ICRA Advisors

ICRA relies on a network of advisors with different expertise


Craig Oliphant OBE

Craig is a Senior Adviser at the Foreign Policy Centre, in London. He also works in the non-governmental sector, at the NGO Peaceful Change Initiative, where he focuses on protracted conflicts in the Black Sea region, including in the South Caucasus and Ukraine. Until 2011 his career was in the British diplomatic service and he was Head of Eastern Research Group at the FCO dealing with Russia and Eastern Europe.

Jonathan Cohen

Jonathan is Executive Director of Programmes of Conciliation Resources (CR), a post he took up in 2016. Over the past 25 years at Conciliation Resources, initially as Caucasus Director and then as Director of Programmes, Jonathan has supported dialogue and peacebuilding initiatives in contexts including the South Caucasus, Kashmir, the Philippines, Colombia, Ethiopia, and Nigeria.

Dr. Shanthie Mariet D’Souza

Shanthie is a Research Fellow at the Institute of South Asian Studies (ISAS), National University of Singapore. Her research interest and expertise include Afghan Insurgency and the Counter Insurgency campaign; Politics of Aid, Development and Security in Afghanistan; Terrorism and Strategies in Counter-Terrorism; United States Counterterrorism policy in South Asia; Armed Conflicts in South Asia; Conflict Management and Mediation.

Salma Malik

Salma is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Defence and Strategic Studies, Quaid-I-Azam University (QUA), Islamabad Pakistan. She specializes in the areas of War, Arms Control & Disarmament, Military Sociology, South Asian Affairs, and the research areas include; Conflict Management & Transformation, Human Security, CBMs & Micro-Disarmament.

Román D. Ortiz

Román works as a consultant and professor in Latin American security affairs. He has been an external adviser for Counterterrorism and Counternarcotics to Colombian security and defense institutions, including the Ministry of Defense, the General Command of the Military Forces, the Navy, and the National Police.

Virginia Comolli

Virginia is a Senior Expert at the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime (GI-TOC) where she focuses on environmental crime and illicit financial flows relating to environmental commodities. Prior to joining GI-TOC in 2020, she spent 14 years with The International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) in London.

Kamal Alam

Kamal is an advisor on aspects of conflict in the Middle East, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. He holds a BA degree in Politics & History of the Middle East with Arabic from Durham University. He also has an MA in Syrian History from Damascus University. He has acted as an advisor to countries involved in Afghanistan’s conflict. He advises on the relationship between the Arabs and the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.

John Heathershaw

John is a Professor of International Relations at the University of Exeter. His research addresses conflict, security, and development in authoritarian political environments, especially in post-Soviet Central Asia. He is the author of Dictators Without Borders and the principal investigator of an Anti-Corruption Evidence project on the transnational ties to democracies of elites from authoritarian states.


Dr. Antonio Giustozzi

Antonio is an independent researcher born in Ravenna, Italy, who took his Ph.D. at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and is currently a senior research fellow at RUSI.

Robin Seaword

Robin was most recently UK government defence reform advisor, embedded in the
Ukrainian MOD. He contributes to analysis and developments in the Balkans, the Caucasus and Central Asia, and the Russian sphere of influence.


Affan Burki

Affan is currently employed at the political-strategic level for NATO. He was commissioned as a British Army Officer in 2005 at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. He first deployed to Afghanistan in 2009, in support of the NATO International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) where he commanded a team of UK military mentors responsible for training the Afghan National Army (ANA). Following appointments in the British Army’s Land Stabilisation and Counterinsurgency Centre (LSCC) and the Army’s Collective Training Group (CTG) he retired from the Army and took up a role as a civilian defence consultant employed within the NATO ecosystem.

Maria Reha

Maria Reha has over 20 years of experience with UNAMA/Afghanistan, UNMIS/Sudan UNMISS/South Sudan, UNMIL/Liberia, UNDP/Afghanistan, UNDP/Liberia UN-WFP/Kabul, UN-WFP/Provincial level, UNOCHA, Oxfam-GB/Kabul, Oxfam-GB/Provincial level, CIR and the Afghan government.

She has developed five languages: Arabic, Urdu, Pushtu, and her mother tongue Dari/Persian.