Weekly Round-Up


1. After violent unrest, Guyana has asked Britain and the Caribbean Regional Security System to help investigate murders.


Three teenaged boys have been murdered during a spate of violent unrest in West Coast Berbice that has also resulted in injuries, property damage and looting. The protests started because of the arrest of a member of Guyana’s Elections Commission, Clairmont Mingo, who is accused of trying to manipulate the troubled March election in favour of the previous government. The protests have been exacerbated by fake social media posts from both sides of the political divide. Recently sworn in President Irfaan Ali has asked Britain and the Caribbean Regional Security System to help investigate the murders, hoping that the apprehension of those responsible will go some-way to quelling the unrest. It is thought that the international partners will provide operational assistance and expertise to bolster the Guyana Police Force’s investigative capacity.



2. Nigerian security agencies arrest 20 suspected members of the Ansaru terrorist group


Nigerian security operatives have arrested over 20 suspected members of the Islamist Ansaru terrorist group, an offshoot of Boko Haram. The extremists were apprehended following reports from the country’s intelligence agencies that they had established camps in the forests surrounding Abuja and in Kogi state. The insurgents, who were operating in a cell structure, were believed to be planning attacks on public places in the capital. The group is also believed to be behind a spike in kidnaps for ransom in the region.



3. The Cameroonian army has launched a large offensive against the country’s anglophone insurgents.


Cameroon’s army has launched a special operation against Anglophone separatists in the capital of its English-speaking northwest region, Bamenda. The military operation, named ‘Clean Bamenda’, comes after a police inspector was killed in the city. Movement throughout the city has been restricted by the armed forces, who released a statement noting that the operation was mounted in response to “various attacks perpetrated by terrorists, such as theft and looting, robberies of banks and shops, and the assassinations of civilians and personnel of the defence forces.” Indeed, it is believed that 15 people were kidnapped by the insurgents last week. This represents an escalation in the tactics of the government and army in response to extremism in the country.



4. Damaged oil tanker off the coast of Sri Lanka presents large environmental risk.


A tanker which was transporting crude oil from Kuwait to India has run adrift 30 nautical miles off the coast of Sri Lanka after sustaining damage and catching fire. Since then crews from the Sri Lankan and Indian navies have been fighting to contain several blazes on board exacerbated by high winds. The ship has so far left a 1km oil slick in its wake, and officials from Sri Lanka and India are trying to assess the extent of any environmental damage. If the ship produces a full-blown oil leak or worse, explodes, the environmental damage could be catastrophic.



5. A province of the Solomon Island’s has proposed secession over the country’s diplomatic relations with China and Taiwan.


The premier of Malaita province in the Solomon Island’s has suggested holding a referendum on the province’s independence after a disagreement with the central government concerning foreign relations. Last year, the government decided to officially recognise China instead of Taiwan much to the chagrin of many in Malaita. Daniel Suidani, the premier, has suggested that the referendum could be held as early as this month. The dispute, whilst on the surface about Chinese relations, runs deeper touching on historical and cultural differences between Malaita and the rest of the Solomon Islands. Some commentators have suggested that Suidani is harnessing the regions wider geopolitical struggle to further his own local goals.

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