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GCN’s Security Brief: NATO Awakens, #thisflagmovement and other stories


GCN’s Security Brief: NATO Awakens, #thisflagmovement and other stories


This week saw the unfolding of the aftereffects of the failed military coup in Turkey. Reports state that more than 60,000 individuals including members of the armed forces, police and academia have been suspended detained or placed under investigation. The stories we have selected this week highlights the difficulty of geographical location,  it’s potential impacts on democracy in the state and on nuclear weapons.

Other stories from Europe include an analysis of British policy towards tackling rising extremism in the country and insights into the July 22nd attack on the Olympia shopping centre in Munich. We have also included a 2014 article (following the attack at the National War Memorial in Ottawa) on the link between mental illness and terrorism.


this-flag#ThisFlagMovement is a citizen’s movement challenging the incompetence and mismanagement of resources by President Mugabe is gaining traction in Zimbabwe. Can this movement disrupt the status quo? And in Kenya, the government wants to shut down the Dadaab, the world’s largest refugee camp, citing security concerns. The camp houses more than 200,000 refugees, mainly from South Soudan, which the Kenyan government thinks could be susceptible to radicalization by al- shabaab. And the President of Burundi speaks out before the elections which could plague his country into civil war.

South Asia

As riots and violence continue in the Kashmir valley, the Indian Home Minister visited Srinagar to assess the situation. Rather than calling for dialog, he asked Pakistan to “change its mindset” about Kashmir. On Thursday following the victory of the Pakistan Muslim League in the Azad Jammu and Kashmir assembly election, Pakistan Prime Minister said “We are waiting for the day (when) Kashmir becomes (a part of) Pakistan.” Will his dream be realized?

Earlier this week a bomb blast during a protest killed 80 and left 231 people injured in Kabul.

Asia Pacific

Last week Manila won a landmark victory against China in the ruling of its sovereign rights to drill for off-shore oil and natural gas by the Permanent Court of Arbitration. As the Philippine economy continues to grow and current domestic resources becoming scarce, it is essential for them to start finding alternatives. However, China is not easing up on their presence in the area.

  1. The Philippines Despite Legal Victory in South China Sea, Philippines’ Oil Remains in Troubled Waters
  2. The South China Sea dispute


Last week, following the NATO summit in Warsaw, troops were deployed to reassure allies and signal a show of support to Russia. This week following the anointment Donald Trump as the Republican nominee for President of the U.S. he called for NATO countries to increase their financial contribution to the alliance or risk losing U.S. support. What will this mean for the region?

  1. NATO Shmato?
  2. NATO and Russia: In search of a dialogue 


Secretary John Kerry is “hopeful” that a U.S.-proposed plan for counterterrorism coordination with Russia in Syria will bear fruit. Unfortunately, not too much is known about this secret plan.

That’s all for this week.

M. Sudhir Selvaraj

M. Sudhir Selvaraj writes the Weekly Security Brief for GCN. He is a fellow with the Oxford Centre for Religion and Public Life. His interests lie in security of religious minorities, secularism, U.S. foreign policy and politics of South Asia. He is currently pursuing his doctoral studies at King’s College London. He has a master’s (with distinction) in International Relations from the Department of War Studies, King’s College London and graduated cum laude (with honors) from Concordia College, Minnesota with majors in Political Science and Global Studies and a minor in Business.

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