Saturday 19 August 2017
(Reuters (Eng) 06/07/17)
Building a network of African women leaders in fields ranging from business to politics could galvanize female leadership across the continent and boost peacebuilding efforts and good governance, the head of U.N. Women said on Tuesday. The African Women Leaders Network, which was launched last week in New York by the United Nations and the African Union Commission, hopes to drive more women into leadership roles, through mentoring, peer learning and harnessing contacts. By supporting women's leadership in Africa, the platform aims to galvanize their contributions to building and sustaining peace, improving political processes and driving social change, and realizing the U.N. global goals, according to U.N. Women. The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), adopted in 2015, include targets on...
(AFP (eng) 06/06/17)
The EU is giving 50 million euros to set up a joint African military force in the Sahel region to fight jihadists, the bloc's foreign affairs chief said Monday. The funds will help pay for the troops to fight terrorism, cross-border crime and illegal immigration, European Union diplomatic chief Federica Mogherini said in the Mali capital Bamako. "Stability and development of the Sahel region are crucial not only for Africa but also for Europe," said Mogherini. "This contribution will arrive very quickly and I hope (it) will set out the right path to other partners of the Sahel G5". Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Chad and Burkina Faso -- dubbed the Sahel G5 -- in March approved plans to build the force...
(AFP (eng) 06/06/17)
In Mali, where skin conditions are widespread and skin doctors are scarce, physicians have turned to technology to treat patients remotely. From his Bamako office, Professor Ousmane Faye, one of a small number of dermatologists in Mali, examines photos of an arm and a torso afflicted by a skin pigmentation disorder. The photos arrived the same day the patient visited his doctor in Koulikoro, 57 kilometres (35 miles) away. Faye's pilot programme, in place for 18 months, allows general practitioners working in even the most remote areas to consult with a specialist. In a country that has around one dermatologist per million people, that is an invaluable aid. For in Mali, according to estimates, nearly 30 percent of the population...
(Xinhuanet 06/06/17)
Delegates of an African conference in solidarity with Cuba on Monday called on the United States to lift its over 50-year economic blockade against Cuba. "We applaud the positive development in this respect and we commend the U.S. government and Cuba for their efforts towards normalizing of ties," said Namibian President Hage Geingob, officially opening the fifth Continental Africa Conference in Solidarity with Cuba here on Monday. "However, there is still much ground left to cover to ensure the complete lifting of the blockage against Cuba," said Geingob. According to Geingob, the conference will lead to the development of the common African strategy in terms of support to Cuba. The delegates also called for the return of the Guantanamo Bay,...
(AFP (eng) 06/05/17)
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday joined West African leaders at a summit in Liberia, where they hailed peacekeeping efforts in the region but warned about threats to stability. Netanyahu, who had visited east Africa in July 2016, vowed that they had "no better partner" than his country after he was received by Liberian President and outgoing head of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. "Israel is coming back to Africa and Africa is coming back to Israel. I believe in Africa. I believe in its potential, present and future. It is a continent on the rise," said the Israeli leader. "Africans are seizing the future. Israel wants to seize this future with you...
(AFP (eng) 06/03/17)
French forces operating in northern Mali said Friday that they had taken "out of action" around 20 militants in operations against jihadist groups this week. Soldiers taking part in Operation Barkhane, the French counterterror mission operating across the Sahel region, called in Mirage 2000 jets and Tiger attack helicopters. "The Barkhane force carried out a new operation in the Serma forest... taking around 20 terrorists out of action," Barkhane said in a statement. The assault, which began Sunday and ended Thursday resulted in the seizure of weapons, munitions and other equipment.
(AFP (eng) 06/02/17)
Several French soldiers were wounded on Thursday, one seriously, in a mortar attack claimed by al Qaeda's local affiliate on a United Nations peacekeeping camp in northern Mali. In a statement, the French army said the attack on Thursday morning targeted the MINUSMA peacekeeping force in Timbuktu, close to a French unit operating as part of a separate counter-terrorism operation. "In this attack several French soldiers were wounded, including one in a serious condition," the French statement said. An al Qaeda affiliate in Mali, Nusrat al-Islam wal Muslimeen, said it carried out the "barrage of mortar shells".
(Reuters (Eng) 06/02/17)
Gunmen killed six security agents in southwestern Niger, a security source and local resident said, in an area near the Malian border where jihadists have been increasingly active. The attackers opened fire on a security post in the town of Abala, about 150 km (90 miles) northeast of the capital Niamey, at around 7 p.m. (13.00 ET) on Wednesday, killing four national guard troops and two gendarmes, a security source told Reuters. "Just when everyone was preparing to break the Ramadan fast, we heard shots in the town. The exchange of fire lasted almost two hours," a school teacher in Abala told Anafi, a local radio station. Militants and criminal gangs have long operated around the vast, desert border between...
(Xinhuanet 06/02/17)
Fifty-four African Union member states will convene the 5th Continental Conference of Solidarity with Cuba in the Namibian capital from June 5-7, said an Naminian official on Thursday. The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of International relations and Cooperation, Selma Ashipala-Musavyi, said the aim of hosting the conference in Namibia is to intensify solidarity and to strengthen bounds of friendship between the people of Cuba and the progressive peoples throughout the African Continent. Namibia's President Hage Geingob will open and address the conference, which will run under the theme, "Intensifying Solidarity and continuing the legacy of Fidel and Che". The conference, which will also be attended by a Cuban delegation, will also recognize the important work done in support of...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/01/17)
When Fatmata was kidnapped from a market in Mali last year, she was scared for her life. When the Malian schoolgirl realized she would be forced to marry her captor, she feared for her future. The 15-year-old was taken to a village in southern Mali, where she discovered that her abduction - a practice known as bride kidnapping - was fueled by vengeance. In an earlier raid, Fatmata's brother had himself abducted her kidnapper's sister. "I was very scared - I cried all the time," Fatmata told the Thomson Reuters Foundation at school in the village of Mahou. "I didn't like the young man, at all, and I hated the idea of being forced into marriage," she added, fidgeting with...
(AFP (eng) 06/01/17)
One in five children born with a twin sibling in sub-Saharan Africa dies before the age of five -- three times the rate among singletons, said a study Thursday. Almost two-thirds die in the first month of life -- often succumbing to the after-effects of a difficult birth or entering the world too early or underweight, according to research published in The Lancet medical journal. And while rates of under-five deaths in the sub-Saharan African region have declined over two decades, the improvement has been much slower for twins than for single-borns. "Twins account for 10.7 percent of all under-five deaths and 15.1 percent of neonatal (newborn) deaths in the region and these percentages are increasing," the study said. "The...
(Graphic Online 05/31/17)
Ghana and Mali have pledged to work to strengthen cooperation between the two countries. In a joint communiqué issued at the end of a day’s working visit to Mali by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo last Sunday, the two countries agreed to reinforce their co-operation in the areas of trade, agriculture, security and the process of West African integration. They also re-affirmed their commitment to the implementation of the ECOWAS protocols on the free movement of goods and persons. On agriculture, in order to curb the smuggling of agro-chemicals, the two countries agreed to put measures in place to stop the illegal movement of agro-chemicals from Ghana to Mali, as well as take steps towards the diversification of agriculture in...
(Washington Post 05/31/17)
The old man’s house had become a camp for the displaced. In the back yard, groups of women boiled water for rice. Small children skittered across the dirt, running into the bedroom, where they careened around the long, skinny legs of Elijah Karama. “Because of the conditions, they are mine to take care of,” said Karama, 57, more tired than proud. By conditions, he meant Boko Haram’s destruction of vast areas of northeastern Nigeria, and the hunger crisis that has followed. This city of about 1 million has absorbed an additional 1 million people who fled the Islamist militants who burned their villages and kidnapped hundreds of children. In Maiduguri, the vast majority of the displaced aren’t living in U.N...
(AFP (eng) 05/29/17)
A threat by radical Islamists in northeast Mali to punish an unmarried couple with death by stoning finally was not carried out, local officials told AFP on Monday. Officials had told AFP on May 17 that the couple had been stoned to death in public the previous day in the Taghlit valley, in the remote Kidal region. It would have been the first such incident since jihadist groups were driven out of the region in 2013 by a French-led military intervention. The report was queried on social media but could not be checked independently as the area is difficult to access and a haven for smugglers, drug-traffickers and other criminal gangs and militia fighters. "Finally they weren't lapidated," said a...
(Reuters (Eng) 05/27/17)
Leaders of the Group of Seven wealthy nations met African heads of state on Saturday, the final day of their annual summit which has been marked by discord over climate change, but unity on tackling terrorism. Italy had hoped to make Africa the major focus of the annual G7 gathering, holding the discussions on the island of Sicily that has taken in hundreds of thousands of migrants over the past four years as they flee war and poverty back home. However, the two-day meeting got overshadowed by a suicide bombing in northern England on Monday that killed 22 people, and also got bogged down by lengthy discussions on the merit of free trade and the 2015 Paris Agreement to tackle...
(AFP (eng) 05/26/17)
Suspected Islamic extremists have wrecked a primary school in central Mali out of hostility to Western-style education, local administrators and paramilitary police said Thursday. "Armed jihadists who are 'against Western schools' attacked, sacked and burned classrooms in the primary school in the Ndodjiga district" on Wednesday, a local official told AFP, asking not to be named. The raiders "set fire to classrooms and fired shots in the air. They also threatened to attack other schools. Two civilians on the premises were beaten up," another official said. The paramilitary gendarmerie in Mopti, the main town of the region,
(AFP (eng) 05/26/17)
Entertainment | France | film | festival | Cannes | Zambia | witchcraft Cannes, France | AFP | Friday 5/26/2017 - 14:01 UTC+3 | 615 words by Katy Lee Being accused of witchcraft is no laughing matter in Africa -- but movie director Rungano Nyoni decided a dose of humour was just what was needed to tackle a problem rampant in parts of the continent. Set in Zambia, the sharp satire "I Am Not A Witch" has premiered to strong reviews at the Cannes film festival, taking aim at the blatant sexism behind accusations that overwhelmingly target women. White tourists are seen gawping at women detained in a "witch camp" in the movie, taking pictures of them as if they're...
(AFP (eng) 05/24/17)
Two UN peacekeepers were killed and a third wounded on Tuesday in an ambush in restive northern Mali, the nation's UN mission said. The troops were patrolling on foot near Aguelhok, which is close to the border with Algeria, when they were attacked, according to a statement from the multinational UN force, MINUSMA. A military source told AFP that the soldiers belonged to Chad's contingent. Stationed in Mali since July 2013, MINUSMA has just over 12,000 military and police personnel working on what is considered the UN's most dangerous active peacekeeping deployment. The attack was the latest in "a wave of violence in the last weeks," MINUSMA chief Mahamat Saleh Annadif was quoted in the statement as saying. A UN...
(Xinhuanet 05/24/17)
China is willing to strengthen cooperation with African countries within the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative, visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said here on Monday. Speaking at a press conference, Wang said his current visit to four African countries comes right after the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation was successfully held in Beijing. The four countries, i.e. Mauritania, Cape Verde, Mali and Cote d'Ivoire, have all expressed willingness to participate in China's Belt and Road Initiative. Many African countries are at the natural and historical extension of the Maritime Silk Road, Wang said. If they agree with the spirit and concept of the Belt and Road Initiative, they can be cooperative partners. Proposed by Chinese...
(Xinhuanet 05/24/17)
The UN Security Council on Tuesday condemned "in the strongest terms" a terrorist attack that killed two Chadian peacekeepers in Mali. "The members of the Security Council called on the government of Mali to swiftly investigate these attacks and bring the perpetrators to justice,"said the 15-nation council in a unanimous statement. While expressing concern about the security situation in Mali, the Security Council urged Malian parties to fully implement their peace agreement without further delay. The two peacekeepers were killed in an ambush against the mission, known as MINUSMA, 5 km from Aguelhok in Mali's northeastern Kidal region on Tuesday morning, said the United Nations. Group for the Support of Islam and Muslims, a new alliance of al-Qaida, has claimed...

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