GIS Dossier: Sub-Saharan Africa
The list of challenges facing sub-Saharan Africa is long and daunting. Political instability and violence have led to immense migration flows that countries on three continents are struggling to contain. These problems have exacerbated weather-related catastrophes like famine, creating a vicious circle. Yet, the region has plenty of potential. Can it overcome its hurdles? This edition of GIS Dossier surveys the predictions from our experts on this troubled region.
Mexico: Pena Nieto papers over security crisis
In nearly four years, President Enrique Pena Nieto has been unable to tackle Mexico’s difficulties with organized and violent crime. His shift of focus to economic matters only papers over the problem, rather than addressing its root cause: institutional weakness. The country’s perpetual security crisis looks set to continue.
The Northern Triangle in Central America
Central America’s Northern Triangle states – Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador – have become a thoroughfare for illegal migration and drug smuggling to the United States. The U.S. is trying to stop this tide by funding police and judicial reform and setting up watchdog agencies. Progress in this diverse and poorly governed region has been mixed.
War on Drugs crippling Northern Triangle countries
The United States has been trying for decades to solve its drug problem with a failing War on Drugs. Washington has militarized its response in places like El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras. The trouble is that these countries’ militaries are part of the problem: violence is not helping.
Sinai’s tangled web
The geopolitical significance of the Sinai Peninsula, which borders several strategic waterways and serves as a buffer between Egypt and Israel, can hardly be understated. Instability there is on the rise, as radical jihadi groups gain a stronger foothold. Egypt will have to overcome mistakes of the past and underwhelming support from its allies to bring law and order back to this critical portion of its territory.
Latin American drug trade requires varied approach
The U.S.-led “War on Drugs” is not working. The production, trafficking and consumption of illegal drugs has spread throughout the Western Hemisphere and Europe, while violence and corruption plague the countries where the “war” is being waged. New solutions will be necessary, tailored to the individual countries in Latin America.
El Salvador counts on international help to curb gang violence
El Salvador is Central America’s most densely populated country. With six million people and a gross domestic product of $25 billion, its per capita GDP is $4,100 – not bad for a country generally considered poor by international standards. In the region, only Costa Rica does much better. El Salvador’s potential for further development is strong, but it is being he...
The West must consider humane solutions to refugee crisis
Horrific photographs of starving children from the besieged Syrian town of Madaya are the latest defining images from the tormented country. Conflict there has claimed the lives of more than 260,000 people – 55,000 in 2015 alone. However, peace in Syria is unlikely in the near future. The deluge of humans flowing out of that country – and many other troubled region...
Global trends: Latin America seeks growth as leaders straggle
Latin America has reached an inflection point. Recent developments suggest that parts of the region will make significant economic strides over the next few years. However, its two biggest economies – Brazil and Mexico – are stuck in the doldrums, and their politics may be in even worse shape. <i>This report is par...
Political split could put Mozambique’s gas boom on hold
Even with the collapse of energy prices, Mozambique’s economy appears poised for explosive growth thanks to discoveries of huge offshore natural gas fields. President Filipe Nyusi’s government has committed to much-needed economic and financial reforms. Yet cracks in Mozambique’s political system, especially the failure to incorporate the opposition Renamo party, c...