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Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Sudan: The Crisis in Darfur and Status of the North-South Peace Agreement

Ted Dagne
Specialist in African Affairs


Sudan, geographically the largest country in Africa, has been ravaged by civil war intermittently for four decades. More than 2 million people have died in Southern Sudan over the past two decades due to war-related causes and famine, and millions have been displaced from their homes. There were many failed attempts to end the civil war in Southern Sudan. In July 2002, the Sudan government and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) signed a peace framework agreement in Kenya. On May 26, 2004, the government of Sudan and the SPLM signed three protocols on Power Sharing, on the Nuba Mountains and Southern Blue Nile, and on the long disputed Abyei area. The signing of these protocols resolved all outstanding issues between the parties. On June 5, 2004, the parties signed "the Nairobi Declaration on the Final Phase of Peace in the Sudan." On January 9, 2005, the government of Sudan and the SPLM signed the final peace agreement at a ceremony held in Nairobi, Kenya. In April 2010, Sudan held national and regional elections. In January 2011, South Sudan will hold a referendum to decide on unity or independence. Abyei is also expected to hold a referendum in January 2011 to decide whether to retain the current special administrative status or to be part of South Sudan. 

The crisis in Darfur began in February 2003, when two rebel groups emerged to challenge the National Congress Party (NCP) government in Darfur. The crisis in Darfur in western Sudan has led to a major humanitarian disaster, with an estimated 2.7 million people displaced, more than 240,000 people forced into neighboring Chad, and an estimated 450,000 people killed. In July 2004, the House and Senate declared the atrocities in Darfur genocide, and the Bush Administration reached the same conclusion in September 2004. On May 4, 2006, the Government of National Unity and the Sudan Liberation Movement/Army (SLM/A) signed the Darfur Peace Agreement (DPA) after almost two years of negotiations. 

In July 2007, the U.N. Security Council passed Resolution 1769, authorizing the deployment of a robust peacekeeping force to Darfur. The resolution calls for the deployment of 26,000 peacekeeping troops to Darfur. The resolution authorizes the United Nations African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) to take all necessary measures to protect its personnel and humanitarian workers. As of February 2010, UNAMID deployed a total of 21,800 peacekeeping personnel. As of February 2010, 57 peacekeeping personnel have been killed in Darfur. In July 2008, International Criminal Court (ICC) Chief Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo accused President Omar Bashir of Sudan of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes and asked ICC judges to issue an arrest warrant for President Bashir. On March 4, 2009, the ICC Pre-Trial Chamber issued a warrant of arrest for President Bashir for war crimes and crimes against humanity. 

In late October 2009, the Obama Administration announced a new Sudan policy. The new Sudan policy focuses on three policy priorities: the crisis in Darfur, the implementation of the North- South peace agreement, and counter-terrorism. The new policy links the lifting of sanctions and incentives to verifiable progress on the ground
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Date of Report: August 5, 2010
Number of Pages: 34
Order Number: RL33574
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Africa: U.S. Foreign Assistance Issues

Ted Dagne
Specialist in African Affairs

U.S. aid to Africa initially reached a peak in 1985, when global competition with the Soviet Union was at a high point. After the cold war ended, security assistance levels for Africa began to decline. In 1995, at the outset of the 104th Congress, substantial reductions in aid to Africa had been anticipated, as many questioned the importance of Africa to U.S. national security interests in the post-cold war era. As the debate went forward, however, congressional reports and bills emphasized U.S. humanitarian, economic, and other interests in Africa. Aid levels did fall, but gradually began to increase again in FY1997. U.S. assistance to Africa is reaching new highs due to a significant increase in health care sectors under the Global Health and Child Survival (GHCS) program. U.S. aid to Africa nearly quadrupled from $1.2 billion in FY2006 to $6.7 billion in FY2010. Moreover, the United States is the leading donor of humanitarian assistance to Africa. Between FY1999 and FY2009, the United States provided over $10.1 billion to East and Central African countries and an estimated $2.2 billion to Southern Africa countries. 

U.S. assistance reaches Africa through a variety of channels, including USAID-administered Development Assistance (DA) and GHCS programs, food aid programs, and refugee assistance. As of February 2010, the Peace Corps had an estimated 2,620 volunteers and trainers in 29 African countries. The U.S. African Development Foundation (ADF) makes small grants to cooperatives, youth groups, and self-help organizations and operates in 20 countries. The Obama Administration has requested $30 million for ADF for FY2011. U.S. security assistance, though still far below levels seen in the 1980s, has increased in recent years, primarily because of U.S. support for African peacekeeping and counter-terrorism initiatives. The World Bank's International Development Association (IDA) is the principal multilateral channel for U.S. aid, but the United States also contributes to the African Development Bank and Fund and to United Nations activities in Africa. 

Total U.S. foreign assistance to Africa for FY2009 was estimated at $6.6 billion. More than half of the FY2009 funding went to health-related programs. Sub-Saharan Africa is expected to receive $6.7 billion in FY2010. The Obama Administration has requested an estimated $7.5 billion for FY2011
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Date of Report: August 3, 2010
Number of Pages: 14
Order Number: RL33591
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Sunday, August 22, 2010

Senegal: Background and U.S. Relations

Alexis Arieff
Analyst in African Affairs


While Senegal enjoys relative peace and political openness by regional standards, recent political trends and signs of a growing public backlash against the government have raised concerns among some analysts over the potential for future instability. Senegal is an electoral democracy and one of the few countries in Africa never to have experienced a military coup. Its leadership is seen as diplomatically influential within Africa. Over 90% of the population is Muslim, the majority of whom adhere to an indigenous Sufi order. A largely arid coastal country in Africa's Sahel region, and one of the world's least developed countries, Senegal has struggled with food insecurity and the impact of global climate change. 

In March 2000, longtime opposition leader Abdoulaye Wade won presidential elections widely seen as free and fair. Wade's victory, and the subsequent peaceful transfer of power to his Senegalese Democratic Party (PDS), were hailed as a landmark for democracy in Senegal and the region. However, in recent years, international observers and some Senegalese have expressed concern at apparent democratic "backsliding," amid reports of rising corruption, nepotism, and attempts to restrict press freedom. Wade has announced plans to run for a third term in 2012, when he will be 86 years old, in apparent contravention of the constitution. Public demonstrations against government policies and stagnant living conditions have occasionally turned violent. Violence between rebel factions and security forces has also recently increased in the southern Casamance region, the site of a long-running, though low-level, anti-government insurgency. 

Relations between Senegal and the United States are close, and the State Department refers to Senegal as a "key strategic partner" in Africa. U.S. policy toward Senegal focuses on encouraging economic growth, socio-economic development, improved health outcomes, food security, democratic governance, and military professionalism. The United States also sees Senegal as an anchor of regional stability and a potential partner in combating transnational security threats, such as terrorism, narcotics trafficking, and maritime piracy. Bilateral engagement has increased in recent years, in part due to Senegal's identity as a moderate, pro-Western Muslim country in a region affected by violent extremism. Senegal is a significant contributor of troops to international peacekeeping missions, and thousands of Senegalese peacekeepers have received U.S. training through the Africa Contingency Operations Training and Assistance (ACOTA) program. U.S. foreign assistance through State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) accounts has increased significantly in recent years, from $57.8 million in FY2008 to an estimated $106.3 million in FY2010. The Obama Administration has requested $136.9 million for FY2011, and Senegal is expected to be one of 13 African focus countries for the Administration's new global food security initiative, Feed the Future. In addition, a $540 million Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) compact was signed in 2009. Some U.S. officials, however, including Members of Congress, have criticized recent governance trends.



Date of Report: August 16, 2010
Number of Pages: 22
Order Number: R41369
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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Rwanda: Background and Current Developments

Ted Dagne
Specialist in African Affairs

In 2003, Rwanda held its first multi-party presidential and parliamentary elections in decades. President Paul Kagame of the Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF) won 95% of the votes cast, while his nearest rival, Faustin Twagiramungu, received 3.6% of the votes cast. In the legislative elections, the ruling RPF won 73% in the 80-seat National Assembly, while the remaining seats went to RPF allies and former coalition partners. In September 2008, Rwanda held legislative elections, and the RPF won a majority of the seats. Rwandese women are now the majority in the National Assembly. In October 2008, the National Assembly elected Ms. Mukantabam Rose as the first female speaker of the Assembly. The next presidential elections are scheduled for August 9, 2010. 

In Rwanda, events of a prior decade are still fresh in the minds of many survivors and perpetrators. In 1993, after several failed efforts, the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) and the government of Rwanda reached an agreement in Tanzania, referred to as the Arusha Peace Accords. The RPF joined the Rwandan government as called for in the agreement. In April 1994, the presidents of Rwanda and Burundi, along with several senior government officials, were killed when their plane was shot down as it approached the capital of Rwanda, Kigali. Shortly after, the Rwandan military and a Hutu militia known as the Interhamwe began to systematically massacre Tutsis and moderate Hutu opposition members. In the first 10 weeks of the Rwandan genocide, an estimated 1 million people, mostly Tutsis, were slaughtered by government forces and the Interhamwe militia. In July 1994, the RPF took over power and later formed a coalition government. 

In late 2008, the governments of Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) agreed on a wide range of issues. The two governments agreed to launch a joint military offensive against the National Congress for the Defense of the Congolese People (CNDP) and the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR). They also agreed to restore full diplomatic relations and to activate economic cooperation. In January 2009, Rwanda and Congo launched the joint military operation in eastern Congo. In late February 2009, Rwandese troops pulled out of Congo as part of the agreement with the Kabila government. In October 2009, Ugandan authorities arrested a top genocide suspect, Idelphonse Nizeyimana. He was later transferred to Tanzania to stand trial at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. 
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Date of Report: August 3, 2010
Number of Pages: 10
Order Number: R40115
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Monday, August 16, 2010

Kenya: Current Conditions and the Challenges Ahead

Ted Dagne
Specialist in African Affairs


Kenya, a nation of about 36.9 million people, has been an important ally of the United States for decades. Kenya moved from a one-party state to a multi-party democracy in 1992. Kenyans voted in record numbers in the country's first multi-party election in almost 26 years. President Daniel arap Moi defeated opposition candidates by a small margin. In 1997, Kenya held its second multiparty elections, at the height of tensions between the opposition and the ruling party. President Moi was re-elected with 40% of the votes cast, while his nearest rival, Mwai Kibaki, won 31%. In the 2002 presidential and parliamentary elections, the opposition National Rainbow Coalition (NARC) defeated the ruling Kenya African National Union (KANU). In the presidential election, NARC leader Kibaki defeated Uhuru Kenyatta, the leader of KANU. 

On December 27, 2007, millions of Kenyans went to the polls in Kenya's fourth multi-party elections, with the hope of strengthening the institutions of democracy and, most important in the view of many observers, of bringing change. An estimated 14.2 million (82% of the total eligible voters) Kenyans were registered to vote, while 2,547 Parliamentary candidates were qualified to run in 210 constituencies, according to the Electoral Commission of Kenya (ECK). Nine candidates competed in the presidential election. The opposition reportedly made significant gains in the parliamentary elections. The ECK, however, hastily declared President Kibaki as the winner of the elections. Kibaki was quickly sworn in as president, while international and domestic election observers declared the elections as rigged and deeply flawed. 

Following the announcement of the election results, violence erupted in many parts of Kenya. More than 1,000 people have been killed and an estimated 350,000 reportedly displaced. In August 2008, the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR) released a report on the post-election violence. In early February, the opposition and the government began negotiations under the leadership of former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan. The two parties agreed to work together to end the violence, improve humanitarian conditions, and to write a new constitution within a year. In late February, the government and the opposition reached a powersharing arrangement. On March 18, 2008, the Kenya parliament unanimously approved the Agreement. On April 3, 2008, the parties agreed on a 40-member cabinet. But important reforms agreed to by the parties have yet to be implemented. The initial United States government reaction to the December elections was considered by some international observers as contradictory and seen by some Kenyans as being one-sided in favor of President Kibaki. On December 30, the United States government reportedly congratulated President Kibaki. Senior Bush Administration officials visited Kenya in an effort to resolve the crisis and provided support to Kofi Annan's mediation efforts. The Obama Administration has repeatedly pressed the Government of Kenya to implement reforms agreed to by the parties in 2008. In September 2009, Assistant Secretary of State for Africa, Johnnie Carson, sent a letter to 15 Kenyan officials warning them that reforms must be implemented. In April 2010, the Kenyan parliament passed a new draft constitution, and on August 4, 2010, Kenyans will vote in a referendum to approve or reject the new constitution.



Date of Report: July 29, 2010
Number of Pages: 16
Order Number: RL34378
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Monday, August 9, 2010

Uganda: Current Conditions and the Crisis in North Uganda


Ted Dagne
Specialist in African Affairs


In February 2006, Ugandans voted in the first multi-party elections in almost 26 years. President Yoweri Museveni and his ruling National Revolutionary Movement (NRM) parliamentary candidates won a decisive victory over opposition candidate Kizza Besigye and the Forum for Democracy Coalition. Nevertheless, poll results showed a notable decline in support for President Museveni from previous elections. International election observers did not condemn the election results, nor did they fully endorse the electoral process. Critics charged the government with intimidating the opposition during the pre-election period, and Besigye spent much of the campaign period in jail. The election followed a controversial move by the Ugandan parliament in July 2005 to remove the constitutional two-term limit on the presidency.

In the north, the government of Uganda has long fought the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA), an armed rebel group backed by the government of Sudan. Through over 20 years of civil war, the brutal insurgency has created a humanitarian crisis that has displaced over 1.5 million people and resulted in the abduction of over 20,000 children. In 2006-2008, the government of Uganda and the LRA were engaged in an effort to resolve the conflict peacefully. The Government of Southern Sudan (GOSS) mediated the talks. In August 2006, the government of Uganda and the LRA signed a Cessation of Hostilities Agreement. In February 2008, the parties agreed on a Permanent Ceasefire and amended the Agreement on Accountability and Reconciliation and Agreement on Comprehensive Solutions. However, the leader of the LRA, Joseph Kony, failed to show up for the final signing of the agreement on a number of occasions. The cessation of hostilities has allowed an estimated 1.4 million people to return to their homes. In November 2007, an LRA delegation went to Kampala for the first time and held talks with senior Ugandan officials. In late 2007, Vincent Otti, the Deputy Commander of the LRA, reportedly was killed in Uganda by Joseph Kony, the head of the LRA. In December 2009, the Deputy Commander of the LRA, Bok Abudema, was killed by Ugandan forces in Central African Republic.

In late October 2007, President Museveni visited Washington, DC, and met with President Bush and other senior administration officials. President Museveni also met with several Members of Congress. During his visit, President Museveni discussed a wide range of issues, including U.S.- Uganda relations, the crises in Somalia and Darfur, trade, and HIV/AIDS. Uganda deployed an estimated 2,700 peacekeeping troops to Somalia, shortly after Ethiopian forces invaded Mogadishu and installed the Transitional Federal Government (TFG). As of July 2010, more than 20 members of the Ugandan peacekeeping forces have been killed.

On July 11, 2010, the Somali terrorist group, Al-Shabaab, carried out multiple suicide bombings in Kampala, Uganda. An estimated 76 people, including one American, were killed and more than 80 injured. The United Nations, the African Union, and the United States condemned the terrorist attacks. More than 20 suspects are currently in prison.



Date of Report: July 30, 2010
Number of Pages: 38
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Monday, August 2, 2010

Guinea: Background and Relations with the United States


Alexis Arieff Analyst in African Affairs

Nicolas Cook
Specialist in African Affairs


Guinea is a former French colony on West Africa's Atlantic coast, with a population of about 10 million. It is rich in natural resources but characterized by widespread poverty and limited socioeconomic development. While Guinea has experienced regular episodes of internal political turmoil, it was considered a locus of relative stability during much of the past two decades, a period during which each of its six neighbors suffered one or more armed internal conflicts. At the same time, democratic progress was limited, while popular discontent with the government rose along with instability within the sizable armed forces.

The past two years have seen a series of deep changes in Guinea's political landscape, a new experience for a country that had only two presidents in the first fifty years after independence in 1958. On June 27, 2010, Guineans voted in the country's first presidential election organized by an independent electoral commission and without an incumbent candidate. A run-off vote between two front-runner candidates is slated for early August, after being briefly postponed as a result of legal challenges to the first-round results. The presidential election is expected to bring an end to a military-led transitional government, formed in early 2010, which in turn succeeded a military junta that seized power in December 2008 upon the death of longtime president Lansana Conté. The junta dissolved the constitution and legislature, appointed a civilian prime minister, and promised to hold presidential and legislative elections. Elections were repeatedly postponed, however. On September 28, 2009, Guinean security forces opened fire on thousands of civilian protesters in the capital, Conakry, killing at least 150 and wounding many more.

On December 3, 2009, junta leader Capt. Moussa Dadis Camara was evacuated from the country after he was shot and wounded by his chief bodyguard. Dadis Camara's exit paved the way for the formation of the transitional government, which is headed by Gen. Sekouba Konaté, a senior junta official. A longtime opposition leader, Jean-Marie Doré, serves as prime minister.

The United States suspended some development aid and all security assistance to Guinea in the wake of the 2008 coup. Neither U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) governance and humanitarian assistance programs, which comprised a substantial portion of the U.S. aid budget in Guinea before the coup, nor U.S. contributions toward Guinea's electoral process were affected by the suspension. In response to the military crackdown on opposition supporters in September 2009, the United States called for Dadis Camara to step down and announced targeted travel restrictions against CNDD members and selected associates. However, some restrictions on security assistance were rolled back during the transitional government, and bilateral aid is expected to increase if the transition to elected government is completed.

Related legislation during the 111th Congress includes H.Res. 1013 (Ros-Lehtinen) and S.Res. 345 (Boxer). This report focuses on recent events, U.S.-Guinea bilateral relations, and U.S. policy and assistance. It also provides background on Guinean history and politics. For further analysis of recent events, see CRS Report R41200, Guinea's New Transitional Government: Emerging Issues for U.S. Policy, by Alexis Arieff.



Date of Report: July 19, 2010
Number of Pages: 34
Order Number: R40703
 Price: $29.95


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