The European Business Council for Africa

Three conflict trends as seen by Crisis Group analysts  

➤ Algeria: The constitutional mandate for Abdelkader Bensalah’s 90-day interim presidency expired on Tuesday, three days after a national conference of eleven political parties and 30 trade unions agreed on elections should the regime guarantee their transparency and credibility. Crisis Group expert Michaël Ayari says the problem is that demonstrators, who have protested for twenty consecutive weeks, believe that elections cannot be transparent and credible until the regime has been completely dismantled.

➤ Iran: The UN’s nuclear watchdog verified that Iran exceeded its uranium enrichment cap of 3.67 per cent and Tehran threatened to further increase enrichment to 20 per cent. Crisis Group expert Ali Vaez says Iran has so far pursued limited and reversible steps to pressure Europe to offer an economic lifeline, but sooner or later it could pass a red line that triggers the deal’s remaining signatories to snap back multilateral sanctions and/or that provokes a military confrontation with the U.S.

Nigeria: Clashes between police and members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) killed two protesters, injured nine security guards and resulted in 40 arrests. Crisis Group expert Nnamdi Obasi says the Shi’ite Muslim protesters, who have demanded the release of their detained leader since 2015, have clashed with security forces repeatedly. If Nigerian authorities continue to hold the IMN leader, in defiance of court orders for his release, the protests will continue and IMN could become much more radical.

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