The first in a new series of monthly political and security risk briefings that have replaced our weekly updates. This month: civilian rule returns to Burkina Faso but armed forces retain considerable power; concern over territorial expansion after Russia signs treaty with Georgian breakaway territory of Abkhazia; conflict with Islamic State in Syria becomes increasingly complex; and more.
Political and security risk updates from the Open Briefing intelligence unit. US president sheds light on strategic interests in the Asia-Pacific during regional tour, peace talks between Israel and Palestinian Authority come to halt following reconciliation agreement between Fatah and Hamas, Russian president holds special meeting on Arctic policy, and more.
Political and security risk updates from the Open Briefing intelligence unit. South Sudan government and rebel forces sign ceasefire agreement, India and Japan seek agreement on civilian nuclear cooperation, the IMO finalises draft Polar Code for Arctic shipping, and more.
Political and security risk updates from the Open Briefing intelligence unit. Ugandan Army helping South Sudan fight rebels, Ukraine passes anti-protest legislation, new US Navy Arctic strategy calls for more icebreakers, and more.
Open Briefing: Reports that construction of an alternative oil pipeline from South Sudan to Port Lamu, Kenya, will begin in October 2013 are overly optimistic and on-schedule pipeline construction is unlikely. However, Juba is highly likely to continue to seek alternatives to the existing pipeline to Port Sudan, Sudan.
Open Briefing: Sudan's economy faces potential collapse. However, its current risk profile will deter many lenders from issuing new loans. As such, debt relief will most likely be the dominant form of any financial relief provided to Sudan.
Open Briefing: The recent agreements between Sudan and South Sudan will take some time to have an impact on the ground and the security threats to UN and INGO staff will, therefore, continue for at least six to 12 months.