John Campbell

Africa in Transition

Campbell tracks political and security developments across sub-Saharan Africa.

Posts by Category

Showing posts for "Iran"

South Africa: Nuclear Power and Politics

by John Campbell
A general view of part of the South African Petroleum Refinery (SAPREF) is seen in Durban November 29, 2011. (Siphiwe Sibeko/Courtesy Reuters) A general view of part of the South African Petroleum Refinery (SAPREF) is seen in Durban November 29, 2011. (Siphiwe Sibeko/Courtesy Reuters)

Traditionally, South Africa’s energy sources have been its large coal reserves (85 percent) and imported oil (10 percent), much of it from Iran. In addition, South Africa maintains the only nuclear power station on the African continent, Koeberg, near Cape Town. There are two reactors at Koeberg, which produce between 5 and 6 percent of South Africa’s energy. Read more »

Iran Now a Source for Ammunition in Africa

by John Campbell
M23:  A M23 rebel guards weapons returned by the government's army in Goma city November 21, 2012. (James Akena/Courtesy Reuters) M23: A M23 rebel guards weapons returned by the government's army in Goma city November 21, 2012. (James Akena/Courtesy Reuters)

C.J. Chivers has published a must-read article in the January 13 New York Times that shows that Iran has become an important supplier of small caliber ammunition to Africa. It is based on The Distribution of Iranian Ammunition in Africa, a report by Conflict Armament Research (CAR, a private British firm that tracks arms movements). Read more »

Iran, South Africa and the U.S.

by John Campbell
An oil rig lights up Cape Town harbour as the sun sets, August 6, 2011. (Mike Hutchings/Courtesy Reuters) An oil rig lights up Cape Town harbour as the sun sets, August 6, 2011. (Mike Hutchings/Courtesy Reuters)

I am at present in South Africa talking to people about a book I am writing on where the country is going. Iran is right at the top of the South Africa international relations conversation. What I have been hearing underscores the extent to which South Africa and United States seem to talk past each other. Read more »

South Africa: An Alternative to Iran Oil?

by John Campbell
Iranian President Mohammad Khatami (R) welcomes South African Foreign Minister Dlamini Zuma in Tehran, December 14, 2004. (Raheb Homavandi/Courtesy Reuters) Iranian President Mohammad Khatami (R) welcomes South African Foreign Minister Dlamini Zuma in Tehran, December 14, 2004. (Raheb Homavandi/Courtesy Reuters)

Reuters reports that on March 13, South Africa’s minister of energy, Elizabeth Dipuo Peters, said that South Africa is looking to have in place by the end of May a plan for an alternative to Iranian crude, suggesting Venezuela as a possibility. She told Reuters the United States is not pressuring South Africa to cut Iranian imports nor has Iran offered South Africa concessionary prices. U.S. pressure would be a red flag for parts of the ruling African National Congress that are suspicious of alleged Western “neo-colonialism” in Africa. Read more »

Iran in Africa

by John Campbell

An anti-Tehran human rights advocacy group, Iran180.org, has produced a two-minute video on the Iranian regime’s bloody meddling in Africa. It focuses on Tehran’s deal with  Sudan’s al-Bashir and the devastating consequences for Darfur; with Zimbabwe’s Mugabe whereby Iran supplies oil in exchange for uranium; and its involvement in the arms trade. Read more »