| Africatime
Tuesday 28 March 2017
(Xinhuanet 03/27/17)
There is need for China and its African allies to kick start a new dialogue aimed at revitalizing wildlife and ecological conservation in the world's second largest continent, a conservationist has told Xinhua in an interview. Kaddu Sebunya, president of African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), told Xinhua that Beijing is an indispensable partner in efforts to protect Africa's iconic wildlife species that are grappling with human and climatic induced threats to their survival. "China is playing a big role in Africa's economic development and would like to see it direct more support towards protection of wildlife and vital ecosystems in the continent," Sebunya said. Sebunya noted that China's growing economic and diplomat clout place it at...
(Xinhuanet 03/24/17)
A group of non-government organizations (NGOs) on Friday called on African leaders to find practical solutions to protect and assist Somali refugees and asylum seekers facing ongoing conflict and a humanitarian crisis in Somalia. In a joint statement issued on the eve of the regional summit on refugees, members of the Regional Durable Solutions Secretariat (ReDSS), Somalia NGO Consortium and the Inter-agency Working Group (IAWG) expressed hope that the leaders will take practical steps towards the development and implementation of a comprehensive regional approach. "It is hoped that such an approach, developed in the spirit of the New York Declaration, will support countries and communities that host Somali refugees in improving asylum space, integrated access to services, inclusive economic opportunities...
(AFP (eng) 03/23/17)
Eight people have died in violent clashes between two ethnic groups in central Mali, local sources told AFP Thursday, as tensions grow over use of land and food scarcity in the region. Increased availability of arms from Libya has also contributed to intercommunal violence in Mali, experts say, while drought has forced herders into areas traditionally cultivated by farmers. Cattle rustling in the village of Tougou angered traditional hunters who cultivate the land with their animals, a local official told...
(AFP (eng) 03/21/17)
Under a cloudless sky in South Africa's northwestern farming region, donkeys still amble along muddy paths, pausing to nibble on grass, oblivious to the threat from a demand for Chinese medicine. The gelatin found in the animals' skin has made them a target, leading to a growing wave of donkey slaughtering in several African countries, as gangs seek to fuel a lucrative, and in South Africa illegal, trade. Animal rights groups say the docile beasts of burden are often cruelly...
(Voice of America 03/17/17)
One of the enduring legacies of the Barack Obama presidency will be the relationship built between the United States and young Africans. As part of Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), each year 1,000 young people from sub-Saharan Africa travel to the United States to spend six weeks at a U.S. college or university. The program will continue this summer. But building enduring relationships is a two-way street, and many in Africa want to see Americans coming to their continent...
(AFP (eng) 03/16/17)
A nearly week-long strike over pay in Mali's public hospitals has brought services in major cities to a near standstill. The strike, which began on March 9, has affected hospitals and clinics in the capital Bamako and three other cities, sources said. Consultations were cancelled Wednesday at Bamako's Gabriel Toure Hospital, one of the country's largest, although essential services appeared to continue to be available, AFP journalist saw. A couple who had taken their baby to the hospital said the...
(Xinhuanet 03/16/17)
China's aid to the education sector in Africa is helping boost teacher training, a key component in skilling the population to fast track development, a UN official has said. Ann Therese Ndong-Jatta, Director of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Regional Office for Eastern Africa, in an interview recognized China's contribution to Africa's education sector over the years. "We value the initiative in teacher training in Uganda and other countries in Africa. This will revitalize the teaching profession,"...
(Agence Ecofin 03/14/17)
The Land Policy Initiative (LPI), a joint programme of the tripartite consortium consisting of the African Union Commission (AUC), the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) has launched a pilot project to track progress in implementing in the AU Declaration on land issues in Africa. This was revealed by the ECA in a press statement dated March 7. In collaboration with the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), the project will assess progress...
(Agence Ecofin 03/10/17)
On a sensizibilation mission on land ownership and rights in the Kayes region, in the South Western part of Mali, the minister of public domains and land affairs, Mohamed Ali Bathily, recalled how important it is to respect land legislation in order to tackle land conflicts. The official in fact blamed local authorities of contributing to the sustaining of the phenomenon. “Administrators, local elects and often village chiefs, in order to satisfy their personal interests, and those of the highest...
(AFP (eng) 03/10/17)
In the beginning was .com, followed by a host of other .somethings, but on Friday, 32 years after the world's first domain name was registered, the African Union has launched .africa for the continent. Africans who want to register a website will be able to apply for a .africa domain name in the coming months, which outgoing AU commission chair Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said would allow the continent's people and businesses to better reach the world. "With .africa, I would say...
(Xinhuanet 03/09/17)
A critical mass of trained and well equipped community health workforce is key to easing the rising burden of infectious and noncommunicable diseases in Africa, experts said on Wednesday at a continental forum taking place in Nairobi. The experts, policymakers and campaigners who attended Africa Health Agenda International Conference agreed that optimal engagement of community health workers is key to revolutionize response to diseases ravaging the continent. Kenya's Cabinet Secretary for Health Cleopa Mailu in his opening remarks said that...
(AFP (eng) 03/08/17)
Lawyers and human rights campaigners launched an initiative for African whistleblowers in Senegal on Tuesday, aimed at providing a secure means of exposing wrongdoing on the continent. African nations such as Somalia, South Sudan, Libya and Guinea-Bissau regularly appear at the very bottom of rankings such as Transparency International's Corruption Index, while none make it into the top 30. The Platform for the Protection of Whistleblowers in Africa (PPLAAF) will provide guidance from legal experts, secure submission of information and...
(AFP (eng) 03/06/17)
At least 11 soldiers were killed in Mali on Sunday in an attack on an army base near the border with Burkina Faso, as rival armed factions surrounded the flashpoint city of Timbuktu. The jihadist attack on the border village of Boulekessi killed 11 troops and wounded five more, according to an official toll from the defence ministry read out on national television. "One of our positions was attacked early Sunday morning by terrorists, on the border with Burkina Faso," a highly-placed Malian military source told AFP on condition of anonymity earlier Sunday.
(AFP (eng) 03/03/17)
Three jihadist groups operating in the Sahel region have merged to form one single organisation, Mauritania's private news agency ANI said Thursday, citing a video distributed by the Islamists. Among the groups joining the merger south of the Sahara are Mali's Al-Qaeda-linked Ansar Dine and Al-Murabitoun, led by Algerian extremist Mokhtar Belmokhtar. The new movement will operate under the name the Group to Support Islam and Muslims, and will be led by Ansar Dine's Iyag Ag Ghaly, ANI said, adding...
(AFP (eng) 03/03/17)
Interim authorities for Mali's troubled northern regions of Gao and Menaka were installed Thursday in a step toward improving security enough to allow local elections in former rebel strongholds. Mali's north fell under the control of Tuareg-led rebels and jihadist groups linked to Al-Qaeda in 2012. The Islamists sidelined the rebels to take sole control. Although they were largely ousted by a French-led military operation in January 2013, implementation of a 2015 peace accord has been piecemeal but the long-delayed installation of interim authorities is a key step.
(Reuters (Eng) 03/03/17)
Mali's main jihadist groups said on Thursday they will merge under Islamist leader Iyad Ag-Ghali whose fighters have claimed multiple attacks on Malian, French and U.N. peacekeeping forces, Mauritania's Nouakchott News Agency (ANI) reported. ANI said Ag-Ghali's Ansar Dine would join with al-Mourabitoun, led by Algerian jihadist and smuggler Mokhtar Belmokhtar, which claimed responsibility for a suicide bomb attack on a military camp in northern Mali that killed up to 60 people and wounded more than 100 in January. France...
(AFP (eng) 02/28/17)
The Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership -- the world's biggest individual prize -- drew a blank once again in finding a suitable laureate, it was announced Tuesday. The prize only goes to a democratically-elected African leader who demonstrated exceptional leadership, served their mandated term and left office within the last three years. The award comes with $5 million (4.7 million euros) paid over 10 years and $200,000 annually for life from then on. The prize, founded by Sudan-born...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/26/17)
Armed groups in northern Mali have agreed on the return of interim authorities to towns there next week, a government statement said, overcoming a stumbling block in the implementation of a 2015 peace deal. Most government posts in northern Mali have been empty since desert jihadists usurped them in 2012 before being chased out themselves by a French military intervention. However, an attempt by authorities from the southern capital Bamako to visit the Tuareg rebel bastion of Kidal in 2014 led to heavy fighting between the army and local fighters who were formerly allied with the jihadists.
(AFP (eng) 02/24/17)
Senegalese police have arrested two Malians suspected of involvement in a jihadist attack on an Ivory Coast beach resort last year that killed 19 people. More than 10 suspects have already been detained in relation to the March 13 assault, when assailants armed with grenades and assault rifles stormed three hotels in Grand-Bassam, a beachside resort popular with foreigners 40 kilometres (25 miles) from Abidjan. The attack, the first of its kind in the Ivory Coast, was claimed by Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, which has also carried out assaults on tourist hotspots in Mali and Burkina Faso.
(Reuters (Eng) 02/24/17)
Senegalese authorities have arrested two suspected foreign jihadists in Dakar, including one who had been in contact with the mastermind of an attack on an Ivory Coast hotel a year ago. Police spokesman Henry Cisse said an operation in Dakar on Thursday had led to the arrest of Ould Sidy Mohamed Dina, a Malian, as he was trying to leave his home. He had been in Senegal for a month, he said. Another suspected jihadist, whom he did not name, from Mauritania, had been arrested trying to board a bus to Gambia. The suspects have not yet been charged.

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