Somalia has been plunged into fresh turmoil following the decision by President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed (also known as Farmaajo) to extend his term in office. Some observers have viewed the move as a power grab by an embattled president. But Claire Elder argues that Farmaajo’s decision isn’t about an authoritarian takeover. Rather, it’s indicative of the power struggles already underway and the renegotiation of what comes next for the struggling Somali state.

The death of Chad’s President Idriss Dèby - killed while visiting troops on the eve of his sixth inauguration - has sent a shiver of apprehension through the region. Folahanmi Aina explains why Dèby’s death has serious implications for regional stability and the war against insurgency in the troubled Lake Chad Basin and the broader Sahel region. And why it’s been particularly keenly felt by two countries that play significant roles in security arrangements in the region - Nigeria and France.

Julie Masiga

Peace + Security Editor

A Somali military officer supporting anti-government forces on the streets of the capital Mogadishu. AFP via Getty Images

Somalia: toxic elite politics and the need for cautious external mediation

Claire Elder, London School of Economics and Political Science

The international community is opposed to Farmaajo's term extension because of fears that it's a power grab consistent with political trends elsewhere in the region.

Nigerian president Muhammadu Buhari (left) and late Chadian president Idriss Deby during a 2019 summit of Sahel-Saharan States. Brahim Adji/AFP via Getty Images

Dèby’s death threatens security in the Sahel: Nigeria has a key role to play

Folahanmi Aina, King's College London

Chadian president Idriss Deby's death has serious implications for stability in the troubled Lake Chad Basin and the broader Sahel region of West Africa.

Business + Economy

Why Ghana doesn’t get the full value of its cocoa beans – and how this could change

Sophie Van Huellen, SOAS, University of London

The importance of raw cocoa beans to Ghana's foreign exchange earnings is derailing the development of a viable chocolate industry

Malawi’s farm subsidies aren’t helping women: but there are solutions

Dieter von Fintel, Stellenbosch University; Anja Smith, Stellenbosch University; Francesca Marchetta, Université Clermont Auvergne (UCA); Martin Limbikani Mwale, Stellenbosch University

Malawi's revamped subsidy regime is designed to reach many more farmers. But a granular look shows that women aren't reaping the benefits.

From our international editions

Supermoon: how an illusion makes the full Moon appear bigger than it really is

Osnat Katz, UCL

April 26 is the first supermoon of the year.

Why some people don’t experience vaccine side-effects, and why it’s not a problem

Veenu Manoharan, Cardiff Metropolitan University

There are many reasons your immune system might react differently to vaccines.

En Français

Idriss Déby et la France : la diplomatie en treillis

Christian Bouquet, Université Bordeaux Montaigne

Idriss Déby était un allié militaire majeur de la France en Afrique. Si bien que Paris l’a souvent soutenu contre les rebelles et a toujours fermé les yeux sur son bilan en matière de droits humains.

Éruption à Saint-Vincent-et-les-Grenadines : gérer une évacuation en temps de pandémie

Éric Daudé, Université de Rouen Normandie; Alexandre Cebeillac, Université de Rouen Normandie; Delphine Grancher, Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS); Franck Lavigne, Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne; Olivier Gillet, Université de Rouen Normandie

Le volcan de la Soufrière est entré en éruption le 8 avril dernier sur cette île des Caraïbes. Insuffisamment anticipée, l’évacuation a mis à mal la stratégie de lutte contre la Covid-19.


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