A Political Economy of Tripoli’s Abu Salim: The Rise of the Stability Support Apparatus as Hegemon

Submitted by Katie Lazaro on 27 March, 2024

Once a hotbed of pro-Qaddafi resistance, Abu Salim is now a stronghold dominated by Abdelghani al-Kikli (widely known as ‘Ghaniwa’) and his Stability Support Apparatus (SSA). Ghaniwa has consolidated power over Abu Salim—the main southern gateway into the Libyan capital of Tripoli—through violence.

A Political Economy of Zawiya: Armed Groups and Society in a Western Libyan City

Submitted by Lionel Kosirnik on 8 March, 2024

Since 2015, the coastal city of Zawiya has witnessed endemic violence, but never an all-out war between its main forces. Due to this, the city has become emblematic of Libya’s power struggles. Despite its significance, however, no in-depth studies exist on its armed groups and their evolution.

Guided light weapons reportedly held by non-state armed groups, 1998-2013

Submitted by Olivia Denonville on 1 December, 2021

The increasingly sophisticated arsenals of guided light weapons held by non-state actors pose an international security threat. These include man-portable air defence systems (MANPADS) and anti-tank guided weapons (ATGWs)—systems operable by a single user or a small crew, where the weapons’ missiles are either manually targeted or self-guided after launch. Such systems have been used by armed groups to attack commercial airlines, military aircraft, and governmental targets, as well as to degrade military and peacekeeping operations.

Hollow Promises: The Risks of Military Integration in Western Equatoria

Submitted by Lionel Kosirnik on 14 January, 2021

In 2018, the Government of the Republic of South Sudan (GoSS), the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-in-Opposition (SPLM-IO), and the South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA) signed the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (R-ARCSS). As part of the transitional security arrangements within the R-ARCSS framework, all warring parties agreed to assemble combatants in designated cantonment sites to facilitate their training, and later, integration into a new ‘unity’ army or other national security services.

Diaspora in Despair: Darfurian Mobility at a Time of International Disengagement

Submitted by Lionel Kosirnik on 13 January, 2021

Darfur’s fade-out from international headlines and Western interests over the past several years has fostered a false narrative that the conflict there is over, despite stark evidence to the contrary. Linked to this narrative, the paralysis of internal and international engagement on Darfur  has compelled Darfurians—civilians and combatants alike—to increase their outward mobility in search of safety and livelihood opportunities in neighbouring African countries or further afield into Europe.

Lost in Trans-nation: Tubu and Other Armed Groups and Smugglers along Libya's Southern Border

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on 24 November, 2020

Southern Libya after the fall of Qaddafi has become synonymous with lawlessness. For centuries, the area has been home to a shifting sea of ethnic groups who see the border as an imposition but not a barrier. The Tubu (or Teda) are one such group, whose presence stretches across southern Libya, Chad, and Niger. 

Capital of Militias: Tripoli's Armed Groups Capture the Libyan State

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on 24 November, 2020

The history of Tripoli after the fall of Qaddafi is one of conflict, shifting control, fractured alliances, and the quest for power and influence. Central among the players in this quest have been the militias controlling the capital’s territory. In the past two years, that control has consolidated into the hands of a cartel: four militias whose military dominance, influence in government, and power over the resources of the state is unprecedented.

A Challenging State: Emerging Armed Groups in Egypt

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on 24 November, 2020

An unprecedented and complex Islamist insurgency has raged in Egypt since the 2013 military coup that overthrew the government formed by the Muslim Brotherhood. The Salafi-Jihadi attacks of Islamic State – Sinai Province (IS-SP) are well known. But another strain of pro-violence Islamist armed action aligned with the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) has recently evolved in the Nile Valley, home of 97 per-cent of the country’s population. This new strand of Jihadi belief represents what can perhaps best be described as a type of MB-Jihadism, or Ikhwani-Jihadism.

Down, but Not Out: The FDLR in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (Research Note 56)

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on 24 November, 2020

The Forces Démocratiques de Libération du Rwanda (Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda, FDLR)—including its armed wing, the Forces Combattantes Abacunguzi (Abacunguzi Fighting Forces, FOCA)—is among the most enduring armed groups in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Several members of the group’s top leadership are suspected of involvement in the 1994 Rwandan genocide, making the FDLR’s continued presence in the DRC a recurring point of contention between Kinshasa and Kigali and a source of tensions for the Great Lakes region as a whole.