Lecture on Violent Jihad and Counter-Terrorism: How are Tribal Relations Reshaped in Northern Mali?

February 26, 2018 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Sala del Capitolo, Badia Fiesolana
Via della Badia dei Roccettini
9, 50014 Fiesole FI
Sarah Katherine St John

Against a thematic backdrop provided by the recent publication of ‘Tribes and Global Jihadism’ (Hurst, 2017), edited by Virginie Collombier and Olivier Roy, MEDirections welcomes Dr. Yvan Guichaoua (Brussels School of International Studies, University of Kent) to give a lecture on how violent jihad and counter-terrorism impact tribal relations in Northern Mali.

Northern Mali’s tribal mosaic was, until the crisis erupted in 2012, governed through minimal state presence backed by a contested web of co-opted local notabilities. First separatist forces and then jihadi movements challenged this political order in a dramatic fashion. The occupation of Northern Mali by a jihadi coalition in 2012 reconfigured tribal economic and political positions. The French intervention in 2013, followed by a peace agreement promising peace dividends to signatories, then forced another re-alignment of positions.

How can these perpetually changing alliances be understood? Are they guided by a parochial logic and destroying tribal unity? This lecture aims to answer such questions to unpack how violent jihad and counter-terrorism reshape tribal relations.

This lecture is part of the workshop on Tribes and Global Jihadism, continuing on 27 February in the Cappella (Villa Schifanoia).

Yvan Guichaoua is a Lecturer in International Conflict Analysis at the Brussels School of international studies (University of Kent). He is a former teaching fellow at Yale University and research officer at the University of Oxford. He has been studying the dynamic of irregular armed groups in Nigeria, Côte d’Ivoire, Mali and Niger since 2004. Since 2007, Yvan Guichaoua has been studying Tuareg recurring rebellions in Niger and Mali and the rise of Jihadism in the Sahel. His works pays close attention to the complex interactions between entrepreneurs of violence and low level combatants shaping the success or failure of irregular armed groups as well as the forms of violence they perpetrate. His present research concerns interactions between insurgents, populations and foreign forces. Yvan Guichaoua is the author of numerous journal articles and book chapters and the editor of “Understanding Collective Political Violence” and co-editor of “The Developmental Challenges of Mining and Oil” (Palgrave-Macmillan).

Research interests: Political violence, dynamic of Irregular armed groups, rebel governance.

Main regional interests: Mali, Niger, Ivory Coast, Nigeria.

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