Monday 29 May 2017
(Reuters (Eng) 05/24/17)
When U.S. President Donald Trump and other leaders of the world's seven major industrialized nations gather in Sicily on Friday, they will enjoy a spectacular view of the Mediterranean Sea, but won't get any glimpse of boats full of migrants. A common sight off Sicily in recent years, the authorities have banned all migrant landings on the island during the Group of Seven Summit for security reasons, telling rescue vessels that pick them up at sea to take them to the mainland during the two-day meeting. Out of sight does not mean out of mind. Italy chose to host the summit in Taormina, on the cliffs of eastern Sicily, to concentrate minds on Europe's migrant...
(Reuters (Eng) 05/23/17)
Fossils from Greece and Bulgaria of an ape-like creature that lived 7.2 million years ago may fundamentally alter the understanding of human origins, casting doubt on the view that the evolutionary lineage that led to people arose in Africa. Scientists said on Monday the creature, known as Graecopithecus freybergi and known only from a lower jawbone and an isolated tooth, may be the oldest-known member of the human lineage that began after an evolutionary split from the line that led to chimpanzees, our closest cousins. The jawbone, which included teeth, was unearthed in 1944 in Athens. The premolar was found in south-central Bulgaria in 2009. The researchers examined them using sophisticated new techniques including CT scans and established their age...
(AFP (eng) 05/22/17)
Angolan soldiers recruited by South Africa's apartheid government to fight against their homeland now live in squalor, forgotten and unwanted. Without healthcare, jobs or basic services, some 3,000 Angolan-born men call home the town of Pomfret in a far-flung northern corner of South Africa on the edge of the Kalahari Desert. Dilapidated buildings crumble by the side of the town's sun-baked main road, water and power are cut off, and the asbestos factory that once sustained the region was abandoned...
(Reuters (Eng) 05/20/17)
France will step up the fight against resurgent Islamist militants in north and west Africa and will work more closely with Germany to help the tinderbox region, President Emmanuel Macron said on his first trip outside Europe on Friday. Visiting Mali days after taking office, Macron vowed to keep French troops in the Sahel region until there was "no more Islamist terrorism" there. He said operations would be escalated in response to signs that militant groups were regrouping and uniting...
(AFP (eng) 05/17/17)
More than 1.4 million people in Angola, including many children, have been affected by a "chronic drought" that has increased the risk of disease, a UN report said Wednesday. Seven southern regions of Angola are affected, with the three border provinces of Cunene, Namibe and Huila hit the hardest. The UNICEF report said severe acute malnutrition rates in Cunene were at 3.6 percent, higher than the national average of one percent. The report said the El Nino weather phenomenon had...
(Reuters (Eng) 05/17/17)
Gay and lesbian Africans who fled abuse in their home countries face a "culture of disbelief" which makes their experience of seeking asylum in Britain traumatic, a Nigerian lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender rights (LGBT) campaigner said. Aderonke Apata, 50, who fled persecution in Nigeria, said the practice of assessing Africans' sexual orientation claims based on Western standards was problematic. "They expect an LGBT person to have used sex toys, to go to gay clubs," Apata, an asylum seeker who founded...
(AFP (eng) 05/13/17)
Hundreds of people from Democratic Republic of Congo's central Kasai region have been pouring into neighbouring Angola every day for more than a month to escape violence plaguing their homes. Some 20,000 people who have fled are now in or around three holding camps in Dundo in Angola's far north, living in increasingly dire conditions, according to the UN. And the flow of refugees shows no sign of abating. Patrice Ilunga managed to reach Mussungue with his children after four...
(AFP (eng) 05/13/17)
"It was flee or die," said Jean Makemissi, a refugee from the violence raging in Democratic Republic of Congo who has sought sanctuary in neighbouring Angola. "All of the villages in our region have been occupied by rebels. We left chaotically without taking anything with us. We were truly terrified," he said from the Mussungue camp in the extreme north of Angola, fear visibly etched on his face. "I'm scared for my children, I don't have any news on them...
(Reuters (Eng) 05/13/17)
Tackling climate change in Africa could help resolve multiple problems ravaging the continent, from drought to refugees and violence, the head of the African Union said on Friday. The mix of global warming with economic woes and political conflicts keeps peace from taking hold, said Moussa Faki Mahamat, the Union's new chairman, at Chatham House, an international think tank. "There is a link between climate change and prosperity, as well as peace, on the continent," Mahamat said in French with...
(Reuters (Eng) 05/10/17)
Thousands of people have fled fighting in Democratic Republic of Congo over the past month and sought refuge in neighboring Angola, a provincial governor said, an exodus that is straining resources in villages along the border. Ernesto Muangala said officials had counted more than 20,000 refugees in his Lunda Norte province, almost double the number recorded a month ago. All had fled clashes between Congolese government and militia forces that erupted in Congo's Kasai-Central province in July, then spread to...
(Fox News 05/10/17)
After five years of no major attacks on merchant vessels, piracy around the Horn of Africa seemed to be on hiatus. Acts of piracy in those treacherous waters have fallen sharply since 2012, according to statistics released by the United States Navy. The Navy credits aggressive patrolling by international forces and increased vigilance by the commercial shipping industry for the decrease. However, in the past month, Somali pirates have intercepted five ships, raising concerns that piracy has returned to the...
(Voice of America 05/03/17)
African military expenditures have finally slowed down after more than a decade of steady increases, according to a new report on global defense spending. The main reason, the report found, is a drop in oil prices. “The sharp decreases in oil prices has affected quite a number of African countries, namely South Sudan and Angola. This has kind of driven almost the entire regional trend,” said Nan Tian, a researcher at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute’s (SIPRI) Arms and...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/29/17)
The fall armyworm - which decimates fields as it marches ever forward - has spread to Angola as the caterpillar eats its way through southern Africa, a U.N. agency said. With Angola the latest country affected, only Lesotho and island nations in the region have escaped the pest, which devours crops in its path, U.N. officials said. Its spread has undermined hopes for a better harvest this year, they added, with swathes of southern, eastern and western Africa infested. "Now...
(Eye Witness News 04/28/17)
Officials said only Lesotho and island nations in the region have escaped the pest, which devours crops in its path. The fall armyworm - which decimates fields as it marches ever forward - has spread to Angola as the caterpillar eats its way through southern Africa, UN officials said on Thursday. With Angola the latest country affected, only Lesotho and island nations in the region have escaped the pest, which devours crops in its path, the officials said. Its spread...
(Voice of America 04/28/17)
A low-cost and widely available drug could save the lives of 1 in 3 mothers who would otherwise bleed to death after childbirth, according to a new study. Severe bleeding, known as postpartum hemorrhage, or PPH, is the leading cause of maternal death worldwide, killing more than 100,000 women every year. Even for mothers who survive, it is a painful and traumatic experience. The world's poorest countries, especially in Africa and India, are the worst hit. Drug from 1960s But...
(AFP (eng) 04/24/17)
A new malaria vaccine will be tested on a large scale in Kenya, Ghana and Malawi, the World Health Organization said Monday, with 360,000 children to be vaccinated between 2018 and 2020. The injectable vaccine RTS,S could provide limited protection against a disease that killed 429,000 people worldwide in 2015, with 92 percent of victims in Africa and two-thirds of them children under five. "The prospect of a malaria vaccine is great news. Information gathered in the pilot will help...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/22/17)
Thousands of refugees fleeing fighting between the army and armed groups in the central Democratic Republic of Congo have sought refuge in overcrowded villages across the border in Angola, the United Nations said on Friday. More than 11,000 refugees have fled Kasai-Central province amid clashes between local militias and Congolese forces that started last August, with some 9,000 arriving since the start of this month, the U.N. refugee agency (UNHCR) said. Refugees, about half of whom are children, are arriving in Angola in desperate conditions, many of them malnourished
(AFP (eng) 04/20/17)
Seven Angolan opposition activists have been sentenced to 45 days in jail over a protest calling for transparency in next year's election when veteran President Jose Eduardo dos Santos will stand down. The election, due to be held in August, will mark a new chapter for Angola as Dos Santos hands over power after ruling the oil-rich country since 1979. "The court condemns the accused to 45 days of imprisonment and a fine of 65,000 kwanzas ($390) for the offences...
(AFP (eng) 04/19/17)
Angola said Wednesday that it was reinforcing security patrols along its northern border through which thousands of refugees have fled violence in the Kasai region of the neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo. "The Angolan police has intensified patrols on the border with the Democratic Republic of the Congo to prevent the infiltration of armed groups into our national territory," police chief Ambrosio de Lemos said on public RNA radio. The DRC's four central provinces of Kasai, Kasai-Central, Kasai-Oriental and Lomami have been gripped by a violent uprising since last year. The fighting erupted after government forces last August killed tribal chief Jean Pierre Mpandi, also known as Kamwina Nsapu
(Voice of America 04/17/17)
The Italian coast guard says it has rescued nearly 6,000 migrants on the Mediterranean since Friday, underscoring the continued flow of people along this dangerous route. A group of Africans living in Europe visited Cameroon this week to launch a campaign against illegal migration. The group is called “No More Death in the Desert or on the Sea.” Its mission is simple: to educate youth in Africa about the harsh realities of illegal migration. "We want to tell them that...

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