Sunday, December 30, 2018

All About South Ossetia's 2017 Name Change

South Ossetia (purple) and Abkhazia (green) within the claimed borders of Georgia. Click to enlarge. Map by ChrisO based on UN map of Georgia (public domain; source).

Adding "State of Alania"

At PolGeoNow we promise to inform our readers any time one of the world's countries changes its name, even if it's just a modification to the country's official long name, or a switch in the name's preferred English translation.

But there was one name change we missed out on reporting last year - depending on what you consider a "country".

In April 2017, people in the disputed Republic of South Ossetia voted to change the self-declared country's full name to "The Republic of South Ossetia – the State of Alania". The name change referendum reportedly passed with about 80% of valid votes in favor, though many countries strongly condemned the whole process, seeing it as part of an ongoing Russia-led attempt to steal the region away from Georgia (the country, not the US state).

Map: Which Countries Recognized Abkhazia and South Ossetia in 2018?

This is our new, completely redesigned map of which countries consider disputed South Ossetia and Abkhazia to be independent from Georgia. From now on, PolGeoNow will report on any changes to Abkhazian or South Ossetian recognition with updates to this map.

Map of what countries recognize South Ossetia and Abkhazia as independent from Georgia in December 2018. Includes Russia, Nicaragua, Venezuela, Nauru, new recognizer Syria, disputed or withdrawn recognitions from Tuvalu and Vanuatu, and unrecognized countries Transistria, Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh), and Western Sahara whose self-proclaimed governments also recognize the so-called Georgian breakaways.(Colorblind accessible)
Click to enlarge. By Evan Centanni, modified from public domain blank world map.
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Friday, December 28, 2018

Syrian Civil War Map & Timeline: IS Loses Western Enclave - December 2018

(To see other maps in this series, view all Syria updates.)

Map of Syrian Civil War (Syria control map): Territorial control in Syria in December 2018, just before the US troop withdrawal (Free Syrian Army rebels, Kurdish YPG, Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS / Al-Nusra Front), Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL), and others). Includes US deconfliction zone and Turkey-Russia demilitarized buffer zone, plus recent locations of conflict and territorial control changes, such as Hajin, Al Safa, Baghuz, and more. Colorblind accessible.
Base map by Koen Adams of, with territorial control by Evan Centanni and Djordje Djukic.
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(Subscribers click here to view this article on the member site)

Timeline by Djordje Djukic

Syria: Where Things Stand Now

In the month and a half since our previous Syria control map report, the main territorial changes have been losses by the so-called "Islamic State" (IS; formerly ISIS/ISIL). The Assad government has eliminated the last pocket of IS control in western Syria, in the south's Al Safa area, and the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have recaptured the town of Hajin in the east, while also driving IS once again off of the Syria-Iraq border.

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Yemen Control Map & Report: Battle of Hodeida Begins - December 2018 (Subscription)


There are newer versions of this map available. To see them, view all Yemen articles on PolGeoNow.

Map of what is happening in Yemen as of December 6, 2018, including territorial control for the unrecognized Houthi government and former president Saleh's forces, president-in-exile Hadi and his allies in the Saudi-led coalition and Southern Movement, Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), and the so-called Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL). Includes recent locations of fighting, including Hodeida, Malahith, Baqim, and more. Colorblind accessible.
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Timeline by Djordje Djukic. Map by Evan Centanni, Djordje Djukic, and

After the pro-Hadi coalition's months of stop-and-go movement towards the Houthi-held port city of Hodeida, the battle has finally moved into the city itself. Meanwhile, fighting has also continued along the Saudi border.

See all this and more on the newest update to PolGeoNow's Yemen territorial control map, which includes a timeline of changes and important events since our previous Yemen map report in September.

This map and report are premium content available to paid subscribers of the PolGeoNow Conflict Mapping Service.

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Exclusive report includes:
  • Up-to-date map of current territorial control in Yemen, color-coded for the pro-Hadi coalition, Houthi forces, Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), and the so-called "Islamic State" (ISIS/ISIL)
  • Detailed indication of town-by-town control, including provincial boundaries, all major cities, and many smaller ones
  • Markers for recent areas of fighting, including Hodeida, Malahith, Baqim, and more
  • Timeline of changes to the situation since September 12, 2018, with links to sources


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Thursday, November 29, 2018

2014 Map of Taliban Control in Afghanistan

Welcome to PolGeoNow's brand new series of Afghanistan control maps! In the coming months, we'll publish more maps spanning the gap between 2014 and 2018, leading into routine updates of the current situation. To secure your access to all future installments, sign up now for our professional conflict map subscription service!

Where in Afghanistan is the war? Map of Taliban control in Afghanistan in April 2014, after the troop surge and before withdrawal was completed. Also marks areas of government control and unclear or mixed control. Includes all of Afghanistan's major cities, plus selected towns, including the four districts known to be controlled by the Taliban at the time: Dishu and Baghran in Helmand province, Kakar (Khak-e-Afghan) in Zabul province, and Nawa in Ghazni province. Colorblind accessible.
Basemap by Koen Adams of, with territorial control by Evan Centanni.
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(Subscribers click here to view this article on the member site)

Article by Evan Centanni

Afghanistan: Who Controlled What in 2014?

The date is April 5, 2014. It's been more than 12 years since a US-led invasion helped overthrow the Taliban's Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, a religious hardline government that ruled most of the mountainous country from 1996 to 2001. Its successor, the NATO-backed Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is voting today on a replacement for President Hamid Karzai, who has led the country ever since the Taliban government's fall in 2001.