Saturday 21 October 2017
(AFP (eng) 07/06/17)
The costs of diabetes in sub-Saharan Africa could double to almost $60 billion annually just 13 years from now, as obesity fuels an explosion of the disease, a report said Thursday. In 2015, the overall diabetes cost in the region was nearly $20 billion (18 billion euros), or 1.2 percent of total economic production, according to research published by The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology. This included medication and hospital stays, and loss of labour productivity due to illness or death. About half of all treatment costs were paid for by patients themselves.
(AFP (eng) 07/04/17)
Eritrea's ambassador to the African Union said on Tuesday that Qatar must mediate with neighbouring Djibouti over the two countries' disputed border. The Gulf nation brokered a peace deal between the two countries in 2010 over the disputed Red Sea region of Doumeira, which has been the site of disagreements and clashes between Eritrea and Djibouti for decades. Qatari troops withdrew from the contested border last month when the Horn of Africa nations signalled their support for Saudi Arabia after it accused Doha of supporting Islamic terrorism. Djibouti claims Eritrean troops moved into the disputed territory for one day after the Qatari withdrawal, raising fears of an armed confrontation such as the one that broke out in 2008. While Djibouti...
(AFP (eng) 07/04/17)
Djibouti will turn to the African Union to help it resolve a long-running border dispute with Eritrea, the Horn of Africa nation's foreign minister told AFP on Monday. Qatari troops who patrolled the tense frontier pulled out last month after both Djibouti and Eritrea sided with Saudi Arabia when it severed ties with Doha over its alleged ties to Islamic extremists. Djibouti's Foreign Minister Mahamoud Ali Youssouf said that after Qatari troops left the disputed Doumeira region, Eritrean soldiers moved in but left the next day, elevating tensions between the two countries and leading the AU and UN to call for restraint. "As long as this border is not demarcated, it will remain a source of tension ... in the...
(Voice of America 07/04/17)
GENEVA — The U.N. children’s fund warns tens of thousands of malnourished children are at great risk in Yemen, Somalia and South Sudan, which are on the brink of famine. UNICEF reports an estimated 4.7 million children in the cholera-stricken countries are malnourished. Of these, UNICEF spokesman Christofe Boulierac tells VOA, more than one million are suffering from severe acute malnutrition. “Let me remind you that a child who is suffering from severe acute malnutrition are nine times more likely to die of disease than a well-nourished child," he said. "So, having cholera and diarrhea in countries where so many children are so fragile because of malnutrition among other things because of such a bad access to safe water is...
(RFI(EN) 07/04/17)
New tax rules in Israel could leave hundreds of African migrants worse off than they are. In May, the government introduced a new deposit law, enabling the governemnt to take 20 percent of migrants' salaries each month and place it out of reach. The money can only be accessed once they leave the country. Rights groups say the policy is designed to force them out of the country. "We're not pressuring you to leave but will make your life miserable so you decide to leave," Anwar Suliman, a Darfuri refugee living in Israel since 2008, told RFI . "Every time the state makes a different law, different pressure, but we said we can't go back right now." Suliman fled Darfur...
(AFP (eng) 06/28/17)
The generic version of the most advanced drug against HIV has been introduced in Kenya, a first in Africa where more than 25 million have the disease, the NGO Unitaid said Wednesday. The drug, Dolutegravir (DTG) is the anti-retroviral drug of choice for those living with HIV in developed countries, but its high price has put it out of reach for most struggling with the disease in Africa. "The generic DTG has two advantages: on the one hand, it is very good from a pharmaceutical point of view. On the other hand, it is much cheaper," said Robert Matiru of Unitaid, which works to reduce the costs of medicines treating AIDS, tuberculosis or malaria. He described the drug as "the...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/23/17)
DAR ES SALAAM (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Sadick Thenest remembers how his 8-year-old daughter had a narrow brush with death two years ago, when she contracted cholera after drinking contaminated water. “She was so gaunt, weak and had terrible diarrhea,” said the refugee from Burundi. “A slight delay in rushing her to hospital would have meant something else - but with God’s grace she survived.” The father of four, aged 35, is among thousands of refugees grappling with frequent outbreaks of waterborne diseases in the crowded Nyarugusu camp in western Tanzania, due to poor sanitation. “Living in a refugee camp is a constant struggle. You either stick to health rules or contract diseases,” he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation by...
(Voice of America 06/21/17)
The U.N. Security Council is calling on Eritrea and Djibouti to peacefully resolve a land dispute along their border. Djibouti accused Eritrea of deploying troops to occupy the contested area, known as Ras Doumeira, after a contingent of 450 Qatari peacekeepers departed last week. If true, the move could threaten a return to war for the first time since the countries fought over the land in 2008. In a news conference Monday, Sacha Sergio Llorenty Soliz, the permanent representative of the president of the U.N. Security Council, said that council members supported an African Union initiative to deploy a fact-finding mission to the border and that all parties should work to "maintain an atmosphere of calm and restraint." The U.N...
(Voice of America 06/21/17)
WASHINGTON DC — On June 5, Saudi Arabia and its allies, including Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of funding extremist groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamic State. In response, Qatar said it was the victim of a policy of “domination and control” by its larger neighbor and that Saudi Arabia was, in fact, the one responsible for backing extremism. So what is the truth? Fundamentalist strains of Islam, including Saudi-born Salafism and Wahhabism, form the ideological bedrock for most terror groups. According to a study by Leif Wenar of King’s College London based on the Global Terrorism Database, three out of four terror attacks in the last 10 years...
(AFP (eng) 06/20/17)
The UN Security Council on Monday urged Djibouti and Eritrea to resolve their border dispute peacefully after tensions flared following the withdrawal of Qatari peacekeepers from a buffer zone. Djibouti accused Eritrea of moving its forces into the buffer zone last week, a day after Qatar, a mediator in the border dispute that turned violent in 2010, announced the troop pullout. After hearing a UN report, the Security Council called "on the parties to resolve their border dispute peacefully in a manner consistent with international law," said Bolivian Ambassador Sacha Llorenty, this month's council president. The council "would welcome the consideration of future confidence-building measures," he told reporters after the closed-door meeting. Council members welcomed a plan by the African...
(APA 06/19/17)
Ethiopia called on all parties for restraint as tension between Djibouti and Eritrea has intensified along their borders, the country’s Foreign Ministry said. In a press release issued on Monday, Ethiopia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs called for restraint from “escalating tensions and resolve differences in peaceful means”. Tensions rocked the two neighboring east African countries over a disputed border territory after the withdrawal of Qatari peacekeepers. The release said that Ethiopia fully supports the statement issued the Chairperson of AU Commission on the situation including the deployment of fact...
(AFP (eng) 06/17/17)
The African Union on Saturday urged "restraint" as tensions intensified between Djibouti and Eritrea over a disputed border territory after the withdrawal of Qatari peacekeepers from a buffer zone. Djibouti has accused Eritrea of occupying territory following the departure of the Qatari troops, threatening the revival of a long-standing, sometimes violent dispute. AU Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat called for "calm, restraint" and said the body would send a "fact-finding mission to the Djibouti-Eritrea border." The Qatari pullout comes as the Gulf emirate is locked in a bitter dispute with Saudi Arabia and its allies over alleged ties to Islamist extremists...
(AFP (eng) 06/14/17)
Qatar has withdrawn its peacekeeping troops from the Djibouti-Eritrea border, the foreign ministry said on Wednesday, after years of mediating in a territorial dispute between the two African states. "The state of Qatar informed the government of Djibouti that it has withdrawn all its troops deployed on the border line in Djiboutian territory," a ministry statement said. The ministry said Qatar had been an "impartial diplomatic mediator" in the dispute between Djibouti and Eritrea, which led to armed...
(AFP (eng) 06/14/17)
Extortion, corruption and fear; violence, hunger and sometimes even death: for west African migrants dreaming of reaching Europe, the road to get there can be an absolute minefield. - Departure - Whether it's The Gambia, Ivory Coast, Senegal or Nigeria, everything starts with the "hustlers" -- slang for the middlemen or fixers who organise the trip. Their honesty and prices vary, with the would-be migrant usually deceived about the welcome expected in Europe. Many possess no official documents from their home country, and do not understand illegal status in Europe. Most are ignorant about the extreme difficulties they will encounter en route. "We didn't know we were risking our lives," said Kante Sekou...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/14/17)
Qatar has withdrawn its troops from the border between Djibouti and Eritrea, where the Gulf state has been acting as mediator in a border dispute, the Qatari Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday. It did not give reason for the withdrawal but the move comes as Qatar faces a major diplomatic crisis with some of its Gulf Arab neighbours. They cut ties a week ago, accusing Doha of backing Islamist militancy and Iran. Qatar strongly denies this. "Qatar has been an impartial diplomatic mediator in resolving crises and disputes between brotherly and friendly countries and will continue to be a major player in the international community," the ministry said in a statement. It did not specify the number of troops affected...
(AFP (eng) 06/14/17)
Maria gave smugglers all her family savings and crossed three countries and the searing Libyan desert, but when she finally boarded a boat for Europe her dream was swiftly shattered. She was 24 and pregnant with her second child when she left Liberia with her husband and their three-year-old son. The family passed through Guinea and Mali before crossing southern Algeria to reach the Libyan desert. "The smugglers took all our money" -- more than $2,150 (2,000 euros), she said. "We spent four days in the desert. People died of thirst and the sun in the back of the truck." They finally arrived on the beach at Sabrata, 70 kilometres (45 miles) west of Libya's capital Tripoli, a key departure...
(AfricaNews 06/13/17)
Eritrea has backed Saudi Arabia and its allies in the ongoing Gulf diplomatic crisis that started last week after Gulf nations cut ties with Qatar for allegedly supporting extremist groups. The Eritrean government said in a statement on Monday that its decision is in the right direction to realise regional peace and stability. “The decision by Gulf nations is among many in the right direction that envisages full realisations of peace and stability … For Eritrea, this is a timely issue that warrants its active support,” the statement cited by local media said. This statement comes a day after a visit by Qatari officials to Asmara and Addis Ababa seeking support in the ongoing crisis. The decision by Gulf nations...
(AFP (eng) 06/13/17)
Uche's real journey had yet to begin but he had already spent four days in the northern Nigerian city of Kano after travelling on public buses and potholed roads from Imo state in the southeast. He planned to go to Agadez, a transit town on the southern edge of the Sahara desert in central Niger, take a truck to Sebha, in southwestern Libya, and from there to the capital Tripoli, and then to Italy or Spain. But his contact, who was supposed to drive him and three women across Nigeria's northern border, was arrested on suspicion of people smuggling. "His house had been under surveillance," explains the 38-year-old electrician in Kano's bustling Sabon Gari district. "The movement of the three...
(AFP (eng) 06/12/17)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel will on Monday meet African leaders in Berlin on initiatives aiming to reduce the poverty and conflict driving a mass migrant influx to Europe. The idea is to team up African nations willing to reform with private investors who would bring business and jobs to a continent where instability or graft often scare off foreign companies. Merkel is hosting the initiative as part of Germany's presidency of the Group of 20 powerful economies, whose leaders meet in the northern port of Hamburg a month later. Invited to Berlin are Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and the leaders of Ghana, Ivory Coast...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/08/17)
More girls are completing secondary school across sub-Saharan Africa as attitudes change and state spending rises, but some of the most marginalized girls — like those married young or forced to work — are still missing out, education experts say. The percentage of girls completing secondary school has risen in all regions of Africa since 2005, said a recent report by the African Development Bank, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, and the U.N. Development Program. Almost twice as many girls in East Africa and three times as many in Central Africa completed secondary education in 2014 as in 2005, according to the annual African Economic Outlook report, which was published at the end of last month. Yet more...

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