[in] focus

Reflecting on the International Committee of the Red Cross and South Africa’s humanitarian role in Somalia

SikhumbuzoThe Southern African Liaison Office (SALO) recently hosted the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) at an open dialogue reflecting on their humanitarian experiences in Somalia. The ICRC has maintained a humanitarian presence in Somalia since 1982. However, since 1994, its humanitarian delegation has been based in Nairobi, Kenya due to the escalation of the civil conflict. The ICRC has also worked with the Somali Red Crescent Society (SRCS) in attempts to implement many of its humanitarian activities inside Somalia.

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South China Sea Dispute; a Battle between David and Goliath

RemofiloeChina and the Philippines have been engaged in a tug of war over who has legitimate sovereignty over parts of the South China Sea1, an area that sees one-third of the world’s shipping pass through it and is believed to have huge oil and natural gas reserves under its seabed, from as far back as the 1970’s. This dispute has since escalated with the outgoing Filipino President, Benigno Aquino, filling an international legal case in 2013 against Beijing and China responding by reiterating its stance against third party interference.

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Rethinking the scope of South-South Co-operation in the wake of attacks on Africans in India

pooja JainThe murder of Congolese resident M K Olivier in India has given a jolt to the bonhomie of Africa-India relations. There have been attempts to temper this and the spate of other incidents against Africans in India as cases of urban violence and scuffles without having to do with racial prejudice1. Racial and urban violence cannot necessarily be dissociated from one another and in any case one does not stand as an alibi for the other. We argue that racism is not just ‘skin’ deep. It isn’t a superficial phenomenon arising simply from differences in physical appearance or culture. Racism is a complex phenomenon which comes from a self-induced image of the other against one’s own conception of grandeur.

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South Africa-Zimbabwe relations in the context of China’s growing footprint in Africa

PhilaniMthembu largeRelations between South Africa and Zimbabwe pose interesting questions about regional dynamics in Southern Africa in the context of China’s growing footprint on the African continent. Rather than describing the relationship, the following article suggests a way of understanding it in a changing global political landscape. It does this by presenting five key themes, namely 1) the Johannesburg FOCAC Summit in 2015, 2) China’s second Africa policy paper released prior to the summit, 3) the convergence of the inception of FOCAC and Zimbabwe’s Look East policy, 4) the role of emerging powers in establishing regional autonomy, and 5) the fallacy of using traditional International Relations lenses to explain the relationship between South Africa and Zimbabwe throughout the political crisis that unfolded.

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Here’s how we can counter xenophobia against African immigrants in India

13319787 992721420818562 6093145360813982811 nThe brutal murder of a young Congolese man, Masonda Ketanda Oliver followed closely by the four separate attacks on seven Africans near Chattarpur in south Delhi at the end of May, has blown the lid off the simmering pot of resentment against the treatment of Africans immigrants in India, especially the large student population. President Pranab Mukherjee condemned the attacks and said: “It would be most unfortunate if the people of India were to dilute our long tradition of friendship with the people of Africa and the welcome we have always extended to them in our country”.

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