News

2016

The director's book, The Jihadist Threat, was shortlisted for the British Army Military Book of the Year, 2016.

2015

Visiting the Pyramids Pre-Book Launch Greeting

In April 2015 Paul Moorcraft went to Khartoum to lecture at universities and to launch the Sudanese version of his book on the country’s military history and President al-Bashir’s role in that history. He also took the opportunity to visit the unspoiled pyramids north of Khartoum.

In May the director and cameraman Irwin Armstrong spent a week filming in Sri Lanka and the Maldives to make a documentary about the unjust imprisonment of former Maldivian president, Mohamed Nasheed.

Director's News

2014

In January 2014, Professor Moorcraft spent a week in Khartoum interviewing President Omar al-Bashir and his family for his book on Sudan.

In February 2014, the director returned to Columbo to launch the paperback version of his book on Sri Lanka's long war.

In March 2014, Professor Moorcraft visited the Doon school, India’s version of Eton, as well as the Indian Military Academy, the equivalent of Sandhurst.

Media Role

Since its foundation in 2004, the Centre has been asked to comment on almost a daily basis in print and broadcast media. The main TV outlets have been Al Jazeera, Sky and BBC News 24. The main radio work has been on BBC radio, especially Radio Wales and BBC Radio 2, especially the popular Jeremy Vine Show. The director appeared regularly too on London's LBC radio channel as well as occasional forays into Australia's ABC, and Voice of Russia. The director's print articles appeared in Johannesburg's Business Day regularly, but also in the Washington Times, the Western Mail, the Scotsman, the Guardian etc as well as specialist journals such as the RUSI Journal.

The director also acts as consultant on programmes, for example, the recent BBC Radio 4 programme (September 2014) 'The Reunion', on the transition from Rhodesia to Zimbabwe.

2011-2012

The Centre was very active in Sri Lanka in this period, returning regularly to Sri Lanka to visit major sites of the conflict, as well to visit minefield clearance, IDP camps and prisons. The President of Sri Lanka, Mahinda Rajapaksa was interviewed on a number of occasions as well as his senior military commanders and intelligence chiefs. Professor Moorcraft also gained rare access to 'K P', Kumaran Pathmanathan) the controversial successor to the leadership of the Tamil Tigers. Although under house arrest, he was very open in his long discussions.

The director was subsequently asked to address the UK Parliamentary All-party Committee on Sri Lanka on issues of human rights abuses, especially in the final stages of the civil war in 2009.

The Maldives

The Centre had spent much time working with the President of the Maldives, Mohamed Nasheed on his programme of democracy. When he was deposed in a 'coup', the Centre spent much time lobbying, particularly Commonwealth states, to help restore full democracy to the beautiful islands.

2011 - South Sudan Referendum

In January 2011, Paul Moorcraft joined Sam Dealey, former editor of the Washington Times, Irwin Armstrong and Martin Stalker of Visionworks, Northern Ireland, to cover the referendum in South Sudan. They traversed much of the south in 4x4s and by a variety of boats on the White Nile.

The election was free and fair and largely peaceful. Over 99 per cent of voters opted for independence scheduled for July 2011. Irwin and Martin produced a number of films on the referendum: See publications page for a preview.

No one was injured or arrested. The threat came from aggressive mango trees. Martin, who had served a number of tours with the Royal Marines, said: 'It would be funny - after surviving Afghanistan and Iraq - if it's death by mango.'

2010 - Sudan elections

The CFPA sent 50 British observers to Sudan. Three long-term observers deployed in February 2010. Six observers joined them on 23 March. Three teams worked in greater Khartoum, while one team visited Blue Nile state. The five-person deployment to Darfur was cancelled because of security concerns; the EU team was also removed from Darfur at the same time. The majority of CFPA observers went to the south. Teams were based in Juba, Malakal, Wau and Bentiu. In addition, a roving team covered large parts of the more rural areas.

The preliminary report produced by the team noted many flaws, both procedural and structural, but considered the elections a credible step in the transition to political pluralism. It was judged an important part of the peace process, especially bearing in mind the long civil war, the lack of a democratic tradition and widespread illiteracy, especially in the south. For the full report click here

The CFPA mission, headed by Professor Moorcraft, was deemed a success, until disaster struck in the form of volcanic ash. Many members of the mission were delayed in Khartoum for up to ten days, while others sought their own way back to London. Despite this, many team members volunteered for inclusion in the referendum in 2011.

The Centre to observe 2010 Sudan elections

The CFPA has applied for and been granted observer status by the Sudan National Electoral Commission to observe the presidential and parliamentary elections in Sudan in April 2010. These elections form part of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement which ended Africa's longest-running civil war in Sudan.

Sudan ChildThe Centre director, Professor Paul Moorcraft, visited Sudan in early February to consult with the NEC and leaders of all the major parties. In particular, the opposition groups expressed their full support for all external observers, including from the EU, AU and elsewhere. Both major parties in the National Unity Government have also welcomed the contribution of external bodies as a means of securing the successful implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement.

The CFPA observer group will include senior British academics, lawyers, election specialists and experts on Africa. The CFPA has set up offices in Khartoum and Juba.

The CFPA's final election report will be completed by the end of April 2010.

Professor Moorcraft said: "The Centre welcomes this opportunity to play a role in what will be an important election. The CPA and its implementation is crucial not just for Sudan but for the region and Africa."

Khartoum

The director visited Khartoum in the first week of April 2009 to lecture at the University of Khartoum, as well as address a pan-African trades union congress and an international students' conference. The director also spoke to senior ministers in the government of national unity about Sudan's relationship with the ICC. In addition, he attended a briefing by the Sudanese president at his official home in Khartoum.

Prosecuting Presidents: The Challenges of International Indictments of African Leaders

On 27 March 2009, the CFPA co-sponsored with the Royal United Services Institute an international conference in Whitehall, London. The conference, which played to a full house, discussed the implications of the International Criminal Court's prosecution of the Sudanese president, and the possible indictment of Robert Mugabe. The issues in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda were also discussed. International experts from Africa, US and Europe attended as well as 120 delegates and media. The various sides in the Sudanese internal conflicts, both on the panel and in the audience, made sure the debate was very lively.

International journalism

The director again contributed to Cardiff University's school of journalism by teaching on the MA course in International Journalism during February to May 2009.

Sri Lanka

The Centre has been monitoring events in Sri Lanka, especially the military progress of the government security forces in the recent offensive against the Tamil Tigers. The director had a meeting with the Deputy High Commissioner to London on 23 February 2009.

Punjab

The director met the chief minister of the Punjab, Mian Shahbaz Sharif, in London, on 7 February 2009.Chad

The Centre extended its interest in North Africa by meeting senior Chadian political leaders in January 2009.

International oil conferenc

In 20 November 2008, Paul Moorcraft delivered a lecture on "Conflict Zones and Oil Industry Implications" at the 7th London Oil Week conference at the Meridien Hotel, London, organised by Global Pacific and Partners.

Advanced Research and Assessment Group, Defence Academy

In late 2008 the director joined, on an occasional basis, ARAG, which brings together government, academic and military experts. Sponsored by the Defence Academy and meeting in the Royal College of Defence Studies in London, the director contributed to issues related to Sudan, China in Africa and Zimbabwe. ARAG has recently been renamed the Research and Assessment Branch.

Maldives: end of dictatorship

Director in MaldivesThe new president of the Maldives, Mohamed Nasheed, gave his first media interview (12 November 2008) on his first day in office to Paul Moorcraft, after inviting him the previous day to his inauguration. The interview was shown on More 4 News in the UK:

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid1184614595?bctid=3334783001

The Maldives achieved a first: a transition to multi-party democracy in a completely peaceful election in an Islamic nation. There is a lesson here for the so-called "long war".

Syria

The director attended a China-Arab friendship conference in Damascus on 27-28 October. The capital's main souk, by the way, is one of the most interesting, and authentic, in the Middle East. Syria looks like it is coming in from the cold, as far as relations with the West are concerned.

The Horn of Africa

The Centre co-sponsored with RUSI in Whitehall, London, a one-day international conference on 23 October 2008, entitled Crisis in the Horn of Africa. The event, with maximum attendance, concentrated on the threat of piracy in the region.

Zimbabwe

The director visited Zimbabwe and South Africa in June 2008 to talk to senior players in the drive to reconcile the crisis in Zimbabwe.

Book launch

On 23 May 2008, at RUSI, Whitehall, Paul Moorcraft and Peter McLaughlin gave a joint presentation on the background to the current crisis in Zimbabwe to launch their new book, The Rhodesian War – A Military History.

Sudanese-European Relation Forum, Khartoum

On 10 March 2008 the director presented a paper entitled "Out of Step with the Hyper power? The European Union and Sudan." The three-day conference, which included speakers from Europe and the USA as well as Sudan, was sponsored by the Sudanese Media Center.

"Zimbabwe: Crisis, Reconstruction and Security"

The director chaired the security sector of this conference held on 7 February 2008 at the Royal United Services Institute in Whitehall. The event was marked by heated debate about the policies of President Robert Mugabe.

Islamic political parties conference, The Hague

The Institute of Social Studies and The Netherlands Ministry of foreign Affairs organized a conference on "Islamic Political Parties, Movements, Conflict and Democracy" in The Hague, 21-22 January 2008. Paul Moorcraft presented a paper entitled "The Maldives: The Strange Case of Islamic Multi-party Liberal Democracy."

"Responding to Radicalisation"

The director gave an after-dinner speech at the Responding to Radicalisation conference on 29 January 2008. The conference, at Eynsham Hall, near Oxford, was organized by The Analysis Corporation.

"Post-Conflict Security, Justice and Reconciliation in Africa"

The Centre co-sponsored and co-chaired this conference in conjunction with the Royal United Services Institute, in Whitehall, on 26 November 2007. Speakers included Geofrey Mugumya (AU Commission), Professor Akua Kuenyehia (Vice President, ICC) Rakiya Omaar (Director African Rights, Kigali), Dr Caroline Ziemke (IDA, Washington) and Dr Knox Chitiyo, Head of Africa Programme, RUSI.

The key question was whether the International Criminal Court had been effective in Africa. It was suggested that indigenous systems, for example, the South African Truth and Reconciliation process, could complement what was often seen in Africa as Eurocentric approaches.

"Sorting the Tangled Relationship between the Military and the Media"

Paul Moorcraft chaired the Operational Security section of this conference held at RUSI, Whitehall, on 10 October 2007. Few punches were pulled as senior defence journalists and UK MoD officials engaged in debate.

Beijing conference

The Great Wall of ChinaOn 26 July 2007, the Centre co-sponsored with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences an international conference, "Symposium on China-Sudan Relations", in Beijing. The symposium brought together eminent Chinese, European and Sudanese scholars to discuss, inter alia, Darfur, oil politics and Chinese policy on Africa. A lively debate was spearheaded by an opponent of Khartoum, Professor Mohamed Salih, the Institute of Social Studies in The Hague, Professor Stephen Chan (LSE, SOAS) and Richard Dowden, director of the Royal African Society. Private meetings with senior Chinese experts on Africa also helped to produce a constructive dialogue which seemed to have a practical, and positive, impact on Chinese Darfur policy at the UN, and in Beijing's distancing itself from the Mugabe regime in Zimbabwe.

Professorship

In July 2007, Paul Moorcraft was made a visiting professor at Cardiff University's School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies.

Washington conference

Paul Moorcraft was the only British representative at a conference on Muslim-Government Partnerships in Washington on 19-21 March 2007. The event, attended by senior members of the CIA, FBI, DoD and Homeland Security departments as well Muslim leaders, was sponsored by the Institute of Defense Analyses and the International Institute for Islamic Thought. The conference was organised by IDA's Dr Caroline Ziemke.

Dr Moorcraft also separately lectured on Darfur at an IDA seminar, and on events in Palestine, Afghanistan and Iraq at the International Institute for Islamic Thought.

Cyprus

The Centre participated in a conference on Effective Risk Communication at a conference in Nicosia on 5-7 February 2007. It was sponsored by the Harvard University School of Public Health.

Oxford Union

Hands up for DarfurPaul Moorcraft took part in a debate on Darfur, chaired by Channel Four's Jon Snow, at the Oxford Union on 3 February 2007.

China

Paul Moorcraft delivered a conference lecture on 'A British Perspective on Sino-African Relations' on 18 December 2006 in Beijing. The conference was sponsored by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

The Maldives

The MaldivesThe Centre sent a film crew to monitor the pro-democracy demonstrations in the Maldives in November 2006. A part of their documentary was shown on Channel 4 News in London on 10 November.

Malé, the capital of Maldives

The Centre is keen to support the emergence of an effective multi-party system in the islands, which could form the first liberal democracy in an Islamic state.

Darfur conference with RUSI

Darfur ConflictThe Centre co-hosted with the Royal United Services Institute, the UK's most distinguished security think tank, a conference on the peace process in Darfur. It was held on 6 July 2006 at RUSI in Whitehall. About 200 people attended the successful event, including major players from all factions in the Darfur conflict.

Future of Nepal

The director was invited by the US State Department to give two presentations on security in Nepal to experts in Washington in May 2006.

Tswalu Dialogue

The Centre's director attended the Tswalu Dialogue in April 2006. This annual meeting of African leaders and experts on Africa is organised primarily by the Brenthurst Foundation. The four-day event at a luxury game lodge on the edge of the Kalahari desert is hosted by Jonathan Oppenheimer. The conference examined the nuances of African success stories compared with the decline of many of the economies on the continent.

Washington

The director attended a private-sector intelligence conference in Washington in February 2006, and also met senior government representatives and ambassadors to discuss the conflicts in the Horn of Africa and Nepal. He also gave a presentation on the war on terror to the Atlas Foundation, to tie in with the launch of The New Wars of the West, co-written and edited by Dr Moorcraft.

Ethiopia

In February 2006 a representative of the Centre met senior members of the government in Addis Ababa to discuss the continuing tension within the Horn of Africa.

World Summit Conferences

The Centre's director, Paul Moorcraft, chaired and moderated 'The 2005 European Cargo and Border Security Conference', held in Frankfurt in the Sheraton Hotel on 8-10 March. Over 140 delegates, sponsors and speakers attended the event, which was organised by the World Summits Organisation.

The Centre also provided a chairman for the 2005 Asian Cargo and Border Security Conference in Bangkok in October 2005, and a co-chairman for the 2006 European version of the conference held in Prague in February 2006.

Nepal

Nepalese SoldierIn November 2005, the Centre teamed up with a TV production company based in Belfast, to make a film on the war in Nepal. The Royal Nepalese Army provided unique access to some of the most inaccessible terrain in the Himalayas. The Centre deployed state-of-the-art HD technology to produce outstanding film material.

The Centre had previously visited Nepal in May 2005 and met many of the senior politicians and journalists to discuss the current insurgency. The director gave a series of lectures including to the Royal Nepalese Institute of International Affairs, universities, the military staff college and a talk at the British Embassy. He also met members of the General Staff of the Royal Nepalese Army and senior officers of the British Army working in Nepal. The Centre is concerned at the current political and military situation in the kingdom; these issues are to be discussed at a conference in London in 2007.

Sudan

A small team from the Centre visited Darfur and Khartoum in June/July 2005. Despite the tragic circumstances in Darfur, the team met many senior foreign diplomats and Sudanese politicians, from north and south, who were optimistic about the peace treaty ending 22 years of north-south conflict. Despite the death of the southern vice president, Dr John Garang, the team was assured that the peace process and new government would proceed according to the agreements made earlier in the year in Nairobi.

A representative of the Centre attended, as an observer, the 2nd African Regional Counter-Terrorism conference, held in Khartoum in September 2005.

Meetings

In June 2005, Dr Moorcraft had a one-hour meeting in London with Air Chief Marshal Sir Jock Stirrup, the Chief of the Air Staff, soon to become Chief of Defence Staff. 

The director travelled to Brussels for a personal interview with the Nato Secretary General, Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, on 25 July 2005. The interview was published in the Autumn issue of Defence International.

Cardiff University

Cardiff University's well-known Centre for Journalism Studies invited the director to give a series of lectures on war reporting for their MA in International Journalism. Dr Moorcraft gave ten lectures on the history of – and current developments in – the coverage of conflicts by the media. Over a three-month period (February–April 2005) the students discussed such topics as the Gulf wars, the war on terror and the Balkans. The director showed a wide range of TV material, including some of the documentaries he produced in Africa and the Middle East.

Darfur

In December 2004, the director and a film crew visited Darfur in western Sudan. Parts of their documentary were shown on UK's Channel 4 as well as TV stations in Germany and Holland.