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democracy

The situation in Nicaragua has taken a dark turn in recent months. President Daniel Ortega's growing authoritarian streak has led to months of protests against his rule - and a violent response from pro-government militias.

With hundreds dead and many more arrested, some observers fear the country is slipping towards a new civil war. On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at the political crisis in Nicaragua and what lies ahead for a country still recovering from a debilitating civil war in the 1980s.


European Press Agency

Two figures have dominated the politics of southern Africa in recent years. One is Zimbabwe’s 93-year-old President Robert Mugabe. The other is South Africa’s 75-year-old President Jacob Zuma.

Now Mugabe is in military custody after an apparent coup d’etat brought an end to his 37-year rule. Meanwhile Zuma is set to be replaced as the leader of the ruling African National Congress next month, and may be forced to step down from his eight-year-old presidency before the end of his term in 2019. On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at southern Africa in transition.


EPA

After more than 16 years in power, the Democratic Republic of Congo's President Joseph Kabila was to step down after his term expired in December.

Instead his government has repeatedly postponed elections, spurring violence across sub-Saharan Africa's largest country and raising fears that Kabila may not intend to relinquish power peacefully. 

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at rising tensions in a country still recovering from a horrific war. Also: an interview with the Congolese radio journalist who exposed the use of mass rape and sexual violence during Congo's civil war.


AP Photo

Until recently, Ethiopia has been hailed as an African success story. After a decade of strong economic growth, the country has begun to shed its image as a famine-struck wasteland.

But repression by Ethiopia’s authoritarian government has sparked demonstrations that have led to the deaths of hundreds of protesters this year.

The movement gained worldwide attention at the Rio Olympics when the country’s silver medal-winning marathon runner Feyisa Lilesa crossed his wrists above his head at the finish line in a symbol of the protest movement.

Updated at 8:30 a.m. ET

Hong Kong leader Leung Chun-ying is appealing to pro-democracy demonstrators who've brought parts of the Asian financial hub to a standstill in recent days to halt their campaign "immediately" because, he says, Beijing won't accede to their demands. But protesters have promised to announce a new phase of civil disobedience if reforms aren't forthcoming.

Thousands of pro-democracy protesters, wearing surgical masks and holding umbrellas to ward off tear gas lobbed by police, have continued to throng Hong Kong's Central business district and other areas of the city, calling on Beijing to make good on a promise to allow the former British colony to choose its next leader.

Organized mainly by a group calling itself "Occupy Central," the mass protest and the police pushback is being described as the worst unrest in the southern Chinese business hub since it was handed back to China in 1997.