Argument

Democracy Lab Weekly Brief, April 6, 2015

To keep up with Democracy Lab in real time, follow us on Twitter and Facebook. Mohamed Eljarh looks at life in Derna, the Islamic State’s stronghold in Libya. Cenk Sidar and Emre Tuncalp ask whether anyone in Turkey’s government is prepared to take serious steps to save the country’s ailing economy. Juan Nagel explains why ...

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To keep up with Democracy Lab in real time, follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Mohamed Eljarh looks at life in Derna, the Islamic State’s stronghold in Libya.

Cenk Sidar and Emre Tuncalp ask whether anyone in Turkey’s government is prepared to take serious steps to save the country’s ailing economy.

Juan Nagel explains why the latest U.S. sanctions against Venezuelan officials are actually far more effective than the conventional wisdom suggests.

Emanuel Stoakes reports on Bahrain’s continuing abuse of prisoners.

And Christian Caryl writes about the African legacy of deceased Singaporean statesman Lee Kuan Yew.

And now for this week’s recommended reads:

Writing for the Monkey Cage, Michael Miller argues that elections benefit citizens living in autocratic regimes — even when voting procedures don’t live up to the highest democratic standards. Also in the Monkey Cage, Seva Gunitsky shows how autocratic regimes have learned to use social media to strengthen their rule.

In the Washington Post, Robert Kagan and Michele Dunne fault the Obama administration for its support of Egypt’s strongman president, Abdel Fatah al-Sissi.

Writing for the American Interest, Democracy Lab contributor Samuel Tadros proposes a reform agenda for Egypt’s schools to address growing extremism and intolerance.

In U.N. Dispatch, Penelope Starr hails Professor Attahiru Jega, chairman of Nigeria’s election commission, for enabling a mostly fair and free election. Also in U.N. Dispatch, Mark Leon Goldberg warns that the war in Yemen is turning into a catastrophe for human rights. (In the photo, a supporter of Nigeria’s main opposition party waits for election results in Abuja.)

In Bloomberg View, Leonid Bershidsky profiles the young Ukrainians who are working to reform the country’s creaky public sector economy. The Economist reports on Ukraine’s struggle to curtail the power of oligarchs.

Writing for Foreign Policy, Jillian Keenan describes critical shortages of land that are crippling Burundi’s political and economic development.

In the Irish Times, Liz Alderman asks whether an upcoming visit to Moscow by Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras represents a pivot to the east in the wake of failed attempts to wrest more loans from Europe.

Photo credit: PIUS UTOMI EKPEI/AFP/Getty Images

Ilya Lozovsky is assistant editor of Democracy Lab. Prior to joining Foreign Policy, he worked as program officer for Eurasia at Freedom House, providing emergency support to human rights activists and organizations across that continent. @ichbinilya

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