In this edition of the Global Risk Bulletin, we look at the potential for violence and instability surrounding Thailand’s May 2023 elections, analyse the dynamics around the recent fighting in Sudan, and consider the ramifications of the recent mass unrest in France.
Deep seated: Thailand’s elections and prospects for political (in)stability
Longstanding tensions between rival political factions in Thailand have raised concerns that the upcoming elections may herald violence. Both the conservative and liberal parties have shown they have the ability to amass large demonstrations, with protest actions held at public locations, government buildings, educational institutions, and airports.
Sudan’s descent into conflict: Is the worst yet to come?
Fighting between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces broke out in Khartoum in April, with localised clashes also reported in other parts of the country. With both sides capable of prolonged conflict, and with little to suggest a compromised solution is likely, an escalation into civil war remains a distinct possibility.
Macron’s decline: Unrest in France
The French government’s decision to push through unpopular pension reforms has sparked months of protest in the country since January. Beyond the immediate disruptions caused by the unrest, societal and political divisions are likely to have longer-term implications for President Emmanuel Macron’s governance during the remainder of his tenure, as well as likely playing a key role in the 2027 presidential elections.