Friday 22 September 2017
(Reuters (Eng) 09/22/17)
Rival Tuareg groups said on Thursday they had signed a peace deal in northern Mali, raising hopes of an end to years of fighting and broken ceasefires. Senior members of the separatist CMA and their pro-government opponents known as the Platform said they had settled their differences in the arid region, which is still reeling from a 2012 Islamist insurgency. Past deals have fizzled as goodwill faded - though observers said they were optimistic, as the pact had been signed in Bamako on Wednesday night under the watch of the United Nations, government officials and international mediators. “We assure that in future we will respect all the commitments we have made before you and before...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/22/17)
From deadly droughts and destroyed crops to shrinking water sources, communities across sub-Saharan Africa are struggling to withstand the onslaught of global record-breaking temperatures. But the dangers do not end there. Rising heat poses another threat - one that is far less known and studied but could spark disease epidemics across the continent, scientists say. Mosquitoes are the menace, and the risk goes beyond malaria. The Aedes aegypti mosquito, which spreads debilitating and potentially deadly viruses, from Zika and dengue to chikungunya, thrives in warmer climates than its malaria-carrying cousin, known as Anopheles, say researchers at Stanford University. In sub-Saharan Africa, this means malaria rates could rise in cooler areas as they heat up, but fall in hotter places that...
(AFP (eng) 09/21/17)
A Malian soldier was killed and a number of others were injured Wednesday in an ambush in northern Mali, where gunmen also attacked two military camps, including a UN mission, a military source said. The ambush took place 55 kilometres (34 miles) from Menaka, when one of the unit's vehicles ran over a landmine, the source said. Meanwhile, in the northern region of Kidal, gunmen attacked a camp run by the UN mission in the country, known by the acronym...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/21/17)
Makers of generic AIDS drugs will start churning out millions of pills for Africa containing a state-of-the-art medicine widely used in rich countries, after securing a multi-million dollar guarantee that caps prices at just $75 per patient a year. Global health experts hope the deal will help address two looming problems in the HIV epidemic - the rising threat of resistance developing to standard AIDS drugs, and the need for more investment in manufacturing capacity. Bill Gates’ charitable foundation will...
(APA 09/14/17)
APA-Bamako (Mali) - Malian authorities have on Wednesday seized 58 bales of cannabis worth 120 million CFA in Koutiala in the southern region of Sikasso, according to Lieutenant Salikou Traoré, from the regional narcotics department (OCS). “We arrested two drug traffickers who had 58 bales of cannabis, all of them Malians. They were detained at Sikasso Central Prison,” Lieutenant Traore said. When asked about the origin and destination of the seized drug, Lieutenant Traoré replied: “We know that the drug...
(Bloomberg 09/11/17)
The South African companies that dominate the U.K.’s growing private hospital industry are counting on more people like Katie Corrie. A children’s party entertainer, Corrie opted to use 13,000 pounds ($17,000) of her savings and inheritance to get a hip replacement rather than spend months on a National Health Service waiting list. Britons like her are forking out almost 1 billion pounds a year to cover their own medical expenses, a trend that’s giving at least one industry the scope...
(AFP (eng) 09/10/17)
The Niger Basin Authority issued a warning Saturday of possible flooding in Benin and Nigeria, two countries downstream on the river, which is currently flooding in Niger. "We appeal to all residents downstream (of the Niger River)... because the water keeps rising," the NBA's Soungalo Kone said late Saturday, speaking on Niger television. The NBA has issued its second-highest alert level of orange, warning that further flooding is highly likely following months of heavy rain in Niger and Mali. "It's a question of hours to get to a red alert -- the waters can rise very suddenly," said Lawan Magadji, Niger's minister of disaster
(AFP (eng) 09/08/17)
Malian and Burkinabe soldiers have killed, tortured and disappeared civilians while trying to root out jihadists in central Mali, Human Rights Watch said Friday. "Mali and Burkina Faso military operations to counter the growing presence of Islamist armed groups in central Mali have resulted in serious human rights violations," a statement said. "Since late 2016, Malian forces have committed extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances, torture, and arbitrary arrests against men accused of supporting Islamist armed groups". The violations occurred in the...
(APA 09/08/17)
Deprivation and marginalization, underpinned by weak governance, are primary forces driving young Africans into violent extremism, according to a comprehensive new study by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the first study of its kind. Based on interviews with 495 voluntary recruits to extremist organizations such as Al-Shabaab and Boko Haram, the new study also found that it is often perceived state violence or abuse of power that provides the final tipping point for the decision to join an extremist...
(Xinhuanet 09/06/17)
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Tuesday condemned an attack on a convoy of UN peacekeepers in Mali. Tuesday's attack in Kidal region on the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (Minusma) killed two peacekeepers and seriously injured two others. The secretary-general extended his condolences to the families and loved ones of the victims and wished the injured a speedy recovery. He noted attacks against peacekeepers may constitute war crimes under international law, said Stephane Dujarric, Guterres' spokesman, in a...
(AFP (eng) 09/05/17)
France unveiled plans on Tuesday to start using armed drones, joining a growing number of countries worldwide to operate the deadly unmanned aircraft. "I decided to begin the process of arming our intelligence and surveillance drones," Defence Minister Florence Parly told a gathering of recruits and lawmakers in the southern port city of Toulon. France currently operates a handful of unarmed Reaper drones as part of its presence monitoring jihadist groups in Africa's Sahel region. Parly said the military planned to equip six unmanned aerial vehicles purchased from the United States with "precision guided"
(Agence Ecofin 09/05/17)
The World Bank has just set aside FCFA 160 million to finance in Mali, a project to establish a land commission in Ségou. Related works for the project began on August 22 in the administrative region which is located in the central part of the country. “This project aims to boost land tenure, facilitate public and private investments, insure equal access to land as well as mitigate and prevent conflicts,” according to Studio Tamani, a daily radio program broadcasted in...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/29/17)
Europe’s “big four” continental powers and three African states agreed a plan on Monday to tackle illegal human trafficking and support nations struggling to contain the flow of people across the desert and Mediterranean sea. The 28-nation European Union has long struggled to reach a coherent answer to the influx of migrants fleeing war, poverty and political upheaval in the Middle East and Africa, and the crisis is testing cooperation between member states. After hosting the leaders of Germany, Italy,...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/28/17)
Getting Europe’s migrant crisis under control will be in focus at a summit of Europe’s “big four” continental powers and three African nations in Paris on Monday, with French President Emmanuel Macron seeking concrete action. The 28-nation European Union has struggled to agree on a coherent answer to the influx of migrants fleeing war, poverty and political upheaval in the Middle East and Africa, and the crisis is testing cooperation between member states. Over the summer, Macron sought to take...
(Bloomberg 08/25/17)
Two armed groups in Mali agreed to a 15-day cease-fire and committed to peace talks after repeated clashes near the northern city of Kidal. The Coordination of Azawad Movements, a coalition of Tuareg separatists, and the pro-government militia known as the Platform, signed the truce on Wednesday in the capital, Bamako. Despite a peace deal signed in Algiers in 2015, fighting between the organizations has resulted in scores of deaths in the north. Kidal is a stronghold of ethnic Tuareg...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/24/17)
Rival armed groups in northern Mali agreed to the return of a state governor to the desert city of Kidal for the first time in years as part of a ceasefire deal signed on Wednesday after weeks of fighting. The return of Governor Sidi Mohamed Ag Ichrach follows a truce among fighters drawn mostly from competing Tuareg clans involved in remote desert battles since July that have killed dozens. The clashes have undermined a Western-backed peace process in the country...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/19/17)
West and Central Africa is the most volatile region in the world for aid workers, accounting for more than half of attacks on humanitarians worldwide this year, aid agencies said on Friday. Worsening militant violence across the region has seen aid workers attacked on nearly 200 occasions in Central African Republic, more than 115 in Mali and about 75 in the Democratic Republic of Congo, U.N. agencies and humanitarian groups said. "The deteriorating trend in these countries ... is extremely worrying," said Noel Tsekouras, regional representative for the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). "Our staff and volunteers too often risk their own lives when coming...
(Bloomberg 08/18/17)
Judges order Ahmad al-Faqi al-Mahdi to pay damages for destroying 10 mausoleums and religious sites in 2012. A former Islamist militant who was jailed for destroying holy sites in Timbuktu is liable for damages of €2.7m (£2.5m), judges at the international criminal court (ICC) have ruled. Ahmad al-Faqi al-Mahdi was imprisoned for nine years last year after pleading guilty to war crimes for his involvement in the destruction of 10 mausoleums and religious sites in Timbuktu in 2012. Jihadis used...
(Bloomberg 08/18/17)
Islamist militant attacks in West Africa are increasing in intensity. High-profile strikes on resorts and restaurants that have shattered the area’s tourist industry get most of the attention. Yet barely a week goes by without a deadly incident in a remote rural zone where some of the world’s poorest people live. Instability in the region affects Europe because it benefits organized crime networks which are engaged in the smuggling and trafficking of migrants to the shores of Italy. 1. What’s...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/17/17)
Judges at the International Criminal Court (ICC) ruled on Thursday that a former Islamist rebel who was jailed for wrecking holy sites in Timbuktu was liable for damages of 2.7 million euros ($3.2 million). Amad al-Faqi al-Mahdi was sent to prison for nine years in 2016 after pleading guilty to war crimes for his involvement in the destruction of 10 mausoleums and religious sites in Timbuktu. The sites date from Mali's 14th-century golden age as a trading hub and center...

Pages