Monday, November 23, 2020

Syria Control Map & Report: Army Takes Last IS Stronghold - November 2020

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Research by Djordje Djukic. Map by onestopmap.com, Evan Centanni, and Djordje Djukic

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Syrian Civil War map: Territorial control in Syria in late November 2020 (Free Syrian Army rebels, Kurdish YPG, Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS / Al-Nusra Front), and others). Includes areas of dispersed operational presence for so-called Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL), Turkish/TFSA control, joint SDF-Assad control, US deconfliction zone, and Turkey-Russia security corridor, plus recent locations of conflict and territorial control changes, including Doubayat gas field, Al Karak, Morek, and more. Colorblind accessible. The so-called "Islamic State" (ISIS/ISIL) has lost control of a remote gas field that formed its last clearly-held territory in Syria. But it hasn't disappeared: The group has continued carrying out attacks in the central desert through a dispersed, mobile operations network.

See all this and more on the latest update to PolGeoNow's concise, professional Syrian Civil War control map, which includes a timeline of changes since our previous Syria map report in July, with sources cited.

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

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Exclusive map report includes:
  • Up-to-date illustration of current territorial control in Syria, color-coded for the Assad government, rebel groups, and the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). Colorblind accessible.
  • NEW: Pattern showing areas of "Islamic State" (ISIS/ISIL) dispersed operational presence now that the group has lost its last firmly-held territory.
  • Special symbols for joint Turkish/rebel control and joint SDF/government control in the border region
  • Extent of "security corridor" sponsored by Turkey and Russia in the rebel-held northwest
  • Outline showing approximate location of the one publicly-known US "deconfliction zone"
  • Special symbols indicating towns dominated by rebels of the former Al Qaeda Nusra Front (now Hayat Tahrir al-Sham or HTS) and by the Kurdish YPG militia (part of the SDF anti-"Islamic State" coalition)
  • Detailed indication of city-by-city control, including key towns and other locations important to current events
  • Locations of recent control changes and other important events, including Doubayat gas field, Al Karak, Morek, and more
  • Detailed timeline of important events and changes to territorial control since July 30, 2020, compiled by our Syria-Iraq expert, with links to sources.

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Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Guest Feature: Map of Control in Ethiopia's Tigray Conflict (November 18, 2020)

Today we're featuring a map created by a friend of PolGeoNow, Daniel from Passport Party, roughly illustrating territorial control in the new conflict in Ethiopia's Tigray state. For further updates to this map, follow Passport Party on Twitter.

Tigray control map: Rough illustration of territorial control in Ethiopia's Tigray war as known November 18, 2020, showing areas believed to have been captured by Ethiopian government forces as well as areas occupied along the disputed border with Eritrea.
Rough map of territorial control in Ethiopia's 2020 Tigray conflict, by Daniel of Passport Party (used with permission).

 

Ethiopia Conflict: Tigray Control Map by Passport Party

On November 4, 2020, a new armed conflict broke out between Ethiopia's central government and the government of Tigray, a regional state within Ethiopia. Details since then have been difficult to track down because of a government-imposed communications blackout in the region, and at PolGeoNow we've been too busy so far to create our own control map. 

Fortunately, our friend Daniel from Passport Party has managed to create a rough map his own, drawing from a carefully-curated network of sources with local ties, along with what scant media reports are available. Though Daniel warns that a map like this can't be completely reliable under the circumstances, this is our pick for best of the maps that we've seen.

Daniel has graciously offered us permission to feature the latest version of his map here, and for further map updates on the rapidly-changing situation, you can check the Passport Party Twitter feed. Keep reading for a brief outline of the situation, and for more details on the sources used in creating this map.

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Nagorno-Karabakh Control Map & Timeline: Peace Deal Reached - November 10, 2020 (Subscription)

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Map by Evan Centanni, Djordje Djukic, Bourrichon, and Lesqual

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Preview thumbnail of Nagorno-Karabakh control map, showing territorial claims and control in the Azerbaijan-Armenia war, including the self-proclaimed Republic of Artsakh. Updated to November 10, 2020, the date when the Russia-brokered ceasefire went into effect. Colorblind accessible.
The six-week war between Azerbaijan and the Armenia-backed, self-proclaimed Republic of Artsakh has come screeching to a halt with a new Russia-brokered peace agreement. Azerbaijan has captured ever-bigger sections of the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region, and will hold onto them under the terms of the new deal.

See all this and more on the latest update to PolGeoNow's concise, professional map of control in the Armenia-Azerbaijan war, which includes a timeline of territorial changes and key events since our previous Nagorno-Karabakh map report of October 25, with sources cited.

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Exclusive map report includes:

  • Up-to-date illustration of current territorial control in Azerbaijan, Armenia, and the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region, including the self-proclaimed Republic of Artsakh. Areas of mixed or unclear control indicated separately. Colorblind accessible. 
  • Claimed borders of the Republic of Artsakh, as well as the former extent of the Soviet-era Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Oblast (NKAO).
  • Indication of town-by-town control along the frontlines.
  • Locations of recent fighting and other important events, including Shusha, Qubadli, Lachin, and more.
  • Detailed timeline of territorial control changes and key military/political developments since October 25, 2020, with sources cited. 

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Monday, November 2, 2020

3 Election Day Referendums that Could Change US Geography (Updated with Results)

Update: As of the earliest hours of November 4, the majority of votes for all three geography-related referendums have been counted. Scroll down to the bottom of each section for details of the partial results! Update 2: Final results are in for Rhode Island (see below). Update 3: Mississippi results are nearly complete, with only a small shift in the final numbers, while vote counting appears to have finished in Puerto Rico (see below). Update 4: As of Nov. 16, the results of the Rhode Island and Mississippi referendums haven't yet gone into effect, since it's taking longer than usual to certify the election results (see below for details).

Map of the United States, showing the 50 states and the District of Columbia (DC)
The US has 50 states...for now. (Map from Wikimedia Commons; CC BY-SA)
 

US Voters to Decide in Geography-related Referendums

This Tuesday - November 3, 2020 - is election day in the United States. And while presidential rivals Donald Trump and Joe Biden have dominated the news, Americans will also be voting (or have already voted) in thousands of other elections for national, state, and local politicians, plus referendums on state and local issues.

The US has no process for nationwide referendums, but statewide referendums - often known as "ballot measures", "propositions", or just "questions" - are common. They also exist at many lower levels of government, and in territories that aren't part of any state, like the national capital district and overseas dependencies. This Tuesday, there will be 120 statewide referendums, all held within 32 of the country's 50 states, plus 3 referendums at the top level of government for other territories.

While most of these votes are on issues like taxation, election rules, and drug laws, three are of special interest to geography fans:

Saturday, October 31, 2020

Yemen Control Map & Report - October 2020

(To see other maps in this series, view all Yemen articles on PolGeoNow.)

Map of what's happening in Yemen as of October 2020, including territorial control for the unrecognized Houthi government, president-in-exile Hadi and his allies in the Saudi-led coalition, the UAE-backed southern separatist Southern Transitional Council (STC), and Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP). Includes recent locations of fighting and other events, including Al Amud, Al Khanjar base, Durayhimi, and more.
Map by Evan Centanni and Djordje Djukic, from base map by Koen Adams of onestopmap.com.
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Timeline by Djordje Djukic

Houthi Control Expanding

In the two months since PolGeoNow's previous Yemen control map report, Houthi fighters have continued their gradual advance against forces loyal to the Saudi-backed, internationally-recognized government of President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi. Most of the changes have taken place in Marib province, east of the capital, where the Houthis have expanded their control of the province's western and southern reaches. Meanwhile, southern separatists and Al Qaeda fighters continue to govern other parts of the country relatively undisturbed.