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Khabenskaya E.O. Relations Between Senegal and Republic of The Gambia: Experience and Perspective

Published in journal "Conflict Studies / nota bene", 2014-1 in rubric "Regional conflicts", pages 89-98.

Resume: The relations between Senegal with Gambia, an ex-colony of Great Britain, always were special, if not dramatic. Each of the four presidents of Senegal focused their efforts on strengthening the relations with this country, which is the smallest on the African continent, because of Gambia’s unique geographical position — within the territory of Senegal. This small states with a narrow coastal strip by Atlantic ocean (barely several dozens of kilometers) is located right at the center of Senegal, dividing Casamanse, its southern part, from the north. The methodological basis is systemic, structural- functional, comparative-historical, comparative-political, geopolitical and cultural-civilizational approaches, the methods of analysis, synthesis, induction, deduction, modeling and observation. The border areas between Senegal and Gambia are dominated by the Jola people. They were pulled into a prolonged conflict in Senegal’s southern part, Casamance. Over 30 years, this region is a «hot spot» of political instability in Southern Africa, a hotbed for a domestic conflict. Since 1982, a political organization called the Democratic Movement of Casamanse has become an actor, its most radical supporters demanding to secede from Senegal and to create an independent state. The Democratic Movement has broad support of the local population, especially the Jola.

Keywords: international relations, conflict studies, Africa, Gambia, Senegal, diplomacy, politics, interests, security.

DOI: 10.7256/.2014.1.13241

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