Conflict Trends in Africa, 1989–2021

PRIO Paper

Palik, Júlia; Anna Marie Obermeier & Siri Aas Rustad (2022) Conflict Trends in Africa, 1989–2021. PRIO Paper. Oslo: PRIO.

This PRIO Paper examines conflict trends in Africa between 1989 and 2021. 30 state-based conflicts were recorded in 2021, resulting in 19,325 battle-related deaths. 8,917 of these deaths were related to conflicts in Ethiopia between the government and the TPLF and OLA. Conflicts involving the Islamic State continued throughout nine African countries in 2021. State-based conflicts in Africa experienced higher rates of conflict recurrence than most other regions, which may point toward underlying incompatibilities and grievances not yet resolved by conflict parties. Non-state conflicts resulted in 3,498 battle-related deaths in 2021. Communal conflicts, a type of non-state conflict where incompatibilities are based on communal identity, remain the dominant form of non-state conflicts in Africa. Africa is the region with the greatest number of fatalities from one-sided violence. One-sided violence is primarily perpetrated by non-state actors in Africa, but government-perpetrated one-sided violence is on the rise. In 2021, non-state actor one-sided violence caused 1,720 fatalities, whereas government-perpetrated one-sided violence caused 2,450 fatalities.

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