André Bank / Yannick Deepen / Julia Grauvogel / Sabine Kurtenbach

COVID-19 and Violent Actors in the Global South: An Inter- and Cross-Regional Comparison

GIGA Working Papers | 2022

  • Abstract

    This Working Paper examines the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on state and non-state violent actors in the Global South. We provide an ACLED-based interregional map-ping of trends in Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East and North Africa, and sub-Saharan Africa. Cross-regional case comparisons shed further light on the similarities and differences of countries characterised by long-term armed conflict (Colombia, Iraq, Nigeria) or having transitioned from authoritarianism but facing inequality and political exclusion (Chile, Tunisia, South Africa). We identify a temporal variation: Initially, state armed actors’ new responsibilities to implement COVID-19–related control measures led to an increase in violence against civilians, but over time there was a decrease. We also find that COVID-19 had an early demobilising effect vis-à-vis protest and mob violence, a consequence of lockdowns and mobility restrictions. Yet, protest has quickly returned to pre-pandemic levels in many countries, underlining continued – sometimes aggravated –grievances. Moreover, different violent actors’ responses to the pandemic were decisively shaped by their respective conflict histories.


    GIGA Working Papers






    German Institute for Global and Area Studies (GIGA)



    Yannick Deepen

    Yannick Deepen

    Ehemals GIGA-Teammitglied


    GIGA Working Papers | 11.2023

    Coping with Complexity: Dealing with Non-State Armed Actors

    In Kriegen oder bewaffneten Konflikten sowie in gewalttätigen Kontexten werfen nichtstaatliche bewaffnete Akteure ernsthafte Probleme für die Friedenskonsolidierung, die demokratische Staatsführung und die nachhaltige Entwicklung auf. Diese Trendanalyse bildet überregionale Entwicklungen ab.

    Yannick Deepen

    Ehemals GIGA-Teammitglied


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