On September 29, the U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) hosted distinguished speaker, Rached Ghannouchi, who discussed the political and security crisis in the MENA region.

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The Middle East is witnessing deepening disorder with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) now controlling a territory the size of Indiana. Extremists in Libya and parts of the Levant operate freely, while youth from Tunisia and 60 other countries have flocked to Syria. The Egyptian military continues to struggle with the influence of the Muslim Brotherhood and counter-revolutionary forces in the political sphere and public arena.

With democratic hopefulness in decline, the MENA region is now beset with a strategic struggle to halt the spread of extremism. National dialogues, crafting new constitutions, reconciliation and transitional justice appear secondary to security challenges. The core lessons of Tunisia’s political transition are lost to many in the region and in the international community.

On September 29th, the U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) held a discussion with distinguished speaker, Rached Ghannouchi, who discussed the current political and security crisis in the region, including how Tunisia’s democratic transition and experience can be drawn upon when seeking solutions to these protracted crises, and can show how dialogue and compromise can pave the way for national unity and reconciliation. 

Speakers

Sheikh Rached Ghannouchi
One of the world’s leading Islamic thinkers and a founder and President of the Ennahdha Party in Tunisia, which rose to power in 2011. His leadership played a critical role in stabilizing post-revolutionary Tunisia and in the success of the democratic transition and national dialogue in Tunisia.

Robin Wright
A journalist, author and joint fellow at the USIP and the Woodrow Wilson International Center. She has reported from more than 140 countries on six continents and received multiple awards and accolades for her writings on international affairs.

Latest Publications

The Role of UN Peacekeeping in China’s Expanding Strategic Interests

The Role of UN Peacekeeping in China’s Expanding Strategic Interests

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

By: Marc Lanteigne

Despite its growing status as a major economic and military power, China continues to be a strong supporter of UN peacekeeping operations. China is not only the second-largest financial contributor to UN peacekeeping (after the United States), it has roughly 2,500 personnel deployed in ongoing missions, including in active combat zones in Mali and South Sudan—far more than any other permanent member of the UN Security Council. This Special Report examines what China hopes to gain from its participation in UN peacekeeping, as well as the challenges it will face as its troops find themselves in more dangerous “peace enforcement” situations.

Global Policy

The Risks of Violence in Nigeria’s 2019 Elections

The Risks of Violence in Nigeria’s 2019 Elections

Monday, September 17, 2018

By: Chris Kwaja; Oge Onubogu ; Aly Verjee

In February 2019, Nigerians go to the polls to elect the country’s next president, parliament and state governors. Nigeria’s elections have historically been tense, and as the campaign gets underway there are concerns the upcoming process will see new violence. USIP’s Chris Kwaja, Oge Onubogu and Aly Verjee discuss the significance of the vote, what has changed since the 2015 elections, and suggest what can be done to mitigate risks of violence.

Electoral Violence

Nigeria’s 2019 Elections: Change, Continuity, and the Risks to Peace

Nigeria’s 2019 Elections: Change, Continuity, and the Risks to Peace

Monday, September 17, 2018

By: Aly Verjee; Chris Kwaja; Oge Onubogu

Drawing on more than two hundred interviews conducted in March and April 2018 in eight states and the Federal Capital Territory, this Special Report identifies the emerging and shifting risks of election violence for Nigeria’s 2019 elections and provides recommendations for Nigerian authorities and international donors supporting the electoral process to help mitigate these risks.

Electoral Violence

China’s Role in Myanmar’s Internal Conflicts

China’s Role in Myanmar’s Internal Conflicts

Friday, September 14, 2018

By: USIP China Myanmar Senior Study Group

This report is the first in the Senior Study Groups (SSGs) series that USIP is convening to examine China's influence on conflict dynamics around the world. A group of thirteen experts met from February to June 2018 to assess China’s involvement in Myanmar’s internal conflicts, particularly those in Rakhine, Kachin, and Shan states, as well as China’s impact on Myanmar’s overall peace process.

Conflict Analysis & Prevention; Global Policy; Peace Processes

Nancy Lindborg on Addressing Extremism in Fragile States

Nancy Lindborg on Addressing Extremism in Fragile States

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

By: Nancy Lindborg

Seventeen years after the 9/11 attacks, Nancy Lindborg details the findings of an interim report from the congressionally mandated Task Force on Extremism in Fragile States. Convened by USIP, the Task Force will devise a comprehensive new strategy for addressing the underlying causes of extremism in fragile states, says Lindborg, a member of the Task Force.

Fragility & Resilience

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