Bureau Chief, Southeastern U.S. and Caribbean
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Jul 8, 2012

Newsmaker: South Sudan rebel now president takes on poverty, graft

By Pascal Fletcher

(Reuters) – South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir, who fought as a rebel chief in one of Africa’s longest civil wars, has confronted those two old and deadly enemies of development – poverty and corruption – in his first year as head of the world’s newest state.

The guerrilla fighter turned president, who likes to wear wide-brimmed cowboy hats, has also faced persisting hostility from South Sudan’s arch-foe to the north, Sudan, from whom it wrested independence last year after a secession vote that followed the end in 2005 of more than two decades of civil war.

Jul 3, 2012
via FaithWorld

Timbuktu tomb destroyers pulverise the history of Islam in Africa

Photo

(A traditional mud structure stands in the Malian city of Timbuktu May 15, 2012. REUTERS/Adama Diarra )

The al Qaeda-linked Islamist fighters who have used pick-axes, shovels and hammers to shatter earthen tombs and shrines of local saints in Mali’s fabled desert city of Timbuktu say they are defending the purity of their faith against idol worship.

Jul 3, 2012

Analysis: Timbuktu tomb destroyers pulverize Islam’s history

By Pascal Fletcher

(Reuters) – The al Qaeda-linked Islamist fighters who have used pick-axes, shovels and hammers to shatter earthen tombs and shrines of local saints in Mali’s fabled desert city of Timbuktu say they are defending the purity of their faith against idol worship.

But historians say their campaign of destruction in the UNESCO-listed city is pulverizing part of the history of Islam in Africa, which includes a centuries-old message of tolerance.

Jul 3, 2012

Timbuktu tomb destroyers pulverise Islam’s history

By Pascal Fletcher

(Reuters) – The al Qaeda-linked Islamist fighters who have used pick-axes, shovels and hammers to shatter earthen tombs and shrines of local saints in Mali’s fabled desert city of Timbuktu say they are defending the purity of their faith against idol worship.

But historians say their campaign of destruction in the UNESCO-listed city is pulverising part of the history of Islam in Africa, which includes a centuries-old message of tolerance.

May 31, 2012

Greenback is the prize of the herd in South Sudan

JUBA, May 31 (Reuters) – Longhorn cattle are the traditional
measure of wealth in South Sudan but the preoccupation these
days in the capital Juba is with a hornless green-backed beast,
preferably in mint condition, no blemishes on its watermarked
hide and no more than six years old.

Ask shoppers in Juba’s bustling markets why prices in South
Sudanese Pounds of everything from charcoal to meat and onions
have gone through the roof since the start of the year and they
will say: “It’s the dollars”. The lack of them, that is.

May 28, 2012

Insight: South Sudan independence still comes at a price

JUBA (Reuters) – South Sudan’s citizens who paid in blood for their independence in a long liberation war are being told freedom carries its own price – in hardship.

An oil shutdown from January by the former bush rebels who now run the world’s newest nation has strangled the flow of dollars into an economy that produces almost nothing else, and sent the South Sudanese pound tumbling against the greenback.

May 28, 2012

South Sudan independence still comes at a price

JUBA, May 28 (Reuters) – South Sudan’s citizens who paid in
blood for their independence in a long liberation war are being
told freedom carries its own price – in hardship.

An oil shutdown from January by the former bush rebels who
now run the world’s newest nation has strangled the flow of
dollars into an economy that produces almost nothing else, and
sent the South Sudanese pound tumbling against the greenback.

May 24, 2012

South Sudan’s history emerges – from a tent

JUBA (Reuters) – South Sudan’s independence last July was forged through years of hard-fought rebellion in the bush, so it seems fitting that the world’s newest nation still keeps much of its history in a tent.

The weather-beaten brown tent in a roadside government compound in the capital Juba goes unnoticed by most passing drivers and pedestrians. Musty papers, files, books and photos, some honeycombed with termites, litter its stifling interior.

May 18, 2012

South Sudan calls for U.N. sanctions on Khartoum

JUBA (Reuters) – The United Nations should impose sanctions on Sudan for failing to obey a Security Council resolution calling for an end to hostilities and renewed negotiations with South Sudan over oil and border disputes, South Sudan’s negotiator said on Friday.

Pagan Amum told Reuters Khartoum had not complied with the May 2 resolution giving neighbours Sudan and South Sudan, under threat of sanctions, two weeks to resume talks over their differences, which boiled over into border clashes last month.

May 10, 2012

Sudan and South Sudan at odds over talks after fighting

JUBA/KHARTOUM (Reuters) – South Sudan said on Thursday it was ready to reopen negotiations “any time” on a range of disputes with its northern neighbor Sudan after a spasm of fighting, but Khartoum said there could be no such talks unless the two sides settled security issues.

The two countries have been at loggerheads over oil, security and frontier disputes that ignited border clashes last month and for a while raised fears of full-blown war in one of Africa’s most significant oil regions.

    • About Pascal

      "I am based in Miami, heading the editorial reporting team covering the southeastern United States and the Caribbean. This includes Cuba and Haiti and we are also in charge of covering the annual Atlantic hurricane season and Space missions from Cape Canaveral. Previously, I was Chief Correspondent for West and Central Africa, and chief correspondent, Venezuela, following earlier postings in Cuba, Brazil, southern Africa, Portugal and Spain."
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