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Nigeria claims to know location of kidnapped girls

A month after more than 200 boarding school girls were kidnapped by a militia group dressed as soldiers, a top Nigerian officer claimed to know exactly where the girls were being held. But he downplayed prospects for a rescue. “We want our girls back,” insisted Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh. “But where they are held, can we go there with force?.. We can’t kill our girls in the name of trying to get them back ...

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Disturbances mar Niger’s deal with French mining company

Students and police clashed in the capital city of the West African nation of Niger last week over essential stipends held up by a school official. Police threw tear gas bombs at the students who set up barricades and burned tires, according to news accounts. Younous Abdouramane, student union leader at Niamey University, estimated the toll of injured at 30 with over 60 detained by police. The disturbances ...

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Hip Hop Ukraine: Music, Race and African Migration

The eyes of the world have turned to Ukraine recently where protests led to the secession of some regions, and Russian troops claiming Crimea. Debate rages: Is this about ethnicity — some believe the Ukrainian nationalists are fascist white supremacists — or natural gas resources and the conflicting financial interests of Russia and the European Union? Despite these history-making events, normal life contin ...

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South African short-story writer to be reburied after long exile

A ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court may decide the final resting place for Ndazana Nathaniel Nakasa, a South African short-story writer, now buried in Ferndale Cemetery, Queens, New York. Born May 2, 1937 in Lusikisiki, Eastern Cape, he moved to Johannesburg to work as a journalist for Drum magazine. He was the first Black journalist to work at the Rand Daily Mail where he provided a Black perspective for th ...

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10-year old rape victim delivers two infants prematurely

Abiding by Senegalese law, a 10-year-old girl who had been raped was compelled to complete her pregnancy. The girl, who just turned 11, told The Guardian newspaper she did not even realize she was pregnant. “My mother saw my body changing, and because I was vomiting, she took me to the hospital. In the last few months, my head ached and I could hardly stand up.” Fatou Kiné Camara, president of the Senegales ...

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African leaders pledge ‘total war’ against Islamist group

Unable to account for the over 276 teenage girls kidnapped in Nigeria almost a month ago, the government of Pres. Goodluck Jonathan has agreed to step up the fight against the Boko Haram militants with regional and international support. At a summit last week in Paris, the Nigerian president met with African leaders and where they agreed to wage a “total war” against the rebel group now said to be overrunni ...

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As troubles in Mali mount, new president goes shopping

With a new outbreak of fierce fighting reported in northern Mali’s contested Tuareg lands, reports that President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita has purchased a $40 million presidential jet have not gone down well with aid donors. Purchase of the Boeing 737 stunned the foreign donors who were attending a meeting in Bamako last week — a year to the day after Mali received a massive $4.1 billion grant from 55 countri ...

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Liberians successfully resist UK company land grab

After years of fruitless court battles by small farmers against major multinational corporations, the Jogbahn Clan, across 11 villages in Liberia, is celebrating victory over a British company which tried to clear them off their lands. The celebration comes after months of advocacy by community members, the Sustainable Development Institute and Friends of the Earth Liberia. President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf h ...

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South Africans return Madiba’s party to lead the nation

In a closely watched election, South Africans turned out a decisive “vote for the party,” giving the African National Congress — the party of Mandela — another five years at the nation’s helm. Despite a recent scandal over costly improvements charged to taxpayers for the private residence of President Jacob Zuma, the former liberation movement managed to attract 62 percent of the 18 million votes cast May 7 ...

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From Afghanistan to Africa, reaper drones are the hottest weapon of choice

As the war in Afghanistan winds down, western countries are finding new uses for their high-tech surveillance equipment and unmanned drones — namely a new war against terror in Africa. U.S. intelligence gathering aircraft are said to be flying over remote areas of north-east Nigeria as part of an international hunt for the more than 200 schoolgirls kidnapped a month ago by Boko Haram militants. ...

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