Emma's Feed
Aug 19, 2015

Mali’s Islamist conflict spreads as new militant group emerges

BAMAKO/SEVARE (Reuters) – Imam Elhadji Sekou Ba was one of the few people in his village of Barkerou who dared to speak out against the rise of Islamist militants in central Mali, denouncing in his sermons the young men taking up arms in the name of religion.

Last Thursday, shortly after dinner, he was gunned down on his doorstep.

Locals suspect the killing was carried out by the Massina Liberation Front (MLF), a new group blamed for a wave of attacks that is shifting Mali’s three-year-old Islamist conflict from the remote desert north ever closer to its populous south.

Aug 9, 2015

At least 12 dead as Mali siege ends, some U.N. workers freed

BAMAKO (Reuters) – At least 12 people were killed during a nearly 24-hour siege of a hotel in central Mali seized by suspected Islamist gunmen that ended on Saturday as security forces stormed the building and released some of the United Nations workers trapped inside.

Four U.N. contractors were freed in the pre-dawn raid, but Mali’s U.N. peacekeeping operation MINUSMA said five people associated with the mission had died, while Malian officials counted three hostages dead.

Aug 8, 2015

Mali hotel siege ends, hostages freed

BAMAKO (Reuters) – Malian security forces on Saturday stormed a hotel used by United Nations staff and freed four hostages held there by suspected Islamist militants who had killed at least six people during their attack.

The gunmen had seized the Byblos hotel in the town of Sevare, around 600 km (400 miles) northeast of the capital Bamako, early on Friday and held off troops surrounding the building for nearly 24 hours.

Aug 8, 2015

Suspected Islamists kill six, take hostages in Mali hotel

BAMAKO (Reuters) – Suspected Islamist militants attacked a hotel in central Mali used by U.N. staff, killing at least six people, taking others hostage and holding off troops encircling the building on Friday, residents and military sources said.

A Russian and a Ukrainian were among those being held inside the Byblos Hotel, officials from their countries said. There were up to eight other captives and South African and French citizens had also been staying there, government officials said.

Jul 22, 2015

Gambia’s Jammeh shores up power before fifth term bid

DAKAR, July 22 (Reuters) – A month after 29-year-old
Lieutenant Yahya Jammeh seized power in Gambia in a bloodless
coup in 1994, the U.S. Ambassador cabled Washington to warn that
the “anti-western” and “anti-democratic” new president was
seeking an “open mandate”.

As Gambia marks the 21st anniversary of Jammeh’s rule,
Andrew Winter’s warning still resonates as rights groups accuse
the president of cracking down on opponents before an expected
bid for a fifth term next year.

Jul 22, 2015

Gambia’s Jammeh shores up power ahead of fifth term bid

DAKAR, July 22 (Reuters) – A month after 29-year-old
Lieutenant Yahya Jammeh seized power in Gambia in a bloodless
coup in 1994, the U.S. Ambassador cabled Washington to warn that
the “anti-western” and “anti-democratic” new president was
seeking an “open mandate”.

As Gambia marks the 21st anniversary of Jammeh’s rule,
Andrew Winter’s warning still resonates as rights groups accuse
the president of cracking down on opponents ahead of an expected
bid for a fifth term next year.

Jul 10, 2015

Tests show Ebola probably remained latent in Liberia

DAKAR/GENEVA, July 10 (Reuters) – Ebola probably remained
latent in Liberia even after it was officially eliminated in
May, health officials said on Friday, after test results showed
the strain of the virus in newly detected cases closely
resembled earlier infections.

The preliminary findings, based on a new technique analysing
the genetic sequence of the virus, suggest that transmission was
either reactivated by an Ebola survivor, perhaps through sexual
intercourse, or continued for weeks undetected, the sources
added.

Jul 7, 2015

Initial Ebola test on Liberia dog carcass negative: sources

DAKAR (Reuters) – A dead dog suspected of being the possible source for the re-emergence of Ebola in Liberia has tested negative for the disease, two health officials said on Tuesday, quoting initial findings.

Residents say that Liberia’s first victim of the virus since the country was declared Ebola-free in early May had shared a dog meat meal with residents shortly before he died on June 28.

Jun 17, 2015

EU to keep withholding aid from Gambia after expulsion – diplomats

DAKAR (Reuters) – The expulsion of an EU diplomat from Gambia this month has derailed efforts to unblock aid to one of the world’s poorest countries, the source of thousands of illegal migrants headed to Europe, diplomats say.

The European Union had earmarked 33 million euros ($37 million) for development projects in the West African country for 2015-2016 but froze the funds due partly to concerns over human rights after a tough new law against homosexuality.

Jun 13, 2015

Ebola could hit again and we would hardly do better: MSF

DAKAR (Reuters) – The Ebola epidemic could flare up again in West Africa and health authorities are no better equipped to control it than they were a year ago, the head of medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres said on Saturday.

“The reality today is if Ebola were to hit on scale it did in August and September, we would hardly do much better than we did the last time around,” Joanne Liu said on the sidelines of a meeting on Ebola in Dakar.