France, Sahel nations vow to step up anti-jihadist fight

  PAU, France (AFP) – Laurence Benhamou and Marie Wolfrom France and its five partner nations in the Sahel region of West Africa pledged Monday to bolster their efforts against jihadists waging an increasingly deadly insurgency, while urging the United States to keep its troops engaged in the region’s anti-terror fight. President Emmanuel Macron and the leaders of Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, Mauritania and Chad lauded Washington’s “crucial support”, after a top US general confirmed […]

89 Niger soldiers killed in jihadist attack on camp: govt

NIER, Nigeria (AFP) — A jihadist attack on a military camp in western Niger three days ago left 89 soldiers dead, according to a new toll announced by the government on public radio Sunday. “After a thorough search, the toll has been established as 89 dead among friendly forces, and 77 dead for the enemy,” said spokesman Zakaria Abdourahame. Three days of national mourning have been declared to honor the dead. The previous toll given […]

63 ‘terrorists’, 25 others killed in Niger army base attack: defense ministry

NIAMEY, Nigeria (AFP) — Heavily armed assailants stormed a military base in Niger on Thursday killing 25 people and leading to fierce clashes that killed 63 “terrorists”, the defense ministry said, in an area where dozens died in a previous jihadist attack. The raid near to the volatile frontier with Mali by attackers in vehicles and on motorbikes began in Chinegodar, in the western Tillaberi, at 01:00 pm (12H00 GMT), defense spokesman Colonel Souleymane Gazobi […]

Taiwan’s military chief killed in chopper crash

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AFP) — Taiwan’s military chief was killed in a helicopter crash on Thursday, the defense ministry said, just days before the island goes to polls to elect a new president. The chief of the general staff, Shen Yi-ming, was among eight senior officers — including three major-generals — who died when their Black Hawk helicopter smashed into mountains near Taipei. The 62-year-old general and his entourage were on a routine mission to visit […]

Children among 18 killed in Sudan military plane crash: army

KHARTOUM, Sudan (AFP) –Four children were among 18 people killed Thursday when a Sudanese military transport plane crashed after takeoff from West Darfur state, an army spokesman said. The plane crashed five minutes after takeoff from an airport in the state capital El Geneina, after delivering aid to the area, which had been hit by recent deadly tribal fighting. “An Antonov 12 military plane crashed Thursday night after take off from El Geneina killing its […]

Captain, 7 crew abducted from Greek oil tanker in Cameroon port

by Hélène COLLIOPOULOU / Jean-Baptiste KETCHATENG DOUALA, Cameroon (AFP) — Armed men staged a night raid on a Greek oil tanker anchored in a Cameroonian port and abducted eight crewmen, including the vessel’s Greek captain, the merchant marine ministry and the ship’s owner said Tuesday. The five Greeks, two Filipinos, and a Ukrainian were part of a 28-member crew aboard the Happy Lady in the port of Limbe, near the economic capital Douala, the ministry […]

Benin jails journalist over Facebook post

Cotonou, Benin (AFP) — Benin sentenced an investigative journalist to 18 months in prison on Tuesday for comments he posted on social media, his lawyer told AFP. Ignace Sossou quoted on his Facebook and Twitter pages comments made by Benin’s public prosecutor Mario Metonou at a media event to discuss fake news on December 17. The comments made by the official appeared to criticise the government’s attitude towards freedom of expression. “The internet outage on […]

Sudan’s Bashir gets two years’ detention for corruption

  by Abdelmoneim Abu Idris Ali and Emmanuel Parisse Agence France Presse KHARTOUM, Sudan (AFP) — Sudan’s former president Omar al-Bashir was sentenced Saturday to two years’ detention in a correctional centre for corruption in the first of several cases against the ousted autocrat. The charges stemmed from millions of dollars received by the toppled strongman from Saudi Arabia. Bashir, who was deposed by the army in April after months of mass protests against his […]

Three soldiers, 14 attackers dead in Niger camp assault

NIAMEY, Niger (AFP) — Three soldiers and 14 attackers died in an assault earlier this week on an army camp in western Niger near the border with Mali, the defense minister said. Heavily armed “terrorists” in a dozen 4×4 vehicles led the attack early Monday morning on the military post in the West African country’s Tahoua region, he said. “After two hours of intense fighting, the vigorous response of our defence and security forces enabled […]

23 killed as fire engulfs Sudan factory

KHARTOUM, Sudan (AFP) — Twenty-three people were killed and dozens injured as a fire triggered by an explosion in a gas tanker tore through a factory in the Sudanese capital on Tuesday, officials said. Thick plumes of black smoke billowed into the sky after the blaze broke out at a tile manufacturing unit in an industrial zone of north Khartoum, witnesses said. “The explosion was loud. Several cars parked in the compound of the factory […]

UPDATED: Plane crashes into homes in east DR Congo city, killing 29

GOMA, DR Congo (AFP) — At least 29 people were killed Sunday when a small plane crashed after takeoff into a densely populated area of the city of Goma in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. A survivor among the 19 people — 17 passengers and two crew members — who were aboard the plane was taken to hospital along with 16 others injured on the ground, the North Kivu regional government said. “At this stage, […]

Kenya landslides kill 29 people

  NAIROBI, Kenya (AFP) — At least 29 people were killed in Kenya when their homes were swept away in landslides during ferocious overnight rainstorms, the government said Saturday. Their homes were hit in the early hours of Saturday amid torrential rains in the Pokot region, 350 kilometres (220 miles) northwest of the capital Nairobi. “We are saddened to confirm that 12 people from Tapach and Parua in Pokot South, and 17 from Tamkal in […]