Sunday 25 February 2018
(Reuters (Eng) 11/06/13)
PARIS/BAMAKO | (Reuters) - France will stick to its timetable for withdrawing troops from Mali despite a resurgence in violence and the killing of two French journalists, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on Tuesday. France, which sent soldiers to its former colony in January to combat militants who had taken over large swathes of Mali, has already delayed by two months plans to reduce troop numbers from 3,200 to 1,000 by the end of the year. Speaking on Radio France Internationale, Fabius said France had moved 150 soldiers from the south to Kidal, the northerly Tuareg rebel stronghold, where instability has grown in recent months and where the journalists were abducted. President Francois Hollande "immediately decided to strengthen our presence...
(CNN 11/06/13)
(CNN) -- The bodies of two French journalists, who were killed in Mali, arrived in France Tuesday, Radio France International reported. Ghislaine Dupont and Claude Verlon worked for Radio France International and were kidnapped Saturday morning. The abduction occurred after the journalists were interviewing a Tuareg rebel near the northern town of Kidal, a local governor said, according to RFI sister network France Info. Both were kidnapped by four men in a Toyota, said Gov. Adama Kamissoko of Kidal. Hollande on Kenya, Mali and Libya.Kidal was one of the strongholds of the Islamic militant Tuareg uprising last year that plunged Mali into chaos after a military-led coup. Following the coup, Tuareg rebels occupied the northern half of the country. Veteran...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/06/13)
LONDON | Wed Nov 6, 2013 (Reuters) - Three years ago, a trip to the Southern Kenya production facilities of Canadian company Africa Oil attracted only seven potential investors. Two months ago, 60 boarded the flight. The investor trip, described by sales staff at Citi following a recent client conference, is just one illustration of the swelling interest in the most esoteric frontier markets. In a world of low yields and paltry growth, the attraction of frontier markets - the lesser developed emerging markets in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East and Latin America - is pretty clear. Juicy returns, often huge natural resources and young populations provide a stark contrast to the ageing economic profile in the West. "Everyone...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/06/13)
WASHINGTON | (Reuters) - A former Deutsche Bank unit will pay $12.1 million to harmed borrowers in order to resolve allegations that it discriminated against African-American and Hispanic borrowers seeking mortgage loans, the U.S. housing regulator said on Tuesday. MortgageIT, which was an indirect subsidiary of the German bank, charged higher rates and fees to minority borrowers and denied their loan applications more often than comparable white borrowers, the Department of Housing and Urban Development said. The money will be used to compensate borrowers who were unfairly denied a loan or whose loans violated fair lending laws, the agency said. "It's creditworthiness and ability to pay that matter when you apply for a loan, not your race or where you...
(The Guardian 11/05/13)
Contingent to be scaled down after upcoming general election as focus shifts to political process. French forces are still holding the front line in Mali, and a huge operation launched last month is still under way. It is the first to deploy French forces, the Malian army and the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilisation Mission in Mali against armed terrorist groups. It is a large undertaking, with some 1,500 soldiers in the bend formed by the river Niger, but it may be striking at empty space after months of "cleansing" operations by French combatants. With one month before a general election, the military reckon the terrorist threat is only "residual". According to a French officer on the ground, attacks in the...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/05/13)
OUAGADOUGOU | (Reuters) - The three main rebel groups in northern Mali said on Monday they had agreed to merge, creating a united front in an ongoing peace process with the government. A Tuareg uprising in northern Mali last year plunged the country into chaos, leading to a coup in the capital Bamako and the occupation of the region by Islamist militants. Since a French-led invasion in January to drive out Islamists, rebel groups have been scattered and reconciliation with them is one of the greatest challenges for President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita. The three groups are: the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA), the High Council for the Unity of Azawad (HCUA) and the Arab Movement of Azawad...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/05/13)
PARIS/BAMAKO | (Reuters) - The coffins of two French journalists killed in Mali last week were loaded onto a Paris-bound aircraft in the capital Bamako on Monday as French and Malian troops hunted for their killers. Reporter Claude Verlon, 58, and radio technician Ghislaine Dupont, 51, who both worked for Radio France Internationale, were found dead in northern Mali on Saturday after being kidnapped in the city of Kidal. In a solemn ceremony attended by the new Malian president, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, soldiers carried the two coffins onto a military aircraft that was due to land in Paris on Tuesday morning. "Mali's Kidal has witnessed the disappearance ... of two courageous fighters for liberty," Mali's communication minister, Jean Marie Sangare,...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/05/13)
PRETORIA | Tue Nov 5, 2013 (Reuters) - African leaders told Congo's M23 rebels on Tuesday they must publicly declare an end to their 20-month insurgency to allow the signing of a peace agreement with President Joseph Kabila's government. The recommendation was made by heads of state from southern Africa and the Great Lakes region who met through Monday night in the South African capital Pretoria to lend their weight to an international push to end the conflict in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Despite growing calls for peace, the M23 rebels and government forces were involved in artillery clashes on Monday near Congo's border with Uganda. Both sides blamed the other for the shelling. A statement released by the...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/05/13)
MBUZI, Democratic Republic of Congo/PRETORIA | (Reuters) - African leaders and international envoys appealed to Congo's government and M23 rebels on Monday to stop fighting and embrace a peace deal after the two sides bombarded each other near the Ugandan border. The appeals were made as United Nations and U.S. envoys said the elements of an accord to end the 20-month insurgency in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo were broadly agreed and only required public commitments to end the hostilities. A rapid Congolese army advance in recent weeks has driven the M23 rebels from towns and cornered them in the steep, forested hills along the Ugandan border, raising the prospect of peace for Congo's mineral-rich eastern borderlands. But before leaders...
(AFP (eng) 11/04/13)
OUAGADOUGOU , November 4, 2013 (AFP) - The main Tuareg rebel group in Mali said on Monday it had been humiliated by the murder of two French journalists in its desert stronghold but had been denied the opportunity to help find the killers. Ghislaine Dupont, 57, and Claude Verlon, 55, were kidnapped and shot dead by what French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said were "terrorist groups" in the flashpoint northeastern town of Kidal on Saturday. "We asked to participate in the hunt for the authors of this heinous act but nothing is decided," Mahamadou Djeri Maiga, vice-president of the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA) told AFP from neighbouring Burkina Faso's capital Ouagadougou. French troops are working with...
(AFP (eng) 11/04/13)
BAMAKO, November 4, 2013 (AFP) - An international operation was under way on Monday to hunt the killers of two French journalists shot dead in Mali, with a police source in the country's north saying around a dozen suspects had been arrested. Ghislaine Dupont, 57, and Claude Verlon, 55, were kidnapped and killed by what French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said were "terrorist groups" in the flashpoint northeastern town of Kidal on Saturday. "At present, there is no certainty about who committed the murder... We will do everything to find the killers and punish them," Fabius said. A police source in Gao, the main city in northern Mali said "a dozen suspects" had been detained following the deaths of the...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/04/13)
PARIS | Mon Nov 4, 2013 (Reuters) - French and Malian forces are questioning suspects in northern Mali to find a small group of militants who arried out the killing last week of two French radio journalists, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on Monday. Claude Verlon, 58 and Ghislaine Dupont, 51, both journalists at RFI radio, were found dead in northern Mali on Saturday after being kidnapped in the city of Kidal. Their bodies are due to arrive in France later on Monday. Fabius declined to confirm a report from Europe 1 radio, citing Malian sources, that French forces had arrested five suspects and transferred them to the city of Gao. "Yesterday, on Sunday, operations were launched to identify a...
(Dw-World 11/04/13)
It’s an important step towards a fresh start: Malians go to the polls in late November to elect a new parliament. The election campaign has just begun in the crisis-hit West African country, and expectations are high. "Many are convinced that the elections mean a return to calm and democracy," said Badié Hima, who works for the US organization the National Democratic Institute (NDI) in Mali's capital Bamako. On November 24, some three months after the presidential elections, Malians will elect a new national assembly, with 1,141 candidates running for 147 seats. Many voters hope that the new parliament will help their country out of the crisis that began just over a year and a half ago. On March 21,...
(AFP (eng) 11/04/13)
BAMAKO, November 4, 2013 (AFP) - Around a dozen suspects have been arrested over the killing of two French journalists in Mali, a police source in the north of the country told AFP on Monday. Radio France Internationale (RFI) reporter Ghislaine Dupont, 57, and sound technician Claude Verlon, 55, were kidnapped and killed by what Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said were "terrorist groups" in the flashpoint northeastern town of Kidal on Saturday. "A dozen suspects have been arrested since the murder of two Radio France Internationale (RFI) journalists," said the source in Gao, the main city in northern Mali. Their murder has shaken France, which just days ago was celebrating the return of four hostages who had been held for...
(Voice of America 11/04/13)
PARIS/BAMAKO — France said on Sunday two French journalists found dead in the northern Mali region of Kidal had been “coldly assassinated” by militants and vowed to step up security measures in the area. Radio journalists Claude Verlon and Ghislaine Dupont were abducted after interviewing a member of the MNLA Tuareg separatist group in northern Mali. Their bodies were found on Saturday by a French patrol 12 km (8 miles) outside Kidal, the birthplace of a Tuareg uprising last year that plunged Mali into chaos, leading to a coup in the capital Bamako and the occupation of the northern half of the country by militants linked to al-Qaida. Full details of why the journalists were killed and who carried out...
(Voice of America 11/04/13)
Heads of state and governments in both the Southern African and the Great Lakes regions plan to meet in the South African capital, Pretoria, Monday, to review the security situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The summit is organized by the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR). It’s the follow-up to an agreement signed between the two groups last February to find ways of addressing the security challenges within the DRC. “This [summit] is a follow up to ensure that there is a full implementation of this framework [and] to review the implementation process and a way forward,” said Tanki Mothae, SADC’s director of politics, defense and security cooperation...
(The Independent 11/04/13)
We start off this week’s news roundup in the Democratic Republic of Congo where the M23 rebels on Sunday declared a ceasefire in their fight with the army, in a move they hope will advance peace talks with the government, France24 reports. “We call on the facilitator of the Kampala peace talks to immediately put in place a mechanism to monitor the ceasefire,” the rebels said in statement. There was no immediate reaction from the army, which has pushed the rebels from all the towns they once controlled during a 20-month rebellion in North Kivu province. Rebel fighters this week abandoned Bunagana, their last stronghold in the eastern province, and have withdrawn into the hills and forests around Congo’s border...
(BBC News Africa 11/04/13)
A rare solar eclipse allowing a view of the Sun that is totally or partially blocked by the Moon has taken place. It was first visible in the southern United States, before sweeping east across the Atlantic Ocean and the African continent. The US space agency, Nasa, said the greatest total eclipse occurred over the Atlantic Ocean. One of the best views was in northern Kenya, where tour companies organised trips to view a total blackout. Local myths there attribute the event to the Moon eating the Sun. Men and women from the Turkana tribe take part in a ceremony in the Sibiloi national Park in the Turkana region Men and women from the Turkana tribe in Kenya took part...
(AFP 11/03/13)
PARIS, November 3, 2013 (AFP) - President Francois Hollande on Sunday held an emergency meeting on the shock abduction and killing of two French radio journalists by armed men in northern Mali. Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, Justice Minister Christiane Taubira and the head of France's external intelligence services agency Bernard Bajolet attended the hour-long crisis talks with Hollande to try and shed light on the double murder. Radio France Internationale (RFI) journalist Ghislaine Dupont and sound technician Claude Verlon had travelled Saturday to the northern city of Kidal to interview a spokesman for the Tuareg separatist group the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA), and were abducted outside his home, according to their employer. Dupont, 57, and Verlon,...
(Reuters 11/02/13)
UNITED NATIONS, (Reuters) - Rwanda, Togo and Morocco are set to circulate to U.N. Security Council members on Friday a draft resolution to defer the International Criminal Court trials of Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto for one year. The African Union asked the Security Council last week to postpone the trials of Kenyatta and Ruto so they can deal with the aftermath of the Nairobi mall attack by al Qaeda-linked group al Shabaab, in which at least 67 people were killed in September. Kenyatta and Ruto face charges related to the violence after Kenya's 2007 elections, in which 1,200 people died. Both deny the charges and have tried to have the cases adjourned or halted. Ruto's...

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