Bougainville: Is the Delayed Independence Referendum a Next Step Toward Peace?

Bougainville: Is the Delayed Independence Referendum a Next Step Toward Peace?

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

By: Jack Stuart

The autonomous region of Bougainville in Papua New Guinea (PNG) is entering a new phase in its quest for peace, almost 20 years after a peace agreement ended a 10-year civil war. Later this year the island will vote in a referendum on greater autonomy or independence from PNG. Unresolved tensions, an unclear referendum timeline, and fears of a return to violence will all impact this tense election process.

Type: Blog

Electoral Violence

We Need a New Approach to Prevent Violent Extremism

We Need a New Approach to Prevent Violent Extremism

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

By: Gov. Thomas Kean; Rep. Lee Hamilton

Sidi Bouzid and Metlaoui are similarly sized towns in Tunisia’s interior, alike in many respects. They suffer from similar social and economic problems, have a shared tribal heritage, and are centers of political resistance and unrest.

Type: Blog

Fragility & Resilience

Nigeria: Poll Postponement Offers Opportunity to Enhance Election Integrity

Nigeria: Poll Postponement Offers Opportunity to Enhance Election Integrity

Thursday, February 21, 2019

By: Oge Onubogu ; Idayat Hassan

Last weekend’s sudden, one-week postponement of Nigeria’s presidential and state elections—to February 23 for the general elections and March 9 for the state elections—escalated public anxiety amid an already tense political environment. The Independent National Electoral Commission’s (INEC) last-minute announcement, hours before voting was set to commence, cited logistical problems. The delay and its aftermath demonstrate that INEC must immediately improve its transparency and communications. Despite the tensions caused by the delay, the election commission now has the opportunity to rectify flaws and deliver a more credible election.

Type: Blog

Democracy & Governance; Electoral Violence

South Sudan: Recent Sexual Violence Fits a Dismal Pattern

South Sudan: Recent Sexual Violence Fits a Dismal Pattern

Thursday, February 21, 2019

By: Alicia Luedke

The irony is stark. Just as U.N. bodies, NGOs and civil society groups started to “Orange the World” in November with activities to mark “16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence,” in South Sudan, young men dressed in civilian and military clothing attacked and raped an estimated 150 women and girls. The attack, whose victims included children and the elderly, occurred as the victims headed to a food distribution site in the north of the country near Bentiu in the former Unity state.

Type: Blog

Gender

Colombia's Peace Experiment: 'Collective Reincorporation'

Colombia's Peace Experiment: 'Collective Reincorporation'

Monday, February 11, 2019

By: Maria Atuesta

Up an unpaved track, about a two-hour drive from the nearest town in the eastern Andes, sits a small village that could be mistaken for a Colombian hamlet of crude dwellings and vegetable gardens. But appearances aside, something extraordinary is going on here. The outpost’s population, comprised entirely of former guerrillas who fought for the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, the FARC, is engaged in an unplanned experiment in building peace.

Type: Blog

Reconciliation; Peace Processes

How Did Martial Law Affect the Upcoming Election in Ukraine?

How Did Martial Law Affect the Upcoming Election in Ukraine?

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

By: Jack Stuart

On November 26, 2018, Ukrainian President Poroshenko enacted martial law—for 30 days—in response to Russian naval ships ramming Ukrainian vessels in the Azov Sea and seizing the strategic Kerch Strait. The decision led to concerns that voter rights and civil liberties would be constrained, just a few months before a critical election. Now that the period of increased military preparedness has officially ended, it is time to evaluate the impact martial law had on the upcoming presidential election, scheduled for March 31. USIP recently published an assessment of these elections, identifying conflict drivers, scenarios for violence and recommendations for election violence prevention.

Type: Blog

Electoral Violence

United and Mobilized, Citizens Can Combat Corruption

United and Mobilized, Citizens Can Combat Corruption

Sunday, December 9, 2018

By: ; Samson Itodo

December 9 is International Anti-Corruption Day, and this year’s theme emphasizes unity and mobilizing fellow citizens. Nothing could be more appropriate. While the scale of corruption globally makes for a grim outlook, citizens working together around the world have demonstrated time and again that “people power” is an effective means for confronting fraud and abuse.

Type: Blog

Democracy & Governance; Nonviolent Action

If History is Any Guide, Bangladesh Elections are About to Get Ugly

If History is Any Guide, Bangladesh Elections are About to Get Ugly

Monday, December 3, 2018

Elections in Bangladesh are traditionally a violent affair, and the general elections on December 30 will be no different. The leader of the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), Khaleda Zhia, is imprisoned for alleged corruption, while recent confrontations between her supporters and the police led to widespread destruction and several dozen injuries in the first violent marches of the election season.

Type: Blog

Electoral Violence

Can Election Violence Really be Prevented?

Can Election Violence Really be Prevented?

Friday, November 16, 2018

By: Adam Gallagher

Kenya and Liberia held elections in 2017 that were closely watched by the international community, as both countries’ history of violence led to fears over election security. Although Liberia’s election was largely peaceful, Kenya’s was marred by intense violence. What worked in preventing election violence in Liberia that didn’t work in Kenya?

Type: Blog

Electoral Violence