Africa Briefs

More bodies pulled from sea after migrant boat rammed

More bodies pulled from sea after migrant boat rammed

| September 17, 2014

(GIN)–About 500 refugees are feared dead after their vessel was rammed by traffickers in icy Mediterranean waters, according to two Palestinians who survived the ordeal. The boat had been carrying Syrians, Palestinians, Egyptians and Sudanese, including women and children, according to reports, and had departed from Egypt early this month. It was the second sinking […]

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Disappointment runs deep as ‘Blade Runner’ walks free

Disappointment runs deep as ‘Blade Runner’ walks free

| September 16, 2014

(GIN)–The upset decision by Judge Thokozile Masipa that found Olympian Oscar Pistorius not guilty for the murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp stunned South Africans who had been glued to the trial since the gavel first pounded the court to order last March. Saying that Pistorius’s defense could “reasonably possibly be true,” Judge Masipa lifted […]

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Oil buyers flee Nigeria, leaving toxic spill cleanup

Oil buyers flee Nigeria, leaving toxic spill cleanup

| September 11, 2014

(GIN)—Angola’s crude oil is proving sweet to U.S. buyers who are snapping it up as fast as they are dropping purchases from Nigeria, according to data released by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). Breaking a 40-year record, crude oil exports from Angola to the U.S. are averaging around 116,000 barrels per day (bpd) since […]

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Drone war on Somalia fails to protect women raped by ‘defenders’

Drone war on Somalia fails to protect women raped by ‘defenders’

| September 10, 2014

(GIN)–A U.S. drone war on the insurgency in Somalia has overlooked the war on women–specifically the abuse, rapes and attacks on women and girls by AMISOM—the African Union Mission in Somalia, a new report by Human Rights Watch has disclosed. In its report titled “The Power These Men Have Over Us,” the New York-based Human […]

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Church leaders defend ‘Public Protector’ vilified over Zuma report

Church leaders defend ‘Public Protector’ vilified over Zuma report

| September 10, 2014

(GIN)—A blizzard of brickbats, insults and other aspersions aimed at South Africa’s Public Protector assigned to investigate the taxpayer-financed country estate of President Jacob Zuma, have roused the Diakonia Council of Churches, a social justice faith-based group, which this week came to her defense in an open letter. The council said it wished there were […]

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Medical center to be named for Sierra Leonean MD who treated victims of Ebola

Medical center to be named for Sierra Leonean MD who treated victims of Ebola

| September 10, 2014

(GIN)—The family of Sheik Humarr Khan has set up a foundation in his name to help pay for the education of future medical workers and provide support to the families of doctors and nurses who lose their lives in the field, The Lancet, a medical magazine reported in a recent issue. “He was very aware […]

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Liberia contends with Ebola as diasporans urge ‘regime change’

Liberia contends with Ebola as diasporans urge ‘regime change’

| September 10, 2014

(GIN)—Photos of Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf looking tired or grim suggest the toll the current Ebola epidemic has taken on the 75-year-old leader. The crisis, for which the region was ill-prepared, has taken more than a thousand lives–some 700 in Liberia—and many of the improvised control strategies appear to have backfired including the quarantining […]

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Greenpeace takes aim at South Africa’s Eskom over airborne killer coal dust

Greenpeace takes aim at South Africa’s Eskom over airborne killer coal dust

| September 10, 2014

(GIN)—Environmental activists at Greenpeace Africa have launched a global campaign to block efforts by Eskom, South Africa’s public power utility, to release more polluting coal dust in the air. The dust has been linked to an uptick in premature deaths now estimated at 2,700 every year. Greenpeace is pushing its campaign in the wake of […]

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Fight over spoils turns deadly in leaderless Lesotho

Fight over spoils turns deadly in leaderless Lesotho

| September 9, 2014

(GIN)—In the Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho, encircled by South Africa, there’s trouble in paradise. Prime Minister Tom Thabane, fearing a military coup, slipped out of the country recently to reappear in Johannesburg calling for intervention by that country’s security forces. Thabane believed he was a target by his coalition partner seeking his ouster so he […]

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Islamists gain ground in Nigeria’s embattled northeast

Islamists gain ground in Nigeria’s embattled northeast

| September 4, 2014

(GIN)—Following fierce fighting with government forces, the insurgent Boko Haram captured new ground in Borno state—sending thousands of civilians into exile, along with soldiers, residents said. “Just when you imagine that it cannot get worse for the Nigerian military and its pride as a fighting force, it takes a further dive,” observed Mannir Dan Ali, […]

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