Monday 22 May 2017
(Voice of America 01/20/17)
By most measures, Africa is safer today than it has been in the modern era: Diseases are less deadly and wars are less frequent. But recent years have also been marked by a rise in radical extremism on the continent, and the terror threat could derail some of the world's fastest-growing economies. Dealing with the spread of radicalization has been a central focus of U.S. President Barack Obama's foreign policy during his time in office. Few areas have been spared over the past eight years, with much of the continent living in the shadow of a violent extremist group: al-Shabab in Somalia and East Africa, Islamic State (IS) in Libya, al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) in Mali, the Lord's...
(AFP (eng) 01/19/17)
The UN Security Council will vote Thursday on a draft resolution endorsing the West African bloc ECOWAS in its efforts to ensure a transfer of power in The Gambia, diplomats said. The Economic Community Of West African States has repeatedly called on leader Yahya Jammeh to respect the result of the December 1 election and step down after 22 years in power. Senegal presented the measure to the council on Wednesday, requesting UN approval for ECOWAS to take "all necessary measures" to force Jammeh to cede power to President-elect Adama Barrow. That language however was dropped from the draft resolution during negotiations late Wednesday, weakening the measure.
(AFP (eng) 01/19/17)
Ghana's new president has announced he is sending 205 soldiers to The Gambia as part of a regional force to enforce the result of the country's disputed election. Nana Akufo-Addo said in a statement late Wednesday that he had "approved and authorised the deployment of a combat team of 205 troops, backed with the appropriate logistical equipment". Nigeria on Thursday said it was contributing 200 soldiers and air assets, including fighter jets, to the regional force while Senegal, The Gambia's neighbour, said its troops were "on alert". Opposition candidate Adama Barrow won the December 1 election and was due to take office on Thursday.
(AFP (eng) 01/19/17)
Gambia's army chief said Wednesday he would not order his men to fight other African troops if they enter Gambian territory, speaking as Senegalese and other troops massed on his nation's borders. The Senegalese troops backed by other African forces are on standby to move into The Gambia as President Yahya Jammeh approaches a midnight deadline to stand down or face military action after refusing to leave at the end of his term. "We are not going to involve ourselves militarily. This is a political dispute,"
(AFP (eng) 01/19/17)
Senegalese troops backed by other African forces were poised to enter The Gambia Thursday after President Yahya Jammeh refused to leave office, ignoring a midnight deadline to stand down or face military action. Jammeh's army chief said his troops would not fight their entry into the country, as the Mauritanian president flew out of The Gambia following hopes of a last-minute deal to convince Jammeh to hand over power. "We are not going to involve ourselves militarily. This is a political dispute," Chief of Defence Staff Ousman Badjie said after eating dinner in a tourist district close to the capital Banjul, eyewitnesses told AFP. "I am not going to involve my soldiers in a stupid fight. I love my men,"...
(AFP (eng) 01/19/17)
Gambian president-elect Adama Barrow was to take power Thursday, capping weeks of tension over Yahya Jammeh's refusal to quit which has seen Senegalese and Nigerian troops massing at the border and tourists racing to leave. With Senegalese troops backed by Nigerian forces and fighter jets gathering, the country appeared on the brink of a military crisis although the army chief insisted his soldiers would not get involved in a "political dispute" nor prevent foreign forces from entering The Gambia. Despite a midnight (0000 GMT) deadline for the expiry of Jammeh's term, the situation remained calm in the city overnight, witnesses said following a last-minute mediation attempt by the Mauritanian president. Jammeh, who has ruled the former British colony with an...
(AFP (eng) 01/19/17)
Nigeria has sent 200 soldiers and air assets including fighter jets to Senegal as part of a regional force to enforce the result of Gambia's contested election, the country's air force said Wednesday. The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) said it had "today moved a contingent of 200 men and air assets comprising fighter jets, transport aircraft, light utility helicopter as well as intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft to Dakar from where it is expected to operate into Gambia". The Economic Community Of West African States has repeatedly called on leader Yahya Jammeh to respect the result of the December 1
(AFP (eng) 01/19/17)
The Senegalese army said Wednesday it was ready to intervene in neighbouring Gambia failing a solution to the crisis triggered by President Yahya Jammeh's refusal to step down after his election defeat last month. "Our troops are on alert... The ultimatum takes effect at midnight," when Jammeh's mandate is due to expire, army spokesman Colonel Abdou Ndiaye told AFP. "If a political solution fails, we will engage" in operations in The Gambia, he said, confirming that Senegalese troops were heading to the border. Senegal also presented a draft resolution to the UN Security Council that would authorise the West African regional bloc ECOWAS to take "all necessary measures" to ensure a transfer of power in The Gambia, according to the...
(AFP (eng) 01/19/17)
Nigeria sent troops and fighter jets to Senegal in a show of military force Wednesday aimed at persuading Gambian President Yahya Jammeh to finally surrender power after an election defeat. Jammeh's mandate was due to end at midnight in Banjul but in recent weeks has steadfastly refused to leave office, prompting west African states to up the pressure on him after weeks of failed diplomacy. The 51-year-old Gambian leader announced a state of emergency on Tuesday, saying it was necessary because of interference from foreign powers in the country's December 1 election. Jammeh lost the poll to outsider Adama Barrow, who is currently sheltering in Senegal. In New York on Wednesday, its government requested United Nations support for regional action...
(Bloomberg 01/19/17)
Gambia’s President Yahya Jammeh is negotiating stepping down with Mauritania’s president Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz as regional forces mass on the West African country’s borders to force him to cede power to Adama Barrow, who won an election last month, two people familiar with the situation said. Jammeh, who has ruled Gambia since 1994, is seeking a security detail and clearance to take his assets, the regional officials said, asking not to be identified because a public announcement has not been made. His request to stay in his home village of Kanilai has been denied, they said. It wasn’t clear where he will go. Barrow was due to be inaugurated Thursday but Jammeh had, after initially accepting the result, disputed...
(Reuters (Eng) 01/19/17)
Mauritanian President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz flew straight to Senegal to meet President Macky Sall after last ditch talks in Gambia aiming to resolve a crisis over its election, a Senegalese presidential source told Reuters on Thursday. Aziz left Gambia shortly before midnight, when Gambian leader Yahya Jammeh's presidential mandate expired. Senegal, with backing from regional leaders, has threatened to invade Gambia to depose Jammeh if he does not immediately hand over power to challenger Adama Barrow, who beat him in an election in December. (Reporting by Diadie Ba; Writing by Tim Cocks; Editing by Sandra Maler)
(AFP (eng) 01/18/17)
Senegal on Wednesday presented a draft resolution to the UN Security Council seeking support for ECOWAS efforts to press Gambian leader Yahya Jammeh to step down, diplomats said. But the text does not explicitly seek council authorization to deploy troops to The Gambia to force Jammeh to cede power to president-elect Adama Barrow, diplomats said. The Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) has repeatedly called on Jammeh to respect the result of the December 1 election and step down after 22 years in power. Jammeh on Tuesday declared a state of emergency as Barrow, who is currently in Senegal, maintained his inauguration will go ahead as planned on Thursday on Gambian soil. At Senegal's request, the Security Council will...
(AFP (eng) 01/18/17)
Gambian President Yahya Jammeh looked determined to cling to power on Wednesday as his mandate came to an end, while tourists packed onto planes in an exodus sparked by the country's state of emergency. Jammeh said Tuesday the emergency measure was necessary due to interference of foreign powers in the country's December 1 election, which the president of 22 years lost to opponent Adama Barrow. Barrow, who is currently sheltering in neighbouring Senegal, maintains his inauguration will go ahead on Thursday on Gambian soil, putting the country on a collision course. Jammeh's declaration immediately triggered travel advisory warnings by Britain and the Netherlands, with around 1,000 British tourists expected to leave on special flights on Wednesday alone. "It's because of...
(AFP (eng) 01/18/17)
The United States on Tuesday urged the outgoing Gambian President Yahya Jammeh to "peacefully hand over power" to his elected successor Adama Barrow, to prevent "potential chaos" in the small West African country. Despite being increasingly isolated and facing escalating international pressure, Jammeh declared a state of emergency just two days before he was due to step down on Thursday, denouncing what he called dangerous foreign meddling in the small West African country's post-electoral crisis. "President Jammeh is losing opportunities to respect the word of the Gambian people and to peacefully hand over power to the president-elect," said US State Department spokesman John Kirby. "Doing so would allow him to leave office with his head held high and to protect...
(AFP (eng) 01/18/17)
Gambian President Yahya Jammeh on Tuesday declared a state of emergency just two days before he is due to step down, citing "extraordinary" foreign interference in the country's post-electoral crisis. The declaration was necessary, he said on state television, after the "unprecedented and extraordinary amount of foreign interference in the December 1 presidential elections and also in the internal affairs of The Gambia." The 15-nation Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) has repeatedly called on Jammeh to respect the result of the vote he lost to opponent Adama Barrow and step
(Xinhuanet 01/18/17)
The Chinese government's decision to terminate ivory processing and trade by the end of 2017 marked a critical milestone in the journey toward eliminating poaching and other threats to Africa's elephant species, a conservationist group said on Wednesday. Kaddu Sebunya, president of African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) hailed China for taking bold measures to revitalize global efforts to save African elephants whose numbers had declined this decade due to poaching and climatic stresses. "The recent announcement by the central government of China to ban all domestic ivory trade by the end of 2017 offers a glimmer of real optimism in the fight against elephant poaching," Sebunya said in a statement issued in Nairobi The Chinese authority in December 2016 announced the...
(AFP (eng) 01/17/17)
Morocco has offered The Gambia's President Yahya Jammeh asylum in return for accepting election defeat and stepping down, a local news website reported Tuesday. The small west African country has been plunged into political turmoil since Jammeh disputed president-elect Adama Barrow's December election victory and refused to cede power. Deputy Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita and the North African kingdom's foreign intelligence chief Yassine Mansouri have been conducting "a delicate mission in Banjul", the Gambian capital, for several days, Le Desk website reported. Morocco wants Jammeh "to accept his election defeat in return for a golden retirement in Morocco", the website said. The initiative comes after an international outcry over Jammeh's refusal to step down. Even the prospect of military intervention...
(AFP (eng) 01/17/17)
An eight-year-old son of The Gambia's president-elect Adama Barrow has died after being bitten by dogs, a family source said Monday, days before his contested inauguration. Barrow, who is in Senegal, is scheduled to be sworn in on Thursday, but President Yahya Jammeh has declared he will not step down by then. "President-elect Barrow's son, Habibou, died yesterday evening (Sunday) after he was bitten by dogs," the family source said. Habibou was one of 51-year-old Barrow's five children. The boy was "buried this afternoon (Monday) in the cemetery in Kanifing," a suburb of the capital Banjul, watched by "several hundred sympathisers". No further details were available from Barrow himself or his entourage about the circumstances of the death. The small...
(Reuters (Eng) 01/17/17)
The top judge in Gambia's Supreme Court declined on Monday to rule on President Yahya Jammeh's petition to overturn his election defeat, as many Gambians wait nervously to see how the veteran leader will react to his rival's planned inauguration this week. Jammeh initially conceded defeat to opposition leader Adama Barrow following the Dec. 1 poll but later changed his mind, drawing widespread condemnation and the threat of a military intervention by regional neighbours. Whether Gambia succeeds in swearing in Barrow is viewed as a test for democracy in West Africa, a region which is seeking to draw a line under a history of coups and autocratic rule. The Supreme Court has not sat for over a year and all...
(Usa Today 01/17/17)
Ebrima Sall hopes Thursday will be a proud day for Gambia, when President-elect Adama Barrow is inaugurated as the first new leader of the tiny West African country in 22 years. But Sall, like most Gambians, is waiting to see whether President Yahya Jammeh, 51, an authoritarian who seized power in a 1994 bloodless coup, will actually step down because he has refused to accept the election results. Barrow supporters are gearing up for a fight. “I am not sure Jammeh is ready to hand over" power, said Sall, 34, an auto mechanic. "He is still suppressing people, and the army is firmly in support of him. The coming days in The Gambia are days when anything can happen." Neighboring...

Pages