The European Business Council for Africa

Four conflict trends as seen by Crisis Group analysts  

➤ Afghanistan: Three U.S. servicemen were killed on Monday by a Taliban suicide bomb near Bagram Airbase north of Kabul. Crisis Group expert Borhan Osman says attacks usually increase in the spring and summer months and this year, facing incentives to improve their military position as peace talks get underway, both the government and the Taliban have already declared a formal start to offensive operations.

➤ Algeria: Abdelkader Bensalah, the speaker of Algeria’s upper house, was appointed interim president for a 90-day period on Tuesday, the same day that police for the first time resorted to tear gas to disperse protesters in Algiers. Crisis Group expert Michaël Ayari says Bensalah’s announcement on Wednesday that elections will be held on 4 July is unlikely to satisfy the demands of demonstrators, who are still mobilised and asking for immediate concrete measures to dismantle the "regime/system". 

 Libya: The UN on Tuesday postponed the national conference scheduled for 14-15 April, citing escalating violence and the rising casualties in Tripoli as the Libyan National Army (LNA) continues its offensive. Crisis Group expert Claudia Gazzini says international actors' calls for restraint will not be effective unless backed up by the credible threat of sanctions and a set of incentives that address the warring sides’ core political and financial concerns.

➤ Sudan: President Omar al-Bashir was removed from power on Thursday by the Sudanese army, which subsequently dissolved the government, suspended the constitution and declared a curfew designed to force out thousands of protesters camping outside the defence ministry. Crisis Group expert Murithi Mutiga says the coup will do little to appease protesters and unless generals hand power to a civilian-led transitional authority, demonstrations will continue.

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