Piracy and smuggling are already a menace. Add a budding Islamist insurgency, and far-reaching implications may follow.
South Africa may be facing an unholy mix of insurgency, radicalism and major power competition in the Western Indian Ocean. Much attention is given to the rivalry between major naval powers operating in the Indian Ocean. This has included the dense concentration of international military forces in the Gulf of Aden, using the banner of maritime security, some of which may also include a spillover from China-US competition in the Western Pacific.
The National Security College (NSC), with the support of the Department of Defence, is leading a two-year research project on Australia’s Indo-Pacific strategy in the Indian Ocean. As a part of this project, this paper analyses South Africa’s interests in the Indian Ocean Region. This paper first appeared on the Lowy Institute’s ‘The Interpreter’ on 29 October 2020.
Photo courtesy Flickr user F Mira.