KW 41: Presidential election in Cameroon, Nobel Peace Prize award to Congolese Mukwege, Iraq’s Murad, Ethiopian PM pushes for unity

– NEWS –

Presidential election in Cameroon: Polls have closed in Cameroon in a presidential election that has been disrupted by a number of violent incidents in English-speaking parts of the country, leaving at least three people dead. Cameroonians voted on Sunday in the key presidential election which could end or extend the 36-year rule of President Paul Biya, one of Africa’s longest serving leaders. Reuters reports that three separatists have been shot dead in Bamenda, capital of the northwest region of the country. A security source said that the trio had been gunned down for attempting to disrupt the voting process. The northwest and southwest regions have been the epicenter of what has become known as the Anglophone crisis. Separatist groups have vowed to stop the polls from taking place in both regions.
bbc.com, africanews.com

Nobel Peace Prize award to Congolese Mukwege, Iraq’s Murad: The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided to award the Nobel Peace Prize for 2018 to Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict. Both laureates have made a crucial contribution to focusing attention on, and combating, such war crimes. The physician Mukwege has spent large parts of his adult life helping the victims of sexual violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Murad is herself a victim of war crimes. She refused to accept the social codes that require women to remain silent and ashamed of the abuses to which they have been subjected. She has shown uncommon courage in recounting her own sufferings and speaking up on behalf of other victims.
reuters.com

Morocco rejects EU migrant centers: Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita said he rejects the EU’s plan to build asylum centers in North Africa, according to an interview with German national daily „Die Welt“. It would be “too easy to claim this is a Moroccan responsibility,” he said, adding that the policy is counterproductive and claiming financial help from the EU would not change his country’s position. The EU wants to reach migration deals with Middle East and northern African countries, such as Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia, and Libya, similar to the one it has with Turkey, and has suggested building migrant reception centers in these countries to hold asylum seekers.
dw.com, politico.eu

Ethiopian PM pushes for unity: At the congress of Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) in the southern city of Hawassa, Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed told members of his ruling coalition that „an attack on one is an attack on all“ as he pushed for unity after months of ethnic violence. Abiy has presided over a series of jolting political and economic changes since coming to office in April – making peace with arch-foe Eritrea, freeing political prisoners, pledging to open up the state-controlled economy and promising to overhaul the security services. But the reforms have not stopped ethnically-charged violence that has escalated since he was named premier. „If we are see a developed Ethiopia, we should not commit violence on the basis of ethnicity or religion“, Abiy told about 1,000 delegates.
reuters.com

French airstrike targets extremists in Burkina Faso abcnews.com
DHL and Germany’s Development Ministry are testing drug drone in Africa deutsche-apotheker-zeitung.de
Two thirds of Sub-Saharan Africa do not want to emigrate correctiv.org

– BACKGROUND –

Mysterious wave of layoffs in Algeria: Heads have been rolling in the Algerian army, the North African nation’s most respected institution, and in other security services, with generals in top posts fired — without explanation — at a rate never before seen. Since late June, nearly all top officials in the security hierarchy have been replaced. Algeria’s President Abdelaziz Bouteflika on Tuesday also dismissed his powerful police chief, General Abdelghani Hamel. Observers and local media have linked the unexpected dismissal to the seizure of 701 kg of cocaine at the western port of Oran at the end of May, and the handling of the subsequent investigation.
foxnews.com, uk.reuters.com

Race between EU and China: Compared to Chinese investment and engagement in Africa, European efforts are relatively meager. China’s President Xi Jinping pledged $60 billion to African nations, matching the size of funds offered at the last summit in Johannesburg in 2015. As it pushes forward with Xi’s pledge, China will use feasibility studies to select projects that help African countries achieve sustainable development and steer clear of debt or financial woes. Although EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker recently announced a plan for investment in, rapprochement to and exchange with Africa, he turned the tide away from classic development aid. While Europe is staying vague with its promises – focusing on education and increased trade – China is already investing a lot of money.
euractiv.com

– NUMBER –

China’s trade with Africa was over 140 billion euros in 2017. Europe reached almost 120 billion euros, while the US was in last place with about 30 billion euros.
spiegel.de

– QUOTE –

„There were no functioning free trade zones within or across Africa.“

Jann Lay, director of the Giga Institute in Hamburg, has criticized the European idea of an Africa united in trade matters as delusional.
spiegel.de

– AT LAST –

Melania Trump on visit to the „shithole“: The United States‘ First lady Melania Trump’s arrival in Lilongwe, Malawi, the second stop on her four-country African tour, had all the pageantry of a presidential visit to Africa, but none of the crowds. Absent were the fawning crowds that greeted President Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, on their first visit in 2009. Melania Trump’s motorcade in Malawi on Thursday reportedly passed by a sign reading „Not a shithole!“, a reference to US President Donald Trump’s derogatory remark earlier this year about African nations.
nbcnews.com, newsweek.com

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