Friday 15 December 2017
(Reuters (Eng) 09/26/13)
UNITED NATIONS | (Reuters) - France's foreign minister called on Wednesday for the U.N. Security Council to adopt a resolution next month to boost U.N. operations in the Central African Republic, which he said risked becoming a new Somalia if it did not get immediate support. The landlocked, mineral-rich Central African Republic, or CAR, has slipped into chaos since northern Seleka rebels seized the capital, Bangui, and ousted President Francois Bozize in March. U.N. officials and rights groups say both sides may have committed war crimes. French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius co-hosted a meeting with the European Union and U.N. humanitarian affairs officials on Wednesday in an effort to raise awareness for a crisis that has struggled to galvanize international...
(Voice of America 09/26/13)
ADDIS ABABA — Experts say Africa's economy is expected to grow by 4.8 percent in 2013, and exceed five percent growth in 2014. Statistics compiled by the African Development Bank, the U.N. Development Population and the OECD Development Center indicate Libya will be the fastest growing African country, followed by Sierra Leone and Ivory Coast. The African Economic Outlook report of the African Development Bank and its partners projects that Africa’s gross domestic product -- the measure of goods and services produced -- will grow by 5.3 percent in 2014. Central and West Africa are the fastest growing regions, mainly because of their commodities. GDP Growth in AfricaGDP Growth in Africa Anthony Simpasa of the African Development Bank said the...
(BBC News Africa 09/26/13)
Nelson Mandela is continuing to respond to treatment at his home in Houghton, according to South African President Jacob Zuma. The former South African president, 95, returned home at the start of September after almost three months in hospital. In his statement, President Zuma thanked the global community for their support but did not go into detail about Mr Mandela's condition. Previous statements have often said he is "critical but stable". Mr Mandela was admitted to hospital in Pretoria in June with a recurring lung condition. Family members have spoken of their happiness at having Mr Mandela home again. "Our revered former president continues to respond to treatment at his home," said President Zuma on Wednesday. "His family and our...
(Voice of America 09/25/13)
The U.S. military has moved its fleet of drones from a key Horn of Africa air base to a more remote location. A Pentagon official tells VOA that the unmanned aircraft have been moved from Camp Lemonnier, a U.S. base in Djibouti, to another location in the country. The official says the new location alleviates traffic issues that resulted from having drones share the same runway with regular base traffic and commercial air traffic. Camp Lemonnier is located at the Djibouti international airport. The Washington Post reported Wednesday that the relocation took place after a string of crashes raised fears in Djibouti about the risk of collisions between drones and passenger planes. The newspaper says local officials had expressed concern...
(CNN 09/23/13)
(CNN) -- Africa is in the middle of an amazing demographic shift. Our continent is the only one where the size of the younger generation is rising significantly. Our population is already 16 years younger than in China, and this is only the beginning. Within less than three generations, four out of ten of the world's youth will live on our continent. This demographic dividend -- and the energy and enthusiasm it brings -- offers us a unique advantage which other continents facing the prospect of a rapidly aging population and dwindling workforce can only envy. In a world changing with breakneck speed, it is young people who are best equipped to identify and deliver fresh solutions to our problems...
(Voice of America 09/21/13)
WASHINGTON, DC — Can the United States take a trade law that’s helping to increase African exports, and make it better? That’s what African and American politicians, economists and policy makers are discussing as they consider the future of the African Growth and Opportunity Act, or AGOA. The legislation, which expires in two years, drops duties and tariffs on thousands of products from the continent. Supporters say it’s generated hundreds of billions of dollars in trade and investment opportunities. Most African development specialists and policy makers would like to see AGOA extended, at least for another ten years. Some would like to add other low income countries outside Africa or include a wider range of products. A new study by...
(BBC News Africa 09/20/13)
The African Union has called a special summit to discuss a mass withdrawal from the International Criminal Court (ICC) in protest at the trial of Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto. A letter sent to the ICC signed by African leaders says Mr Ruto's presence in The Hague will disadvantage Kenya. The AU has previously accused the ICC of "hunting" African leaders and ignoring atrocities elsewhere. The ICC says it is standing up for victims of crimes wherever they are. The extraordinary summit will be held in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, on 13 October. Days before the start of Mr Ruto's trial this month, Kenya's parliament voted to leave the ICC. This decision will not affect the trial of Mr...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/20/13)
DAKAR | Fri Sep 20, 2013 (Reuters) - The United States and its allies are clamping down on suspected Hezbollah activity in West Africa, which Washington says is a major source of cash for the Lebanese group as its patron Iran feels the pinch of sanctions. The push coincides with Hezbollah's deepening role in Syria, where it has dispatched thousands of fighters to back President Bashar al-Assad. It also comes in the wake of attacks outside Lebanon linked to Hezbollah that Western experts say are part of global campaign that could soon include Africa. Critics, however, argue that Washington and its allies may be exaggerating the threat and failing to distinguish between different forms of support for various elements of...
(CNN 09/20/13)
London (CNN) -- The girls strutting down the runway in The Savoy Hotel share many features - all are long-limbed, fine-boned and have glowing complexions. A silent army marching to the heavy music, past the front row A-listers peering out from behind their dark glasses. But one girl is different: the only one with black skin in a battalion of white faces. Nadja is one of the few black models lucky enough to make this year's cut for London Fashion Week. The lack of racial diversity in the fashion industry is a serious issue that needs to be tackled, according to supermodels Naomi Campbell and Iman, who this month launched a campaign to raise awareness of racism in the industry...
(AFP (eng) 09/19/13)
BAMAKO, September 19, 2013 (AFP) - French President Francois Hollande was due to hold a mini-summit Thursday with African leaders in Mali on the security situation in the Central African Republic, aides said. The meeting on the sidelines of the inauguration of Malian President Ibrahmim Boubacar Keita in Bamako will bring together the heads of state of Gabon, Chad and Cameroon, the main contributors to an African Union force in the troubled country. "The president wants to encourage this approach, see what they need and how to bring the issue to the United Nations," said a member of Hollande's entourage. The idea is to "enable the force to press for a resolution from the Security Council", he added. Hollande is...
(Voice of America 09/19/13)
UNITED NATIONS — Human Rights Watch is calling on the U.N. Security Council to sanction leaders of the Central African Republic’s Seleka coalition. The group seized power in March and killed and raped civilians, burned villages and looted property as it took control of the country’s provinces. HRW says the Central African Republic has become a forgotten crisis. With the launch Wednesday of its new report on the situation there, the New York-based group urges the international community to urgently address the situation. The group conducted field research from April to June, documenting cases of human rights abuses and identifying patterns of violence committed by Seleka. HRW also obtained satellite imagery confirming the destruction of villages. Lewis Mudge is the...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/19/13)
ADDIS ABABA | Thu Sep 19, 2013 (Reuters) - African leaders will meet in the Ethiopian capital on October 13 to take a common stance on whether to join Kenya's planned pull-out from the International Criminal Court (ICC) over the prosecution of its leaders, officials said on Thursday. So far there does not seem to be much support for it, but heads of state from the 54-member African Union (AU) may still discuss the possibility of a pullout by the 34 African signatories to the Rome Statute that created the tribunal. Last week's start of the trial of Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto for crimes against humanity - with President Uhuru Kenyatta's trial due in November - has fuelled a...
(AFP (eng) 09/19/13)
NADOR, September 19, 2013 (AFP) - In a forest overlooking the Spanish enclave of Melilla, Diamani nurses fresh wounds from his latest desperate bid, along with hundreds of other African migrants, to scale the heavily guarded border fence. He describes being attacked by Moroccan security forces, who he says fired rubber bullets and hurled rocks. "I managed to get past them, but then cut my leg as I was climbing over the fence," adds the 27-year-old from Gao in northern Mali, showing a bloody gash on his bandaged left leg. Sheltering in the Gourougou forest in northern Morocco, hundreds of fortune seekers like him get ready for the night, the lights of Melilla tantalisingly visible below, less than two kilometres...
(The Wall Street Journal 09/18/13)
When residents sang and danced in this town's dusty streets in August to celebrate the self-declared birth of their new nation, Zambia's police pounced. On Tuesday, 59 people arrested in the sweep appeared at a court in Mongu, located on the marshy banks of the Zambezi River, charged with treason. Many were picked up in the past few weeks for their alleged involvement in a ceremony to select a new regional administrator who would organize elections for a newly independent government. It was the latest sign of separatism taking hold in Africa—both peacefully and violently. Some of the jailed activists now call themselves citizens of Barotseland, a kingdom that before Zambia's independence in 1964 was a British protectorate. When the...
( 09/18/13)
(IRIN) - This year, the two most powerful men on the globe, presidents Barack Obama and Xi Jinping, both embarked on Africa tours, pledging to increase aid and investment and work with the continent to improve development. While this was Barack Obama's first extended tour of Africa since taking office (he made a one-day stop in 2009 in Ghana), Chinese leaders have been visiting the continent regularly for decades, quietly working on joint development, trade, foreign direct investment and assistance projects. "China is the largest developing country in the world, and Africa is the continent with the largest number of developing countries," Jiang Zemin, then-president of China, said in his opening remarks at the first Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC)...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/17/13)
LIBREVILLE | Tue Sep 17, 2013 (Reuters) - Reinforcements have begun arriving for an African peacekeeping mission in Central African Republic but the planned 3,600-strong force will not be fully deployed before 2014, an official involved in talks on the crisis said. The land-locked, mineral-rich nation has slipped into chaos since northern rebels ousted President Francois Bozize in March. U.N. officials and rights groups say both sides may have committed war crimes in the violence. Former colonial power France has called on world powers to take action to prevent the country following Somalia's path to decades of lawlessness and efforts are focusing on beefing up a 1,100-strong African force that has long been deployed. "The force will reach 2,000 soldiers...
(Voice of America 09/17/13)
BOUCA, CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC — Recent inter-religious fighting in the Central African Republic has raised tensions between communities and has threatened the rebel-led government. The town of Bouca, which was left in ruins following an attack targeting Muslims a week ago. The fighting started at 5 a.m., at the time of morning prayers. Those who survived say the killers came from within their own community. Entire families were murdered, at least 40 people total. Hundreds of homes were burned in just a few hours. Resident Mandera Liman said he ran to get a gun to defend his family, but was too late. “I heard them yelling ‘Kill him, kill the Muslim.’ They came, they took my father and they killed...
(The Guardian 09/17/13)
Safe and Inclusive Cities initiative will compare existing approaches as part of drive to tackle urban conflict. Urban violence in 40 cities in sub-Saharan Africa, south Asia, and Latin America will be investigated as part of an ambitious Canadian-British funded research project. The initiative will seek to understand the complex causes of urban violence and find practical solutions. The $11m (£6.7m) Safe and Inclusive Cities initiative, funded by Canada's International Development Research Centre (IDRC) and Britain's Department for International Development (DfID), will provide 15 research teams with grants of up to $500,000 each. "Top experts from around the world will analyse the effectiveness of violence prevention strategies and identify successful concrete examples," said John de Boer, a programme leader at...
(Voice of America 09/16/13)
BANGUI — An African-led peacekeeping force in the Central Africa is due for a boost in numbers, as the international community weighs a response to the ongoing security crisis in the country. African soldiers on the ground in the Central African Republic are one of the last lines of defense against total chaos. The security situation here has rapidly deteriorated as the Seleka rebel movement that seized power in March has struggled to keep control over its soldiers.There are about 2,000 peacekeepers in the region as part of the Multinational Force of Central Africa (FOMAC), but the number of troops is expected to grow to more than 3,500 as part of a transition to a new force supported by the...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/16/13)
BANGUI | (Reuters) - Central African Republic's new president said on Friday he was dissolving the rebel alliance that swept him to power, a group that has since been blamed for a wave of violence. Seleka rebels seized the capital Bangui and overthrew leader Francois Bozize in March, the latest in a series of coups in the country that remains one of the world's poorest despite its mineral resources. The rebels have carried on looting and killing indiscriminately, witnesses have said, and French President Francois Hollande last month called for urgent U.N. action to stop the country slipping further into chaos. Michel Djotodia, himself a former Seleka leader sworn in as the country's new president last month, released a decree...

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