Youth, Arms and Drugs - Proximate Risks Surrounding the Elections in Liberia


  • Eldridge Adolfo

Publish date: 2010-12-20

Report number: FOI-R--3120--SE

Pages: 65

Written in: English


  • Truth and Reconciliation Commission
  • corruption
  • ethnicity
  • land
  • marmative power
  • vigilantes
  • illicit drugs
  • security sector reform


On commission from the Ministry of Defence, the FOI Studies in Africa Security Team have made an analysis of the current situation and security developments in four countries in the West African sub-Region. This analysis is a defence policy analysis that focuses on the current situation in Liberia and potential security developments over the next two years. The paper discusses the current situation in the country by looking at the political dynamics; the truth and reconciliation commission report and recommendations; corruption; ethnicity, land and religious tensions; the struggle for normative power; the economy including youth employment and trafficking in illicit drugs; and the security sector reform processes. The paper then identifies the proximate conflict risk factors including the elections in 2011; justice and impunity issues; civil security threats; land and ethnic tensions; and the vigilante/informal security operations. The paper also discusses some potential future security threats that appear in the form of youth unemployment and the illicit drugs and small arms trafficking in Liberia. The military and security capabilities to navigate these threats - both proximate and potential - are discussed in potential worst case security development scenarios that could be enacted in the next two years.

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