Category Archives: Africa

Tanzania elephant & rhino populations recover

Tanzania presidency reported elephant and rhino populations have begun to recover after a government crackdown dismantled organized criminal networks involved in industrial-scale poaching and transporting the ivory to China.

A influential Chinese businesswoman running a poaching network on industrial scale, dubbed the “Ivory Queen” was sentenced to 15 years in prison by a Tanzanian court in February for smuggling the tusks of more than 350 elephants, weighing nearly 2 tonnes, to Asian countries. Yang Feng Glan had been charged in 2015 along with two Tanzanian citizens with smuggling 860 pieces of ivory between 2000 and 2004 worth $5.6 million.

“As a result of the work of a special task force launched in 2016 to fight wildlife poaching, elephant populations have increased from 43,330 in 2014 to over 60,000 presently,” the presidency said in a statement this week, underlining the success of the case as a government victory over illicit ivory traffic.

The number of rhinos, an endangered species, had increased from just 15 to 167 over the past four years, the report says.

 

 

26 dead in Al-Shabaab Asasey hotel attack

A suicide bomber drove a car loaded with explosives into the Asasey hotel in the port of Kismayo, Somalia, followed by the gunmen, who stormed popular among travelers location. Radical Islam militants of al-Shabab have claimed the attack, the most devastating act of jihad in Kismayo since fighters were forced out in 2012. (Image above: illustration).

Famous TV presenter Hodan Naleyah (43), and her husband Farid were among the victims. A local politician, three Kenyans, three Tanzanians, two Americans and one Briton among the killed, the authorities confirmed.

Al-Shabab, affiliated to al Qaeda terrorist group, often uses car bombs to infiltrate heavily fortified targets like the hotel in Kismayo, which has enjoyed relative calm since 2012.

Al-Shabaab attacks hotel in Kismayo

A bomb attack in an hotel in Somalia port Kismayo has been revendicated by AlShabaab militants, Agence France presse (AFP) reports.

TV presenter Hodan (pictured) is announced among seven perished in the attack. The authorities said there are “at least” seven people killed, including Hodan and her husband.

A lethal blast occurred in Hotel Asasey in the heart of Kismayu, followed by gunfire. 

Abdiasis Abu Musab, Al-Shabaab military operation spokesman, said the militant group linked to al Qaeda, trying to overthrow Somalia’s central government, was behind the attack and that fighting was still going on.

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TV presenter Hodan moved from Canada back to Somalia inspired to communicate stories beyond war.

 

Shia Muslim clashes close to Nigeria National Assembly

On July 9 Nigeria’s National Assembly was on lockdown after shots were heard outside during clashes between police and a group of Shi’ite Muslim protesters.

The involved in violent clashes blamed each other for the shooting. In a statement, police clarified two officers were shot and wounded in the legs, and six other officers were injured by individuals using clubs and stones.

Police used tear gas on the protesters and smoke could be seen rising from the area.

The Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN), a group that represents Nigerian minority Shia Muslims tried to enter the complex, provoking the confrontation with police units.

One of the four injured policemen beaten up by Shi’ite protesters during a violent invasion of the National Assembly, Umar Abdulahi, a dergeant, has died.

 

Mogherini “shocked” by Tajoura attack

The shocking attack on the Tajoura detention centre that caused the death of dozens of refugees and migrants and injured many more, including children and women, is a stark reminder of how the war in Libya is affecting civilians. We condemn it in the strongest terms. All violence against civilians is unacceptable. We welcome any fact finding mission undertaken by the UN and look forward to its results” says the text of the Declaration issued by the EU top diplomat Federica Mogherini on behalf of the bloc on the latest developments in Libya.

We call for an immediate de-escalation and for an end to the fighting, and we urge actors to refrain from the systematic use of incitement to violence and promptly return to the UN led mediation process. We reiterate that there can be no military solution to the crisis in Libya and we call on all UN Member States to fully respect their obligations to contribute to Libya’s peace and stability, prevent destabilizing arms shipments, safeguard Libya’s oil resources and protect its infrastructure in accordance with relevant UN Security Council resolutions. The ongoing conflict is destabilising Libya and the entire region and has increased the risk of terrorism and of the tragic loss of human lives, also at sea.

“We fully support UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General Ghassan Salamé in his efforts to restore confidence, achieve a cessation of hostilities, promote inclusive dialogue and create the conditions for the resumption of the UN led political process. It is indispensable to relaunch the UN led mediation process to promote an inclusive government representing all Libyans, prepare for credible parliamentary and presidential elections, ensure a fair and transparent distribution of national wealth and advance the reunification of all Libyan sovereign institutions.

We remind all Libyan parties and institutions of their responsibility to protect civilians, safeguard civilian infrastructure, allow full humanitarian access and ensure protection for humanitarian workers under International Humanitarian Law. The EU stands ready to urgently step up collective efforts to address the situation, and in particular, to improve protection and assistance to migrants and refugees. In this regard, we welcome the UNHCR and IOM work in Libya and reiterate our full support to their mission and activities.”

Tajoura held at least 600 migrants and refugees—including women and children. The airstrike that left scores dead, also left dozens injured. The casualty toll from an air strike on a detention camp for migrants near the Libyan capital Tripoli has climbed to 53 dead and 130 wounded, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported.

 

 

 

EU calls Mauritania for calm

The first round of presidential elections in Mauritania took place on June 22nd.

“The European Union commends the high turnout at this poll held in a peaceful atmosphere and generally satisfactory conditions”.

“Still waiting for the final results, the European Union is concerned by the statements of some candidates and calls everyone to calm and restraint and to resort to legal channels for possible disputes” says the statement of the European External Action Service spokesperson.

Sudan’s opposition accepts Ethiopian mediator

Sudan’s main opposition coalition confirmed it had received a draft agreement from an Ethiopian mediator and had agreed to all of its points defining the country’s governmental structure for the transitional period.

Babikr Faisal, a spokesman for the Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC) coalition, gave no details on the contents of the agreement.

“Our acceptance of the Ethiopian mediation proposal pushes all the parties to face their responsibilities toward continuing to effort a political solution,” the coalition later said in a statement.

Therefore we demand that the document be approved by the military council in order to move the situation in Sudan (forward).”

 

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