Sunday 10 December 2017
(AFP (eng) 11/20/17)
At least four people, including a police officer, were injured during overnight clashes in an English-speaking region of Cameroon, in which gunshots were heard ringing out despite a curfew imposed to contain an escalating crisis. sources said Sunday. A source close to the security services said the officer received a gunshot wound near the Food Market in Bamenda, a city of 300,000 people in the mountains of western Cameroon that is the epicentre of anglophone resentment of perceived discrimination by the country's French-speaking majority. The officer's life was not in danger, the source said, without providing further details on the skirmishes between "extremists" and the police. Two other men were injured in the clashes, one of whom said he was...
(AFP (eng) 11/20/17)
srael's cabinet voted on Sunday to close a migrant detention centre, as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced an agreement to deport 40,000 Africans who entered the country illegally. Ministers unanimously approved plans to shutter the Holot centre in southern Israel and gave migrants a three-month deadline to leave the country or face deportation, said the interior and public security ministries. "The infiltrators will have the option to be imprisoned or leave the country," the public security ministry said in a statement. Israeli official figures from June 30 show a total of 38,043 African migrants in the country. They include 27,494 Eritreans and 7,869 Sudanese, and their presence in south Tel Aviv has raised discontent among Israelis there and elsewhere. Speaking...
(AFP (eng) 11/18/17)
he African Union on Friday called for Libyan authorities to investigate "slave markets" of black Africans operating in the conflict-torn nation, following the release of shocking images showing the sale of young men. The demand follows the release of CNN footage of a live auction in Libya where black youths are presented to north African buyers as potential farmhands and sold off for as little as $400. Guinean President Alpha Conde, who is also Chairman of the African Union, demanded an enquiry and prosecutions relating to what he termed a "despicable trade... from another era". Meanwhile Senegal's government. commenting on Facebook, expressed "outrage at the sale of Sub-Saharan African migrants on Libyan soil,"...
(AFP (eng) 11/17/17)
The United Nations on Friday underscored its commitment to Cameroon's "territorial integrity and unity" as the francophone-majority country grappled with violence and separatism in two English-speaking regions. The UN's Regional Office for Central Africa (UNOCA) said it was deeply concerned by the upsurge in violence, "particularly against the civilian population and state agents." UNOCA chief Francois Lounceny Fall, who is also the secretary general's envoy for central Africa, recalled the commitment of the UN to "the territorial integrity and unity of Cameroon." He called for calm and restraint and the holding of an "inclusive dialogue." The statement was issued after violence erupted in the Northwest and Southwest Regions of Cameroon, where most of the country's English-speaking minority live. Anglophones, who...
(AFP (eng) 11/17/17)
A fire swept through the main building of Cameroon's parliament in Yaounde overnight, causing substantial damage but no injuries. The apparently accidental blaze broke out in the administrative part on the rear facade of the building, the government said, but the debating chamber is believed to have been spared. The fire was completely out by dawn on Friday, an AFP photographer saw. "A violent fire devastated the rear facade of the main building of the Ngoa Ekelle Glass Palace last night," Cameroon's public broadcaster CRTV reported, referring to the west African nation's parliamentary building. The fire broke out around 9:00 pm (2000 GMT) Thursday, and the flames were under control six hours later after causing "a lot of material damage"...
(AFP (eng) 11/17/17)
It's only 8pm, but in the bars by the Hospital Roundabout, one of the liveliest nightspots in Bamenda, thoughts are already turning to last orders. "We respect the curfew, we're going to close soon," a waitress warns grumbling clients who would rather drink on into the night as of old, despite a police crackdown triggered by sporadic bombings, arson and killings. Bamenda, a city of about 300,000 people nestled in the mountains of western Cameroon, is the epicentre of an escalating crisis. At its source is resentment among Cameroon's English-speaking minority, angry at perceived discrimination at the hands of the country's francophone majority. Frustration, for some, has spiralled into violence.
(BBC News Africa 11/17/17)
The main parliament building in Cameroon's capital Yaoundé has been badly damaged by fire which ripped through four floors. Firefighters managed to put out the blaze before it could reach the parliamentary chamber. There has so far been no indication of any casualties and the cause of the blaze was not immediately clear. In this week's session, the national assembly had been discussing the budget. Pictures and video posted on social media show the upper floors in flames, hours after it first took hold. Read more at: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-42024655
(AFP (eng) 11/17/17)
Africa is making only faltering progress towards food and nutrition security, the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has warned. "Multiple forms of malnutrition coexist, with countries experiencing simultaneously high rates of child undernutrition or anaemia as well as high rates of obesity," it says in a new report, Regional Overview of Food Security and Nutrition. In sub-Saharan Africa, "progress towards the World Health Assembly global nutrition targets has been generally poor," the Rome-based agency says, referring to goals to end hunger by 2025. The annual document came out Thursday at the start of a two-day food and health seminar in Ivory Coast's economic capital, Abidjan. Around 200 people from 47 African nations are gathered to discuss "sustainable food systems...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/14/17)
KIGALI (Reuters) - The global airline industry has $1.2 billion blocked in nine dollar-strapped African countries, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) said on Monday. The global commodities price crash that began in 2014 hit economies across Africa hard, particularly big resource exporters such as Angola and Nigeria. Low oil and mineral prices have reduced government revenue and caused chronic dollar shortages and immense pressure on local currencies. The fiscal slump has meant governments have not allowed foreign airlines to repatriate their dollar profits in full. At an aviation meeting in the Rwandan capital, IATA’s Vice President for Africa, Raphale Kuuchi, said that airlines were in talks with “a few governments to unblock airline funds”. He did not specify the...
(AFP (eng) 11/13/17)
Four makeshift bombs exploded overnight in the main city in Cameroon's restive English-speaking region, but no one was injured, officials said Monday. "Four home-made bombs exploded in Bamenda, one at 9:00 pm and the three others at 3:00 am," said a source close to the security services. "The blasts did not cause any casualties. They caused minor damage in various places," the source said, in an account confirmed by a security source in the capital Yaounde. One of the explosions detonated close to a police unit from the Mobile Intervention Squad (GMI) and another near a well-known supermarket, the sources said.
(Reuters (Eng) 11/13/17)
YAOUNDE (Reuters) - Separatists from Cameroon’s Anglophone region have killed four security forces in several attacks over the past few days, the government said on Saturday, an unprecedented violent turn to a movement that risks morphing into a full blown insurgency. A government crackdown on the separatists has killed dozens of people since October and driven many into the arms of a once-fringe separatist movement ahead of presidential elections in 2018. It followed on from demonstrations a year ago by English-speakers in the western region bordering Nigeria against what they see as a marginalization by the mostly French-speaking government of President Paul Biya, who has been in power for 35 years. Only a minority want to secede, however. The secessionists...
(AFP (eng) 11/13/17)
Ministers from 13 European and African countries on Monday pledged steps to ease the migrant crisis around the Mediterranean, vowing especially to improve conditions for migrants held in Libya. Interior ministers and other representatives from countries impacted by the ongoing wave of migration up through Africa towards Europe, including Libya, voiced deep concern over the "ongoing human tragedy" along the so-called Central Mediterranean route. "The participants intend to address the challenges posed by the alarming situation along the migration route to North Africa," Switzerland, which hosted the third meeting of the so-called contact group on the crisis, said in a statement. Thousands of migrants and refugees who attempt to travel along this route "find themselves in catastrophic situations," it said,...
(AFP (eng) 11/09/17)
Authorities in Cameroon have imposed a night-time curfew and ordered the closure of shops and public places in the main city in a region rocked by unrest among the country's anglophone minority. The measure applies to the city of Bamenda, the hub of Northwest Region, where two policemen were killed on Tuesday, a day after an officer was gunned down in a nearby town. Under a decree issued by the local prefect, obtained on Thursday by AFP, all movement of people and vehicles in Bamenda is being banned from November 8 to 23, from 10 pm to 5 am.
(AFP (eng) 11/08/17)
Separatists killed two policemen in the restive English-speaking region of Cameroon, a day after an officer was shot dead there, the government said Wednesday. "Secessionist terrorists killed two gendarmes overnight in Bamenda," government spokesman Issa Tchiroma Bakary told AFP, adding that the attack was carried out "with combat weapons." The two were on guard duty at the time, one of them outside a micro-loan bank, he said. The assailants fled with the policemen's guns, said Tchiroma, who is also minister for communications. Bamenda is the chief town in the Northwest, one of two regions where unrest has broken out among Cameroon's...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/08/17)
DAKAR (Reuters) - Anglophone secessionists in Cameroon killed at least two gendarmes on Wednesday, two secessionist leaders and a security official said, signaling an escalation in their protracted dispute with the central government. The attacks in the English-speaking city of Bamenda marked the worst fighting in recent years between secessionist militants and government forces in the central African state after a year of mostly peaceful protest. Anglophone lawyers and teachers launched demonstrations a year ago against what they see as a marginalization of English-speakers by President Paul Biya’s government in the Northwest and Southwest regions who were forced to work in French. A harsh crackdown by state forces, including the use of helicopter gunships to fire on civilians, has killed...
(AfricaNews 11/08/17)
Two members of Cameroon's security forces have been killed in Bamenda, capital of the Northwest region of the country. According to BBC Afrique, the death of the gendarmes - paramilitary troops - were recorded in an overnight raid on a security checkpoint in Bamenda. The source of the attack remains unknown even though the Northwest and Southwest regions of the Central African nation have been under high security over what has become known as the 'Anglophone crisis.' In September 2016, a curfew was imposed by the governor of the region after a bomb attack had injured three soldiers. Governor Adolphe Lele Lafrique told state TV at the time that the bomb blast was a “terrorist attack”. The two regions -...
(AFP (eng) 11/08/17)
A dozen other students look on as Umar Amadu uses a glass pipette to draw a solution from a conical flask as part of a chemistry experiment. It could be a scene from any school laboratory around the world, but until two months ago Amadu and his fellow students had no access to any science equipment. Science subjects at his rural secondary school outside the city of Katsina in northern Nigeria were taught using theory only. But now they have all the kit they need to put theory into practice, thanks to a mobile science lab that tours selected state schools. "It's an exciting experience. We were being taught only the theoretical aspect of science subjects," Amadu, who wants to...
(AFP (eng) 11/07/17)
A Cameroon policeman has been killed while pursuing men who attacked a school in one of the country's English-speaking regions, where tensions have fuelled a separatist movement, authorities told AFP on Tuesday. "Suspected separatists gunned down a gendarme yesterday (Monday) in Jakiri," a town in the country's northwest, a source close to local authorities said, an account confirmed by a government source. "They killed him with the officer's own gun," the sourced added, speaking on condition of anonymity. Police were in pursuit when the officer found himself cut off and encircled by the attackers in a forest, the source said. French-speaking Cameroon has a large anglophone minority which comprises about a fifth of its population of 22 million. Gathered mainly...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/07/17)
CAPE TOWN (Reuters) - Ride-hailing service Uber Technologies Inc. [UBER.UL] is growing rapidly in sub-Saharan Africa and considering moves into more markets, despite sometimes violent opposition from metered taxi drivers, a senior executive said on Tuesday. Uber’s service has triggered protests by rivals from London to New Delhi as it up-ends traditional business models that require professional drivers to pay steep licensing fees to do business. “We are bullish on Africa. The growth here is still substantial and we think that given the right regulatory environment, the growth could be even better,” Justin Spratt, head of business development for the sub-Saharan region, told Reuters. “Africa’s growth thus far has been faster than America and a large part of that is...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/06/17)
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Africa’s mobile internet connections are set to double in the next five years, a study showed on Monday, thanks to affordable smartphones and the roll-out of high-speed networks. A report by research and consulting firm Ovum in London estimates that mobile broadband connections will rise from 419 million at the end of this year to 1.07 billion by the end of 2022. “Data connectivity is growing strongly in Africa, and there are also good prospects on the continent in areas such as digital media, mobile financial services, and the Internet of Things,” said Matthew Reed, Practice Leader Middle East and Africa at Ovum. “But as Africa’s TMT market becomes more convergent and complex, service providers are under...

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