Monday 18 December 2017
(Bloomberg 11/21/13)
Ankur Varma, third officer on the oil tanker M/V Cotton, opened his cabin door at five minutes to midnight on July 14 to find two men pointing AK-47s at him. “They just pushed me into the cabin with the guns in my chest and they told me to stay silent,” Varma said in a phone interview from India. “They were threatening, they were showing the guns, pointing at us. They took everything -- everything that we had -- including clothes, toiletries, electronics.” Porters offload goods from a foreign vessel in the sea port in Mogadishu, Somalia. They also took the ship’s cargo. The Maltese-flagged vessel was carrying about 10,000 tons of fuel oil belonging to France’s largest oil company when...
(AFP (eng) 11/20/13)
KINSHASA, November 20, 2013 (AFP) - A military court in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Wednesday began trying a group of soldiers and officers for rape and other war crimes in the volatile east of the country. Defence lawyer Matthieu Mugisho said a group of 39 were accused but only 38 appeared for the hearing as one was taken ill and was being cared for outside Goma, the eastern regional hub where the trial is taking place. The dozen officers on trial were not facing rape charges, he said, but were accused of failing to prevent their forces from committing the offences. The hearing began amid tightened security on Wednesday morning in the Virunga neighbourhood of Goma, with soldiers...
(AFP (eng) 11/20/13)
KAMPALA - The military chief of Democratic Republic of Congo's defeated M23 rebels, Sultani Makenga, has been placed under military protection in the Ugandan capital, a Ugandan intelligence officer told AFP. "He is in a safe house in Kampala but for security reasons we cannot reveal the location," the officer said on condition of anonymity. He added that the Ugandan army "is providing necessary security". Makenga is wanted by the authorities in neighbouring DR Congo, and is accused of participating in several massacres, mutilations, abductions and sexual violence, sometimes against children. He is on both United Nations and United States sanctions lists. He led the mainly ethnic-Tutsi M23 force, which mutinied from the Congolese army 18 months ago. He fled...
(The Namibian 11/20/13)
The Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP) yesterday issued a statement from its headquarters, in which the party appealed to the residents of the DRC settlement in Swakopmund to “think deep and stay focused in their effort to address their living conditions”. “Returning the voters’ cards to ECN is neither the answer to their plight, nor will abstinence from participation in the general and presidential elections bring them the necessary changes they so need,” the statement read. “Namibia has adopted a democratic constitution that vests the power into the voters. It goes without saying that change will only come once the voters realise that they must now vote differently for a party of their choice that can deliver the services...
(Voice of America 11/20/13)
KIGALI, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO — Several armed groups in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo have said they are ready to lay down their weapons, following the army's defeat of M23 rebels. Since then, there has been a series of letters and declarations by other militias expressing their willingness to be demobilized. It has been two weeks since the M23 rebels fled from their last holdouts in Congo after coming under intense bombardments from the U.N.-backed Congolese army. Other armed groups in North Kivu province seem anxious to avoid the same fate. Several of them are ready to give up their activities and demobilize, according to documents VOA has seen that apparently were signed by their leaders. One of...
(Voice of America 11/20/13)
The President of the Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) says members of the group will start a one-week annual meeting beginning Wednesday at The Hague. The Assembly of States Parties is a body that administers management oversight over the ICC. Ambassador Tiina Intelmann says high on the agenda will be a discussion on the immunity from prosecution of sitting heads of state. It’s an important issue to some members who say current leaders should not be prosecuted for crimes against humanity. “This year we will focus on how the court addresses and helps victims, also on the issue of cooperation and also on complementarity,” said Intelmann. “African states parties have asked...
(AFP (eng) 11/20/13)
KUWAIT CITY, November 20, 2013 (AFP) - Arab and African leaders ended a two-day summit in Kuwait Wednesday by calling for closer cooperation on the political and economic levels, as well as in the fight against terrorism. The leaders issued the Kuwait Declaration which called for accelerating economic integration in the Arab world, which includes oil-rich Gulf states and investment-thirsty African states. They called for the creation of a joint "Africa-Arab Financing Mechanism" to fund programmes and projects, under a plan adopted at the second summit in Libya three years ago. But there was no mention of any moves for an Africa-Arab common market, as recommended by businessmen. The Kuwait Declaration strongly condemned terrorism. It urged member states to "enhance...
(AFP (eng) 11/19/13)
KAMPALA, November 19, 2013 (AFP) - The military chief of Democratic Republic of Congo's defeated M23 rebels, Sultani Makenga, has been placed under military protection in the Ugandan capital, a Ugandan intelligence officer told AFP Tuesday. "He is in a safe house in Kampala but for security reasons we cannot reveal the location," the officer said on condition of anonymity. He added that the Ugandan army "is providing necessary security". Makenga is wanted by the authorities in neighbouring DR Congo, and is accused of participating in several massacres, mutilations, abductions and sexual violence, sometimes against children. He is on both United Nations and United States sanctions lists. He led the mainly ethnic-Tutsi M23 force, which mutinied from the Congolese army...
(Bloomberg 11/19/13)
The Democratic Republic of Congo’s provincial governments expect a windfall of reconstruction and development funds after an insurgency by M23 rebels ended, said Moise Katumbi, governor of the copper-rich Katanga province. Congo’s government diverted cash meant for the provinces to pay for its fight against the M23 insurgents in the east of the country, Katumbi, 48, said in an interview in Lubumbashi, Katanga’s capital. The rebels ended their 20-month rebellion on Nov. 5 after Congo’s army seized key positions, including the rebel stronghold of Bunagana. “Our budget for reconstruction has been blocked by the central government because of the war,” Katumbi said on Nov. 11. “Without this war, there will be more money.” Congo’s provinces have complained that the central...
(Voice of America 11/19/13)
The African Union (AU) is monitoring security in the Democratic Republic of Congo following the breakdown of a peace deal between the government and the M23 rebels, according to Erastus Mwencha, deputy AU chairman. He expressed concern over the security situation in the north eastern part of the DRC, where the recent clashes between UN-backed government troops (FARDC) and the M23 left scores dead and thousands internally displaced. “It is really a matter of concern that with the hopes that have been created, the agreement would have been signed. This is perhaps something that both parties concerned should consider going back to the table for the sake of the people, for the sake of women, [and] children who have suffered...
(CNN 11/19/13)
(CNN) -- Tubes used to clear his lungs prevent Nelson Mandela from speaking, and he uses facial expressions to communicate with doctors and family, according to his former wife. "He remains very sensitive to any germs, so he has to be kept literally sterile," Winnie Madikizela-Mandela told South Africa's Sunday Independent newspaper in an article published Sunday. "The bedroom there [at his home] is like an ICU ward." Mandela, 95, "remains quite ill," she said, but doctors are tending to his needs at his residence in Houghton, a suburb of Johannesburg. The tubes are used to prevent infection in Mandela, who is said to be stable. "He communicates with the face, you see," Madikizela-Mandela told the newspaper. "But the doctors...
(AFP (eng) 11/19/13)
KUWAIT CITY, November 19, 2013 (AFP) - Kuwait's Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad Al-Sabah opened the third Africa-Arab summit Tuesday with a pledge to provide $1 billion in low-interest loans to African countries over a five-year period. Arab and African leaders gathered for the two-day summit in Kuwait City are to review steps to promote economic ties between wealthy Gulf states and investment-thirsty Africa. "I ordered officials of the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development to provide soft loans worth $1 billion to Africa over the next five years," Sheikh Sabah announced. Thirty-four heads of state, seven vice presidents and three heads of government are attending the third Africa-Arab summit, which brings together 71 countries and organisations. The meeting is the...
(AFP (eng) 11/19/13)
WARSAW, November 19, 2013 (AFP) - Africa will need between $200 and $350 billion a year by 2070 to shore up its defences against climate change, a UN report said Monday. The $200-billion (150-billion-euro) figure is a best-case scenario, based on meeting the goal of limiting average global warming to 2.0 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit), the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) report said. It was issued on the sidelines of UN climate talks in Warsaw that are working towards sealing a global deal by 2015 to reach the 2 C target. The higher figure of $350 billion (260 billion euros) assumes warming of 3.5-4.0 C, which will cause much greater damage to Earth's climate system. "Missing the 2.0 C window...
(Dw-World 11/18/13)
Benoit Kinalegu publicly criticized the atrocities of Joseph Kony's Lord's Resistance Army, thus risking his life. Human Rights Watch invited the Congolese priest to Europe as the 'voice of justice.' Twice a day Benoit Kinalegu gets on his motorbike and rides through the Haut-Uele region in the north of the Democratic Republic of Congo. It is here that he heads a Committee for Peace and Justice, run by the Roman Catholic Church, but for residents, the strong man with the wide smile is just 'Abbe Benoit.' In Haut-Uele, the priest has a daunting task: he wants to systematically document atrocities committed by the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) against civilians. The self-proclaimed holy warriors are active in large areas of central...
(Bloomberg 11/18/13)
Nov 18, 2013---The Democratic Republic of Congo’s provincial governments expect a windfall of reconstruction and development funds after an insurgency by M23 rebels ended, said Moise Katumbi, governor of the copper-rich Katanga province. Congo’s government diverted cash meant for the provinces to pay for its fight against the M23 insurgents in the east of the country, Katumbi, 48, said in an interview in Lubumbashi, Katanga’s capital. The rebels ended their 20-month rebellion on Nov. 5 after Congo’s army seized key positions, including the rebel stronghold of Bunagana. Children play on a burned tank, which formerly belonged to M23 rebel soldiers, in Kibumba, Democratic Republic of Congo, on October 31, 2013. “Our budget for reconstruction has been blocked by the central...
(AL Jazeera 11/18/13)
Nelson Mandela remains in a "stable but critical" condition more than two months after doctors treating him for a lung infection sent him home to recover, the South African government said. The latest update on the anti-apartheid icon's health came after President Jacob Zuma visited Mandela at his home Monday. "The health of the former president remains much the same," the government said in a statement, noting "he continues to recover." Monday's statement was the first since September. The former South African president was still "quite ill" and unable to speak because of tubes being used to clear fluid from his lungs, ex-wife Winnie Madikizela-Mandela told the Sunday Independent newspaper. "He remains very sensitive to any germs, so he has...
(The Independent 11/18/13)
Why Africa should fight for free trade, not fair trade; for competitiveness in global markets and not kindness in consumers. Everyday there is an effort mainly in the West to save Africa from something - tyranny, impunity, poverty, disease, ignorance - whatever. Always, the savior is an institution or person from Western Europe and its off-shoots in North America. This "savior" is presented as kind, generous and altruistic. Consequently, the supposed beneficiaries need not be active participants in the efforts to save them. They are "victims" to be "helped." It was in this context that last week, I attended a presentation by researchers from the University of London on a new mantra to end poverty, "fair trade." There is a...
(Tanzania Daily News 11/18/13)
Arusha — Despite being operational for more than seven years now, the Arusha-based African Court on Human and Peoples' Rights has been under-utilized having handled only 28 petitions relating to contentious matters and five requests for advisory opinion. The court has therefore decided to make its presence felt through organising a continental conference for the media on the promotion of the court's activities. The occasion will be graced by Prof Makame Mbarawa, the Minister of Communication, Science and Technology and attended by among others, the president and other judges of the court, as well as representatives of international organizations established based in the region. According to Mr Jean- Pierre Uwanone, Senior Information and Communication Officer, the objective of the seminar...
(CNN 11/18/13)
(CNN) -- Notch this up to Swedes and another ridiculously cool, innovative design. This latest effort can be found off an African island and straightaway is placed high on that list of 'amazing hotels I wish i could get to' many travelers have. Just off the coast of Tanzania, The Manta Resort on Pemba Island has added a beautiful, other-worldly underwater bedroom to their original 16-room offering. The new 'digs' opened for business this month, designed by Swedish company Genberg Underwater Hotels. They are the brains behind the The Utter Inn, an underwater room in the middle of a Swedish lake which was also one of our 15 unusual places to spend the night. Lying approximately 250 meters offshore, the...
(AFP 11/17/13)
KUWAIT CITY, November 17, 2013 (AFP) - Arab and African foreign ministers met in Kuwait on Sunday hoping to accelerate a strategy to bolster economic cooperation, investment and trade ahead of a summit this week. The Third Africa Arab Summit on Tuesday and Wednesday will be the first meeting of its kind since 2010, when leaders met in Libya prior to the Arab Spring uprisings that toppled longstanding dictatorships there and elsewhere in North Africa and the Middle East. The one-day meeting will adopt the agenda for the summit, where leaders are expected to approve a raft of new measures to upgrade economic ties between the two regions, including the oil-rich Gulf and sub-Saharan Africa. "It is time to upgrade...

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