Sunday 21 January 2018
(Reuters (Eng) 01/19/18)
JUBA (Reuters) - Seventy percent of South Sudan’s children are out of school and the young country risks losing a generation that would make it harder to rebuild after conflict ended, a United Nations official said. South Sudan, which split off from its northern neighbor Sudan in 2011, has been gripped by a four-year civil war sparked by political rivalry between incumbent leader Salva Kiir and his former deputy Riek Machar. In an interview with Reuters on Friday, Henrietta H. Fore, UNICEF’s executive director, made the warning after visiting some of the areas most devastated by the war. “70 percent of the children are out of school, that is highest in the world. There is...
(AFP (eng) 01/19/18)
US Ambassador Nikki Haley expressed regret on Thursday to African ambassadors who were outraged by President Donald Trump's alleged description of African countries as "shithole" nations, the head of the African Group said. Haley asked to meet the African ambassadors at the United Nations after they released a joint statement on Friday demanding an apology from Trump for his "outrageous, racist and xenophobic remarks." Ambassador Anatolio Ndong Mba of Equatorial Guinea, who chairs the Africa Group, said the US ambassador did not offer an apology during the closed-door meeting, but she did express regret. Haley told the meeting that "she was not there at the White House, she is not sure what was said, but she regretted all this situation...
(AFP (eng) 01/17/18)
There's nothing covert about Roxy -- a huge market in Abidjan selling counterfeit medicine, the scourge of Africa and the cause of around 100,000 deaths annually on the world's poorest continent. Located in the bustling Adjame quarter of Ivory Coast's main city and commercial hub, the haven for fake medicine has been targeted time and again by authorities and stockpiles burnt. But it resurfaces every time. "The police hassle us but they themselves buy these medicines," said Mariam, one of...
(AFP (eng) 01/12/18)
The African Union said Friday that President Donald Trump's reported description of African nations as "shithole countries" broke with "accepted behaviour" and was "extremely upsetting." Ebba Kalondo, spokeswoman for AU Chairperson Moussa Faki, told AFP that Trump's statement "truly flies in the face of accepted behaviour and practice." "This is not only hurtful, I think, to people of African origin in the United States, but certainly to African citizens," she said. "It's an extremely upsetting statement," she added. The comment was reportedly made during a Thursday meeting with lawmakers about immigration reform...
(AFP (eng) 01/12/18)
President Donald Trump reportedly lashed out in a Thursday meeting with lawmakers about immigration reform, demanding to know why the US should accept citizens from what he called "shithole" countries. The comments, first reported by The Washington Post, sparked anger among Democrats and Republicans and revived questions about Trump's tendency to make racially charged remarks. Trump sat down with senators and congressmen at the White House to discuss a proposed bipartisan deal that would limit immigrants from bringing family members...
(Reuters (Eng) 01/08/18)
JUBA (Reuters) - The South Sudanese government on Monday declared army chief of staff General Paul Malong a rebel and accused him of being behind a series of attacks last week. Malong, who had led President Salva Kiir’s campaign against rebels, has been under house arrest since May after Kiir sacked him following a string of military resignations by senior generals alleging abuses and ethnic bias. Malong initially fled the capital Juba for his home state of Aweil following his...
(Reuters (Eng) 01/05/18)
JUBA (Reuters) - Clashes have broken out near South Sudan’s capital Juba between government troops and rebels, officials said on Friday, the latest violation of a ceasefire signed last month. The deal reached in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa between the government of President Salva Kiir and a myriad of opposition groups had aimed to end a four-year-old war in which tens of thousands of people have been killed. But several violations have since taken place, for which all sides have been blamed. On Friday, the army’s spokesman Lul Ruai Koang said several people were killed after rebel troops attempted to seize...
(AFP (eng) 01/03/18)
Israel on Wednesday began implementing a plan to force tens of thousands of African migrants out of the country by April, threatening to arrest those who stay. "This plan will get under way today," Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at the start of a cabinet meeting. Under the programme, some 38,000 migrants who entered Israel illegally, mainly Eritreans and Sudanese, will have until the end of March to leave. Each will receive a plane ticket and $3,500 (2,900 euros) to...
(Reuters (Eng) 12/29/17)
KAMPALA (Reuters) - South Sudanese troops raided the home of the exiled former army commander, relatives said on Friday, after his rival was named to command troops in his home region to counter any threats he might pose to the government. Soldiers and National Security agents entered the compound belonging to Paul Malong and assaulted a neighbor while searching for weapons, said a relative who witnessed the alleged incident in the town of Malualkhon in the Aweil region. A second...
(AFP (eng) 12/27/17)
The Congolese army has stepped up arrests of South Sudanese refugees and tightened the border in a bid to block rebels from seeking sanctuary in its country, officials say. As hundreds fled into the Democratic Republic of Congo last week, after President Salva Kiir's government army dislodged Riek Machar's rebel SPLA-IO from its headquarters in southwestern Lasu, some 18 suspected rebels were taken into detention. It is the first time Congolese authorities have detained a significant number of South Sudanese and may signal a change in Kinshasa's policy towards the neighbouring country, riven by a devastating four-year power struggle. "As of now 15 have been released.
(AFP (eng) 12/26/17)
South Sudan's government and main rebel group on Sunday accused each other of breaking a ceasefire that went into effect shortly after midnight. The ceasefire is the latest bid to end a devastating four-year war which broke out after a falling out between former vice president Riek Machar and President Salva Kiir in 2013. In a statement on Sunday, Machar's rebel group the SPLA-IO accused government forces of launching an "aggressive attack" on their positions in the town of Bieh...
(AFP (eng) 12/24/17)
A ceasefire between South Sudan's warring parties went into effect just after midnight Sunday, in what is the latest bid to end a devastating four year war. Government and several armed groups signed a ceasefire deal Thursday during peace negotiations in Addis Ababa, to begin from 00:01 hours (South Sudan local time) on December 24. The agreement says all forces should "immediately freeze in their locations", halt actions that could lead to confrontation and release political detainees as well as abducted women and children.
(AFP (eng) 12/22/17)
As South Sudan's warring parties haggled over a ceasefire deal this week, dozens of refugees streamed into neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo, fleeing what they said was a fresh government offensive. The apparent push to recapture the key rebel stronghold of Lasu came as mediators tabled a ceasefire agreement in Addis Ababa, which was signed by major parties to the four year conflict on Thursday and is to go into force on December 24. However with South Sudanese rebel forces vowing to take back their stronghold of Lasu in Central Equatoria State -- regardless of the ceasefire -- the fragility of the deal was thrown into stark relief.
(AFP (eng) 12/22/17)
A team of UN rights experts said Friday they were "deeply disturbed" by atrocities committed by all warring parties in South Sudan and called for perpetrators to be brought to justice. During a 12-day visit to the country, which this month entered its fifth year of a devastating conflict, the team encountered harrowing tales of torture, revenge killings, abduction of women and children and sexual violence. "We are deeply disturbed by what we witnessed and heard throughout our visit. The...
(AFP (eng) 12/21/17)
As South Sudan's warring parties met for peace talks this week, dozens of refugees streamed into neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo, fleeing what they said was a fresh government offensive. The push to recapture a key rebel stronghold came shortly before mediators tabled a ceasefire agreement in Addis Ababa, raising serious doubts over the government's commitment to talks seen as a last-ditch chance to end the country's four-year war. On Sunday, President Salva Kiir's troops attacked the town of Lasu in Central Equatoria State, which has served as the headquarters for Riek Machar's SPLA-IO, the main opposition movement in South Sudan.
(AFP (eng) 12/21/17)
The UN humanitarian coordinator for South Sudan said Wednesday that six aid workers who went missing four days ago in the northwest of the country had made a "safe return". The employees of two foreign and one local organisation disappeared during clashes between government and rebel forces in the Bahr el-Ghazal region, with both sides accusing the other of having attacked the aid workers. Government officials said rebels aligned with former vice-president Riek Machar had kidnapped the workers during clashes,...
(The Associated Press 12/20/17)
The United Nations says it has closed the first of seven protection camps that have sheltered more than 200,000 civilians during South Sudan’s civil war. More than 560 people are being voluntarily relocated from the camp in Melut in Upper Nile State, with some moving to another camp in Malakal. The unprecedented move by the U.N. to open its doors to civilians has been controversial since the conflict began four years ago, with government officials worrying that citizens have become...
(AFP (eng) 12/19/17)
The United Nations' humanitarian coordinator in South Sudan called Tuesday for the "swift and safe" return of six aid workers who have disappeared in the northwest of the country. The co-ordinator, Alain Noudehou, said in a statement that one international and five national aid workers had gone missing on Sunday while travelling between the towns of Raga and Wau, where they were working on food security. The six were employed by two foreign organisations, and one national organisation. On Monday,...
(AFP (eng) 12/18/17)
France on Monday accepted a first group of 19 refugees who were identified in Africa under an overhauled asylum policy that will also see it expel thousands of economic migrants. While it has drawn little public outcry in France, the policy faces stiff opposition from the left and from charities that shelter migrants, 22 of which called in an open letter for France's rights ombudsman Jacques Toubon to intervene. Djamel, a refugee from the Central African Republic, arrived at Paris's...
(AFP (eng) 12/15/17)
The UN Security Council warned Thursday of "cost and consequences" for any side in South Sudan that blocks a new regional peace initiative set to open next week in Ethiopia. In a unanimous statement, the council said a high-level forum organized by the IGAD East African group "is a unique window of opportunity, but equally a last chance for the parties to achieve sustainable peace and stability in South Sudan." The so-called high-level revitalization forum will open in Addis Ababa...

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