| Africatime
Thursday 23 February 2017
(AFP (eng) 02/20/17)
The mediator in Burundi's nearly two-year political crisis on Sunday asked regional leaders to call an urgent summit as deep discord and a government boycott hamper peace talks. Former Tanzanian president Benjamin Mkapa wrapped up four days of talks with some 30 Burundian representatives who agreed on the basic problems, but not how to resolve them. He was tasked with ending problems that erupted when President Pierre Nkurunziza ran for a third term in April 2015, sparking unrest which killed hundreds and left 400,000 displaced. The biggest hitch is Burundi's fierce opposition to the process as long as it includes exiled main opposition...
(AFP (eng) 02/18/17)
Burundi's government on Friday asked Tanzania to arrest several leaders of the main opposition attending peace talks in Arusha in a bid to resolve a nearly two-year political crisis. The talks are the latest effort by former Tanzanian president Benjamin Mkapa to mediate the crisis in neighbouring Burundi which erupted when President Pierre Nkurunziza decided to run for a third term in office in April 2015. But the government has once again refused to attend the talks and negotiate with the main umbrella opposition movement, the National Council for the Restoration of Arusha Agreement and Rule of Law (CNARED) -- which is exiled in Brussels. Bujumbura considers the party a "terrorist organisation" and accuses it of leading a coup plot...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/16/17)
The government of Burundi has said it will not attend peace talks scheduled to resume in Tanzania on Thursday, although the main opposition alliance has confirmed its participation. The talks are meant to find an end to a violent political crisis that began in 2015 after President Pierre Nkurunziza said he would seek a third term - a move opponents said violated the constitution and a peace deal that ended an ethnically charged civil war. "The government of Burundi finds...
(Xinhuanet 02/16/17)
The Burundian government has decided to boycott talks due in Arusha, Tanzania on Feb. 16-18, aimed at settling the east African country's 2015 crisis, the Burundian government said Wednesday night in a statement. "The Burundian government will not send delegates to the Arusha talks due on Feb. 16-18 this year. Burundian citizens need international solidarity, but they have the right to be respected during their choice in the dialogue process," Burundian Government Spokesman Philippe Nzobonariba said in the statement. According...
(AFP (eng) 02/15/17)
Burundi's government affirmed Tuesday it will shun peace talks with opposition figures planned for later this week in Tanzania, dragging out a political crisis that has stretched for over a year. The talks are intended to resolve deadly political violence that has rocked the tiny central Africa nation for over a year, killing at least 500 people. Violence erupted when President Pierre Nkurunziza decided to run for a third term in office in April 2015. At least 300,000 people have...
(Voice of America 02/14/17)
U.S. President Donald Trump made his first phone calls to African heads of state Monday, speaking with Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and South African President Jacob Zuma. Nigeria and South Africa said the calls were made at the request of the U.S. president, who until now has said little about Africa or African issues since assuming office last month. The Nigerian presidency said Trump and Buhari discussed issues of terrorism, and said Trump assured Buhari the United States is ready...
(Xinhuanet 02/03/17)
T20 Africa Conference, the meeting for the G20 think tanks and African countries, ended on Friday in Johannesburg with a commitment to accelerate cooperation between the G20 and Africa. The three-day conference aimed to chart a course for the future cooperation between Africa and the G20. The day ended with the formulation of the communique which will be given to the current G20 chair Germany. The communique will also be the reference for further discussion between Africa and T20. T20...
(Xinhuanet 02/01/17)
Newly elected senior officials of the African Union (AU) Commission, including Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson of the AU Commission, were sworn in on Tuesday at the conclusion of the 28th AU summit in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa. In addition to the two top officials, other officials took the oath for positions including, peace and security; political affairs; trade and industry; social affairs; infrastructure and energy; and rural economy and agriculture. The 28th AU summit also elected Alpha Conde, President of...
(Bloomberg 01/25/17)
Taiwan’s last two African allies have no plans to switch allegiances and break ties with Taipei as Beijing tries to woo the self-ruled island’s diplomatic partners. Burkina Faso won’t cut relations with Taiwan despite people and companies with links to China offering funding in return for recognition of the One-China principle, according to Foreign Minister Alpha Barry. Swaziland said its relationship with Taiwan is based on mutual interests, not on money. “We get outrageous proposals telling us, ‘if you sign...
(Xinhuanet 01/24/17)
Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza on Monday evening appointed Celestin Ndayizeye as the new Minister for Water, Environment, Territory Planning and Urbanization, said a presidential decree. Ndayizeye, a senator elected in Muramvya constituency, replaced Emmanuel Niyonkuru, who was assassinated on Jan. 1 in the Burundian capital Bujumbura. Investigations into the assassination of Niyonkuru are still underway. Niyonkuru, 54, was shot dead with a firearm in front of his house in Rohero. He had been the minister for water, environment and territory...
(RFI 01/14/17)
The 27th Africa-France Summit kicked off on Friday in the Malian capital Bamako with more than 30 African heads of state meeting French officials to discuss the threat of jihadists in the Sahel region and improve democracy in Africa. the meeting is also an opportunity for French president François Hollande to showcase his legacy. The choice to hold the 27th Africa-France summit in Mali is not insignificant. Bamako is where president François Hollande first revealed himself as an international statesman,...
(AFP (eng) 01/13/17)
France's top diplomat Jean-Marc Ayrault struck a defiant tone at a summit on Friday with foreign ministers from across Africa as he urged them to show confidence and hope despite the deadly jihadist threat. With the battle against extremists, the struggle to improve governance and the migrant crisis high on the agenda, ministers from at least 30 nations met in Mali's capital Bamako ahead of heads of state due on Saturday. Mali called on France four years ago to help...
(AFP (eng) 01/13/17)
Talks gathering some 30 African states and France begin in Mali's capital Bamako on Friday, with leaders expected to focus on Africa's battle against jihadists and bid to improve its democratic record. The summit, also due to take in the migrant crisis, will see foreign ministers gather first, with heads of state expected to follow Saturday, according to Malian and French conference organisers. Many of the nations taking part were once ruled by France, which in recent years has boosted...
(Huffingtonpost 01/10/17)
And it’s ironic given the growing consensus that Beijing is the U.S. president-elect’s enemy number one. Eric Olander and Cobus van Staden are the duo behind the China Africa Project and hosts of the popular China in Africa Podcast. We’re here to answer your most pressing, puzzling, even politically incorrect questions, about all things related to the Chinese in Africa and Africans in China. The election of Donald Trump has introduced a new era of uncertainty in global politics, especially...
(Reuters (Eng) 12/27/16)
Burundi has halted legal action against 11 non-governmental organizations that were banned due to accusations they conspired with opponents of President Pierre Nkurunziza, the prosecutor general's office said on Saturday. Nkurunziza's government has often accused civil society groups of working against it during a crisis that erupted last year over his disputed election for a third term. About 450 people have been killed in political violence. "The Prosecutor General of the Republic informs the national and international community that he has terminated judicial proceedings against some civil society organizations," Prosecutor General Sylvestre Nyandwi said in a statement.
(AFP (eng) 12/16/16)
Burundi's foreign minister on Thursday summoned envoys for the EU and several European nations to rap them over the knuckles for skipping a diplomatic meeting he had invited them to, government sources said. Ambassadors for the EU, France, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands had been ordered to attend a meeting on Tuesday to be briefed on the "positive development of the situation in Burundi and the resumption of co-operation," a high-ranking Burundian official told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity...
(Reuters (Eng) 12/14/16)
Burundi opposition groups demanded an international mediator resign just days after he arrived, casting a shadow over already troubled efforts to resolve months of political violence. Mediator Benjamin Mkapa flew in on Friday at the head of an African peace mission, then gave a speech at the airport that anti-government groups said appeared to recognise the legitimacy of Burundi's leader - the issue at the heart of the conflict. The main opposition grouping CNARED released a letter dated Monday telling...
(AFP (eng) 12/13/16)
In a church in Rwanda, sobs ring out and candles flicker as refugees from neighbouring Burundi mark a year since one of the deadliest episodes of violence in their crisis-wracked country. Darcy, 32, is one of about 200 Burundians who gathered to commemorate those killed when an attack on military installations by gunmen opposed to President Pierre Nkurunziza lead to a violent crackdown by security forces against those seen as "enemies" of the state. "They entered homes, killing anything that...
(Xinhuanet 12/07/16)
The facilitator in the inter-Burundian talks Benjamin Mkapa is expected in Burundi on Wednesday to seek ways of settling the east African country's 2015 crisis, a statement from the country's foreign ministry said Tuesday evening. "Former Tanzanian President, also facilitator in the inter-Burundian dialogue, Benjamin Mkapa, is expected in Burundi on Wednesday. During his three-day visit, the facilitator will have an opportunity to meet the secretary general of the Burundian ruling party (CNDD-FDD), registered political parties, the civil society, religious groups, women and youth groups," said the Burundian foreign ministry statement. According to the statement, Mkapa was invited by Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza.
(AFP (eng) 12/01/16)
Eleven countries, meeting Wednesday on security in central Africa, urged the Democratic Republic of Congo's opposition to back a deal that could keep its president in office far beyond his official mandate. Leaders or their representatives from the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) met in Libreville, the capital of Gabon. "The conference called on those political and social forces (in DRC) which have not yet done so to join the October 18, 2016 political agreement, which is aimed at strengthening social cohesion and the holding of calm democratic elections," a statement said. DRC President Laurent Kabila, whose tenure is scheduled to end December 20, has been elected to two terms

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