Africa Briefs

Former military man declares victory in Nigerian polls

Former military man declares victory in Nigerian polls

| April 1, 2015 | Reply

Opposition party wins election in West African economic giant, Goodluck Jonathan ousted (GIN)–Showing a “commendable determination to register their vote and choose their leaders,” Nigerians by the hundreds of thousands lined up at polling stations across the country to select the next president and National Assembly of their country, U.S. and British witnesses to the […]

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Lawyers, rights groups rally around author of ‘Blood Diamonds’ facing jail

Lawyers, rights groups rally around author of ‘Blood Diamonds’ facing jail

| April 1, 2015 | Reply

(GIN)—The Southern Africa Litigation Center, Amnesty International and more than a dozen other human rights organizations including the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights have signed on to an open letter demanding justice for crusading journalist Rafael Marques, whose exposés have offended several military officials and other higher-ups. In their letter, published this week […]

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Conflicting accounts over Mrs. Mugabe’s trips abroad

Conflicting accounts over Mrs. Mugabe’s trips abroad

| April 1, 2015 | Reply

(GIN)–First Lady Grace Mugabe is being treated in Asia for appendicitis, according to government officials. Local media reports say she was flown to Dubai and then Singapore for surgery in January but that she has a cancerous condition, not appendicitis as government claims. Her husband, President Robert Mugabe, also spent weeks in Singapore in 2013 […]

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Maryland students launch fund appeal for jailed Swazi writer

Maryland students launch fund appeal for jailed Swazi writer

| April 1, 2015 | Reply

(GIN)–A journalist jailed in Swaziland is getting some unexpected help from a class of journalism students at the University of Maryland who are taking up the cause of writers around the world currently in jail. The students, led by their teacher, Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post reporter Dana Priest, plan to launch a line of bracelets with […]

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Profiteers selling ‘conflict diamonds’ from Central African Republic, despite ban

Profiteers selling ‘conflict diamonds’ from Central African Republic, despite ban

| March 24, 2015 | 1 Reply

(GIN)–Since a coup d’etat and an extremely bloody aftermath, not much has improved in the Central African Republic and that suits the black market diamond merchants just fine. With news cameras turned away, their trade in “conflict diamonds” is proceeding at a gallop, despite a global ban. The diamond-trading ban was imposed by the Kimberley […]

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South Sudan frees hundreds of child fighters, including 9-year-old girl

South Sudan frees hundreds of child fighters, including 9-year-old girl

| March 24, 2015 | Reply

(GIN)–South Sudan’s Democratic Army Cobra Faction announced its third release of child soldiers as agreed in a pact with the government signed last May. Over the weekend, 654 children registered with the U.N. Children’s Fund (Unicef) were released—bringing the total freed by the militia group since January to 1,314. The children exchanged their weapons and […]

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Winners announce for free expression prize

Winners announce for free expression prize

| March 24, 2015 | Reply

(GIN)—At home she was subjected to death threats for defending women in northeastern Kenya who are vulnerable to rape, female circumcision and murder. This month, Amran Abdundi Amram was cheered as a hero as she collected the 2015 Index on Censorship Freedom of Expression Award for Campaigning. The 15th annual freedom prize was presented this […]

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French police on trial for death of teens after 10-year wait

French police on trial for death of teens after 10-year wait

| March 18, 2015

(GIN)—Two teenagers of North African descent, running from police, fell to their deaths and were electrocuted in a power substation 10 years ago. The officers will finally stand trial this week It has been called the most important police trial in a decade, one that could expose the inequalities that plague France’s mostly segregated apartment […]

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Pro-democracy activists at U.S. event jailed in Congo

Pro-democracy activists at U.S. event jailed in Congo

| March 18, 2015

(GIN)—Journalists, activists, hip hop artists and a U.S. diplomat were rounded up by police at a pro-democracy event Sunday in the Congo, sponsored in part by the U.S. government. Security forces charged them with threatening stability, according to a government spokesman. The diplomat, Kevin Sturr, “was among a group of people believed to be in […]

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Sparks fly as Sierra Leone’s VP is expelled from party

Sparks fly as Sierra Leone’s VP is expelled from party

| March 18, 2015

(GIN)—An internal war is roiling the administration of President Ernest Bai Koroma with the Vice President Samuel Sam-Sumana, at dead center. The VP, expelled last week from the ruling All People’s Congress (APC), is said to be forming a rival political movement from his home district in Kono, the country’s raw diamond capital, and an […]

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