Tuesday 24 April 2018
(AFP (eng) 11/13/17)
South Sudanese troops have withdrawn from around the residence of powerful former army chief Paul Malong, a week after a tense standoff over his bodyguards sparked fears of clashes in the capital. In a press statement on Sunday entitled "Misunderstanding Resolved", army spokesman Lul Ruai Koang said a peaceful resolution had been found to a dispute over the number of bodyguards in Malong's service. Lul Ruai said scores of troops had been deployed around Malong's house as he had failed to comply with an order that he release most of his government-appointed bodyguards to return to their former duties.
(Reuters (Eng) 11/13/17)
UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - South Sudan President Salva Kiir’s government is using food as a weapon of war to target civilians by blocking life-saving aid in some areas, United Nations sanctions monitors told the Security Council in a confidential report seen by Reuters on Friday. During 2016 and 2017, the U.N. monitors said a military campaign by government troops in the northwestern town of Wau and surrounding areas in Western Bahr el-Ghazal targeted civilians on ethnic grounds and displaced more than 100,000. “The government has during much of 2017 deliberately prevented life-saving food assistance from reaching some citizens,” the monitors wrote. “These actions amount to using food as a weapon of war with the intent to inflict suffering on civilians...
(AFP (eng) 11/13/17)
Ministers from 13 European and African countries on Monday pledged steps to ease the migrant crisis around the Mediterranean, vowing especially to improve conditions for migrants held in Libya. Interior ministers and other representatives from countries impacted by the ongoing wave of migration up through Africa towards Europe, including Libya, voiced deep concern over the "ongoing human tragedy" along the so-called Central Mediterranean route. "The participants intend to address the challenges posed by the alarming situation along the migration route to North Africa," Switzerland, which hosted the third meeting of the so-called contact group on the crisis, said in a statement. Thousands of migrants and refugees who attempt to travel along this route "find themselves in catastrophic situations," it said,...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/08/17)
PALORINYA, Uganda (Reuters) - Oliver Wani found sanctuary from South Sudan’s civil war in a Ugandan refugee camp. But when the food ran out, he returned home only to be killed in the conflict he had fled. The 45-year-old farmer was one of more than a million South Sudanese living in sprawling camps just across the border in northern Uganda, seeking refuge from the four-year war that has devastated their homeland. But funding gaps and organizational problems often delay or reduce their meager rations, driving some desperate families back to the lands they fled and underscoring the struggle to cope with Africa’s biggest refugee crisis in two decades. Refugees from South Sudan have been arriving in Uganda at an average...
(AFP (eng) 11/08/17)
A dozen other students look on as Umar Amadu uses a glass pipette to draw a solution from a conical flask as part of a chemistry experiment. It could be a scene from any school laboratory around the world, but until two months ago Amadu and his fellow students had no access to any science equipment. Science subjects at his rural secondary school outside the city of Katsina in northern Nigeria were taught using theory only. But now they have all the kit they need to put theory into practice, thanks to a mobile science lab that tours selected state schools. "It's an exciting experience. We were being taught only the theoretical aspect of science subjects," Amadu, who wants to...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/07/17)
MOYO, Uganda (Reuters) - A South Sudanese military commander said he had defected with more than 200 soldiers to the country’s largest rebel group, amid a showdown between President Salva Kiir and his former military chief. Lieutenant Colonel Chan Garang, an ally of former army chief Paul Malong, defected to join the largest rebel group fighting Kiir, he said. All three men are ethnic Dinkas and any split within the powerful group could represent a threat to Kiir. The four-year civil war has split the country into a patchwork of fiefdoms, created Africa’s biggest refugee crisis in two decades and led to ethnic cleansing. A third of the 12 million-strong population has fled their homes and half are dependent on...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/07/17)
CAPE TOWN (Reuters) - Ride-hailing service Uber Technologies Inc. [UBER.UL] is growing rapidly in sub-Saharan Africa and considering moves into more markets, despite sometimes violent opposition from metered taxi drivers, a senior executive said on Tuesday. Uber’s service has triggered protests by rivals from London to New Delhi as it up-ends traditional business models that require professional drivers to pay steep licensing fees to do business. “We are bullish on Africa. The growth here is still substantial and we think that given the right regulatory environment, the growth could be even better,” Justin Spratt, head of business development for the sub-Saharan region, told Reuters. “Africa’s growth thus far has been faster than America and a large part of that is...
(AFP (eng) 11/06/17)
Devastating food shortages and high prices continue to affect nearly half the people in South Sudan, and aid agencies warned Monday that some regions could again slide into famine. Nearly five million people lack adequate food, said the United Nations' World Food Programme (WFP) and Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), blaming destruction and economic collapse caused by a civil war since late 2013. "The country's greenbelt has been ravaged by fighting, and finding a peaceful solution to this man-made tragedy should be the top priority or the situation will get even worse next year," said Serge Tissot of the FAO in a joint statement. In February a famine was declared in some rebel-held parts of the country but emergency food...
(AFP (eng) 11/06/17)
Troops remained deployed around the home of South Sudan's powerful former army chief Paul Malong on Sunday in a dispute over the fate of his 30 bodyguards, an army spokesman told AFP. The standoff began on Friday evening when more than 100 soldiers surrounded his residence in central Juba, South Sudan's capital, in a move which prompted people to flee to their homes for fear the standoff would erupt into clashes. Malong is a hardline ethnic nationalist whose dismissal in May by President Salva Kiir had sparked fears of a major clash...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/06/17)
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Africa’s mobile internet connections are set to double in the next five years, a study showed on Monday, thanks to affordable smartphones and the roll-out of high-speed networks. A report by research and consulting firm Ovum in London estimates that mobile broadband connections will rise from 419 million at the end of this year to 1.07 billion by the end of 2022. “Data connectivity is growing strongly in Africa, and there are also good prospects on the continent in areas such as digital media, mobile financial services, and the Internet of Things,” said Matthew Reed, Practice Leader Middle East and Africa at Ovum. “But as Africa’s TMT market becomes more convergent and complex, service providers are under...
(AFP (eng) 11/04/17)
South Sudan's capital Juba was tense on Saturday as dozens of soldiers surrounded the residence of powerful former army chief Paul Malong in a bid to disarm his bodyguards. Streets across the city were largely empty as people stayed at home for fear the standoff would erupt into clashes, an AFP correspondent said. The deployment was confirmed by presidential spokesman Ateny Wek Ateny who said it was a "routine operation" which should not cause any concern. "The situation is normal... this is not anything to worry about," he told AFP.
(AFP (eng) 11/03/17)
South Sudanese President Salva Kiir on Thursday accused Sudan of being a "source of weapons" fuelling the brutal civil war in his country as he met leader Omar al-Bashir in Khartoum. Tens of thousands of people have been killed in South Sudan's civil war that erupted in December 2013, less than three years after it gained independence from the north. Since then ties between Khartoum and Juba have remained tense amid border disputes and mutual allegations of supporting rebels in each other's countries. On Thursday, Kiir fired a fresh salvo at Sudan on day two of his two-day visit to Khartoum.
(AFP (eng) 11/03/17)
US politicians are voicing concern over America's growing military presence across Africa, where they worry the Pentagon is getting ever more embroiled in a secretive campaign against a shifting enemy. Last month's killing of four US soldiers in a Niger ambush has thrust the issue into the spotlight, with lawmakers calling for greater transparency on what is going on in Africa. "The footprint in Africa is much bigger than the American public understands," Democratic Senator Tim Kaine said this week. The Niger ambush has also rekindled debate over the legal authorities the Pentagon uses to fight jihadist groups overseas, particularly in Africa where about 6,000 US troops are deployed across the vast continent. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis this week faced...
(AFP (eng) 11/02/17)
Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir told his South Sudanese counterpart Salva Kiir on Wednesday that Khartoum is keen to resolve all pending issues with South Sudan in a bid to improve relations, the official news agency SUNA reported. Bashir's remarks came during a meeting with Kiir, starting a two-day visit to Khartoum to try to resolve border disputes and address mutual accusations of supporting rebels in each other's countries. It is Kiir's third visit to Khartoum since the Christian-majority south split from the Muslim north in 2011 after a 22-year civil war that killed hundreds of thousands. "Sudan is keen to resolve all pending issues ... and activate political and security mechanisms in order to take bilateral relations forward," Bashir told...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/31/17)
JUBA, South Sudan/KITCHANGA, Democratic Republic of Congo (Reuters) - In a mountainous camp for displaced Congolese, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley wrapped her arm around an inconsolable woman who recounted being raped twice. “It only makes me more passionate, it makes me more determined,” Haley told a small group of reporters traveling with her during her first trip to Africa. “I’ll carry the voices of the women that I met and things that they said.” Dispatched by President Donald Trump to Ethiopia, South Sudan and Democratic Republic of Congo, Haley’s trip was one of the first tangible signs of interest in Africa by the nine-month old administration.
(Xinhuanet 10/31/17)
Sudan and South Sudan on Monday agreed on joint move for debts exemption. The agreement was reached between Sudan's Finance Minister Mohamed Osman Al-Rikabi and his South Sudanese counterpart Stephen Dheiu Dau in Khartoum, Sudan's Finance Ministry said in a statement. The two ministers further agreed to open the joint border crossings, encourage trade between the two countries and facilitate customs and banking procedures as well as movement of the citizens and flow of commodities and services. They stressed keenness to intensify consultations to enhance the economic and trade ties. On Sept. 27, 2012, the two countries signed an agreement to settle their external debts. The agreement stipulated to form a joint mechanism to make contacts with the international community...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/31/17)
HARARE (Reuters) - Economic growth is expected to rise to 3.4 percent in sub-Saharan Africa next year from 2.6 percent in 2017, the IMF said in a report on Monday, but warned that rising debt and political risks in larger economies would weigh down future growth. Nigeria and South African are the biggest economies in Africa south of the Sahara, but both nations have been clouded by political uncertainty linked to the tenure of their leaders. The IMF said a good harvest and recovery in oil output in Nigeria would contribute more than half of the growth in the region this year while an uptick in mining and a better harvest in South Africa as well as a rebound in...
(AFP (eng) 10/28/17)
A rebel "general" from South Sudan, Dhiling Keah, briefly sums up the strategic position of his army, eking out an existence in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. "We are confined," he says. In July 2016, his soldiers were fighting with former vice president Riek Machar in Juba, capital of the world's newest state, against the forces of President Sala Kiir. Beaten, the rebels retreated over the border into the northeast of the DRC. They trudged hundreds of kilometres (miles), ending up in a camp some distance from Goma, capital of the strife-prone North Kivu province. Today, Keah, 37, exercises authority over a lost army of several hundred rebels who have been disarmed and lost their purpose. The general is held...
(AFP (eng) 10/26/17)
Thousands of South Sudanese refugees have been left homeless in Khartoum after Sudanese police demolished their shelters over the past few months, the UN refugee agency said Thursday. More than 450,000 South Sudanese refugees have entered Sudan after a brutal civil war erupted in their country in December 2013, the UN says. Khartoum estimates there are some 1.3 million of them in the country. Over the past few months, Sudan's police have been demolishing the shelters of refugees living in Khartum or relocating them without "adequate planning", the UNHCR said. "Latest reports indicate that some 220 shelters in Dar es-Salam's open area were removed by police on 23 October, reportedly leaving some 2,000 South Sudanese refugees without shelter" in Khartoum,...
(AFP (eng) 10/26/17)
US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley on Wednesday was quickly escorted out of a UN camp she was visiting in South Sudan when protesters angry with President Salva Kiir turned up, officials said. Haley, the most senior US administration official to visit Africa, was in Juba to meet with South Sudanese civilians affected by the nearly four-year war and has traveled on to Kinshasa as part of a three-nation Africa tour. "A group of several hundred protesters approached the site", the US mission said. "The group was not protesting Ambassador Haley's visit, but rather South Sudanese President Salva Kiir." "Diplomatic security agents determined that the site was no longer secure and escorted Ambassador Haley and her traveling party...

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