Monday 25 September 2017
(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...
(The Associated Press 09/21/17)
A top Moroccan security official says his government is working on a new strategy to track Moroccans who become radicalized in Europe, part of beefed-up counterterrorism efforts by a country that is both a key player in the global anti-extremism struggle and a source of international jihadis. Preventing radicalization of Moroccans abroad is especially important after Spanish extremists with Moroccan origins carried out last month's deadly Barcelona attacks, Abdelhak Khiame, director of an agency known as Morocco's FBI, told The Associated Press in an interview.
(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...
(Xinhuanet 09/19/17)
The Moroccan city of Casablanca will host a new edition of Africa Security Forum on October 8-10, organizers announced on Monday. The 2017 edition will bring together more than 400 participants from 45 different African nations to discuss the Inter-African cooperation in the face of terrorism, radicalization and transnational crime, the president of the forum Driss Benamer told a press conference to shed lights on the forum. It will feature three main topics, namely terrorism, cyberspace, and new vectors of radicalization; the new challenges of migration and transnational criminality and the Inter-African cooperation and its new challenges, he added. "The Africa Security Forum, by adopting a broad and comprehensive approach
(Xinhuanet 09/18/17)
Some 1.2 million people suffer from undernourishment in Morocco, which represents 3.5 percent of the total population, local media reported on Sunday. Citing the United Nations report on the State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World, the Moroccan daily L'Economiste said undernourishment has significantly declined in the kingdom. Morocco contains the least proportion of undernourished in North Africa, followed by Egypt 4.5 percent, Algeria 4.6, Tunisia by five percent and Sudan by 25.6. After steadily declining for over a decade, global hunger appears to be on the rise, affecting 11 percent of the global population, the report indicates.
(AFP (eng) 09/13/17)
Media watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF) voiced alarm Wednesday after a Moroccan court increased the prison sentence of a journalist to one year for inciting an unauthorised protest. Hamid El Mahdaoui, who heads the Badil online news site, was arrested in July at the start of a banned demonstration in the restive northern city of Al-Hoceima. He was initially sentenced to three months in jail after being found guilty of helping to organise "an unauthorised march" and having "invited" others...
(AFP (eng) 09/13/17)
Edouard Kunz knows timekeeping is important but the former Swiss watch precision mechanic admits that James Bond's Oriental Desert Express in remote eastern Morocco never runs on schedule. The train, made famous in the 2015 Bond movie "Spectre", trundles tourists between the town of Oujda and the former mining city of Bouarfa along a 350-kilometre-long (215-mile) stretch of desert. "It takes between eight and 12 hours to make the trip, sometimes even more," says Kunz, 70, who is known as...
(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...
(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...
(AFP (eng) 09/05/17)
A medical aid group on Monday called for an independent enquiry into the suspected deaths of seven African women in the waters between Morocco and Spain, a route increasingly used by migrants trying to reach Europe. Doctors of the World Spain said in a statement that The women were from the Democratic Republic of Congo and Guinea, Doctors of the World Spain said in a statement citing information from the migrant aid association Walking Borders. "The exact circumstances of their...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/30/17)
Moroccan authorities have arrested a man suspected of supplying gas canisters to a jihadist cell that carried out a double attack in Catalonia earlier this month that killed 16 people, a source from the Spanish investigation said. The cell accumulated around 120 canisters of butane gas at a house in a town south of Barcelona with which, police say, it planned to carry out a larger bomb attack. Police believe the cell accidentally ignited the explosives on Aug. 16, the...
(AFP (eng) 08/29/17)
Spain's Interior Minister Juan Ignacio Zoido, visiting his Moroccan counterpart Tuesday, said Rabat had arrested two men linked to deadly twin attacks in Catalonia. "Thanks to permanent contact and collaboration between the two countries, Moroccan security services have carried out two arrests here in Morocco linked to the attacks in Barcelona and Cambrils," he said. He declined to give further details because the men were still under investigation. Zoido was in Rabat to meet Moroccan Interior Minister Abdelouafi Laftit for...
(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,...
(AFP (eng) 08/28/17)
Two women porters died in a stampede Monday at a border post between Morocco and Spain's North African territory of Ceuta, a rights group and the MAP news agency said. The women, aged 34 and 45, were trampled at the Tarajal 2 border post and rushed to hospital where they died of their injuries, Mohammed Benaissa of the Northern Observatory of Human Rights told AFP. Four other women porters were injured in the crush and taken to hospital in the nearby town of Fnid'q, Benaissa said. Morocco's MAP confirmed the death toll and said that one of the injured was in a critical condition.
(Xinhuanet 08/28/17)
The Moroccan authorities have arrested three people over suspected links to Spain's terror attacks, local media reported on Monday. Citing Morocco's Central Bureau of Judicial Investigations (BCIJ), Akhbar Al Yaoum said the suspects were captured in the Eastern city of Oujda, the northeastern city of Nador and Casablanca. The same source said that two of the suspects were freed, while the third is still detained. The detained is accused of preparing a terror attack against the Spanish embassy in Morocco,...
(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...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/26/17)
In a winding early-morning queue, Jemaa Laalaoua hunches over with 50 kg (110 lb) of kitchenware on her back, waiting to cross back into Morocco from the Spanish enclave of Melilla. The 41-year-old mother of eight is one of thousands of Moroccans who eke out a living by walking loads of merchandise from Melilla into the northern Moroccan province of Nador. Goods including metal kettles that Laalaoua was carrying are counted as personal luggage and are not taxed, allowing for...
(AFP (eng) 08/25/17)
Morocco's Prime Minister Saadeddine El Othmani vowed Thursday to adopt a strategy to tackle sexual harassment after attacks that have shocked the North African country. Footage of a woman being assaulted by six bare-chested teenagers on a bus last week sparked outrage less than two weeks after a video emerged online of men hounding a lone woman in the northern city of Tangier. The government is "considering how to deal with this kind of phenomenon so that such acts do...
(AFP (eng) 08/24/17)
Hundreds of people staged an angry protest Wednesday in the Moroccan city of Casablanca against sexual harassment after footage of a woman being assaulted on a bus caused outrage across the North African country. "We are not afraid! Liberate public space!" chanted the protesters, gathered in the centre of Morocco's economic capital, near where the assault took place. Six teenage suspects were arrested on Monday after footage emerged online showing bare-chested teenagers assaulting a weeping young woman in broad daylight, laughing as they touched her private parts. "Nobody can remain indifferent... It concerns us all," said actress and theatre director Fatym Layachi...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/23/17)
Moroccan authorities have arrested two people suspected of links to the alleged perpetrators of the van attack that killed 13 people in the Spanish city of Barcelona, state TV channel 2M reported on Tuesday. One of the men, a 28-year-old detained in the Nador, close to the Spanish enclave of Melilla, lived for 12 years in Barcelona and is suspected of links to Islamic State and of plotting to attack the Spanish embassy in Rabat, the channel reported. It gave...

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