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Black South Africans get new chance to seek redress for stolen land

South Africa will restart the claims process that provides compensation to black families who were illegally removed from their land during white rule. The window for those claims had been shut 16 years ago. In a published statement, President Jacob Zuma assented to the Restitution of Land Rights Amendment Act, which among other things reopens the period to make a claim for those who missed the previous dea ...

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Smith & Wesson off the hook for arms-to-Africa bribe deal

After a whirlwind round of dinners in fancy hotels, Smith & Wesson’s vice president of sales was one of a group of arms dealers in a congratulatory mood after winding up what they thought was a major weapons sale to an African leader. To get the deal, worth $15 million, all the dealers — top-level execs — agreed to pay a 20 percent “commission,” even after being told that half would go into the pocket of th ...

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Kenyan round-up of refugees nets 300 children

As part of a controversial anti-terrorism operation, Kenya is rounding up and detaining Somali refugees, migrants and asylum-seekers, separating parents from young children. Some of the children are said to be confined to a Nairobi stadium without a parent or guardian. Emanuel Nyabera, spokesman for the UN Refugee Agency, expressed concern for some 300 Somali children, including babies as young as a few mon ...

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Botswana’s Okavango Delta a ‘world heritage site’

The Okavango Delta — Africa’s last-remaining wetland wilderness — has been listed as the 1,000th World Heritage site by UNESCO, the United Nations’ cultural body. The vast “Okavango wilderness” will be counted alongside such majestic formations as the Galapagos, Amazon, Arctic and Great Barrier Reef. It contains a number of endangered species and is unusual in that it is inland and does not flow into a sea. ...

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Africa and the World Cup

The home continent for all human beings, Africa, is no longer represented in the World Cup, as the quarter-final round begins. On June 30, Nigeria lost to France, and Algeria lost to Germany in the round of 16. This was the first time in the history of the competition that two African teams made it to the round of 16 together. Egypt appeared for the first time during the second FIFA World Cup in 1934, but f ...

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Female genital mutilation: A horror of dominance

When a girl in the United States and the western world, prepares for marriage, she plans her trousseau and shops for her wedding gown. I recently learned from Angela Peabody, author of “When the Games Froze,” that in parts of Africa, the preparation for marriage is far removed from trousseau and wedding gowns. For too many, the practice of female genital mutilation (FMG) is at the top of the list for marria ...

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Terrorism in Africa won’t be defeated by failed Iraq war strategies

As conditions in Iraq deteriorate, a war-weary American public watches nervously as policy-makers debate prospects for renewed military intervention in that country. Heavy U.S. casualties that were the product of a seemingly pointless, endless conflict left many with no appetite for further military engagement in Iraq — or for that matter in any country. Nevertheless, while all eyes are on Iraq, the Pentago ...

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How did you get that name?

Deciding which ancestral line you want to research can be difficult. One of the greatest challenges my genealogy students at Wayne County Community College District have in researching their ancestors is finding them using a surname (last name). Researching the spelling of surnames in how they sound, as opposed to how we spell them today, can be a painstaking challenge like trying to find a needle in a hays ...

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Ma Ellen: ‘Invest in our girls, if Africa is to rise’

In an open letter dated June 16 — the International Day of the African Child — Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf warned there would be no “Africa Rising” without a serious investment in young girls. The key to addressing some of the world’s most pressing challenges is a quality education for all children, especially girls, the former World Bank official known as “Ma Ellen”declared. ...

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Former African leaders call for legalizing low-level drugs

A report cited by two former African presidents has called for the decriminalization of minor drug offenses. The report states trafficking, consumption and production is undermining development in West Africa and abetting corruption. Picking up the momentum led by some U.S. governors, the report by a panel of African experts criticized current punitive policies which, they said, was fueling corruption in a ...

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