Tuesday 22 August 2017
(AFP (eng) 08/21/17)
When Angolan President Jose Eduardo dos Santos steps down and his successor is chosen in Wednesday's elections, it will bring to an end a 38-year reign dominated by his unrelenting authoritarian style. Though seldom seen in public, he has been a looming presence in daily life for as long as most Angolans can remember, maintaining fierce control over the country throughout its devastating civil war and recent oil boom. Now aged 74 and reportedly in poor health, Dos Santos became president in 1979, making him Africa's second-longest-serving leader -- one month shy of Equatorial Guinea's Teodoro Obiang Nguema. Until the 27-year civil war ended in 2002, Dos Santos presided over a country torn apart by...
(AFP (eng) 08/21/17)
Six teenage suspects were arrested in Morocco on Monday after video footage of young men reportedly sexually molesting a woman on a bus caused widespread outrage on social networks. A Moroccan police statement reported the arrests of the six aged between 15 and 17 after the incident in the kingdom's economic capital Casablanca. In the footage posted on Sunday, six bare-chested teenagers are seen assaulting a weeping young woman and laughing as they touch her private parts. The half-stripped victim is seen crying out in distress as no passenger intervenes to help her and the bus fails to come to a halt. Public transport company M'Dina Bus said the incident happened on Friday. The police statement said the 24-year-old woman...
(AFP (eng) 08/21/17)
Two livestock traders were killed and three seriously injured after triggering a mine as they fled an ambush by jihadists in northeast Nigeria, a militia fighting the group said Monday. The men were travelling between Damaturu, the capital of Yobe state, and the town of Biu in neighbouring Borno state when they were attacked by Boko Haram fighters at around 5pm (1600 GMT) on Sunday. They abandoned their vehicles and ran into the bush "but one of them stepped on...
(AFP (eng) 08/21/17)
The head of the International Committee of the Red Cross warned Monday that South Sudan's inability to pay civil servants risked worsening a humanitarian crisis and urged donors to step in. ICRC chief Peter Maurer was in Kampala after a three-day visit to conflict-torn South Sudan, where he warned of a "spiral which no international actor can prevent" as civil servants working in critical sectors such as health and water services go unpaid. Maurer said he had "rarely seen another...
(AFP (eng) 08/21/17)
A UN official on Monday called on donors to provide more assistance to Sudan after the world body received only a fraction of the $804 million it needs for humanitarian aid. Marta Ruedas, the UN resident humanitarian coordinator, told a news conference in Khartoum that only 23 percent of the humanitarian aid for Sudan in 2017 had been raised. The United Nations and its aid agencies had so far managed to raise only about $182 million, she said. "We look...
(AFP (eng) 08/21/17)
A South African civil rights organisation said Monday it would challenge the government's decision to grant diplomatic immunity to Zimbabwe first lady Grace Mugabe, who was facing assault charges. The wife of President Robert Mugabe allegedly attacked a 20-year old model with an electrical extension cord at a hotel in Johannesburg where the couple's two sons were staying. The attack left Gabriella Engels with cuts on her forehead and on her head that required stitching and she filed an assault charge against Mugabe. South Africa's foreign affairs ministry said on Sunday that it had granted Mugabe immunity after "careful consideration of all the relevant factors".
(AFP (eng) 08/21/17)
The death toll from a landslide that swept over a fishing village on the banks of a lake in the Democratic Republic of Congo has reached 140, the government said Monday. "We estimate that there at least a hundred bodies buried underneath the rumble of large rocks that fell on the 48 destroyed homes," the deputy governor of Ituri Province, Pacifique Keta, told AFP. The landslide occurred last Wednesday in the northeast village of Tora on the banks of Lake...
(Xinhuanet 08/21/17)
The Zambian government on Monday backed down on its earlier decision to introduce mandatory HIV testing, saying testing will not be forced on citizens. Last week, President Edgar Lungu declared that his government had introduced mandatory HIV testing and that anyone who visits a health facility for any ailment will be tested for HIV as well. But the announcement caused an uproar, with some stakeholders saying it was against human rights as testing should be consented to by the individual...
(AFP (eng) 08/21/17)
Nigerians on Sunday celebrated the return of President Muhammadu Buhari with thanksgiving services after his prolonged absence abroad for medical treatment, a period that stoked tension in a divided nation. Early morning services were held in churches across the vast west African country, including the seat of government, Aso Villa, in Abuja. Buhari left Nigeria on May 7 for his second break of treatment in Britain this year for an unspecified medical condition, on the heels of a spell of...
(Xinhuanet 08/21/17)
Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi said that Egypt is ready to provide Somalia with all possible support to help it build its state institutions. Sisi's comments came during his meeting in Cairo with visiting Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, state-run MENA news agency reported. Talks between the two presidents focused on ways to boost bilateral relations in all fields, as well as the latest security developments in Somalia. Egypt is keen on activating all aspects of cooperation with Somalia, particularly in...
(AFP (eng) 08/21/17)
Thirteen people have been killed in a town in Central African Republic, a local doctor said Sunday, as the toll from sectarian violence that has sparked fears of genocide continued to rise. The clashes took place in Bria, in the centre of the country 450 kilometres (280 miles) from the capital Bangui, between a majority Muslim rebel group and a predominantly Christian militia called the anti-Balaka. "Thirteen bodies were found on Saturday after violent fighting between self-defence forces and parts...
(Xinhuanet 08/21/17)
Bodies recovered from the mudslide and flooding on Aug. 14 in Sierra Leone have totalled 499, local media reported on Sunday. Victims included 162 male, 163 female, 70 boys and 86 girls and an additional 18, Awoko Newspaper reported. The side of a hill collapsed in heavy rains in the early hours of Aug. 14, killing residents and destroying homes near or on the outskirts of Freetown, capital of Sierra Leone, and leaving more than 2,000 others homeless. Sierra Leone's...
(AFP (eng) 08/20/17)
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari returned home on Saturday after spending more than 100 days in London receiving treatment for an undisclosed illness. His plane touched down around 4:35 pm (1535 GMT) at the international airport in Abuja, an AFP correspondent said. Wearing a black caftan with a cap to match, the 74-year-old left the aircraft unaided and was met by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and other senior government officials, including ministers, security chiefs and state governors. He took a salute...
(AFP (eng) 08/19/17)
Finnish police said Saturday that after new information a stabbing spree that left two people dead was now considered a terrorist attack, identifying the suspect as an 18-year-old Moroccan citizen. Police shot and wounded the knife-wielding suspect on Friday, arresting him minutes after an afternoon stabbing rampage at a busy market square in Turku in southwestern Finland. "The incidents were initially investigated as murders, but in light of further information received during the night, the offences include now murders with...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/19/17)
Royal Dutch Shell has lifted a cargo of 600,000 barrels of crude oil from Libya's Zueitina port, its first from the war-torn north African country in 5 years, two industry sources told Reuters on Saturday. "Libya is a significant resource holder and Shell International Trading and Shipping Company Ltd (STASCO) has a history marketing Libyan crudes," a Shell spokesperson said. "We welcome new business opportunities with Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC). However, we don't comment on specific trading deals," the...
(AFP (eng) 08/19/17)
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari will return home on Saturday after spending more than 100 days in London receiving treatment for an undisclosed ailment, his office said. The 74-year-old left for the British capital on May 7 with his prolonged absence causing tensions back home where calls have grown for him to either return or resign. A presidency statement said Buhari "returns to the country later today, after receiving medical attention in London." It said the retired general who headed a...
(AFP (eng) 08/19/17)
Zimbabwe's first lady Grace Mugabe, who is seeking diplomatic immunity for an alleged assault in South Africa last weekend, is due to attend a regional leaders' summit in Pretoria on Saturday. The wife of President Robert Mugabe is accused of attacking a 20-year-old model with an electrical extension cord in a Johannesburg hotel where the Mugabes' two sons were staying. South African police said she was expected at the two-day Southern African Development Community (SADC) meeting that opens at 9:30...
(AFP (eng) 08/19/17)
Kenya's opposition filed a petition late Friday at the Supreme Court challenging the conduct and results of last week's election won by President Uhuru Kenyatta, demanding new polls. Court registrar Esther Nyaiyaki received piles of bound papers from lawyers representing the National Super Alliance (NASA) coalition, 90 minutes before the midnight deadline for challenges to be lodged."The entire process of tallying recording, transmitting, verifying and confirmation of results was so fundamentally flawed that you cannot talk of any meaningful results," NASA said in a statement outlining the alleged irregularities.
(AFP (eng) 08/18/17)
Rwandan President Paul Kagame was sworn in Friday for a third term in office after a crushing election win that rights groups criticised over irregularities and voter intimidation. Nineteen African heads of state were present at the ceremony which took place in front of a packed crowd in the national stadium in Kigali, entertained by a military parade and drummers. The 59-year-old Kagame, who was re-elected with nearly 99 percent of the vote, took a swipe at critics who regularly...
(AFP (eng) 08/18/17)
The forces of Libyan military strongman Khalifa Haftar said Friday they had detained a senior commander two weeks before the International Criminal Court issued a warrant for his arrest over unlawful killings in the flashpoint city of Benghazi. "We hereby inform you that the defendant... has been arrested and investigated by the military prosecutor on those charges" since August 2, as ordered by Haftar, said the general command of his armed forces. The International Criminal Court (ICC) announced Tuesday that...

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