Thursday 21 September 2017
(Xinhuanet 08/03/17)
The World Food Programme (WFP) on Tuesday held a hand-over ceremony in Mogadishu to welcome the arrival of more than 2,800 tonnes of rice assistance into the drought-hit country from China. China's rice contribution will enable WFP to sustain ongoing efforts to save lives and avert famine in Somalia, according to a press release by the WFP, which added that it will be used to provide hot meals to about 96,500 vulnerable people for about three months. "The rice is one part of the generous 10 million U.S. dollar contribution that WFP received from China in April this year," WFP Somalia Deputy County Director Edith Heines said. "This contribution towards WFP's emergency drought response in Somalia was also used to...
(Business Day Ghana 08/03/17)
AfDB signs US$ 78 million Grant agreements with Governments of Somalia and South Sudan to strengthen drought resilience whilst addressing chronic hunger and malnutrition The African Development Bank (AfDB) has signed tripartite grant agreements of US$ 34.8 million and US$ 43.8 million with the Republic of Somalia and the Republic of South Sudan respectively and the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) under the Bank’s ‘Say No To Famine – Short Term Regional Emergency Response Project – STRERP’. IGAD will oversee the implementation of the project through an agency to be recruited in each of the countries. The agencies will work with the governments to put in place structures, systems and facilities that will enable them take on increasing responsibility for...
(The Associated Press 08/03/17)
NAIROBI, Kenya — Somalia’s Islamic extremist rebels killed a Kenyan policeman Thursday when they attacked a police station in northern Mandera County, raising security concerns over next week’s national elections. Al-Shabab, which is allied to al-Qaida, claimed responsibility for the attack on Lafey police station near the border with Somalia. The group made the claim through its Shahada News Agency’s blog and social media accounts, according to the SITE monitoring group. Two vehicles were burned in the early morning attack, according to Kenya’s North Eastern regional coordinator Mohamud Saleh. The violence comes a day after three people died in a suspected al-Shabab attack in southern Kenya and days before Kenya’s national elections on Tuesday. Al-Shabab has been threatening since March...
(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,...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/02/17)
A car bomb explosion in the southern Somali town of Kismayo wounded at least 10 people on Tuesday, police and residents said. The blast occurred on a busy road in the port city once prized by warlords and the Islamist militant group al Shabaab for its money-spinning charcoal trade, said Mohamud, a police officer who gave his first name only. "We believe it was a car bomb parked here in this busy street. So far we know 10 civilians were injured," he told Reuters. There was no immediate claim of responsibility. Al Shabaab, which has been frequently carrying out attacks in the country, was not immediately reachable for comment. Residents gave a larger number of casualties, saying up to double...
(Voice of America 08/02/17)
Being a journalist in Somalia carries both risk and reward. The risk comes from al-Shabab militants and other armed groups who have killed at least 26 reporters in the last five years, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. The reward is having a job with one of the many independent media outlets that have sprung up despite chronic violence and the absence of any journalism schools in Somalia. Somalia's National University is trying to fill the education void by reopening its journalism school for the first time in 26 years. The Faculty of Journalism and Communication Science could begin classes as early as next month, instructing up to 60 students. Somali Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire addressed — and...
(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...
(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...
(AFP (eng) 07/31/17)
Uganda's military said on Monday it had lost 12 soldiers in an attack claimed by Shabaab militants in southern Somalia. The Al-Qaeda linked insurgents ambushed Ugandan troops that are part of an African Union force as they patrolled a supply route in the hotly-contested Lower Shebelle region, the military said in a statement. "From the battlefield, it is now confirmed that UPDF lost 12 gallant soldiers with seven sustaining injuries," the statement from the Uganda Peoples’ Defence Forces said. Witnesses told AFP the attack occurred in the village of Golweyn, some 120 kilometres (74 miles) from the capital Mogadishu. The AU mission...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/31/17)
Fighting between al Shabaab fighters and Somali government troops and African Union peacekeepers killed 24 people on Sunday, a regional official said, with the Islamist militants putting the death toll higher. Al Shabaab ambushed a convoy carrying troops from the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) early on Sunday in the Bulamareer district of the Lower Shabelle region, about 140 km (85 miles) southwest of Mogadishu, Colonel Hassan Mohamed told Reuters Ali Nur, the deputy governor of Lower Shabelle region, said: "We have carried 23 dead AMISOM soldiers and a dead Somali soldier from the scene where al Shabaab ambushed AMISOM today," Abdiasis Abu Musab, al Shabaab’s military operations spokesman, said: "We have in hand 39 dead bodies of AU...
(AFP (eng) 07/31/17)
Shabaab militants in Somalia on Sunday claimed they had killed 39 African Union troops in an ambush in the country's south. The claim by the Al-Qaeda linked insurgents, made by the group's spokesman on an affiliated radio station, could not be immediately verified. Local residents did confirm to AFP that fighting had taken place Sunday in the Lower Shebelle region, a hotly contested area where Shabaab's spokesman said they had staged their ambush. "The mujahedeen fighters stood over the dead bodies of 39 soldiers, among them senior commanders”, Abdiaziz Abu Muzab told Andalus radio. The African Union has a 22,000 strong force in the country dedicated to fighting Shabaab and backing up the internationally backed government in the capital Mogadishu...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/31/17)
The death toll from fighting on Sunday between al Shabaab fighters and Somalia government and African Union peacekeeping troop stands at 24, a senior regional official said. The fighting broke out when the al Shabaab fighters ambushed the troops early Sunday in the Bulamareer district of the Lower Shabelle region, about 140 kilometers (84 miles) southwest of Mogadishu. "We have carried 23 dead AMISOM soldiers and a dead Somali soldier from the scene where al Shabaab ambushed AMISOM today," Ali Nur, the deputy governor of Lower Shabelle region, told Reuters.
(Andalou Agency 07/28/17)
New bank notes will incorporate modern, anti-counterfeiting security features, says Central Bank governor. Somalia’s government is set to print modern bank notes for the first time in more than 25 years to end the currency crisis in the Horn of African nation, authorities said Thursday Bashir isse Ali, Somalia's Central Bank governor, told a news conference in Mogadishu that the bank will print new notes which incorporate modern financial security features. "The Central Bank and related agencies are now in the process of coming up with new notes this year which will not be vulnerable to counterfeiting," he added.
(The Guardian 07/28/17)
Fears of widespread famine as people in extremist-controlled areas are threatened with death if they contact aid agencies. Islamist militants in Somalia have imposed a ban on humanitarian assistance in areas they control, forcing hundreds of thousands of people to choose between death from starvation and disease or brutal punishment. In some towns, hungry and weak people have been ordered by extremist leaders to remain where they are to act as human shields against US airstrikes. Somalia is suffering its worst drought in 40 years, with the effects of climatic catastrophe compounded by war and poor governance. Interviews with villagers in the swaths of land controlled by al-Qaida-affiliate al-Shabaab, in the centre and south of the east African state, reveal...
(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...
(Voice of America 07/27/17)
Somalia is suffering from a renewed displacement crisis as people flee drought and conflict, particularly in the country’s southern region. Gerard Waite, chief of mission for the International Organization for Migration Somalia, told VOA that about 800,000 people have fled their homes in response to the drought over the past seven months. That is in addition to the 1.1 million people who were previously displaced in the country. “We have a displacement crisis on top of a drought crisis,” Waite said. “The 800,000 new IDPs [internally displaced persons] that have resulted from the drought have put incredible pressure on the existing camps. The formation of new camps has developed, [and] these camps are, by and large, not very well managed...
(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.
(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...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/21/17)
Mohamed Noor was celebrated when he became a Minneapolis police officer 21 months ago, joining a handful of other Somalis on the police force in a city with one of the United States' largest Somali communities. Now he is now under investigation in fatal shooting of Justine Damond, an Australian woman who had made Minneapolis her home and who was killed by a single gunshot wound to the abdomen that state law enforcement officials say was fired by Noor. Noor, 31, still has supporters after the shooting of Damond, who had called 911 to report a possible sexual assault in her neighborhood on Saturday. But some are worried about a backlash in the Somali community, while one former politician had...
(AFP (eng) 07/21/17)
The 2019 Africa Cup of Nations will expand from 16 to 24 teams and be staged in June and July, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) announced on Thursday. The tournament has traditionally been held in January and February, with the timing of the tournament a source of frustration to European clubs forced to release players in the middle of the season. The CAF executive committee confirmed the changes to the format following a two-day symposium in Rabat, although the tournament will continue to be held every two years and exclusively on African soil. The decision to increase the number of teams mirrors a similar one taken by UEFA to expand the European Championship, with 24 nations taking part at...

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