Kaltoum Saleh, 18, is elated to graduate from her overcrowded high school in the remote Saharan town of Ubari, near the Algerian border.
Tunisian families have begun to dread knocks on their doors, or late-night phone calls, fearing that the messenger will bear the news that their son has been smuggled out of the country to join the “jihad” in Syria.
While the tenth anniversary last month of Washington’s invasion of Iraq provoked overwhelmingly negative reviews of the adventure except among its most die-hard neo-conservative proponents, a more recent - albeit far less dramatic and costly - intervention has faded almost completely from public notice.
In Libya, a dose of LSD or the painkiller tramadol costs 78 cents, and a joint of cannabis is 7.80 dollars. Here, drugs are affordable to the poor for a simple reason. “Slashing prices is a way to create demand and open up a market,” a Western diplomat tells IPS in Tripoli, the capital.
“We need a solution. The U.N. has created the problem, and they should do their work and fix it,” says Bright, a young Nigerian stuck in the Choucha refugee camp in Tunisia, a few kilometres from the Libyan border.
For Egypt’s commercial marine fishermen, making a living has never been more dangerous. Egyptian crews driven further afield in search of fish have faced pirate attacks, spent months in dingy foreign prisons, and come under fire from coast guard vessels. Dozens of fishermen have been held for ransom, abused by authorities, or shot and killed.
Having survived the announced end of the world on Dec. 21, we can now try to foretell our immediate future, based on geopolitical principles that will help us understand the overall shifts of global powers and assess the major risks and dangers.
As the Arab Spring enters its third year, new Arab democracies and the international community should reflect on several critical lessons from the past two years.
Safia’s six-year-old body is riddled with scars from the rocket that hit her home in February. With her immediate family all killed in the violent attack, this sole survivor smiles shyly as she visits the medics that fought to save her life.
A group of Tabu fighters with mud-splattered trucks rest on the outskirts of Zweila, a small historic slave-trade stop in Libya’s southwest Sahara.
The attacks on U.S. embassies in Libya and Egypt last month shocked and scared Americans, but the majority of Americans nevertheless recognise that the violence was the work of extremist minorities and not the majority of the population, according to a new poll.
Civilians in the town of Bani Walid, 170 km south-east of Tripoli, are facing a humanitarian crisis as Libyan security forces lay siege to the stronghold of Muammar Gaddafi supporters, cutting off water, food and medical supplies.
The Arab Spring is far from over. The protracted conflict in Syria continues to swallow lives while the international community, hamstrung by geopolitics, looks on; riots across the Muslim world following the release of a low-budget American movie that is disrespctful of the Prophet Muhammad resulted in the death of U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens in Libya; Tunisia and Egypt continue to struggle with post-revolutionary economies; and a string of democratically elected Islamist governments has taken root in newly-liberated countries throughout the region.
Farrah Hamary looks the picture of despair as sweat trickles down his face in Tripoli’s heat and humidity. Hamary is too afraid to give his full name or to allow his picture to be taken.
It could be premature to believe that the storming of Islamist militia bases by Benghazi citizens on Friday could spell the end for Libya’s Islamist militants. Just as it was premature to claim when moderate Libyan political parties took the majority of votes during the July elections that Libya had bucked the Islamist trend sweeping the region.