TOPICS: The Kurds, South Sudan, International Humanitarian Law, Women Rights, Nigeria
Christian Chereji and Ciprian Sandu
ARTICLES in Issue 13 – October 2015:
Kurds: An Intersection of Unusual Alliances
The war against the Islamic State has seen some unusual alliances: the United States and European forces currently support the Kurdish positions in Bashur (Iraq) and Rojava (Syria). What would have been considered unlikely two years ago has, triggered by the threat potential of ISIS, become the most plastic show of neorealist concepts such as balance of power, alliance formation on the basis of shared enemy conceptions, and the relevance of geopolitical spheres of influence.This paper aims to uncover the reasons, consequences, and nature of the alliance between the United States, Turkey, the Syrian-Kurdish revolutionary movement PYD (Democratic Union Party), and the Iraq-Kurdish parties of the KDP (Kurdistan Democratic Party) and PUK (Patriotic Union of Kurdistan). The guiding hypothesis of the paper understands the “state”to be an outdated concept for understanding the conflict. At the same time, this absence of centralstates and the multiplication of forces and actors can be seen as one trigger for increased Turkish assertion of strong-state postures both internally against the Kurdish Worker’s Party (PKK) and externally against the Kurds in Iraq and Syria.
alliance formation, sub-state actors, PYD, PKK, KRG, United States, Turkey, Islamic State.
South Sudan: Resolving Conflicts in Africa – A Test Case for China
George AKWAYA GENYI
In all of Africa’s preponderant conflicts since the 1960s, the West has always held the promise for amicable political solutions irrespective of whether the conflagrations are products of Africa’s internal contradictions or exogenously induced turmoil. The proxy wars in Angola and Mozambique in the 1980s and the internal combustibles in Liberia and Sierra Leone in the 1990s are telling examples. The conflict in South Sudan however, has thrown up China as an interested third party mediator with motives yet unclear. This paper argues that China’s economic concern: appetite for energy resources, markets and boost to her international status as an emerging global power centre are the driving dynamics of her engagement in the conflict resolution attempts after Western inertia in the protracted conflict in South Sudan. Her foreign policy success promises to stamp her emerging influence on African affairs.
foreign policy, conflict resolution, global power.
International Humanitarian Law and Plight of Civilians during Armed Conflicts in Africa
Armed conflicts have been a major problem in Africa for many decades. Since the beginning of the 1990s, the African continent has acquired a dubious honor of being number one in hosting the largest number of armed conflicts and complex emergencies. This article examines the role of international humanitarian law (IHL) in the amelioration of the plight of victims of armed conflict in Africa. The article shows that in spite of the ratification of IHL by most African states, its provisions are often violated during armed conflicts. In order to improve the current situation, the states must enact national legislation and take practical measures in order for the rules to be fully effective.
International Humanitarian Law, Armed Conflict, Civilians, Africa.
Nigeria: A Quest for a Permanent Seat in the United Nations Security Council
Nigeria’s bid for the United Nations Security Council permanent seat received a boost from the African Union (AU) at its Golden Jubilee Summit in Addis Ababa the other day. Africa sent an appropriate signal to the world that it could work in unity to pursue its collective interest. The country was endorsed by the AU Executive Council in a pleasant display of solidarity and consensus. Coming against the background of an earlier endorsement by the Economic Community of West Africa (ECOWAS), this new wave of solidarity is commendable. It should be harnessed to win the support of more member states of the global body at the crucial vote of the United Nations General Assembly. Hence, the argument that the Security Council membership be expanded to include major financial contributors and the equitable representation of the regional spread. There is every indication that Nigeria has all it takes to represent Africa in an enlarged Security Council. But considering the vagaries associated with international politics, a lot still needs to be done by Nigeria to garner the overwhelming support from Africa that will enable her to emerge as a consensus candidate for Africa.
Nigeria, United Nations, Obasanjo, Legacy, Permanent Seat, Military, Diplomacy
Cote D’Ivoire: National Interest and Humanitarian Intervention
James OLUSEGUN ADEYERI
Overtime, resurgent global concern for human rights regarding life, property, security,
peace and freedom became a ‘popular’ ground for justifying international intervention in the domestic matters of supposedly independent states. Though it is dangerous and even fruitless to justify war and its concomitant negative appurtenances, recent developments cast serious doubts upon the claim of global humanitarianism as the primary justification for intervention in local conflicts. While the international community under the aegis of the United Nations Organization (UNO) barely hesitated before intervening in Iraq, twice, in less than two decades and in Libya and Cote D’Ivoire very recently, on-going conflicts characterized by abysmal human carnage and material destruction in places like Syria and Egypt are yet to receive similar international response. This double-standard approach to conflict management and resolution inevitably leads one to opine that beyond global humanitarianism, more fundamental considerations bordering on the national interest of powerful states are crucial to international interventions in local conflicts. In this light, this paper seeks to contextualize the place of national interest and global humanitarianism in the international military intervention in the Cote D’lvoire Civil War of 2010-2011.
Globalism, National Interest, Humanitarian Intervention, Cote D’Ivoire Civil War.
Islam: Women Rights and Violence against Women – Islamic Issues and Economic Factors
Mohammed JAVED MIA
As women are often victims of violence of various kinds of reasons extending from unequal marriage to financial and intellectual property, the sole purpose of the article is to find out the grounds of violence against women and the relation to the religious issues and economic factors. How much freedom and rights have given to women under Islamic jurisdiction will be well addressed. Various rights of women given by Islam will be discussed with popular perceptions of divinely ordinations. Sources of violence will be one of the concerns of this article. And economic and social factors of domestic violence will be briefly analyzed. The flawed system of marriage and divorce in Islam is one of the reasons behind violence against women and this problem will also be focused in the article.
Women, Violence, Rights, Islam, Jurisprudence.