The Palgrave Handbook of Disciplinary and Regional Approaches to Peace

pp 299-311

Peace in West Africa

  • Patrick Tom


The end of the Cold War witnessed many states in Africa experiencing military coups, attempted coups, civil strife and violent internal conflicts posing new challenges to the continent, with West Africa being among the most affected sub-regions. West Africa has proved to be one of the poorest and most unstable sub-regions in the world,1 and a major site and arena of some of the most brutal conflicts in the contemporary world. The instability and insecurity in the region have been attributed to challenges of poverty, human rights abuses, poor governance, political exclusion, endemic economic and political corruption, and weak statehood.