Sunday 25 June 2017
(The Associated Press 06/23/17)
The United States ambassador to Somalia says the U.S. once again will have a permanent diplomatic presence in the country after it opens offices in Mogadishu later this year. The U.S. embassy was closed in 1991 as the Horn of Africa nation slid into decades of chaos. Former Secretary of State John Kerry during a 2015 visit said the U.S. would begin the process of re-establishing a diplomatic presence.
(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 of waterborne diseases in the crowded Nyarugusu camp in western Tanzania, due to poor sanitation. “Living in a refugee camp is a constant struggle. You either stick to health rules or contract diseases,” he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation by...
(AFP (eng) 06/22/17)
Five people were killed and 10 were wounded Thursday when a car packed with explosives rammed into the wall of a police station in southern Mogadishu, the security ministry said. "The blast was caused by a car loaded with explosives, five people were killed and 10 others wounded," Ahmed Mohamud Mohamed, Somalia's internal security ministry spokesman told reporters. Police officer Abdukadir Moalim said a suicide bomber had driven the car into the outer wall of the Waberi police station, killing...
(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...
(AFP (eng) 06/20/17)
At least 10 people were killed when Shabaab Islamists drove an explosives-laden minibus into local government offices in the Somali capital Mogadishu on Tuesday, according to the security ministry. The minibus was rammed through a security barrier outside offices in the southern district of Wadajir, injuring nine people including the district's top government official. "More than 10 people died in the blast which was carried out by the Shabaab group and nine others are wounded," said security ministry spokesman Ahmed...
(AFP (eng) 06/19/17)
A Somali military court sentenced a naval officer to death Monday for shooting dead the minister of public works in what the defense argued was an accident. A young minister seen as an inspiration to many in the conflict-torn nation, Abbas Abdullahi Siraji, 31, was killed last month when armed guards shot at his vehicle outside the presidential palace. The naval officer, Ahmed Abdullahi Abdi, 29, a bodyguard to the auditor-general -- who was fired after the incident -- was...
(BBC News Africa 06/19/17)
The Somali soldier who shot dead the country's youngest-ever cabinet minister last month has been sentenced to death by firing squad. Abas Abdullahi Siraji was in his car near the presidential palace in Mogadishu when he was killed by Ahmed Abdullahi Abdi, who reportedly mistook him for a militant Islamist. The minister's death caused shock and anger at the time. The military court which sentenced the soldier said he can appeal. Africa Live: More updates on this and other stories...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/19/17)
A Somali soldier was sentenced to death on Monday for killing a government minister after mistaking him for an Islamist militant, an army officer said. Public works minister Abbas Abdullahi Sheikh Siraji was shot dead in his car in the capital Mogadishu in early May. Soldier Ahmed Abdulahi Ahmed, was condemned to death by a military court "for mistakenly shooting the minister," army officer Hassan Ali Noor told Reuters. A second soldier at the scene at the time was released...
(AFP (eng) 06/14/17)
A suicide car bombing and armed assault by six Shabaab militants on two neighbouring restaurants in Somalia's capital Mogadishu ended Thursday morning with at least 18 dead, the government said. "The operation is over now and the gunmen were killed by the security forces," said Mohamed Ahmed Arab, spokesman for Somalia's security ministry. He said the six attackers -- one suicide bomber and five gunmen -- "attacked business places and killed innocent civilians: 18 civilians were killed, including a Syrian national, and more...
(AFP (eng) 06/14/17)
Extortion, corruption and fear; violence, hunger and sometimes even death: for west African migrants dreaming of reaching Europe, the road to get there can be an absolute minefield. - Departure - Whether it's The Gambia, Ivory Coast, Senegal or Nigeria, everything starts with the "hustlers" -- slang for the middlemen or fixers who organise the trip. Their honesty and prices vary, with the would-be migrant usually deceived about the welcome expected in Europe. Many possess no official documents from their home country, and do not understand illegal status in Europe. Most are ignorant about the extreme difficulties they will encounter en route. "We didn't know we were risking our lives," said Kante Sekou...
(AFP (eng) 06/14/17)
Maria gave smugglers all her family savings and crossed three countries and the searing Libyan desert, but when she finally boarded a boat for Europe her dream was swiftly shattered. She was 24 and pregnant with her second child when she left Liberia with her husband and their three-year-old son. The family passed through Guinea and Mali before crossing southern Algeria to reach the Libyan desert. "The smugglers took all our money" -- more than $2,150 (2,000 euros), she said...
(AFP (eng) 06/13/17)
Uche's real journey had yet to begin but he had already spent four days in the northern Nigerian city of Kano after travelling on public buses and potholed roads from Imo state in the southeast. He planned to go to Agadez, a transit town on the southern edge of the Sahara desert in central Niger, take a truck to Sebha, in southwestern Libya, and from there to the capital Tripoli, and then to Italy or Spain. But his contact, who...
(AFP (eng) 06/12/17)
US forces carried out a strike in conjunction with Somali special forces Sunday against Al-Shabaab approximately 185 miles (300 kilometers) southwest of Mogadishu, according to the Pentagon. The Pentagon said the operation occurred at approximately 0600 GMT "in coordination with regional partners as a direct response to Al-Shabaab actions, including recent attacks on Somali forces." Somalia's president Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed said Somalian special forces participated in the raid against a training center for the extremist group's militants near Sakow, a district in the Middle Juba region. "The mission which was successfully ended destroyed an important training camp where the group...
(AFP (eng) 06/12/17)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel will on Monday meet African leaders in Berlin on initiatives aiming to reduce the poverty and conflict driving a mass migrant influx to Europe. The idea is to team up African nations willing to reform with private investors who would bring business and jobs to a continent where instability or graft often scare off foreign companies. Merkel is hosting the initiative as part of Germany's presidency of the Group of 20 powerful economies, whose leaders meet in the northern port of Hamburg a month later. Invited to Berlin are Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and the leaders of Ghana, Ivory Coast...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/10/17)
Five people were killed in crossfire between two groups of government soldiers on Friday when fighting broke out during the distribution of relief food in the southern Somali city of Baidoa, police and witnesses said. The incident happened in the afternoon at a site where food aid was being distributed to people displaced by drought earlier this year. Baidoa is about 245 km northwest of Mogadishu. "Two groups of soldiers clashed on the scene where food was being distributed. Five...
(AFP (eng) 06/08/17)
A dawn raid by jihadists on a military camp in Somalia's semi-autonomous Puntland region on Thursday left at least 10 soldiers dead, security officials said. The Shabaab, an Al-Qaeda group, claimed the attack saying it had killed 61 soldiers at the Af-Urur military base close to Golis Mountains, a well-known Islamist hideout. "Shabaab militants attacked the Puntland military base near Galgala. The security forces have repelled them but there were some casualties," said Ahmed Abdiweli, a local security official who gave a figure of 10 dead and "several others" wounded. "The militants also suffered heavy casualties and they have lost many of their fighters," he added.
(BBC News Africa 06/08/17)
Somalia's militant Islamist group al-Shabab says it has carried out a major assault on a military base in the semi-autonomous region of Puntland. Its fighters killed 61 government troops and seized 16 vehicles in the dawn raid, the group said. A Puntland government minister has denied the high death toll, but did not give separate casualty figures. The al-Qaeda-linked group has carried out several big attacks on military bases in Somalia. In January, it said it had killed 50 Kenyan...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/08/17)
More girls are completing secondary school across sub-Saharan Africa as attitudes change and state spending rises, but some of the most marginalized girls — like those married young or forced to work — are still missing out, education experts say. The percentage of girls completing secondary school has risen in all regions of Africa since 2005, said a recent report by the African Development Bank, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, and the U.N. Development Program. Almost twice as...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/07/17)
Building a network of African women leaders in fields ranging from business to politics could galvanize female leadership across the continent and boost peacebuilding efforts and good governance, the head of U.N. Women said on Tuesday. The African Women Leaders Network, which was launched last week in New York by the United Nations and the African Union Commission, hopes to drive more women into leadership roles, through mentoring, peer learning and harnessing contacts. By supporting women's leadership in Africa, the...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/06/17)
A bomb planted in a police station killed at least one policeman in Somalia's southern port city of Kismayu on Monday, and militant Islamist group al-Shabab claimed responsibility. "A policeman died and several others were injured after a bomb blast. We are investigating the cause of the blast," Hassan Nur, a policeman, told Reuters by phone. Al-Shabab said the toll was higher. "We planted a bomb inside a police station in Kismayu. We killed four policemen and wounded 27 others," its military operations spokesman Abdiasis Abu Musab said. Al-Shabab lost control of Kismayu in 2012, depriving it of a key

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