The war in Libya began in 2011 with the Arab spring, which led to a civil war, then the overthrow and death of the then leader Muammar Gaddafi. Today, the war is between the rival groups fighting for the control of the oil rich territory of Libya.
2018 was not better than the previous years as the country still faced violent attacks, leaving many dead, homeless or internally displaced.
The battle of Tripoli; August 27th to September 25th was the most violent of the series of attacks in Libya in 2018. The fighting which broke out between the internationally recognized government of Libya and its rival groups led to the signing of a ceasefire which was not respected, as fighting broke out a few days later in Southern Tripoli. These clashes caused the closure of the Airport, 400 prisoners escaped from the Ain Zara prison and over 115 people lost their lives.
It was only on the 25th of September that an effective ceasefire was sign, after the United Nations Support Mission in Libya released a statement in which she condemned the renewed hostilities in the city.
Nigeria, the richest and most populous country in Africa has experienced a good number of civil, ethnic and religious wars since independence in 1960. The Boko Haram insurgency which began in 2009 has been the deadliest conflict in Nigeria, until early 2018 when the farmer and herdsmen conflict broke out in the Northern part of Nigeria, specifically in Benue and Plateau and Taraba states.
The conflict considered as Nigeria’s biggest security challenge at the moment has claimed more than 1,300 lives and left more than 30,000 people homeless.
Though conflicts between Fulani herdsmen (mostly Muslims) and Christian farmers have existed in Nigeria for years, they intensified after the implementation of the Anti-grazing laws in some states by the end of 2017. 72 people were killed in January 2018 after the implementation of this law.
Also, the desertification of the of the northern part of Nigeria especially around the lake Chad basin is another factor that intensified the conflict as herdsmen had no choice than to encroach on farmers’ lands to feed their cattle. 75% of grazing land has been swallowed by the desert.
With their easy access to guns and other sophisticated weapons, small provocations became deadly as Fulani herdsmen opened fire villagers on several occasions.
If precautions are not taken, the conflict will degenerate into another Muslim-Christian war, as Christians are forming armed vigilante groups to counter the attacks of the Fulani.
Many have blamed the Nigerian president for siding with the Fulani because of his ethnic ties with them.
The civil war in Somalia broke out in February 2009 between the forces of the Federal government of Somalia and terrorist groups in the southern part of the country which has displaced thousands of people.
Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia saw the highest number of attacks from Al-Shabaab, a Jihadist Fundamentalist group affiliated to Al Qaeda. This group claimed responsibility of a majority of the attacks that claimed hundreds of lives in 2018.
These were characterized by suicide bombings and attacks on government officials. These bombings were particularly disastrous, especially that which occurred near Sahafi hotel, killing 53 and injuring more than 100 people, in November 2018.
In response to the attacks by the Al Shabaab, the US carried out a series of airstrikes, but failed to destabilize them.
These conflicts have led to the destruction of hospitals, making it difficult for the Somali people to gain access to basic healthcare.
For over three years now, Yemen has been soaked in a civil war that has killed over 10,000 people and millions of other are homeless and at the brink of starvation. The crisis stemmed from the Arab Spring of 2011, which forced President Ali Abdullah Saleh to hand over power to his deputy Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi.
His leadership did not go well as the Houthi Rebels seized control of northern Saana province and neighbouring areas, forcing Hadi into exile.
The conflict escalated when Saudi Arabia and other Arab states; supported by France, the UK and US, began airstrikes against the Houthi in a bid to restore Hadi’s government.
In 2018, the government; with the support of Saudi forces began attacks on Hudaydah, a port held by the rebels which serves as an entry point for aid going into Yemen. This aggravates the already catastrophic humanitarian crisis and if measures are not taken to remedy the situation, millions of people will die of disease and starvation.
The Mexican Drug War is an ongoing crisis between the Mexican government and various drug Cartels since 2006. Mexico is a strategic entry and exit point for drugs from South America and India, and the main destination for these drugs is the US.
The war waged on drugs by the Mexican presidents has had little or no effects as the crackdown on cartels has let to fragmentation and creation of new gangs.
The drug war in Mexico leads to the murder of thousands of people, including journalist every year, as some strategic parts of the country are controlled by drug bosses.
President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, took office on December 1 2018 has promised a transformation of the country’s policy to resolve the problem of illegal drug production in the country.
With the arrest of “El Chapo” the most infamous drug lord in the country, and the murder of many other cartel leaders, one begins to wonder if there is hope that things will get better for Mexico
Article from AFRIC Editorial