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Public Meeting: Climate and Security in the Sahel Region

14 November 2019
The Hague, Netherlands

The public meeting is organised by the Netherlands Atlantic Youth and study association BASIS. Speakers are Clingendael's Senior Associate Fellow Tom Middendorp and ICCT's Senior Research Fellow Liesbeth van der Heide.

Drought, degradation and severe floods: climate change is increasingly becoming a security issue. The recent instabilities in the Sahel region, such as the uprisings in Mali and Nigeria and the civil war in Sudan, indicate a connection between climate change and security.

The UN Special Adviser of the Secretary-General for the Sahel, Ibrahim Thiaw, described the Sahel as "arguably one of the most vulnerable [regions] to climate change."

We will focus on the Sahel, a region that spreads from East to West in Africa and divides the continent between the desert in the North and its tropical grounds in the South. We will not only discuss the security implications of climate change for the Sahel, but also the implications for its surrounding regions such as North-Africa and the Mediterranean.


The former Chief of Defence of the Netherlands, General Tom Middendorp is our keynote speaker. As the ‘green general of the Netherlands’ he will share his views on the topic and experiences with climate security.

Our other speaker is Liesbeth van der Heide, a researcher and lecturer at the Institute of Security and Global Affairs (ISGA) at Leiden University. She also works as a Senior Research Fellow at the International Centre for Counter-Terrorism (ICCT) where she coordinates ICCT's activities in the field of (counter-) terrorism in prison. Her main field of interest is stability in the Sahel, primarily Mali.


You are most welcome to join 14 November at Leiden University Campus Wijnhaven in the Hague. Please register here.


[This description was taken from, and was first published by the Clingendael Netherlands Institute of International Relations.]