Solace Global – Weekly Risk Roundup – Week 21

Headlines From This Week 

  • Bombay Bhel Bombing – At least 15 people were wounded, three critically, when an improvised explosive device was detonated in an Indian restaurant in Mississauga, Canada, in the evening of 24 May. Two males, believed to have built and detonated the device, remain wanted by police. No links to terror or criminal groups has yet been confirmed, however the city has experienced a significant rise in hate crimes over the past two years.
  • Sandinista Clashes in Leon – Members of Nicaraguan Sandinista groups clashed with students staging a sit-in protest in Leon. At least 59 people were reported wounded during the violence. This marked the most recent development in the ongoing violence between supporters of the Ortega regime and a diverse mix of anti-government groups which has stretched on since mid-April. A Church-sponsored dialogue between the two sides also broke down on 24 May; violence and unrest appear likely to continue.
  • Armed Clashes and Kidnappings in Nigeria – Nigeria experienced a series of armed clashes over the past week, with unidentified gunmen clashing with security forces and attacking civilians in both Logo and Kaduna. In addition, on 20 May, at least 47 people were reported kidnapped on the highway between Birnin-Gwari and Kano. Despite Nigeria’s ongoing issues with the Boko Haram insurgency, these attacks have occurred in regions in which the group is not generally active. It appears likely that the incidents are the result of tribal tensions caused by friction between nomadic groups and settled communities.
  • Singapore Summit Cancelled – US President Trump withdrew from the proposed summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, scheduled to be held in Singapore on 12 June. The withdrawal appears to have been due to recent disclosures that China and North Korea have been engaged in significant talks prior to the summit, potentially in order to establish a unified stance against the US-South Korean alliance. This announcement followed North Korea’s highly publicised demolition of part of its nuclear test facility, although the destruction was not overseen by weapons experts.
  • Indian Ocean Cyclones – The Indian Ocean has experienced two significant cyclones during the last week, with Mekuna presently headed north for Salalah on the Omani coast, whilst Sagar struck Djibouti on 19 May, having moved through the Gulf of Aden. These storms have caused significant disruption to air and maritime traffic across the region, with Salalah airport remaining closed since 24 May. Cyclone Sagar’s landfall in Somaliland and Djibouti led to widespread damage and over 50 confirmed deaths, due primarily to widespread flash flooding.

What To Look Out For Next Week

  • Anti-Macron Protests – Protests against French President Emmanuel Macron’s policies are due to be held across a number of major cities on 26 May. The protests are being carried out by a loose coalition of opposition and industry groups opposed to Macron’s sweeping reforms to state industries and labour policy. Protests related to this movement have previously turned violent, and police may use forceful measures to restore order.
  • AfD Protests – The German far-right Alternative fur Deutschland party is scheduled to hold a demonstration in Berlin on 27 May. Anti-fascist groups intend to launch counter-protests with several thousand people, and 2,000 police officers have been assigned to secure the protests. The AfD are due to rally at Berlin central station at midday, before marching to the Brandenburg Gate. With such large crowds expected, and an array of disparate groups participating, isolated instances of violence are likely, despite the large police presence. Widespread violence, however, remains unlikely. Despite this, travellers are advised to avoid the area if possible.
  • Colombian Presidential Elections – The first round of the Colombian presidential election is due to take place on 27 May. If no single candidate wins an out-right majority, a second round will be held on 17 June. At present, of the six candidates contesting the vote, Ivan Duque is leading with 35 per cent in most polls, 10 per cent ahead of his closest rival. It appears unlikely, however, that he will secure a first-round win. In this case, the second-round outcome is less certain, as it remains unclear how those who supported discarded candidates in the first round will vote.
  • Armenian Republic Day – Armenia will celebrate Republic Day on 28 May, an event typically marked with fireworks, concerts, and parades to celebrate the country’s founding in 1918. The event this year is likely to lead to heightened levels of disruption as both the centenary of the nation’s foundation, and also due to the recent bout of political unrest, which essentially led to a bloodless revolution. Although unrest appears to have significantly reduced, there remains a possibility that violence may occur among large groups of people celebrating under the influence of alcohol.
  • French Open – The French Open tennis tournament is due to begin on 27 May and continue until 10 July. The event is held in the Stade Roland-Garros in Paris and is likely to lead to travel disruption throughout the surrounding area due to an influx of spectators. Enhanced security measures likely to be deployed to any significant sporting event.

 Significant Dates and Events

  • 26 May – Iceland – Municipal Elections
  • 25-27 May – Monaco – Formula One weekend
  • 26 May – Ukraine – UEFA Champion’s League Final, Kiev
  • 26 May – Georgia – Day of First Republic
  • 26 May – Italy – Air and rail workers to strike in Milan
  • 26 May – Albania – Anti-government protests due in Tirana
  • 26 May – Madagascar – Pro-government rallies planned in Antananarivo
  • 28 May – Azerbaijan – Republic Day
  • 28 May – Ethiopia – Downfall of the Derg – national holiday
  • 28 May – USA – Memorial Day
  • 29 May – Indonesia – Buddha’s birthday
  • 29 May – Malaysia – Wesak Day
  • 29 May – Nigeria – Democracy Day
  • 30 May – Anguilla – Anguilla national day
  • 30 May – Trinidad and Tobago – Indian Arrival Day, national holiday
  • 3031 MayGreece – Bus workers to strike in Athens
  • 30 May Nicaragua – “Mother’s of April” group seek to march in Managua
  • 31 May – Brunei – Armed Forces Day
  • 31 May – Togo – Opposition groups plan sit-ins in Lome
  • 31 May – Italy – Diamond League athletics to be hosted in Rome
  • 01 June – Bahamas – Labour Day
  • 01 June – Indonesia – Pancasila Day
  • 01 June – Kenya – Madaraka Day
  • 01 June – Samoa – Independence Day
  • 02 June – Brunei – Nuzul Al-Quran
  • 02 June – Italy – Republic Day
  • 04 June Hong Kong – Tiananmen vigil to be held in Victoria Park
  • 04 June Mexico – Teaching union to launch indefinite strike
Click the following link to download this report as a PDF:  Weekly Risk Roundup – Week 21 The Weekly Risk Roundup highlights significant events from the last week and what to look out for next week. Week 21 Weekly Risk Roundup was compiled by Solace Global’s in-house intelligence team.