Africa Security Brief No. 17

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Africa’s Militaries: A Missing Link in Democratic Transitions

By Mathurin C. Houngnikpo

January 31, 2012

Tahrir Square protesters sitting in front of the tanks.The institutionalization of democratic norms in Africa’s militaries is often lagging behind advances made in civilian institutions and civil society. In some situations, security sectors have actively aligned themselves with incumbent leaders seeking to stay in power or directly intervened in politics, thereby discrediting the entire security sector and marginalizing its role when transitions do occur. With national elections becoming increasingly routine and subject to stricter oversight, such dilemmas will continue to be front and center in Africa’s political development.

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Publication Type: Africa Security Briefs

Security Topic(s): Democratization