NARCO ANALYSIS: A Political Crisis in Mauritania


In an effort to distinguish his administration from that of his predecessor, President Mohamed Ould Ghazouani sanctioned the formation of a parliamentary committee to investigate Mauritania’s financial stewardship during the previous administration. But the investigation is turning into a political crisis.

NARCO ANALYSIS: Algerian Energy Sector Changes


As soon as it was announced that Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune had replaced Mohamed Arkab at the Ministry of Energy with Abdelmadjid Attar, NARCO did a quick “Attar” search through its files. The search returned two files: a PDF of the original 1998 Production Sharing Contract (PSC) between Amoco and Sonatrach for Tigantourine; and a due diligence NARCO had undertaken for one of its clients.

NARCO ANALYSIS: What Happens in Algeria's South Matters


I’ve never been to Tin Zaouatine in Algeria’s deep south, where a young man was recently killed by Algerian security services. I suspect that most Algerians haven’t been there either. However, what happens in Algeria’s south matters, not just for the south, but for the rest of the country as well.

NARCO ANALYSIS: Droukdel's Death & an Era's End


Man alive. Droukdel is dead. For NARCO, this closes a long chapter. I still remember the day that Abdelmalek Droukdel took over the GSPC in Algeria in 2004.I had no idea back then that I would reckon with Droukdel for another 16 years...

NARCO ANALYSIS: Haftar's Retreat


After more than 14 months, Field Marshall General Khalifa Haftar, the head of the Libyan Arab Armed Forces (LAAF) has finally abandoned his offensive to capture Tripoli from forces allied with the Government of National Accord (GNA), led by Fayez Serraj.

NARCO CLOSEHOLD: What You Can & Can't Do in Algeria


Doing Algeria analysis is always meta. It’s analysis about analysis. Algeria analysis is rarely about a thing itself because it is so tricky to figure out what that thing might actually be. Algerian affairs are boggy and it’s hard to find your footing.

NARCO RoundUp (APR20)


First, a big Ramadan Karim to everyone who is observing the Holy Month in these difficult times. Second, the NARCO RoundUp is a little late this month due to having to catch up on 7th grade math and 4th grade vocabulary. The RoundUp returns to its standard three-country format this month.

NARCO CLOSEHOLD: Tell Me Something We Don't Already Know About Algeria


Everyone already knows a lot about Algeria. Everyone knows that Algeria has had a challenging 12 months, having undergone a contested political transition.Everyone knows that Algeria is facing an economic crisis, now exacerbated by an unprecedented collapse in crude prices and the coronavirus pandemic.

NARCO RoundUp (MAR20)


The March NARCO RoundUp departs from the standard format and is dedicated entirely to looking at how the novel coronavirus pandemic impacts Maghreb countries. Spoiler alert: badly (but to varying degrees of bad.)

NARCO RoundUp (FEB20)


Of all the years to have an extra day it had to be 2020. Algeria’s Hirak marked its first anniversary. It’s still going strong, but it’s not clear where it’s going. Libya is war, war, and more war. And Mauritania is moving definitively into a new(er) political era.



NARCO CLOSEHOLD is timely, actionable analysis derived from discreet sources. NARCO CLOSEHOLDs are crafted as events merit. They are available to NARCO's subscription and retainer clients and on a case-by-case basis.

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