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Why Al-Shabaab Persists in Somalia Webinar

Program Materials  

A Webinar on Thursday, December 3, 2020, designed to expand understanding of the key technological and geopolitical trends driving Africa’s digital revolution of most concern to African security sector professionals; explore the main ways in which rising internet penetration, technological innovation and the diffusion of cyber capabilities are influencing Africa’s national security landscape; discuss and consider how the COVID-19 pandemic influence how the digital revolution will impact Africa’s security landscape; and identify the cyber capabilities and intentions and of key national security actors, including states, criminal networks and terrorist groups.

The Problem with Militias in Somalia: Almost Everyone Wants Them Despite Their Dangers

Recommended research   published by Vanda Felbab-Brown, UN Centre for Policy Research on April 14, 2020

Militias can present an attractive alternative to state forces but they carry many risks. Somalia, which hosts many militias, reveals why states and their international partners should resist the urge to create and rely on militias. Some such groups prey on local communities, at times perpetrating serious human rights abuses and enabling mafia-like economic practices. Violent extremist organizations exploit clan and community conflicts and economic grievances. Supporting local conflict resolution within and across communities can begin to alleviate these problems.

Transitioning to National Forces in Somalia: More Than an Exit for AMISOM

Recommended research   published by Fiona Blyth, International Peace Institute on April 22, 2019

Somali and international efforts have shifted to planning for the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) to transition directly Somali security forces without an interim UN mission. The implementation of the Transition Plan will require new institutions, processes, and commitment to good governance, changing the Somali state and providing lessons for security sector reform. AMISOM’s eventual exit will influence how the AU and the UN mandate and authorize future missions.

Taking Stock of Somalia’s Security Landscape

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on October 17, 2018

In this Africa Center roundtable, Somalia's National Security Advisor shares his vision for establishing a stable Somalia. Priority reforms include strengthening oversight of the security sector and improving security support to rural communities most vulnerable to Al Shabaab.

Q&A: Somalia Charts Security Transition

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on July 17, 2018

Somalia’s National Security Advisor Abdisaid Ali talks about political will, security reforms in Somalia’s Transition Plan, and the commitment to domestic and international coalition building to sustain the country’s progress.

AMISOM’s Hard-Earned Lessons in Somalia

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on May 30, 2018

In an interview with the Africa Center, Simon Mulongo, deputy to the AU Commission in Mogadishu, says that AMISOM’s gains could never have been realized if it had continued to rely on the traditional peacekeeping template.

Non-State Security Providers and Political Formation in Somalia

Recommended research   published by Ken Menkhaus, Centre for Security Governance on April 1, 2016

Non-state security providers (NSSPs) in Somalia, often entrenched in clan identity politics and the pursuit of profit, are ubiquitous. Their prevalence undermines efforts by the Somali government to provide legitimate governance and security. Yet they are often the only reliable source of protection and so are used by neighborhoods, businesses, international organizations, and even politicians.... Continue Reading

Cyclones and More Frequent Storms Threaten Africa

Infographic   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on May 24, 2022

Global warming is causing an increase in the frequency and intensity of storms in Africa, which are exacerbating other socioeconomic stressors across the continent.

Considerations for a Prospective New Chinese Naval Base in Africa

Spotlight   published by Paul Nantulya on May 12, 2022

China's reported plans to add another naval base in Africa raise questions about China's increasingly militarized strategy and may stoke fears of compromised sovereignty amid a new "scramble" for Africa.

Countering Violent Extremism in Africa

Topic in Focus   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on April 1, 2022

Violent extremism remains one of Africa’s most pressing security threats. The following publications provide a series of resources for countering violent extremism initiatives in Africa.

Weapons Losses Fueling Africa’s Militant Groups

Spotlight   published by Eric G. Berman on March 28, 2022

Loss of munitions and other lethal materiel from African armed forces and peace operations is a key factor sustaining militant groups driving instability on the continent.

Professional Military Education Institutions in Africa

Infographic   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on February 25, 2022

Professional military education institutions aim to foster capable and apolitical militaries to uphold the constitution and serve democratically elected civilian leaders. To do so, however, they must be grounded in a culture that reinforces these values.