Scores die in south Sudan attack
Militiamen have killed more than 100 people in an attack in southern Sudan in the latest in a series of ethnic clashes, the military says.
UN sources said thousands of armed men from the Lou Nuer ethnic group attacked civilians and security forces in the village of Duk Padiet in Jonglei state.
Last month about 185 Lou Nuers were killed by ethnic Murle fighters in an attack in the same state.
Some 2,000 people have died in similar clashes across the south this year.
Initial reports of Sunday's attack on the village had a much lower death toll.
Major General Kuol Diem Kuol told the BBC a nearby company from the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) had been able to retake the village.
He said the attackers had targeted the military and that 22 of the dead were soldiers, including the major commanding the unit.
"This is not a raid for cattle but a militia attack against security forces," he said.
The United Nations mission in Sudan said it was aware of the incident, but did not have full details about it yet.
Under a 2005 peace deal ending a two-decade war between north and south, former southern rebels formed a power-sharing government with President Omar al-Bashir's party in Khartoum.
A national election is due next year and southern Sudanese are meant to vote in a referendum to decide whether to secede from the north in 2011.
The BBC's Peter Martell, in the southern Sudanese capital Juba, says many people fear Khartoum is orchestrating the violence.
Some southern politicians believe Khartoum is arming militias from both sides in a bid to destabilise the region and delay the votes indefinitely.
But the south is made up of a patchwork of rival ethnic groups who have long fought over grazing land, cattle and other resources.
And Khartoum vehemently denies playing any part in the violence in the south.
DR Congo deports genocide suspect
A former mayor accused of taking part in the 1994 Rwandan genocide has been sent from the Democratic Republic of Congo to a UN-backed tribunal.
Gregoire Ndahimana is accused of responsibility for the massacre of some 2,000 ethnic Tutsis sheltering in a church which was bulldozed.
He was arrested in August during operations against Rwandan rebels in North Kivu, eastern DR Congo.
His transfer is seen as a sign of improved DR Congo-Rwanda relations.
"We have done humanity a service, because the crime of genocide is an attack upon the peace and security of humankind," said DR Congo Justice Minister Luzolo Bambi Lessa, quoted by Reuters news agency.
Mr Ndahimana was sent from Kinshasa to Arusha, Tanzania, where the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) is based.
His wife and five children will be sent to Rwanda, reports the AFP news agency.
ICTR prosecutors believe that almost the entire 6,000-strong population of the town of Kivumu - where Mr Ndahimana was mayor - was killed during the genocide.
After the 1994 killing spree, some of those responsible fled across the border to DR Congo, sparking years of unrest in the region.
After years of mutual mistrust, DR Congo and Rwanda earlier this year started working together against both countries' rebel groups based along their common border.
Congolese Communication Minister Lambert Mende used the example of Mr Ndahimana to renew calls that Rwanda send Congolese rebel leader Laurent Nkunda to Kinshasa to face trial, AFP says.
Gen Nkunda was captured at the start of this year's joint operations and is believed to be under house arrest in Rwanda.
quazi wrote:Has anyone been following what's going on in Guinea? Link
Rebel terror spreads to CAR
For years a swath of the African continent has been a killing ground for the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA). As the BBC's Chris Simpson reports, villagers in southern parts of the Central African Republic are the latest to flee in fear from the rebels.
Like the rest of his village, Elie Leande, the chief of Kourokou I, is now living in a makeshift camp near Obo, the regional capital of Haut-Mbomou in southern CAR.
He says the LRA attacked his village in May, killing 10 civilians.
"I had not really heard of these people before, but now they are always with us," he says. "I do not know what they want, because they attack you before you can talk to them."
US deplores 'vile' Guinea abuses
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has labelled Guinea's crackdown on an opposition rally last Monday as a "vile violation" of people's rights. Mrs Clinton promised "appropriate actions" against the military rulers.
Activists say soldiers killed 157 anti-junta protesters - though the government puts the figure much lower.
Opposition leaders have rejected the latest offer of talks with the junta - saying the perpetrators of the killings needed to be punished first. They also said junta leader Captain Moussa Dadis Camara would have to step down before any talks could go ahead.
"We will only sit on the same negotiating table with the junta when these demands are met," said Ba Oury, a senior figure within the opposition.
Burkina Faso's President Blaise Compaore is mediating in the dispute and proposed the talks after holding meetings with both sides on Monday.
sheddi wrote:US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has labelled Guinea's crackdown on an opposition rally last Monday as a "vile violation" of people's rights. Mrs Clinton promised "appropriate actions" against the military rulers.
phil_in_cs wrote:sheddi wrote:US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has labelled Guinea's crackdown on an opposition rally last Monday as a "vile violation" of people's rights. Mrs Clinton promised "appropriate actions" against the military rulers.
What sort of "Appropriate Actions" can be taken? Recent history has shown sanctions hurt the poor folks and give the powerful more money from the smuggling trade. Military action is out of the question.
Are there options beyond these? I mean, options that have a chance of influencing the junta?
Rape used as weapon in DR Congo war
The Democratic Republic of Congo is grappling with rampant rape, which has become an every day practice and is used as a weapon of war, the UN has said.
It said almost 5,400 cases of rape against women were reported in the South Kivu province during the first six months of the year.
Elisabeth Byrs, a spokeswoman for the UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs, said South Kivu, near Rwanda, was an increasingly dangerous place for civilians, especially for women.
"Night-time attacks against civilians by unidentified armed elements, and rape against women, remain widespread," Byrs said.
About 90 per cent of the rapes are allegedly committed by armed groups or regular forces.
Nabwemba Natabaro, a woman in South Kivu, told Al Jazeera that she had been held in the bush for two months and repeatedly gang raped, after being abducted from her village.
"My family thought I had been killed and lost all hope of ever seeing me. Then I managed to escape. I was very sick," she said.
Her family brought her to a hospital where she was diagnosed with HIV.
'Tortured by attackers'
Rossette Kavira, a gynaecologist at a hospital in the town of Goma, said: "There isn’t a single day that we don't get raped women coming to the hospital. This explains how widespread the problem is.
"Almost all victims require surgery due to bleeding or wounds inflicted through torture by their attackers."
Due to the huge numbers of rape victims, some women have to wait for months for reconstructive surgery.
Dede Amanor-Wilks, Action Aid's director for West and Central Africa, said many rape cases go unreported.
"Currently the DRC [Democratic Republic of Congo] is thought to have the highest incident of rape in the world, but statistics that come to surface are only a fraction probably of the rapes that actually occur," she told Al Jazeera.
"Different statistics are coming up in different parts of the eastern DRC all the time. One commonly used statistic is that there are about 400 rapes a day."
Al Jazeera's Mohammed Adow, reporting from Goma, said there were growing fears that the use of rape was turning into a norm in the DR Congo conflict.
"Rape has been used by all armed groups as a weapon that is more readily available than bullets and bombs.
"In many cases the social stigma associated with rape leaves the survivors shunned by husbands, parents and their communities," he said.
The fighting in the eastern DRC between UN-backed Congolese government forces and Rwandan Hutu rebels have worsened in recent months.
The country hosts one of the biggest UN aid operations. Hundreds of thousands of people in the east of the country have been driven from their homes due to fighting, many of whom need protection from violent attacks.
Congo fishing rights clashes ‘force thousands to flee’
More than 50,000 people have fled clashes between two ethnic groups in north-western Democratic Republic of Congo in recent weeks, the UN says.
Many of those fleeing are reported to be unaccompanied children, and some people have drowned trying cross a river into Republic of Congo.
The UN says at least 100 people have been killed in clashes between Lobala and Boba people in Equateur province.
The violence started last month after a dispute over fishing rights.
Local MPs have asked for more security in the region and a small number of UN peacekeepers have been deployed.
But most of the UN's force is embroiled in the entrenched conflict in DR Congo's eastern areas - where they support government troops fighting local, Rwandan and Ugandan rebels.
Rufin Mafouta, head of the office of Medecins d'Afrique group which works with the UN, said the number of refugees pouring over the border from DR Congo into the Republic of Congo had risen this week.
"There's been a massive influx in the past few days because the fighting has become far more intense," he told AFP news agency.
"We have noticed a lot of unaccompanied children who have certainly lost their parents, as well as pregnant women and elderly people."
Late last month Lobala and Boba ethnic groups engaged in clashes after they pulled out of a traditional deal over the sharing of fishing rights.
More than 100 people were killed, including 47 police officers.
Shortly afterwards about 100 men were arrested and the authorities in DR Congo announced that the problem was over.
But the BBC's Thomas Fessy, in DR Congo's capital Kinshasa, says Lobala tribesmen have now advanced southwards and are threatening other villages.
In the past three days at least 11 more people have been killed in an isolated area of Equateur.
And our correspondent says observers fear the situation could continue to deteriorate.
BBC wrote:Niger's new military rulers have lifted a curfew and reopened the country's borders, a day after they overthrew the government and detained the president.
Ten people are said to have died when the junta seized power in gun battles - a move which has been widely condemned.
The African Union has suspended Niger from the regional organisation and demanded free elections are held.
A junta spokesman, Col Goukoye Abdul Karimou, earlier told the BBC President Mamadou Tandja was "safe and well".
"We are taking care of him - remember he is one of our elder soldiers," he told the BBC's Focus on Africa.
The colonel said most of the cabinet ministers captured along with the president had been released and had gone home.
The three still being held would be free in a couple of days, he added.
It is believed they are being held at a military barracks in Niamey.
The day after the takeover, people in the capital were going about their business as normal - attending mosques and going shopping.
There was no obvious military presence on the streets, although heavy artillery was deployed around the presidential palace.
Tetra Grammaton Cleric wrote: I'm led to wonder if this isn't about someone getting into postion to be the one signing those deals with China.
phil_in_cs wrote:Tetra Grammaton Cleric wrote: I'm led to wonder if this isn't about someone getting into postion to be the one signing those deals with China.
The simple answer is that it is about who gets the commissions on all the sales of the nation's resources to the Chinese.
You sign a deal so China pays the nation 50 cents on the dollar, but puts another 25 cents on the dollar into your bank accounts in Geneva or Bahrain. If that goes on for a few years, you can gracefully step aside for the return to democratic elections, and retire to your villas.
A Resource Coup, to follow the parallel of dogbane's Resource Wars theory above.
Nigerian survivors recall Jos massacre
Survivors of violence in central Nigeria on Sunday have been telling the BBC what happened.
One witness in a village near the city of Jos said he heard his neighbours screaming as they were attacked.
Afterwards he saw the bodies of whole families, including women and babies, killed with machetes and burnt.
Another man said he had found his granddaughter hacked to death and said her killers spoke Fulani, a language used by Muslim nomadic herdsmen.
Correspondent Komla Dumor also visited a mass grave where more than 100 bodies from one village had been buried.
Earlier, Nigerian police revised the number of people they say were killed from more than 500 to 109.
The violence followed sectarian killings near Jos in January that left more than 300 dead, most of them believed to be Muslims.
Al Jazerra wrote:Nigerian police and military units carried out extra-judicial killings last year in the aftermath of clashes with members of a Muslim group in the north of the country, footage obtained by Al Jazeera appears to confirm.
An estimated 1,000 people were killed as Nigerian government forces fought Boko Haram in Borno, Yobe, Kano and Bauchi states in July and August of 2009.
But the footage obtained by Al Jazeera shows that many of the deaths occurred only after the fighting was over.
Elements of the police and army staged a follow-up operation in which house-to-house searches were conducted and individuals were apparently selected at random and taken to a police station.
'Shoot him in the chest'
In the video, a number of unarmed men are seen being made to lie down in the road outside a building before they are shot.
As one man is brought out to face death, one of the officers can be heard urging his colleague to "shoot him in the chest not the head - I want his hat".
As the executions continue another man is told: "Sit properly we want to take your picture."
The shootings continue as a crowd gathers further up the street in front of the police station.
Voices can be heard saying: "No mercy, no mercy."
After the executions, the army officer who appears to have been in charge of the operation is seen to be handing over command to a senior police officer. Both men are clearly identified by the name tags on their chests.
The family of Baba Fugu Mohammed, a respected community leader, told Al Jazeera that he was among those put to death outside the police station.
"He was killed, he was killed, that's what we believe. He was shot by the police," one relative said.
Fugu Mohammed was the father-in-law of Mohammed Yusuf, the Boko Haram leader whose group had battled the police, but the two had become estranged.
His family said that he had come to help police restore order, but was shot.
'Killings of the innocent'
In the days following the clashes between the police and Boko Haram, the government, police and military repeatedly denied that civilians had been killed by their personnel.
But Nigerian officials have since acknowledged that extra-judicial killings took place and an inquiry was set up to investigate the incident.
"It was obvious [from] what we have seen and from the eye witnesses that the government police were doing the killings of the innocent," Abubakar Umar Garda, a senator and a member of Nigeria's ruling People's Democratic party, told Al Jazeera.
"The government is investigating the incident and as we go along the perpetrators will be put in front of the law and the law will take its course ... the government acknowledged that this was a crime against humanity ... you cannot shoot an unarmed civilian."
Fugu Mohammed's family have given their story to the government commission set up to investigate the events that took place, but they are still waiting to receive an official explanation for the deaths.
Senator Umar Garda could not confirm to Al Jazeera whether there had been any arrests relating to the killings and there have been few tangible signs of the inquiry bringing anyone to account.
Boko Haram leader killed
Aster Van Kregten, a Nigeria expert with rights group Amnesty International, told Al Jazeera that the group's research suggested extra-judicial killings were widespread in Nigeria.
"Our research shows that the Nigerian police are getting away with murder, they killed hundreds of people a year without any investigation - any investigation on whether the use of force was lawful or not," she said.
"What we saw on the footage happened seven month ago and we haven't heard anything from the government whether they have arrested anyone and how far the investigation is going."
Among those killed in the aftermath of the clashes between Boko Haram and the police, was Boko Haram leader Mohammed Yusuf.
In the Al Jazeera footage, he is seen wearing handcuffs and surrounded by heavily armed police officers.
Nigerian police have said that Yusuf was killed while attempting to escape, but he died still wearing the handcuffs.
In another video, which was made available shortly after last year's fighting, Yusuf is shown inside the police station, his body covered with marks and bruises, as he is questioned about the organisation that he led.
It is not known whether the injuries were caused during the fighting, arrest, or detention.
The New York-based Human Rights Watch described Yusuf's death as "an extra-judicial killing".
"The extra-judicial killing of Mr Yusuf in police custody is a shocking example of the brazen contempt by the Nigerian police for the rule of law," Eric Guttschuss, the organisation's Nigeria researcher, said.
Boko Haram, which means "Western education is prohibited" in the local Hausa dialect, has called for the nationwide enforcement of a strict interpretation of Islamic law, or sharia, even among non-Muslims.
Last year's clashes took place after suspected Boko Haram members, armed with machetes, knives, bows and arrows, and home-made explosives, attacked police buildings and officers.
Nigeria's 140 million people are nearly evenly divided between Christians, who dominate the south, and the primarily northern-based Muslims.
Islamic law was implemented in 12 northern states after Nigeria returned to civilian rule in 1999 following years of military rule.
The video at the link is exactly what the text said it was - piles of bodies, and people being executed. If you don't want to watch it, don't. Just because you didn't watch doesn't mean this sort of thing isn't common in parts of the world.
http://english.aljazeera.net/news/afric ... 49112.html
Keep in mind that the soldiers doing the killings here are posted as "peacekeepers" across Africa.
Valarius wrote:I didn't watch the video.
Just a question: are the soldiers designated U.N. peacekeepers, or simply members of the African Union?
DR Congo massacre unveiled
The Lord's Resistance Army killed about 300 people and kidnapped 250 more in a rampage in the Democratic Republic of Congo in December 2009, according to an international rights group and the UN.
The previously undocumented massacre, undertaken over four-days in the remote Makombo area of the northeastern Haute Uele district, was highlighted in reports by Human Rights Watch (HRW) and the UN on Sunday.
The killings of 321 civilians occurred between December 14 and 17, HRW said in a reportafter documenting the deaths in a visit to the region in February.
The Ugandan anti-government group were said to have abducted 80 children among the 250 people kidnapped.
"The Makombo massacre is one of the worst ever committed by the LRA in its bloody 23-year history, yet it has gone unreported for months," Anneke Van Woudenberg, HRW's senior Africa researcher, said.
"The four-day rampage demonstrates that the LRA remains a serious threat to civilians and is not a spent force, as the Ugandan and Congolese governments claim."
The UN also said on Sunday that their investigation had shown that the LRA had killed at least 290 people, perhaps more than 300, during the rampage and following LRA threats of such massacres the year before.
"The men were tied by the chest by the same rope and killed with wood sticks on the back of the head and neck - it was really brutal and fast," Liliane Egounlety, who led the UN investigation, said.
"They also used machetes. Many witnesses found it too hard to talk about."
The UN said that at least 150 people had been abducted.
HRW's investigation found that the LRA had made some of the 80 abducted children murder other children.
The LRA has a reputation of forcing children into becoming soldiers.
HRW said that the attacks in at least 10 villages were well planned, targeting men first, but also killing women and children.
The group said that the youngest person to die was a three-year-old girl who was burned to death, while at least 13 gangs and 23 children were killed.
Their document said that some people were killed by having their heads smashed with axes and heavy wooden sticks.
The LRA was formed in northern Uganda in the late-1980s as a rebel group.
In 2005, they were forced out of the east African country to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Central African Republic and south Sudan, from where they continued to launch cross-border attacks.
LRA fighters killed 1,200 people and kidnapped 1,400 others - including 630 children and more than 400 women - in the DRC during a 10-month period in 2008 and 2009, the UN has said.
Van Woudenberg told Al Jazeera that the LRA had become a regional problem that needed action by the United Nations and African governments.
"What it does show is that it is high time for the Lord's Resistance Army leaders to be arrested, for them to be brought to justice and these kind of atrocities to end," she said.
"I think what is needed is some bold leadership, some really courageous steps taken by the governments of the region, by the United Nations peacekeeping forces to put together an regional strategy to end the terror of this group."
A much-criticised UN mission remains in the east of DR Congo but is under pressure to leave the country by next year, when presidential polls are due to be held.
It has about 22,000 soldiers in the region to keep peace in the face of Rwandan Hutu fighters.
"The difficulty and the challenge for United Nations peacekeepers that are stationed in that regiion, the Ugandan army and the Congolese army is that these men move through the bush at night; in many instances they dressed in military fatigues," Al Jazeera's Yvonne Ndege said from Nigeria.
"Many of the villagers are unsuspecting to begin with ... initially these villagers were assisting the LRA fighters because they thought they were regular soldiers."
Thomas Gallowglass wrote:Amoung the things I've learned in life are these two tidbits...
1) don't put trust into how politicians explain things
2) you are likely to bleed if you base your actions upon 'hope'...
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