Wednesday 18 April 2018
(AFP (eng) 03/14/18)
The EU warned African and other countries on Wednesday that their citizens will find it harder to get visas to Europe if they refuse to readmit economic migrants under the bloc's efforts to curb migration. Brussels has been seeking greater cooperation from such countries to take back irregular migrants since Europe was hit in 2015 with its worst migration crisis since World War II. "I cannot understand how a country can refuse to take back its nationals" when they have entered Europe illegally, EU migration commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos told a press conference in Brussels. "We will introduce stricter conditions for processing visas when a partner country does not cooperate sufficiently on the readmission of irregular...
(AFP (eng) 02/13/18)
The Democratic Republic of Congo and the Republic of Congo are to jointly seek funds to help them protect their tropical peatlands, a major factor in the issue of climate change. In a joint statement seen by AFP on Monday, the two central African neighbours said they hoped to gain "guarantees, in the form of funding... with the aim of sufficiently offsetting" sacrifices made by their populations if the peatlands are left untouched. The two countries' environment ministers, meeting in the DRC capital of Kinshasa last weekend, agreed to set up a "joint peatland management mechanism," the statement added. The swampy peatlands in the Congo Basin hold a massive stock of carbon -- the result of billions of years of...
(AFP (eng) 02/09/18)
"I absolutely have to get back to Pool," says Lydie Bitsindou, a farmer obsessed by returning to her patch of land. She is among tens of thousands of forgotten people -- families who have been displaced by fighting from Pool, a fertile region south of the Republic of Congo's capital Brazzaville. Many owe their survival today to the kindness of strangers who have taken them in. With her seven children, Bitsindou, 48, fled clashes that erupted between President Denis Sassou...
(RFI 02/08/18)
A l'entrée du Pool, province voisine de Brazzaville détruite par les violences armées, uUn échantillon de mille ménages de déplacés a reçu une importante assistance apportée par l'agence américaine USAID. Au cours de la distribution, ces personnes ont surtout manifesté le désir de retourner dans leur région d'origine après l'accord de paix conclu le 23 décembre dernier. Assis sur des chaises en plastique à l'ombre d'un arbre dans la grande cour d'une paroisse catholique de Nganga Lingolo, à l'entrée du...
(AFP (eng) 02/03/18)
Megastar Rihanna vowed she would "never stop fighting" to get millions of children back in school on Friday as French President Emmanuel Macron promised a major boost in foreign aid for education in developing nations. Macron co-hosted a conference in Dakar organised by the Global Partnership for Education with Senegalese President Macky Sall, while Rihanna attended as the organisation's global ambassador. "We have made tremendous progress today but of course our work is never done, we have a long way...
(AFP (eng) 02/02/18)
Rihanna on Thursday used her star power to urge key governments to commit to ensuring education for the world's poorest as she takes part in an international conference in Senegal. The chart-topping singer arrived in the capital Dakar where she on Friday will join the Global Partnership for Education talks co-hosted by Senegalese President Macky Sall and French leader Emmanuel Macron. Rihanna, the fourth most followed person on Twitter with 86 million followers, took to social media to urge Macron,...
(AFP (eng) 01/26/18)
The oldest remains of a modern human outside Africa have been dug up in Israel, offering evidence of what genetic studies have already suggested -- that humans migrated out of Africa some 50,000 years earlier than previously thought. Facial fragments, including a jawbone and several teeth, were found at a site called Misliya Cave in Israel, one of several prehistoric cave sites located on Mount Carmel. The bones date to between 174,000 and 188,000 years old, said the report in...
(Reuters (Eng) 01/22/18)
KLEINARL, Austria (Reuters) - The chilly conditions on an Austrian mountainside belied the warm reception given to people from 15 African countries who took part in an annual luge race aimed at helping migrants integrate into European society. The event over the weekend, dubbed the African Winter Sports Cup, is a luge race contested by people with little or no experience of winter sports. Its aim, over the six years it has been held, is to promote social integration through...
(AFP (eng) 01/17/18)
There's nothing covert about Roxy -- a huge market in Abidjan selling counterfeit medicine, the scourge of Africa and the cause of around 100,000 deaths annually on the world's poorest continent. Located in the bustling Adjame quarter of Ivory Coast's main city and commercial hub, the haven for fake medicine has been targeted time and again by authorities and stockpiles burnt. But it resurfaces every time. "The police hassle us but they themselves buy these medicines," said Mariam, one of...
(AFP (eng) 01/09/18)
A four-month strike at Congo's sole public university ended Monday with staff resuming work after being paid arrears for three months and agreeing to further negotiations over unpaid wages. "In the interest of the nation... work is resuming on Monday January 8," a statement by the union of teaching and administrative staff sent to AFP said. Unions began the strike in September to demand the payment of quarterly subsidies totalling 1.2 billion CFA francs (1.8 million euros, $2.1 million). They...
(AFP (eng) 01/03/18)
Israel on Wednesday began implementing a plan to force tens of thousands of African migrants out of the country by April, threatening to arrest those who stay. "This plan will get under way today," Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at the start of a cabinet meeting. Under the programme, some 38,000 migrants who entered Israel illegally, mainly Eritreans and Sudanese, will have until the end of March to leave. Each will receive a plane ticket and $3,500 (2,900 euros) to...
(AFP (eng) 12/26/17)
A key Congolese rebel group signed a ceasefire deal with the central government in Brazzaville on Saturday, after months of renewed armed conflict in the oil-rich nation. Fighters loyal to ex-rebel chief Frederic Bintsamou -- seen as having disbanded after a 2003 peace deal -- rose up again April last year in protest at the re-election of President Denis Sassou Nguesso. The fighting in the southern Pool region affected at least 138,000 people and halted district elections in July. It...
(AFP (eng) 12/18/17)
France on Monday accepted a first group of 19 refugees who were identified in Africa under an overhauled asylum policy that will also see it expel thousands of economic migrants. While it has drawn little public outcry in France, the policy faces stiff opposition from the left and from charities that shelter migrants, 22 of which called in an open letter for France's rights ombudsman Jacques Toubon to intervene. Djamel, a refugee from the Central African Republic, arrived at Paris's...
(AFP (eng) 12/06/17)
Conflicts, violence and disaster across Africa forced some 15,000 people to flee their homes every day in the first half of the year, international monitors said Wednesday. A total of 2.7 million Africans were internally displaced within their own countries in the first six months of 2017, a report by the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC) and the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) found. They join the estimated 12.6 million internally displaced people (IDPs) living in African countries at the end...
(AFP (eng) 12/05/17)
The head of the UN's AIDS agency on Monday urged African countries to protect young women and children who are bearing the brunt of the continent's AIDS epidemic. A sharp rise of people living with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has now slowed, "but now is not the time to drop our guard," Michel Sidibe, executive director of UNAIDS, told the start of a six-day conference on HIV/AIDS and sexually-transmitted diseases in Africa. "The many changes under way in our...
(AFP (eng) 12/01/17)
The US and French embassies in Brazzaville, the capital of the Republic of Congo, said Friday Congolese authorities had beefed up security at their buildings after receiving threats. The French embassy on its website said "a message relating to possible attacks" had been received overnight Wednesday. "The French embassy asked the Republic of Congo authorities for additional security presence at the main sites of French interest (in Congo), in Brazzaville and Pointe-Noire," it said. "Units of the Congolese security forces were deployed in the early morning of Thursday, November 30. These measures are still being applied," it said, thanking the authorities for their support.
(AFP (eng) 11/30/17)
Twenty-five asylum seekers from Africa arrived safely in Rome Thursday, using a Christian "humanitarian corridor" set up for Syrians fleeing the war in their homeland. "It was just a project but it became THE project, the way of the future," said Mario Morcone of the Italian interior ministry. The 25 men, women and children from Somalia, Eritrea and South Sudan arrived in Rome before dawn on a flight from Ethiopia. They will be moved to centres across the country. "We...
(AFP (eng) 11/29/17)
More than 80 African and European leaders will gather in the Ivory Coast on Wednesday to promote jobs and stability for Africa's exploding population, with some calling for a new "Marshall Plan." The two-day summit in Abidjan opens as the European Union increasingly sees its fate linked to Africa's following the twin shocks of unprecedented migration and terrorist attacks. It comes as China, India, Japan, the Gulf Arab states and others also compete for influence on a continent where the 28-nation EU remains as a whole the biggest economic and political player. European Parliament President Antonio Tajani told parliamentarians from both continents before the summit...
(AFP (eng) 11/28/17)
A furore over migrant slave markets in Libya casts a shadow over an AU-EU summit this week that aims to promote Africa's long-term economic growth and stability, spurred by European fears of terrorism and mass migration. The two-day African Union and European Union summit opening Wednesday in the Ivory Coast economic capital Abidjan is focused mainly on the need to create jobs for Africa's rapidly growing population. The summit marks what Europe sees as a potential turning point for broader...
(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...

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