Thursday 19 April 2018
(AFP (eng) 03/19/18)
The infant mortality rate in Ivory Coast has halved in 20 years, the planning and development minister said Monday, pointing to better and more accessible health care. Niale Kaba said the probability of an infant dying before turning one had dropped from 112 for every 1,000 births in 1998 to 60 per 1,000 in 2016. "The mortality rate for under fives also fell from 125 per 1,000 to 96 per 1,000 during the same period," Kaba said. "These key results show an increasing improvement in several social indicators related to access to health care, education, and treatment for ailing children and women," she said. However in a recent report, the UN children's agency, UNICEF, singled...
(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 migrants," Avramopoulos added. Under international...
(AFP (eng) 03/07/18)
Hundreds of small undertaker firms in Ivory Coast went on strike on Wednesday over what they described as abusive practices by the country's dominant funeral company. Representatives staged a rally outside the morgue of the University Hospital Centre in Abidjan's Yopougon district in protest at their rival, Ivosep. They brandished placards reading "Enough is Enough," "Ivosep, the morgues and cemeteries do not belong to you" and "no to scams." Boniface Kouame kra, president of the National Association of Ivory Coast...
(AFP (eng) 03/07/18)
For many migrants arriving in Europe, it's difficult to talk about the toll taken by the journey. But Ibrahim Soumahoro is unusually frank: the four years spent getting to France have been "lost years". "I wouldn't make this journey again for anything in the world," the 20-year-old Ivorian said, struggling to control his emotions as he tells his story. "It's not worthy of a human being, all this humiliation." After a trip that saw him go through hell in Libya...
(AFP (eng) 02/20/18)
A Spanish court on Tuesday allowed an Ivory Coast man to walk free, with only a small fine to pay, after his son was found crammed into a suitcase at a border crossing. Prosecutors had initially sought a three-year prison term for Ali Ouattara, 45, for facilitating his son's illegal entry into Europe and threatening the child's life. "The child's life was endangered, he was inhumanly curled up in a tiny suitcase, without ventilation," judge Fernando Teson said as the...
(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) 01/19/18)
At the age of 39, Didier Drogba is in the twilight years of a glittering football career that has spanned two decades and six countries and brought him a harvest of trophies. Such moments are typically occasions of nostalgia, even sadness, for many ageing football greats. But, in an interview with AFP, Drogba showed he was brimming with passion -- launching a school project for Ivory Coast's disadvantaged young and fiery about the underperforming state of the national football team...
(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) 01/03/18)
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) 12/29/17)
A 27-year-old woman from the Ivory Coast has been arrested on the Thai island of Phuket after an airport X-ray found more than one kilogramme of cocaine in her stomach wrapped in scores of small packets. The woman was stopped by officials late Wednesday night at Phuket's international airport after landing on a flight from Doha. An X-ray revealed more than 60 small packages in her stomach, filled with 1.2 kilogrammes (2.6 pounds) of cocaine, according to Sirinya Sitdhichai, secretary-general of Thailand's Office of Narcotics Control Board.
(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)
A huge fire ripped through a paint factory in the Ivorian capital on Wednesday, causing multiple explosions, and witnesses said several people were badly burnt. There was no immediate word on the tally of people caught in the blaze, which sent a thick column of smoke high above Abidjan's industrial zone, an AFP correspondent said. But witnesses spoke of seeing several people with bad burns and of fears that workers were trapped inside the Drocolor paint factory. Police and rescuers...
(AFP (eng) 12/06/17)
Angry AIDS activists are urging western and central Africa to step up the fight against HIV, saying millions of people, especially children, are at risk from complacency and underfunding. A six-day conference in Africa has thrown a stark light on the problems in a region whose two dozen nations extend from Mauritania in the north to Gabon in the south, and include some of the poorest countries in the world. Coalition Plus, an alliance of AIDS groups, said AIDS-related deaths...
(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)
Security experts from West Africa, France and the United States gathered in Abidjan Tuesday for talks on beefing up anti-terrorism measures at sea in the Gulf of Guinea. The three-day seminar seeks to identify terrorism risks in the Gulf of Guinea -- the vast expanse of water stretching from Liberia to Gabon -- and any link with terrorists in the Sahel. The Gulf of Guinea is one of Africa's hotspots for crime, ranging from piracy, armed robbery and illegal fishing to oil theft and trafficking in stolen goods. Participants will discuss measures such as specialised counter-terrorism units...
(AFP (eng) 12/05/17)
Ivory Coast and Burkina Faso on Monday began work to overhaul and expand a single-track rail line connecting Abidjan to the Burkinabe capital that is a vital link between the Sahel and Atlantic coast. Renovating the 1,260-kilometre (782-mile) track -- which had first been announced in 2015 with no work being started -- is expected to take eight years. All parties involved hope the project will improve traffic and trade between the two West African neighbours. "Investment for the work, totalling 396 million euros ($470 million)... is the responsibility of the operator," Ivorian Transport Minister Amadou Kone said at the launch ceremony, referring to the giant French transportation company Bollore.
(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...

Pages