Africa 

Sudan opposition coalition appoints five civilian members of sovereign council

KHARTOUM (Reuters) – Sudan’s opposition coalition on Sunday named five people as civilian members of the country’s sovereign council to be sworn in on Monday, a source within the coalition told Reuters. A power-sharing agreement signed on Saturday paves the way for a transitional government and eventual elections. It provides for a sovereign council as the highest authority in the country but largely delegates executive powers to the cabinet of ministers. According to the agreement, the opposition coalition is allowed to choose five members of the council and the military…

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Africa 

Libya reopens southern airport closed since 2014

BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) – Libya reopened on Friday its airport in the main southern city of Sebha which had been closed since January 2014 due to security problems, residents said. A commercial flight landed from the main eastern city of Benghazi, they said. Southern Libya has been gripped by worse insecurity and chaos than the rest of the North African country since the toppling of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, although security in Sebha is better than in other parts of the impoverished region. In Murzuq town to the west of…

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Africa 

UK judge to allow firm to try to seize $9 bln in Nigerian assets in gas dispute

LAGOS (Reuters) – A judge in London said on Friday he would grant a firm called Process and Industrial Developments Ltd (P&ID) the right to seek to seize some $9 billion in assets from the Nigerian government over an aborted gas project. The company was awarded $6.6 billion in an arbitration decision over a failed project to build a gas processing plant in the southern Nigerian city of Calabar. With interest payments, the sum now tops $9 billion – some 20% of Nigeria’s foreign reserves The judge’s decision, issued on…

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Africa 

Seamen kidnapped off Cameroon’s coast – sources

YAOUNDE (Reuters) – A number of seamen have been kidnapped after an attack on their vessel off the coast of Cameroon in West Africa’s piracy-plagued Gulf of Guinea, a source in the Cameroonian army and a source at the major port of Douala said on Friday. In July, the International Maritime Bureau described the Gulf of Guinea as the most dangerous area in the world for piracy with 73% of all sea kidnappings and 92% of hostage-takings taking place there. The army source declined to give details on the number…

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Africa 

Missile strike halts traffic at Tripoli airport, kills worker

TRIPOLI (Reuters) – Missiles hit the only functioning airport in the Libyan capital Tripoli on Thursday, killing one worker, the airport said. Mitiga airport halted traffic and diverted flights to Misrata, a city some 200km to the east of Tripoli, the airport said in a statement. The airport has been repeatedly hit since eastern forces loyal to Khalifa Haftar launched an offensive to take the capital, now held by the internationally recognized government but there had been rarely casualties. The United Nations had brokered last week a truce accepted by…

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Africa 

Zimbabwe rights groups say 6 activists abducted, beaten ahead of protests

HARARE (Reuters) – Six Zimbabwean political activists were abducted from their homes at night and beaten by armed men this week, ahead of planned street demonstrations by the main opposition party, a coalition of rights groups said on Thursday. The opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has called Friday’s protest against the handling of the economy by President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government. Police have said they believe the protests will turn violent. The MDC says the demonstrations will be peaceful. The Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum, a coalition of rights groups,…

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Africa 

Rome court says migrant ship can enter Italy’s waters, overriding Salvini

ROME/MADRID (Reuters) – An administrative court in Rome ruled on Wednesday that a Spanish rescue ship carrying around 150 migrants should be allowed to enter Italian territorial waters in defiance of a ban imposed by Interior Minister Matteo Salvini. Salvini, leader of the far-right League party, quickly responded that he would not allow the ship entry regardless of the ruling, setting up another high-profile conflict over the issue of immigration which has proved his biggest vote-winner. The charity vessel Open Arms had appealed to the court to let it come…

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Africa 

Uganda says malaria prevalence surges, cites climate change and refugees

KAMPALA (Reuters) – Uganda said on Wednesday it had recorded a 40% surge in the incidence of malaria, attributing the increase to a range of factors including a refugee influx, climate change and a decline in the use of protective nets. The development could heighten public health fears already stoked by an Ebola epidemic which briefly spilled over from neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo, where it has killed more than 1,800 people. The ministry of health said in a statement its data showed malaria cases recorded in June this year…

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Africa 

Somalia’s al Shabaab hits military base, deaths on both sides

MOGADISHU (Reuters) – Militant Islamist group al Shabaab struck a Somali government military base on Wednesday with car bombs and gunfire in a battle that both sides said caused multiple deaths to the other. Witnesses said some local residents were also killed by stray crossfire during the mid-morning attack on the base in Awdheegle, 70 km (43 miles) southwest of the capital Mogadishu. Al Shabaab is fighting the weak, U.N.-backed Somali government and its international allies in a quest to impose its strict interpretation of Islamic law. The Horn of…

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Africa 

Suicide bomber kills five in Chad, including soldier – sources

N’DJAMENA (Reuters) – A suicide bomber killed five people, including a Chadian soldier, when she blew herself up on the shores of Lake Chad on Wednesday, three military and government sources said. The sources said the attack happened shortly after midnight in the compound of a traditional chieftain in the district of Kaiga-Kindjiria. The attacker walked in and detonated her bomb just as people in the compound were preparing to go to bed, they said, without giving further details. Lake Chad, which sprawls across Nigeria, Niger, Chad and Cameroon, is…

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