Sunday 23 July 2017
(AFP (eng) 07/21/17)
A protester was in a coma after being struck on the head during clashes between demonstrators and security forces in northern Morocco, local authorities said on Friday. He was taken to hospital overnight after being wounded by "stone throwing" in the clashes on Thursday in the city of Al-Hoceima, official news agency MAP quoted the authorities as saying. Authorities are seeking to "identify the person and clarify the circumstances of the incident", MAP said, adding that the patient would be flown to a hospital in the capital...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/21/17)
Police fired tear gas and used truncheons to scatter hundreds of protesters in northern Morocco, a Reuters witness said on Thursday, part of the biggest wave of demonstrations in the kingdom since Arab Spring-inspired rallies in 2011. People have taken to the streets in the Rif region around the city of Al-Hoceima since October over injustice, corruption and underdevelopment, and on Thursday thousands gathered to try to join in rallies that local authorities had banned. Police charged at small groups of protesters, including men, women and children, around the town and forced many into side streets where authorities had set up a heavy security presence with checkpoints to block people joining the protests, the Reuters witness said. Cars and taxis...
(AFP (eng) 07/19/17)
A Moroccan court on Wednesday sentenced 23 Sahrawis to prison terms ranging from two years to life over the killing of 11 members of the Moroccan security forces in contested Western Sahara. The verdict in the case, which has been closely followed by human rights campaigners, was delivered at dawn by the Court of Appeals in Sale near Rabat, the official news agency MAP reported. Morocco and the Algeria-backed Polisario Front independence movement have accused each other of provoking the deadly clashes between police and Sahrawi protesters at a camp for displaced people in Gdeim Izik in November 2010. In 2013 a military court sentenced the defendants to jail terms...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/18/17)
Three years after he risked his life crossing the Mediterranean Sea from Libya to Italy on a small boat crammed with migrants, 22-year-old Sow Muhammed can hardly believe his luck. The former street hawker from Guinea now works as a caterer in Venice, rents his own apartment, and sends money back home regularly to his mother and siblings in the West African nation. "I am happy I came to Europe, and my family is also happy," he told the Thomson...
(AFP (eng) 07/14/17)
Six people were sentenced to one year in jail for celebrating on Facebook after the December 2016 assassination of Russia's ambassador to Turkey, the official news agency MAP reported Friday. A court in Sale, near the capital Rabat, condemned the six Moroccans late Thursday and also fined them 10,000 dirhams (115 euros) each for "incitement of terrorist acts". Lawyer Abdessamad El Idrissi, a member of the Islamist PJD (Justice and Development Party), criticised what he called the "exaggerated and sorry" sentencing of the young Moroccans who "represent the country's elite". They were convicted for having hailed in comments on Facebook the murder in Ankara of ambassador...
(Cnbc Africa 07/12/17)
"Africa is an awakening giant," according to the former South African President Frederik Willem de Klerk speaking at the World Petroleum Congress in Istanbul. The leader who oversaw the transition of his country's power to Nelson Mandela said Tuesday that the future looks bright for a continent previously blighted by war, famine and a lack of infrastructure. "I believe Africa is an awakening giant and, yes, it is not performing according to what we expected soon enough, but it will...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/11/17)
Morocco's general prosecutor said he would investigate the leaking of a video of a detained protest leader from the northern Rif region that has sparked widespread anger and accusations he had been abused. Protest organizer Nasser Zefzafi shows his arms, legs and torso to the camera in the video, posted on Monday by a website known for its ties to the security services. The website framed the video as evidence against claims of ill-treatment, but marks and bruises are visible...
(APA 07/11/17)
Moroccan peacekeepers deployed in Bria in the north central region of the Central African Republic (CAR) have been withdrawn, MINUSCA announced on Monday. MINUSCA the UN Integrated Multidimensional Mission for Stabilization in the Central African Republic said on a private radio station in Bangui, the nation’s capital, that the decision came at the end of the demonstration staged by inhabitants of Bria last Thursday, demanding the withdrawal of the Moroccan contingent from Bria, for “bias” in their security activities. “Depending on operational requirements, we very often have contingents or parts of the contingents across the country that move from...
(Voice of America 07/11/17)
In the past five years, terrorist attacks have killed nearly 20,000 people across Africa. Two groups, Boko Haram and al-Shabab, accounted for 71 percent of reported incidents and 91 percent of fatalities. But, while these and other militant groups remain active, fatal terrorist attacks across the continent are on pace to fall for a second straight year, and the total number of attacks is running far below 2012 highs. These findings are part of VOA’s original analysis of data from...
(AFP (eng) 07/06/17)
The costs of diabetes in sub-Saharan Africa could double to almost $60 billion annually just 13 years from now, as obesity fuels an explosion of the disease, a report said Thursday. In 2015, the overall diabetes cost in the region was nearly $20 billion (18 billion euros), or 1.2 percent of total economic production, according to research published by The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology. This included medication and hospital stays, and loss of labour productivity due to illness or death. About half of all treatment costs were paid for by patients themselves.
(Voice of America 07/04/17)
GENEVA — The U.N. children’s fund warns tens of thousands of malnourished children are at great risk in Yemen, Somalia and South Sudan, which are on the brink of famine. UNICEF reports an estimated 4.7 million children in the cholera-stricken countries are malnourished. Of these, UNICEF spokesman Christofe Boulierac tells VOA, more than one million are suffering from severe acute malnutrition. “Let me remind you that a child who is suffering from severe acute malnutrition are nine times more likely...
(RFI(EN) 07/04/17)
New tax rules in Israel could leave hundreds of African migrants worse off than they are. In May, the government introduced a new deposit law, enabling the governemnt to take 20 percent of migrants' salaries each month and place it out of reach. The money can only be accessed once they leave the country. Rights groups say the policy is designed to force them out of the country. "We're not pressuring you to leave but will make your life miserable...
(AFP (eng) 06/28/17)
The generic version of the most advanced drug against HIV has been introduced in Kenya, a first in Africa where more than 25 million have the disease, the NGO Unitaid said Wednesday. The drug, Dolutegravir (DTG) is the anti-retroviral drug of choice for those living with HIV in developed countries, but its high price has put it out of reach for most struggling with the disease in Africa. "The generic DTG has two advantages: on the one hand, it is...
(AFP (eng) 06/23/17)
Authorities in Morocco on Thursday dismantled a suspected "terrorist cell" linked to the Islamic State group and accused of plotting major attacks on tourist sites, the government said. Four suspected cell members were detained and weapons were seized from them during the arrest operation in the Atlantic coast resort town of Essaouira, said the interior ministry. They had been planning to carry out "large-scale" attacks on "sensitive installations and tourist sites of Essaouira", it said in a statement. The group...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/23/17)
DAR ES SALAAM (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Sadick Thenest remembers how his 8-year-old daughter had a narrow brush with death two years ago, when she contracted cholera after drinking contaminated water. “She was so gaunt, weak and had terrible diarrhea,” said the refugee from Burundi. “A slight delay in rushing her to hospital would have meant something else - but with God’s grace she survived.” The father of four, aged 35, is among thousands of refugees grappling with frequent outbreaks...
(AFP (eng) 06/22/17)
The leader of a protest movement in northern Morocco was "severely" beaten and verbally abused by police during his arrest, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International said Thursday. Nasser Zefzafi -- leader of Al-Hirak al-Shaabi, or the "Popular Movement" -- was detained on May 29 in a village 50 kilometres (30 miles) from the city of Al-Hoceima along with two fellow activists. A dozen police officers broke down the door of his house in the early hours of the morning,...
(Voice of America 06/21/17)
WASHINGTON DC — On June 5, Saudi Arabia and its allies, including Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of funding extremist groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamic State. In response, Qatar said it was the victim of a policy of “domination and control” by its larger neighbor and that Saudi Arabia was, in fact, the one responsible for backing extremism. So what is the truth? Fundamentalist strains of Islam, including...
(Others 06/20/17)
No member of staff at the Agadir Beach Club in Morocco bothered to help little Sienna Buckley despite her blood being spattered on the floor following an accident, a judge was told today Tuesday. Sienna, then aged only three, was shocked and crying in pain after suffering a large gash to her chin when she fell on a defective ramp at the Moroccan resort. “None of the hotel staff or receptionists offered to help despite the fact that there was...
(AFP (eng) 06/17/17)
Morocco's OCP group denounced Friday a decision by a South African court to hold a Moroccan ship laden with phosphate mined from the disputed Western Sahara pending a trial. The court said it wanted to determine ownership of the cargo of the boat that is being held at Port Elizabeth. The 34,000-tonne vessel from Western Sahara, which was destined for New Zealand, was last month prevented from departing due to a court motion seeking that the vessel return its cargo...
(AFP (eng) 06/16/17)
A South African court on Thursday ordered the further detention of a Moroccan vessel laden with phosphate mined from the disputed Western Sahara pending a trial to determine the owner of the cargo. The 34,000-tonne vessel from Western Sahara and destined for New Zealand was last month blocked from sailing off due to a court motion seeking that the vessel return its cargo. The motion argued that transportation of goods from disputed Western Sahara is illegal and in violation of international principles. "The court has basically found that the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic and the Polisario Front have established...

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