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Durban Film Festival opens to fanfare — but where’s the film?

South Africa’s world-class film festival in the city of Durban had an opening film and a closing film. But somehow, along the way, the opening night film was pulled from the program. Censors, to the dismay of many, had found it pornographic. According to the festival program, the film tells the somber tale of a small-town high school teacher with a penchant for young girls. “The director’s third feature is ...

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Anonymous whistleblower has Zimbabwe glued to social media

(GIN) — Using social media, a whistleblower has been igniting a firestorm in Zimbabwe with allegations of ruling party corruption as the country prepares for national polls. In recent postings on Facebook, “Baba Jukwa” as he calls himself, appears to be the WikiLeaks of Zimbabwe. His Facebook page, about four months old, has almost 250,000 followers and receives hundreds of responses to new posts. A self-de ...

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Rights activists mourn torture killing in Cameroon by ‘anti-gay thugs’

Friends discovered the body of prominent gay rights activist Eric Ohena Lembembe at his home in Yaounde, Cameroon’s capital, the week of July 15, after he was unreachable for two days, according to a release by Human Rights Watch (HRW). The executive director of the Cameroonian Foundation for AIDS (CAMFAIDS), Lembembe was an outspoken activist and journalist who defended the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual ...

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Justice near for Angolan dad ‘unlawfully killed’ by UK guards

In a surprise ruling, a UK jury said three British security guards “unlawfully killed” an Angolan father held in a stress position prior to his deportation to Angola on British Airways. An earlier hearing had dismissed all charges against the guards. In the incident with overtones of the Trayvon Martin case in Sanford, Fla., the victim, Jimmy Mubenga, a father of five, was overheard crying out: “Let me up. ...

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Defying Obama, Senegal and Ivory Coast declare they are anti-gay

Despite a small but visible increase in public tolerance toward the gay community, African leaders continue to press for the criminalization and, in a few cases, the death penalty for those who are openly gay. Their latest condemnations come in the wake of President Obama’s Africa trip and his praise for the Supreme Court ruling on same sex marriage. ...

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African leaders renege on pledge to support small farmers

Ten years after 53 African Union countries pledged to invest in their farmers and break the cycle of food insecurity, only seven countries have fulfilled their pledge. At a meeting in Maputo, Mozambique, 53 African heads of state agreed in 2003 to allocate at least 10 percent of their national budgets to agriculture and livestock by July 2008. Now only seven countries — Burkina Faso, Niger, Guinea, Senegal, ...

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