West & Central Africa Correspondent, Dakar
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Feb 20, 2015

In camps, Nigerian refugees fear for family left to Boko Haram

MINAWAO, Cameroon (Reuters) – Whenever Emmanuel Ali Talka hears news of a female suicide bombing in Nigeria, he is paralyzed with fear despite having found relative safety in neighboring Cameroon.

Talka, a 36-year-old trader from Nigeria’s Borno state, fled attacks by Boko Haram Islamists with his two wives and four of their children. In the chaos, though, his three daughters were separated from the family, last seen being dragged off by militants.

Feb 18, 2015

Nigeria military says it kills 300 Islamists as neighbours join fight

MAROUA, Cameroon/MAIDUGURI, Nigeria, Feb 18 (Reuters) –
N igerian forces have killed more than 300 Boko Haram fighters
during an operation to recapture 11 towns and villages since the
start of the week, the military said on Wednesday, as its war
increasingly sucked in neighbours Cameroon, Chad and Niger.

The latest fighting comes as the tide has appeared to turn
against Boko Haram, with neighbouring countries plagued by cross
border attacks weighing in against the insurgents.

Feb 18, 2015

Nigeria military says kills 300 Boko Haram militants in counter offensive

MAROUA, Cameroon/MAIDUGURI, Nigeria (Reuters) – Nigerian forces have killed more than 300 Boko Haram fighters during an operation to recapture 11 towns and villages since the start of the week, the military said on Wednesday, as regional neighbours also pounded the militants.

“Weapons and equipment were also captured and some destroyed,” defence spokesman Major-General Chris Olukolade said in a statement. “However, two soldiers lost their lives while 10 others were wounded,” he added.

Feb 18, 2015

Blood-soaked truck symbolises Boko Haram’s war without borders

WAZA, Cameroon (Reuters) – A Nigerian armoured personnel carrier spattered with blood, riddled with bullets and towed into an army base in northern Cameroon is a potent reminder of Boko Haram’s ability to strike across borders in its six-year war for an Islamic state.

Islamist militiamen captured the vehicle when they overran Gwoza, a town in northern Nigeria, last year. It still bears the insignia “PMF Training College, Gwoza” along its flank, partially obscured by Boko Haram scrawled in Arabic.

Feb 16, 2015

Nigerian troops recapture two towns from Boko Haram

MAIDUGURI/MAROUA (Reuters) – Nigerian soldiers recaptured two towns from Boko Haram on Monday as U.S. and regional troops began war games in neighbouring Chad in a growing international campaign to counter the Islamist group.

But militants from Boko Haram, which has killed and kidnapped thousands in a six-year-old insurgency in Africa’s most populous nation, still managed to attack a military camp near Waza in northern Cameroon, killing five soldiers.

Feb 4, 2015

Chad, Cameroon say kill 250 Boko Haram fighters in regional offensive

DJAMENA/DAKAR (Reuters) – Troops from Cameroon and Chad killed more than 250 Boko Haram militants in two days of heavy fighting in a major regional offensive against the Islamists from neighbouring Nigeria, their governments said on Wednesday.

Cameroon said it forces fought off an attack on one of its border towns early on Wednesday by Boko Haram, a group that has kidnapped hundreds and killed thousands in northern Nigeria and mounted increasingly bloody cross-border raids.

Jan 20, 2015

Mistrust between Nigeria, Cameroon stalls fight against Boko Haram

DAKAR, Jan 20 (Reuters) – Mistrust between Nigeria and
neighbouring Cameroon as well as disagreements over how to
deploy troops against Boko Haram have stalled efforts to set up
a regional force to combat the Islamist militants.

Failure to launch the 2,800-strong mission as planned in
November has left the insurgents in control of large swathes of
Nigeria’s north east from where they launch attacks.

Dec 30, 2014

Ebola wrecks years of aid work in worst-hit countries

DAKAR/KOIDU, Sierra Leone (Reuters) – Ebola is wrecking years of health and education work in Sierra Leone and Liberia following their civil wars, forcing many charity groups to suspend operations or re-direct them to fighting the epidemic.

More than a decade of peace and quickening economic growth had raised hopes that the nations could finally reduce their dependency on foreign aid and budgetary support; now Ebola has undermined those achievements, charity workers and officials say.

Dec 12, 2014

Sierra Leone to ban Xmas parties, plans “surge” to curb Ebola spread

DAKAR/FREETOWN (Reuters) – Sierra Leone plans to ban parties and other festivities over the Christmas and New Year’s holidays and to launch a “surge” to cut the risk of Ebola spreading further in the West African country now with the most infections, officials said on Friday.

Sierra Leone is struggling to reduce the spread of the viral hemorrhagic fever as the death toll in West Africa continues to rise, fueled in part by increasing infections in the country.

Dec 9, 2014

Miners fear tax hikes, uncertainty in Burkina mining review

OUAGADOUGOU/DAKAR (Reuters) – A plan by Burkina Faso’s new leaders to review the mining industry after years of opaque management is spooking operators who fear losing tax cuts that they say make operating in the landlocked nation attractive.

Over the last decades Burkina Faso has cultivated its gold mining industry. Two dozen firms operate in the sector, including Semafo, IamGold and Avocet Mining, enjoying corporate tax rates lower than other nations in West Africa.

    • About Bate

      "Bate Felix is a Dakar-based West & Central Africa Correspondent. He joined Reuters in 2007 as a graduate trainee and has worked in Johannesburg, London, Brussels, Paris and Amsterdam. He now covers economics, politics and general news stories in over a dozen countries in West & Central Africa."
      Joined Reuters:
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