Weekly Analysis 26th February

  • 26 Feb 2016 13:11

The G4S Risk Analysis team produces weekly risk analysis pieces on current events pertinent to security and business operations. Please see below for excerpts of our weekly analysis for the week ending 26 February.

India: Caste protests prompt severe water shortages in New Delhi  

On 18 February, protests by members of the Jat caste broke out across Haryana state. Resultant clashes between protesters and security personnel in areas including Rohtak, Bhiwani, Jhajjar and Sonepat have killed 16 people and injured some 150 others. Transport across Haryana has been paralysed, with protesters blocking highways and railways across the state. While protests have largely abated, more than 10 million people in New Delhi have been left without access to water after demonstrators sabotaged pumping equipment at the Munak canal, which supplies approximately 60 percent of Delhi’s water. As of 22 February, security forces have regained control of the canal, however, the extent of the damage means that output is not anticipated to resume at normal levels until 26 February. To read more, sign up here

Libya: Sabratha IS airstrikes highlight critical border security failings 

A US airstrike hit a residential district of Sabratha, near the border with Tunisia, on 19 February, killing at least 30 suspected Islamic State (IS) militants, as well as two Serbian diplomats held hostage by the group. It is unclear if the bombing was a failed rescue attempt, or if US authorities were unware the Serbians were present when the operation was conducted. However, the precision airstrike is indicative of the US’s approach to IS in Libya as ground troops, once again, are unlikely to be deployed to counter the growing threat along the central coastline, leaving Libya to a similar, if not worse, fate as Syria and Iraq. To read more, sign up here

Uganda: Museveni retains power through suppressing opposition rival

President Yoweri Museveni has extended his 30-year rule in Uganda, winning a fifth term in office in the presidential election on 21 February with 60.8 percent of the vote. However, the victory has been overshadowed amid claims of electoral fraud, intimidation of voters and sporadic violence. To read more, sign up here

Bolivia: Evo Morales loses referendum on controversial fourth term 
President Evo Morales has lost a referendum held on 21 February that sought to determine whether he would be allowed to run for a fourth term in 2019. With 99 percent of votes counted, the electoral commission has confirmed that the “no” vote obtained 51.3 percent, while supporters of Morales’s initiative attained 48.7 percent. Morales’s first electoral defeat in a decade has demonstrated that the population remains highly divided and that social programmes fail to gather the same level of support they did a decade ago, as the region’s left-wing leaders continue to struggle to remain in power. To read more, sign up here

Peru: Oil spill causes water emergency in Amazon region  

Peru has experienced three major oil spills since the start of 2016, all of which have occurred along the main Northern Peruvian Pipeline (NPP). The spills have been located in the Amazon provinces of Bagua, Datem del Marañon and Jaen, where there is a record of strong opposition against extractive projects. The most recent spill has heavily contaminated both the Chiriaco and Morona rivers, cutting off water supplies to eight indigenous communities and prompting the health ministry to declare a 90-day water quality emergency, which requires municipal, provincial and regional authorities to tackle the extensive health risk posed by the spill and frequent potable water quality checks. To read more, sign up here

Ethiopia:  Government continues with brutal crackdown in Oromia  

On 23 February, Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn vowed to take decisive action against armed groups he accuses of fuelling protests in the restive Oromia region. Protests began in November 2015 against a government plan to expand the municipal boundaries of the capital, Addis Ababa, into the surrounding Oromia region. The government has responded to months of largely peaceful protests in the region with a violent crackdown, echoing unrest in 2014 following the original announcement of the Addis Ababa expansion plan. Activists claim more than 200 people have been killed by security forces since November 2015 and thousands more remain in detention without charge. The brutality of the government’s crackdown comes at a time when Ethiopia is attracting increased foreign investment. Despite the authoritarian nature of Ethiopia’s government, overseas manufacturing countries are relocating to the country, attracted by low labour costs, cheap power prices and supportive government policies. To read more, sign up here

Italy:  Crackdown on ‘Ndrangheta makes gradual progress 

The discovery and arrest of two senior mafia bosses living in mountain hideouts in early January suggests that the state’s campaign against the deeply-entrenched ‘Ndrangheta crime syndicate has begun to bear fruit. The arrest of Giuseppe Ferraro and Giuseppe Crea, two clan leaders, in the mountains of Reggio Calabria is constraining their units’ ability to operate and raising the prospect of successful prosecutions, casting new light onto the secretive group’s operating structure, which consists of semi-autonomous cells operating around the world. Nevertheless, the efforts of the police and prosecutors to break up the syndicate will continue to face deep challenges related to its wholesale penetration of the Calabria region and its continued control over Europe’s illicit drug trade. Without influential mafia members turning state’s evidence, the syndicate will maintain its hold over southern Italy, holding back investment and economic development. To read more, sign up here