Thursday 21 September 2017
(Xinhuanet 08/03/17)
Trade between China and Africa reached 85.3 billion U.S. dollars in H1, surging 19 percent year on year as the two sides strengthened cooperation in a wide range of areas, official data showed Thursday. The data reversed the negative growth trend since 2015, according to Gao Feng, spokesperson with the Ministry of Commerce. During January-June, Chinese imports from Africa, including minerals, agricultural products and fruits, amounted to 38.4 billion U.S. dollars, jumping 46 percent from the same period last year, while exports gained 3 percent to 47 billion U.S. dollars. Transport equipment has become a bright spot in China's exports to African countries, with that of ships, trains and aerospace equipment up 200 percent, 161 percent and 252 percent respectively,...
(Bloomberg 08/02/17)
Julien Ochala can’t live without his morning cup of Joe. But not just any coffee will do. For the past five years, the 37-year-old physiology lecturer at King’s College London has visited the same store every week to grab a pack of his beloved Kenyan brew. And he’s not put off by the cost: at 37 pounds a kilogram ($22 a pound), it’s more than double a similar supermarket product. "I take Kenyan coffee every morning," said Ochala, who buys his beans from Monmouth Coffee Company in Borough Market. "I love it because of the relatively higher acidity level. It keeps me active in the afternoons." Customers willing to pay a premium for African brews, known for their floral, fruity...
(APA 08/01/17)
APA-Bangui (Central African Republic) - United Nations Deputy Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Jean-Pierre Lacroix on Monday held several meetings with the Central African authorities to discuss the security deadlock in the country against the backdrop of the deadly attacks targeting the UN peacekeepers. The first meeting of the UN official was with CAR’s Foreign minister Charles Armel Doubane, the leaders of civil society movements, Prime Minister Simplice Mathieu Sarandji and the first deputy speaker of the National Assembly, Aurelien Simplice Zingas. Lacroix will end his tour with a series of meetings with the diplomatic corps accredited in CAR...
(APA 08/01/17)
The Cameroonian government on Monday announced that a contingent of 339 gendarmes will be deployed in the Central African Republic later this week. The gendarmes will contribute to stabilizing the CAR, a country riven by violence, targeting personnel of the UN Integrated Multidimensional Mission for the Stabilization of CAR (MINUSCA). According to Cameroon’s Secretary of State for Defense (SED), the security officers with support from the United States, under the project "International Police Peacekeeping Operation Support" (IPPOS), were trained on intervention tactics and keeping and restoring order. Launched on July 5, 2017 at the Center for Professional Development of Policing Techniques (CPTMO), the training camp, the third of its kind, focused on the training of officers, lectures on the UN...
(Bloomberg 08/01/17)
British American Tobacco Plc faces a formal probe by the U.K.’s Serious Fraud Office following reports that the maker of Dunhill cigarettes bribed African government officials to influence tobacco legislation. BAT said Tuesday it is running its own investigations, via external legal advisers, into allegations of misconduct and is cooperating with the U.K. prosecutor. A BBC report two years ago said BAT had a lobbyist arrange bribes totaling $26,000 for three public officials in Rwanda, Burundi and the Comoros Islands in 2015. The British broadcaster said the bribery was revealed by a former employee, Paul Hopkins. At the time, BAT said “we do not tolerate corruption in our business, no matter where it takes place.” The SFO investigation adds to...
(APA 07/28/17)
APA-Bangui (Central African Republic) - The central mosque in Bangui, used to accommodate displaced persons, and the last of 30 sites opened in the nation’s capital, which also provided shelter for ex-fighters was closed on Thursday. The ex-fighters were involved in the fight between the Christian anti-balakas militias and the Seleka rebels The residents of the camp, who are mostly Muslims, have on their departure received support from the government which gave each of the 388 households 50,000 CFA francs. “We have to take care of ourselves, even if we do not have the morale, because we have to return to our homes and reorganize the lives of our families,” said Hassan Abdoul, an IDP, who was arrested as he...
(APA 07/28/17)
APA-Kampala (Uganda) - The Central Africa Republic (CAR) government has thanked President Yoweri Museveni and Uganda Peoples Defence Forces (UPDF) for helping secure their country and fighting the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) rebels. In a note to President Museveni, Mr Ghislain Dieu Beni Kolengo, the Governor of the Upper Mbomu province, one of the 14 provinces (prefectures) of the CAR, said UPDF operations had “reduced the atrocities of the notorious LRA which had regressed us considerably”. Writing on behalf of his government and the people of Obo, the capital of Upper Mbomu, one of the towns that enjoyed stability due to UPDF presence there, Mr Kolengo said: “I would like to thank you for the sacrifice made in terms of...
(New Vision 07/28/17)
“I would like to thank you for the sacrifice made in terms of personnel, materials and money spent in tracking the sinister leader of the rebels, Joseph Kony, in our national territory since 2008.” The Central Africa Republic government has thanked President Yoweri Museveni and the Uganda People's Defence Force (UPDF) for helping secure their country and fighting the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) rebels. In a note to President Museveni, Ghislain Dieu Beni Kolengo, the Governor of the Upper Mbomu province, one of the 14 provinces (prefectures) of the Central Africa Republic, said UPDF operations had “reduced the atrocities of the notorious LRA which had regressed us considerably”. Writing on behalf of his government and the people of Obo, the...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/28/17)
Barclays reported a 1.2 billion pound ($1.57 billion)attributable first half loss on Friday after taking a 2.5 billion pound hit from the sale of its Africa business and calling an end to its restructuring. The British bank said it had made a 1.4 billion pound loss on the sale of 33 percent of Barclays Africa Group, and took a further 1.1 billion pound impairment charge on the sale. Barclays in June cut its stake in Barclays Africa Group to 15 percent, ending more than 90 years as a major presence in the continent as it shifts its focus back to Britain and the United States. The losses from the sale of unwanted assets including the Africa business showed the costs...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/27/17)
DAKAR (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - International aid agencies in Central African Republic have suspended operations in three towns amid escalating violence between armed factions and attacks on humanitarians, the United Nations said on Wednesday. A surge in fighting in several hotspots - from Kaga Bandoro in the north to Bangassou and Zemio in the east - has uprooted more than 100,000 people since April in the worst spell of upheaval since the peak of the conflict in 2014, aid groups say. The violence may plunge the country back into a humanitarian crisis four years after conflict first erupted...
(Voice of America 07/27/17)
A new bout of violence in the Central African Republic, where two Moroccan peacekeepers were killed Tuesday, risks derailing years of efforts to restore a fragile stability, the United Nations warned Wednesday. U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres condemned the killing of the peacekeepers, who were ambushed in the southeast town of Bangassou on Tuesday. The U.N. chief called on all parties to stop the violence and "take action to avoid a further deterioration of the fragile security situation in the country.'' The country is struggling to emerge from a civil war that erupted in 2013 following the overthrow of former President Francois Bozize, a Christian, by Muslim rebels from the Seleka coalition. The coup led to the formation of "anti-balaka" (anti-machete)...
(The Associated Press 07/27/17)
The U.N. peacekeeping mission in Central African Republic says two Moroccan peacekeepers have been killed in a southeastern town where another Moroccan was killed Sunday. A statement says the two peacekeepers were killed by suspected anti-Balaka militia while another peacekeeper was injured. They had been restocking water for the town's humanitarian needs when they were attacked. Hundreds of people have been killed in Central African Republic and roughly 100,000 displaced in the past two months. Sectarian violence that began in 2013 has moved into the impoverished country's central and southeastern regions, prompting warnings of a national conflict roaring back to life. In Bangassou alone, more than 150 people have died in fighting between militias and U.N. peacekeeping forces. The U.N...
(AfricaNews 07/27/17)
At a time when Africa is going through a difficult situation, the blue economy is emerging as a stepping stone to relaunch the continent in the right economic direction. But this type of economy is seriously threatened by “predators” who do not hesitate to plunder resources. The “cancer of illegal fishing” costs Africa about $ 1.6 million annually based on Economic Commission for Africa’s estimates. This and more on this week’s edition segment on Business on the Morning Call with Jean David Mihamle.
(AFP (eng) 07/26/17)
A new bout of violence in the Central African Republic that has killed nine peacekeepers this year risks derailing years of efforts to restore a fragile stability, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned Wednesday. Guterres condemned the killing of two Moroccan peacekeepers who were ambushed in the southeast town of Bangassou on Tuesday, just two days after another soldier was killed in an attack on the same contingent. The United Nations has blamed anti-Balaka Christian militias for the attack. Guterres said he was "deeply concerned at the fighting in the southeast of the Central African Republic, heightened inter-ethnic tensions and efforts by spoilers to derail the stabilization process in the country." "If allowed to continue, the prevailing situation risks undermining the...
(AFP (eng) 07/26/17)
Two Moroccan UN peacekeepers were killed Tuesday in an attack in the Central African Republic's southeast, two days after the death of another soldier from the same contingent, the force said, blaming pro-Christian militias for the violence. "The MINUSCA (peacekeeping mission) regrets to announce the deaths of two more blue helmets on Tuesday afternoon in Bangassou," a town 700 kilometres (430 miles) east of the capital Bangui, the peacekeeping force said in a statement. The Moroccan peacekeepers "were killed in an ambush by suspected anti-Balaka fighters
(Reuters (Eng) 07/26/17)
Suspected Christian militiamen killed two Moroccan peacekeepers from the United Nations mission in Central African Republic on Tuesday, the mission said, in the second deadly attack on Moroccan forces this week. The peacekeepers were ambushed by suspected anti-balaka fighters in the town of Banagassou, 700 kilometers (435 miles) east of the capital Bangui, as they stocked up on water to deliver to the population, the mission said in a statement. Thousands have died in an ethnic and religious conflict that broke out when mainly Muslim Seleka rebels ousted President Francois Bozize in 2013, provoking a backlash from Christian anti-balaka militias. Tuesday's raid, which injured a third soldier, followed similar attacks by suspected anti-balaka fighters in the diamond-mining town in recent...
(Voice of America 07/25/17)
European and African ministers are meeting in Tunisia about efforts to regulate the flow of refugees from Africa to Europe, primarily along the deadly central Mediterranean route originating in Libya. In a declaration Monday in Tunis, the capital, the ministers said they agreed on a multi-pronged approach to the crisis, including informing people about the risks of illegal migration and the possibility of voluntarily returning home, addressing why migrants leave home and beefing up actions against human traffickers. Participating in the meetings were interior ministers from Algeria, Austria, Chad, Egypt, France, Germany, Italy, Libya, Mali, Malta, Niger, Slovenia, Switzerland, Tunisia and Estonia, which currently holds the EU Council presidency. Through the first half of 2017, nearly 84,000 migrants arrived in...
(AFP (eng) 07/24/17)
An ambush killed a Moroccan peacekeeper and wounded three others on Sunday in the Central African Republic, the United Nations said, blaming pro-Christian militias for the violence. "A MINUSCA (peacekeeping mission) military convoy was targeted by anti-Balaka," it said of the clash in the southern city of Bangassou. The country is struggling to emerge from a civil war that erupted in 2013 following the overthrow of former president Francois Bozize, a Christian, by Muslim rebels from the Seleka coalition. The coup led to the formation of "anti-Balaka" (anti-machete) vigilante units...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/24/17)
DAKAR (Reuters) - Christian militias in Central African Republic have launched several attacks in the town of Bangassou in recent days, attempting to seize a cathedral housing displaced Muslims and killing a Moroccan peacekeeper, the United Nations said on Sunday. The incidents, including one on Sunday, came after attacks on the same diamond-mining town in May that killed at least 115 people and point to the inability of U.N. peacekeepers to contain violence in a country where government control barely extends outside the capital. "The attack took place as the peacekeepers from the Moroccan contingent were escorting water trucks filling up in the river in order to meet the humanitarian needs of the town," Vladimir Monteiro, spokesman for the 13,000-strong...
(Bloomberg 07/24/17)
Rough diamonds enabled Abdoul Raouf to marry three women and put his nine children through school. Now that his town in western Central African Republic can legally export the gems to world markets again, his neighbors are expecting similar fortunes. “Diamonds are my life,” said Raouf, who trades the stones bought from artisanal miners in the town of Gamboula, near the border with Cameroon and a 10-hour drive to the capital, Bangui. “It’s because of diamonds that I can take care of my family.” Gamboula is one of five areas in the west that can freely trade in diamonds again after the gradual easing of an export ban imposed three years ago. While fighting has flared in the southeast, forcing...

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