Monday 19 February 2018
(AFP (eng) 02/14/18)
At least 19 migrants were killed on Wednesday and more than 100 injured when the truck transporting them crashed in Libya, a hospital said. More than 300 migrants, mostly Eritrean and Somali nationals, were on board the vehicle which overturned near the town of Bani Walid. A child was among at least 19 migrants killed in the accident, the head of the town's hospital, Salah al-Mabrouk, told AFP. The hospital, which had earlier given a toll of 23 dead, said at least 124 migrants were injured and it was struggling to cope. "Several victims are even being treated on the ground," said spokesman Salah al-Twijer. Since the 2011 overthrow and killing of longtime dictator Moamer...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/14/18)
TRIPOLI (Reuters) - A truck packed with African migrants crashed near the Libyan town of Bani Walid on Wednesday, leaving at least 19 dead and nearly 80 injured, officials said. Bani Walid hospital manager Mohamed al-Mabrouk said the truck had flipped over about 80 km (50 miles) south of Bani Walid. At least 78 people had been injured, eight of them seriously, he said. “We did not receive the driver (at the hospital), and we don’t know what has happened to him,” said Mabrouk. “Most likely he’s survived otherwise he would be brought here.” Among the victims were Somali and Eritrean nationals, said a military source, who put the death toll at 25. Bani Walid, located south of Tripoli, is...
(AFP (eng) 02/14/18)
Couscous may be the signature dish of North Africa, but steaming plates of the stew-topped semolina are also served up in West Africa and around the Mediterranean. Since 1998 the Italian island of Sicily has been the unlikely host of the couscous-making world championship known as Cous Cous Fest, which bills itself as a "festival of cultural integration". Each September chefs convene on Sicily, whose Mediterranean location opposite Tunisia has made it a cultural crossroads throughout history, battling to be crowned couscous king or queen. Palestinian chefs George Suheil Srour and Elias Bassous won the competition last year, with a couscous topped with grilled sea bream...
(AFP (eng) 02/10/18)
Twin bomb blasts struck a mosque in Benghazi in eastern Libya on Friday, killing at least one person and wounding 149 in the latest attack to target worshippers in the city. The explosions hit the mosque at the start of weekly prayers in Libya's second city, which lies 1,000 kilometres (620 miles) east of Tripoli, a security source told AFP. In the wake of the blasts debris was left scattered across the floor of the mosque, with windows blown out...
(AFP (eng) 02/10/18)
On a windswept desert plain, displaced families from a town which sided with Libya's leader Moamer Kadhafi before his ouster in a 2011 revolt have been left in a makeshift camp to rue their bad fortune. A last-minute breakdown in a deal to allow their return has left them stranded, within sight of the palm trees of their home town of Tawergha east of the Libyan capital Tripoli and 40 kilometres (25 miles) from the rival town of Misrata. Armed...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/09/18)
BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) - Two people were killed and 55 wounded in a twin bombing inside a mosque in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi on Friday, medics said. Two weeks ago about 35 people died in another twin bombing at a mosque in Benghazi, the second-largest city in the country. Friday’s explosions occurred during prayers at a small mosque located in the Majouri district, residents said. The devices, placed in bags at the mosque doors, appear to have been...
(AFP (eng) 02/06/18)
Human trafficking is on the rise in Libya, according to a report by a UN panel of experts which found that Libyan forces may be helping rebel groups tighten their control of smuggling routes. The confidential report sent to the UN Security Council also said the Islamic State group is seeking to join migrant smugglers in southern Libya after it was pushed out of Sirte in 2016. "Human trafficking is on the rise in Libya, resulting in major human rights...
(AFP (eng) 02/05/18)
Dozens of Sub-Saharan African migrants at a Libya detention centre got to their knees and crossed their wrists above their heads to protest their imprisonment. They staged their protest at the Al-Hamra shelter in Gharyan, 100 kilometres (60 miles) south of Tripoli, during a visit Friday by Mabruk Mohammad al-Targui, the tourism minister of Libya's fragile unity government. "This gesture is a call for freedom," said Saddam, from Sudan's Darfur region, who fears being forced to return to a homeland...
(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)
At least 90 people were feared dead on Friday in the latest migrant tragedy in the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Libya, the UN migration agency said. The tragedy happened off the coast of Zuwara in the early hours Friday, International Organization for Migration (IOM) spokeswoman Olivia Headon told reporters in Geneva by phone from Tunis. "At least 90 migrants are reported to have drowned, when a boat capsized off the coast of Libya this morning", the IOM said...
(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) 01/30/18)
More than 13,000 migrants have been repatriated from Libya since the beginning of December, the African Union's chief said Monday, nearly two months after reports emerged showing refugees being sold as slaves. That number is short of the AU's goal to fly 20,000 out of the conflict-wracked north African nation by mid-January, but chairperson of the AU commission Moussa Faki Mahamat insisted the campaign was on course. "We have 13,000, and every day, the number increases," Faki told a press...
(Reuters (Eng) 01/30/18)
BANJUL (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Jobless, restless and frustrated, 24-year-old Saikou Jammeh persuaded his father to sell the family home and give up his life savings to pay for the journey from Gambia to Europe. Jammeh saw no future for himself in Gambia, a tiny impoverished country on West Africa’s coast, so he joined an exodus of young men willing to sacrifice everything to leave. But after being robbed, beaten, and locked in a Libyan prison for several months, Jammeh...
(AFP (eng) 01/26/18)
The chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court Friday condemned a deadly attack on a Benghazi mosque which left at least 37 dead, and renewed calls for the arrest of a wanted Libyan commander. "These bombings and executions demand both condemnation and a meaningful response", chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said in a statement. At least 37 people died and scores were wounded after Tuesday's two car bombings outside a mosque frequented by jihadists in Libya's second city Benghazi. The attack...
(AFP (eng) 01/26/18)
The United Nations launched an international appeal Thursday for $330 million dollars to fund humanitarian aid projects for almost one million people in Libya, a country plunged in chaos and a hub of illegal migration. Maria Ribeiro, the UN humanitarian coordinator for Libya, outlined the priorities for a Humanitarian Response Plan for 2018 at a news conference in Tripoli. The target is "to reach at least 940,000 people" through 71 projects at a cost of $330 million to be carried out in partnership with municipalities, civil society and ministries, she said. In 2017, the international community contributed $98 million...
(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...
(AFP (eng) 01/24/18)
More than 30 people were dead and dozens wounded after two car bombings outside a mosque frequented by jihadist opponents in Libya's second city Benghazi, medical officials said Wednesday. The attack after evening prayers on Tuesday underlined the continued chaos in Libya, which has been wracked by violence and divisions since dictator Moamer Kadhafi was toppled and killed in a 2011 NATO-backed uprising. Benghazi has been relatively calm since military strongman Khalifa Haftar announced the eastern city's "liberation" from jihadists in July last year after a three-year campaign, but sporadic violence has continued. The bombers blew up two cars 30 minutes apart outside the mosque...
(Reuters (Eng) 01/24/18)
BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) - The toll from a twin car bombing at a mosque in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi rose to 35 on Wednesday, medics said, one of the highest from a single attack since Libya slid into turmoil after a 2011 uprising. The first blast on Tuesday evening hit worshippers leaving the large Bayaat al-Radwan mosque in Benghazi’s central Al Salmani district. The second, which witnesses said came about 15 minutes later and was much stronger, inflicted...
(AFP (eng) 01/24/18)
An armed group loyal to Libya's national unity government said Wednesday it had arrested a gang accused of kidnapping and torturing Sudanese migrants near the northern city of Sirte. The gang, made up of "five Libyans and one Palestinian... had tortured eight migrants," said the Sirte Security and Protection Force, one of several that took part in the unity government's battle to oust the Islamic State group from Sirte last year. The migrants are being treated at the Ibn Sina...
(Xinhuanet 01/24/18)
Two car bombs exploded in Salmani district of the eastern Libyan city Benghazi on Tuesday, killing and injuring several people, according to the Libyan news agency. The first car bomb exploded in front of a mosque, as worshipers exited the mosque after the night prayer, the agency reported. Following the arrival of ambulances, a second car bomb exploded in the same location. The two explosions killed and injured several people and caused large damage. Fadia Al-Barghathi, official of the Information...

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