from the opposition would manage to put the country back on track but Badibanga does not have much power in his own party. Many supporters of Tshisekedi, the president of the opposition, see Badibanga as a member of the governing party rather than the opposition. Congolese argue that the appointement of Badibanga as the new prime minister proves that Kabila does not intend to stop governing. If Kabila had wanted to show a sign of reconciliation, he would have appointed Tshisekedi.


  12. This comment has been removed by the author.

  13. Two Chinese Uighur accused of planting a bomb in a Hindu Sanctuary a touristic location in Bangkok killing 20, mostly Chinese tourists are currently being judged in Thailand. The trial started last Tuesday (15/11) and had already been postponed many time due to Thailand being incapable of finding any interprets to translate from Thai to Uighur for the accused. This interpret was finally supplied by the Chinese embassy. The two men refused the Chinese interprets, according to them he could not be trusted and would discriminate them because of their ethnicity, however their objection was denied. “I do not want a Chinese translator because China doesn't respect Uighur rights” says Bilal Mohammed, “I want a translator who speaks Uighur, from America, Canada, Australia or any other country” added Yusufu Mieraili. This interpret problem shows clearly the ongoing tension between Han and Chinese. According to the office of the attorney general the trail is expected to last until late 2017 or early 2018.

  14. Romane Centis- Islamic State in Iraq

    Mosul is now that last city with complete ISIS control. Troops moved into the Muharabeen and Ulama after they liberated Tahir from the terroriste control on friday.

    The Iraqi forces continue to advance against ISIS in Mosul. The ISIS fighters are pushed back, but the troops are menaced by the high number of suicide bombers, sniper fires, putting the civilians in great danger. Four civilians were killed and many others wounded.

    The Iraqi military asked the UK for thermobaric missiles. Those weapons make the air explode around the target and would help dislodge the Islamic state. The weapons were used in Afghanistan and had a remarkable effect. It was said that that would be used to “burn jihadists out of their bonkers and tunnel complexes.

  15. Julie Clar - Boko Haram

    On Thursday, October 13th, twenty-one of the two hundred school girls kidnapped in Chibok two and a half years ago were release by Boko Haram. Thanks to the negotiations in between the Swiss government and the International Red Cross and Boko Haram, the Nigerian girls were found in good health. The government indeed hopes that they will be able to negotiate the release of the hundreds of other girls still missing. The terrorist group still holds more than 190 girls. According to Jason Burke from “The Guardian”, one third of the released girls were “unwilling to leave their captors” either because they have been radicalised by the terrorists or by fear of being labelled “Boko Haram wives”. According to “Zee News”, Boko Haram is ready to negotiate the release of 83 more girls with the Nigerian government. Additionally, throughout this month of November, there have been numerous attacks done by Boko Haram gunmen and suicide bombers.


  16. Marin Duroyon - Libyan Civil War

    According to the Washington Post, a senior al-Qaida leader -- Abu Talha al-Hassnawi -- was allegedly killed in a late-night drone strike on the 15th of November. The attack originated of a Western military, but a Pentagon spokesman denied the United States involvement. Abu Talha al-Hassnawi was reportedly killed in his house in Sabha. He is known to previously be the leading member of al-Qaeda's affiliate in Syria, and he was a recruiter of soldiers that would then fight in Syria. It is said that he was close to the most dangerous militant in the Sahara, the leader Mokhtar Belmokhtar. The strike targeted a house on Sabha’s outskirts, according to a resident near Sabha, and the attack left seven unrecognizable bodies, however locals knew the al-Qaida leader has been staying in the targeted house. The death of this militant is a great step in the fight against the Islamic State, it reduces the amount of threats and sends a message to al-Qaida, nonetheless there are many dangerous islamic leaders out in the wild.

  17. Chloé Erny, EU migration crisis

    Human rights group Amnesty International reports that EU pressure on Italian authorities lead Italian police to torture immigrants into giving their fingerprints; report which the EU commission denied. EU asylum reforms are increasingly criticized as being based on coercion (Nikolaj Nielsen).
    EU-Turkey relationships keep degrading. Turkish president Erdogan threatens to scrap the EU-Turkey migrant deal. Following the July failed coup in Turkey, Turkish authorities have put 37,000 people behind bars, dismissed 100,000 from government posts, and shut down 170 media outlets; the government considers reinstating the death penalty. Although the EU wishes to keep a constructive relationship with Turkey, such attacks on democracy could end those ties.
    After Calais, French police dismantled a camp in Paris, evacuating some 3,000 migrants.
    According to EU's border agency Frontex, irregular border crossing in the Western Balkans dropped 90% between the first and second quarter of 2016 (EU Observer).
    EU budget devotes €5.91 billion to managing the migration crisis and reinforcing security.
    A one and a half page paper was circulated by Slovak EU presidency. The paper sets the conceptual groundwork of “effective solidarity”, determining the level of engagement of EU states according to three different intensity of migrant inflows.

  18. Theodore FEVRE- Taliban in Afghanistan

    The Taliban are in the process of discussing possible peace treaties with the US and Afghan government, however simultaneously continue to carry out attacks on the US military and Afghan people in order to regain their leverage.

    - 19/10: Two US soldier were killed when gunman opened fire at the military base next to Kabul.

    -10/11: Suicide bomber truck kills 4 and injures 128 in German consulate in the north provinces. Motif: retaliation on previous US air strike which killed 30 civilians.

    -12/11: Suicide bomber at NATO airbase in Bagram (north) kills 4 US soldiers and injuring 17.

    -14/11: Afghan president, Ashraf Ghani, asks UN to add Taliban leader to their sanctions list, in hope to revive the stalling peace talks with the extremist group. However, a Taliban spokesman has stated that they will negotiate peace when their commanders are off the sanctions list.

    -20/11: Spokesman of the Nangarhar province claims that a Taliban leader and seven fighters were killed in a US air strike on the 18/11.

  19. Elise du Crest - War in Yemen
    After 48 civilians reported dead and 20 Houthi militants killed in south-western city Taiz, the Yemeni government has regained the region. The Houthis had been in control of the Taiz airport since 2015.
    Saudi-led attacks include a recent October airstrike that killed an estimated 100 attendants and over 500 were wounded. This attack is considered a war crime as it violates the law that states that an attack must be of proportionate response. Here, more civilian damage was caused in proportion to military advantage. According to the HRW, “only military personnel [...] involved in in military operations against the coalition would be considered legitimate targets.”
    This saturday, the Saudi-led military coalition declared a truce, supposedly requested by Yemeni president Hadi. The cease-fire is meant to last 48 hours, and may be extended with Houthi cooperation. The goal is to deliver and distribute humanitarian and medical aid to civilians.

  20. Marc de Laportalière, Tensions in the East China Sea
    Though many Chinese ships have been seen in the vicinity of the Japanese-owned Senkaku Islands, China’s first People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) warship was seen near the disputed Isles. Simultaneously, Chinese aircraft are often seen in the region, increasing tensions exponentially. This leads to American and Japanese leaders wondering at China’s plan. Since, Beijing is being isolated from other countries, as was seen in the Shangri-La Dialogue, where many countries like Vietnam or the Philippines criticized China for its behavior in the South China Sea. But in the East Sea, China seems to be testing America's resolve to help their Japanese allies, and Japan’s ability not to overreact to China’s aggressive behavior, which would let the latter justify a significant increase in their activities as an appropriate reaction. This has led Japan and the United States to do military drills in the sea with other countries, recently Australia, to show the strength of their alliance, and their willingness to prepare for an armed combat.

  21. Paul, ISIS Iraq
    Recently there has been some change in Iraq as on November 17th 2016 Iraqi forces recaptured key air base near Mosul (outside the northern city of Tal Afar). They are getting a step closer to seizing the strategic city of Mosul. However ISIS fighters seem to be reluctant in giving in the city as the coalition has been facing suicide car bombs, snipers and multiple waves of counter attacks. The opposing force has also been trying to pass a message to the coalition, as they reportedly killed 21 civilians in the city, telling them that they’re still present and policing the city of Mosul. Today, Iraqi military forces estimates that they’re fighting against 5000-6000 fighters and advances in the city with an army composed of more than 100 000 soldiers. According to CNN, ISIS’s presence has started to wane in parts of the northern city facilitating the way in for the coalition. Nevertheless, local people have said that they’re feeling increasingly fearful concerning the pace at which the coalition advances (as the offensive has started more than a month ago).

  22. This comment has been removed by the author.

  23. Boris Hullin - Cartel Violence in Mexico

    For the past three years, a change has been occurring in the mexican drug trade in the U.S. Since their beginnings, c artels have mainly been trafficking marijuana and cocaine, other drugs remaining marginal sources of income. With the uprise of the demand for heroin, this trend has been inverted. The nonprofit Hudson Institute estimates the amount of heroin produced on mexican land in 2015 went 67% over the 2014 figures and 170% over the 2013 ones. According to the BBC’s Ian Pannell, mexican production menaces to overtake the one in Central Asia and Afghanistan. This major rise in production is partly due to the increasing numbers of states that legalize the recreational use of marijuana, increasing U.S production. When grown legally, the drug becomes cheaper and of better quality than the one smuggled over the border, therefore depriving cartels of a part of their profit. This comes to show the cartels resourceful ability to evolve into the most lucrative businesses no matter how the demands change.

  24. This comment has been removed by the author.

  25. Despite all the human violations which go on a daily basis in North Korea, women are treated equally to men. Laws such as the Law on sex equality or even the labor Laws guarantee this equality. In fact, many women work high up in the hierarchy. Most recently, Kim Jong Un has admitted that women are as equally loyal to the Worker's Party than men are. He also has encouraged women to take part in developing the economy of the DPRK by saving up. Many countries throughout the world still reject women from society, and against all expectations, North Korea isn't part of them. Including women in the North Korean society has helped keeping the population under control.

  26. Matteo Valderrama- Violences in DRC
        The President of DRC, Joseph Kabila, delayed the presidential elections in September in order to prolong his stay as the leader of the country. This led to violent outbursts from people who wish to see Kabila step down on December 19th. The prime minister of the country, Augustin Matata Ponyo, decided to resign from his seat on November 14th in disagreement with the new deals made to delay the elections. Kabila elected a new prime minister of the opposing party to dissolve political tensions however analysts still say the country is in danger of a civil war in the case that Kabila does not give up his power sooner rather than later. Western states, and most of all the US, have told Kabila he will face sanctions if he does not stick to the elections calendar and surrender power. With the dissent around Kabila’s motivations to stay in power, his popularity has crashed and it is difficult to perceive him staying in power peacefully.

  27. North Korea
    On september 9, in North Korea, the fifth and biggest nuclear test yet was done. It is highly suspected that there will be more to come, indeed Pyongyang said that it would continue to make its nuclear capacity stronger. Plus, on october 6, a photo was released of a satellite image taken of a nuclear test site called Punggue-Ri in North Korea. An American monitoring group, 38 north, says that there has been more activity than usual. This possibly means they are preparing for a new test, or there is activity because they wanted to collect information about their last nuclear test. On the other hand, in response to the 5th nuclear test, 13 days after, US bombers flew over South Korea in order to intimidate them and show their strength. The US also has not been showing any signs of giving humanitarian aid to North Korea after severe flooding, which is not what they would do in usual circumstances. On October 20th, once again, North Korea tried to launch a missile that would go all the way to 3,000 km, this is their 8th failed attempt with this kind of missile. They continue to advance their missile and nuclear programs even though the UN security council is against it, the crisis therefore worsening by the day. One of the key players, the United States, has gotten a new president who has not yet said what his policies would be when it comes to North Korea, these could be critical.

  28. On november 4th, a car bomb was detonated in the south-eastern Turkish city of Diyarbakir. The governor office claims that the bomb went off at 8:00 local time, and that the PKK claimed responsibility. The explosion occurred after the arrest of 12 MP’s of the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party, including the party’s 2 leaders. The reason for the detainment of the MP’s is stated to be charges of terrorism. These arrests form part of the series of purges in the government following the failed coup attempt in July, and numerous international organisations, such as the United Nations and european countries, have condemned the attack on Turkish democracy. The purge initially targeted followers of Fethullah Gulen, the individual claimed to be responsible for the attempted coup, but it has spread to any and all whom the government considers opponents, including journalists and academics; the majority of these being pro-Kurdish.!/conflict/kurdish-conflict

  29. North Korea (sources)


  30. Emilie Shagrin: Refugee crisis in the EU

    The International Organization for Migration has recently reported that in 2016 more than 4,500 migrants died or are presumed dead as a result of crossing the Mediterranean. In 2015, “only” 3770 were reported to suffer the same fate.
    Hungary lawmakers have rejected a national ban on refugees; it would have relocated refugees to other EU countries.
    Asylum claims were raised during the summer with a peak in August. Germany is still receiving most of the asylum applications (about two thirds). The UK has only gotten 3% of them this year.
    More than 1,800 unaccompanied refugee children have been reported missing in Sweden. Meanwhile, the unaccompanied minors from the Jungle in Calais were apparently relocated at the start of the month.
    EU member states and European Parliament have agreed on a budget for 2017. It will focus on helping the migrant crisis as well as jobs. The total commitments are set at €157.88 billion.


    cool map:

  31. In the last five days, headlines read head of Al-Qaida in Islamic Maghreb’s wife was arrested in Mechili the 20th; important amount of cash arrives from the UK; Journalists captured between Sirte and Misrata by militias and freed 30 hours later the PC,NOC and Central Bank agree to give money for the failing dinar in exchange for more oil exportation; militia commander assassinated in Tripoli causing tension mainly in the districts of Tajouna and Ajn Zara; and the Misrata airport is once again open after a strike because workers hadn’t been payed in 11 months. Moreover, continual fighting can be observed in Sebha where tribal fighting between the Awlad Suleiman and the Qaddadfa tribes continues since the 16th using heavy artillery, tank cannons, heavy caliber machine guns as well as regular fire fights; as well as in Sirte where the death tolls are proposerous on both sides that of the Jihadists and non-jihadists; and in Bengazhi in Gawarsha and Ganfouda where fighting is on land, at sea, in the air, and uses numerous devastating suicide vehicles, the LNA is regaining control.

  32. Juliette Scholler -- Taliban in Afghanistan

    Despite the peace-talks held in Doha in mid-october between the Afghan government and the Taliban, the the two sides have not yet found an agreement and the tension continues.
    On the Taliban side, they have committed two suicide bombings in the past few week: one at the NATO airbase in north of Kabul, and another in the German consulate in the district of Ghormach. The two attacks combined caused at least 8 deaths and 145 wounded, with only 2 days in between. The spokesperson claims that the attacks were planned four months before, and that the number of casualties were higher than declared.
    On the government side, the president Ashraf Ghani want to add the names of the Taliban leaders in the UN sanction list, which goes against one of the Taliban requests for peace talk to remove names from the blacklist. The names the president wants to add includes Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada, the current leader.

  33. Leah Sadoff- Al-Shabaab

    On the 31st of October, 2016, the town of Gaduud was taken over by some of the troops coming from al-Shabaab. This town is about 250 km away from the capital of Somalia, Mogadishu. During this process we are aware that there was one death amongst the Somali soldiers, and we know that there were some men that died from the al-Shabaab group, but the numbers are not clear. When calculated, the casualty figures always very between al-Shabaab and the news. This town is useful for the terrorist group not only for getting closer to the capital, the government, but given the fact that Gaduud is so close to the sea, this gives al-Shabaab the opportunity to import more weapons.!/conflict/al-shabab-in-somalia

  34. This week, two kurdish fighters (male and female) of YPG and YPJ were killed in Syria. In the north of Syria, the Turkish Air Force is launching air strikes targets on ISIS.
    In Turkey, at least 5000 protesters rally against the crackdown on Pro-Kurds in Istanbul. The Turkish governement is being accused as abusive towards their state of emergency laws: they are arresting everyone suspicious of having links with the PKK.
    On November 4, acar bomb in Turkey killed a minimum of 8 people and wounder dozens. This event can be explained by earlier arrests of pro-Kurdish People s Democratic Party leaders.
    The battle for Mosul is still on, territory slowly (due to multiple suicide bombers, civil population being used as protection by ISIS, bad weather) gained by the Syrian and the Kurds.!/conflict/kurdish-conflict

  35. The city of Aleppo is still undergoing serious bombing, and the US is still not getting along with Russia and Iran. Both sides are failing to find a solution to end this conflict, and ironically enough, they are blaming each other for it. President Obama stated that: "Once Russia and Iran made a decision to back Assad [...] it was very hard to see a way in which even a trained and committed moderate opposition could hold its ground for long periods of time." On the other side, Russian Maj. Gen. Konashenkov is arguing that "rumors about the destruction of five hospitals and a mobile clinic by Russian airstrikes only confirm that all public rhetoric by the US State Department regarding the situation in Syria is based on flagrant lies." It seems as though both sides still have to reach a solution, and it might take more time than we hope which only postpones the end of this seemingly interminable war.

  36. Ito Choho - Burundi
    -On october 19th, the Burundian government “withdrew permits from a prominent human rights organisation, and other non-profit groups,”(Reuters) because they had been opposing Nkurunziza’s third campaign, and his current regime.

    -Recent reports from the UN and human right groups FIDH and ITEKA claim that Burundi’s withdrawal from the ICC and the African Union has significantly worsened the situation. There are now “1,000 dead, 8,000 detained, between 300 and 800 people missing, hundreds tortured, thousands arrested, and hundreds of women subjected to sexual violence.”(Washington Post) Tutsis are now considered “enemies of the regime”, and the government requires ethnic identification (Hutu, Tutsi, or Twa) from its employees.

    -Meanwhile, more and more refugees are fleeing into neighboring countries, notably Tanzania. 325000 (3% of the population) have fled since the beginning of the crisis, and with approximately 460 Burundians arriving each day in Tanzania in November, the refugee population could attain 280000 by the end of 2016, forcing the Tanzanian government to rethink its camp system.!/conflict/political-crisis-in-burundi