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Africa Briefing — Somalia's prospects?

02 July 2010

Somalia has been a case in point of the intertwined challenges of state failure and global threats for the last two decades. The country has been treated either by international indifference or compassion (as illustrated by the bitter experience of the Restore Hope operation). It has now developed into a serious security challenge for the region and the rest of the world, a hotbed of islamist terror and the origin of an increasing wave of piracy. In the last few years, international efforts have focused on the visible and recurrent effects of these crises (operations at sea, regional containment, anti-terror operations). However, these actions should not overshadow the need to address the root causes of the seemingly never-ending Somali crises through international and regional strategies as well as a policy on state-building grounded on the Somali realities. Recent foreign interventions and strategies, with or without regional involvement have not yet succeeded in reaching the path to sustainable stabilisation. The briefing will provide an update and analysis of the Somali crisis, current and new crisis management approaches and explore avenues for sustainable crisis resolution.