Chinese firms have pledged billions of dollars to develop maritime ports and related projects across the Indo-Pacific Region as part of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). This report analyzes Chinese rhetoric and the behavior of the Chinese state and the involved Chinese companies in these port projects using a sample of 15 China-funded port projects and three detailed deep dive case studies.
In this report, we conduct a system-level examination of the North Korean overseas financing and procurement system. Our paper finds that this system is centralized, limited, and vulnerable, and that its disruption should greatly increase the pressure on the Kim regime to return to the negotiating table.
In this report, we examine North Korea's foreign exchange system, focusing on the networks surrounding North Korea’s major foreign exchange banks, which have become a financial lifeline for the regime. Our report finds that this financial structure is reliant on a system that North Korea cannot control and is therefore vulnerable to systemic disruption.
The extinction of the vaquita porpoise is closely linked to the illicit trade in totoaba trafficking, which has grown increasingly professionalized and militarized with the entrance of organized criminal networks attracted by the prospect of a little-known fish bladder worth as much as its weight in cocaine.
In this report, we identify 562 ships, companies, and individuals within one degree of separation from known DPRK illicit and regime entities. Among these we identify key nodes for in-depth investigation, focusing in particular, on a Chinese trading conglomerate that has conducted over $500 million of trade with the DPRK in the past five years, including through subsidiaries and affiliates an additional $300 million with sanctioned Burmese and North Korean entities.
This report highlights the link between systemic corruption and violent conflict in South Sudan, including the mass atrocities committed during the civil war. The Sentry’s investigation focused on top officials identified by the United Nations and African Union as having command authority over military operations that have resulted in widespread human rights crimes since December 2013.
A campaign of hate speech is playing a key role in sustaining violence across Myanmar, driven in part at least by a network of ultra-nationalist monks organized as the “Ma Ba Tha”. This increasingly poisonous information communications landscape is creating grave risks for future mass violence against Myanmar's embattled Rohingya community
This report is intended to fill a critical knowledge gap needed for private-sector transport and payments businesses to better monitor their risk related to wildlife trafficking. It outlines context, identifies red flag indicators, high-risk jurisdictions and container profiles, and provides 7 key typologies with examples of wildlife TOC network activity.
Ivory trafficking organizations must source, consolidate, transport, and sell ivory along an extremely long and complex supply chain from the remotest corners of Africa thousands of miles to retail markets in Asia. Out of Africa finds that between 2009 and June 2014, transnational organized criminal networks trafficked as much as 170 tons of ivory, which could amount to as many as 229,729 elephants.
Elephant ivory poaching is no longer solely a conservation issue. As poaching reaches levels that threaten to render African elephants near-totally extinct within the next ten years, it also funds a wide range of destabilizing actors across Africa, with significant implications for human conflict. This report provides detailed case studies of how these profits empower a wide range of African conflict actors.
The report investigates a network of Ukraine-based individuals and logistics companies—referred to herein as the “Odessa Network”— that is responsible for transporting weapons out of Russia and Ukraine on behalf of government sellers. Evidence suggests that some of these companies may transport weapons to the Assad regime in Syria, among other notorious violators of human rights.