Africa Center for Strategic Studies 

Media Review for September 13, 2011

Guinean president accuses Senegal over coup plot
President Alpha Cond� of Guinea has accused neighbouring Senegal and Gambia of involvement in an assassination attempt against him in July. In an interview with the Senegalese international "Sud FM" radio, President Cond� explained that the plan to kill him and overthrow his government was masterminded by an Guinean opposition politician. Daily Nation


Somalia looms large on Kenya's border
The murder of a British man in Kenya intensifies concerns about Somalian terrorism and war spilling across the border. [...] For months now, Kenya has been living under the shadow of a terrorist group called al-Shabaab and the danger of escalation in a war between militia groups and the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia (TFG). The Guardian


Scores dead in Kenyan pipeline inferno
As many as 100 people are feared dead in a fire caused by a leaking fuel pipeline in a densely populated area of Nairobi, the Kenyan capital, according to police. The explosion took place on Monday in the Lunga Lunga industrial area, which is surrounded by a sprawling urban slum. Flames leapt out from the pipeline in a radius of some 300 meters,setting shacks ablaze and incinerating scores of people, the Associated Press reported. Al Jazeera


Boko Haram, International Terrorism, and the Obama Administration
I have a piece today on where I discuss Boko Haram, that shadowy Islamic terrorist group based in northern Nigeria that has claimed responsibility for the UN headquarters bombing in Abuja two weeks ago. As I've argued in previous blog posts, a security centric solution, particularly when implemented by a poorly trained and trigger happy military and police insensitive to civilians, does not address the conditions that motivate Boko Haram. The Council on Foreign Relations


US, Nigeria, 28 Others to Combat Global Terrorism
Nigeria is among 30 countries that would join hands in a new initiative to combat global terrorism, the United States government has said. The new initiative, Global Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF), which is a proposal of the US government, will be launched officially in New York on the margins of this month's United Nations General Assembly meetings. This Day


Nigeria: Jonathan Orders Military to Act on Plateau State Violence
In what appears to be a declaration of a state of emergency through the backdoor, President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday ordered the chief of defence staff, Air Chief Marshall Oluseyi Petinrin, to take absolute control of the security situation in Plateau State. The president, who directed the army chief to "take all necessary actions to stop the recent spate of killings" on the Plateau, has also summoned the state governor, Chief Jonah Jang, to a meeting at the presidential villa, Abuja, today. The Leadership


North Africa's Sahel: The Next Terrorism Hot Spot?
With a gigantic cache of advanced antiaircraft rockets missing from a raided storage space in Tripoli this week, concerns rose that the Gaddafi regime's weapons had been smuggled into neighboring Niger, Mali or Mauritania by al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), the terrorist network's quickly growing arm in the Sahel, a sunbaked region of the Sahara that has, in recent years, become an ungoverned haven for militant activity. Time


Libya's new leaders pledge 'moderate' Islamic rule
Interim leader Mustafa Abdel Jalil received a hero's welcome when he made a public speech in Tripoli's main square late on Monday. Moderate Islam would be the main source of legislation in post-Kadhafi Libya, he told the crowd. "We will not accept any extremist ideology, on the right or the left. We are a Muslim people, for a moderate Islam, and we will stay on this road," he said. AFP


Tribal friction and informants cripple advance on Qaddafi's remaining bastion
Tribal frictions and secret informants have stalled efforts by Libyan interim government troops to establish control over one of Muammar Qaddafi's last remaining bastions of resistance. At Bani Walid, a besieged city still loyal to the deposed leader, anti-Qaddafi fighters said traitors among their ranks were passing information to Qaddafi loyalists inside the city, making progress difficult on one of the last frontlines of Libya's 7-month-long war. Al Arabiya


US worried about African migrants in Libya
The United States is "deeply concerned" at the plight of black African migrants and refugees in Libya, citing reports of racism, wrongful arrest and violence, a State Department official said on Monday. "Nobody should be detained or harassed due to the colour of their skin or their nationality, and measures must be taken to protect individuals from acts of violence," said spokesperson Victoria Nuland. News 24


Murder and torture 'carried out by both sides' of uprising against Libyan regime
Rebels as well as pro-Gaddafi forces have perpetrated killings, torture and other abuses during the uprising against the Libyan regime, say human rights investigators. The civil war that brought down Muammar Gaddafi has been marked by widespread atrocities on both sides, according to Amnesty International. The Guardian


Niger 'to detain son of Gaddafi'
The government of Niger has confirmed that it has intercepted and intends to detain Muammar Gaddafi's son, Saadi, the US State Department said. "We have confirmed with the government of Niger that Saadi crossed over [and] that they are either in the process or have already brought him to the capital of Naimey and intend to detain him," spokesman Victoria Nuland said. Times Live


Sudan's national assembly endorses military campaign in Blue Nile
The Sudanese parliament on Monday endorsed the extension of the state of emergency in the border state of Blue Nile and also approved the military campaign undertaken by the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) against the fighters from the Sudan People Liberation Movement North (SPLM-N). Sudan Tribune


US is not supportive of a no-fly-zone in Sudan: envoy
United States special envoy to Sudan, Princeton Lyman said his country has no intention to push for the imposition of a no-fly-zone in the Blue Nile or other regions where the government forces fight against rebel groups. Rebel groups in Blue Nile, Darfur and Southern Kordofan called for a no fly zone in the three region accusing the Sudanese air force of bombing civilians in the three regions. Sudan Tribune


Egypt's military threatens to revive emergency law
Egypt's protest movement yesterday turned its anger on the country's military rulers, accusing them of clinging to the repressive legacy of the ousted Mubarak regime. One of the leaders of the protest that drove Hosni Mubarak from power said the revolution had been "aborted" by the military council, which has said it would reactive the country's widely loathed Emergency Law to restore order after the storming of the Israeli Embassy on Friday that left three people dead. Repeal of the law was a central demand of the protesters. The Independent 


Cairo's Embassy Riots: Anti-Israeli Sentiment in Egypt Has Nothing to do with Palestine
[...]to assume that the Egyptian protesters who attacked the Israeli Embassy in Cairo last Friday, tearing down a protective wall and ransacking the premises, were motivated by cosmopolitan, pro-Palestinian concerns is to completely ignore the sad truth that Egyptians overwhelmingly hate Israel for wholly Egyptian reasons: Despite 32 years of peace under the Camp David Accords, Egyptian national pride remains tied to the country's previous wars with the Jewish state. It's therefore all too predictable that the groundswell in Egyptian nationalism that ousted Hosni Mubarak this spring has been accompanied by an equally powerful surge in anti-Israeli sentiment. The New Republic


Uganda looks to strike down LRA amnesty law
In the trial of former LRA commander Thomas Kwoyelo, the Ugandan government is arguing that the LRA amnesty law is unconstitutional. But guest blogger Ashley Benner warns that striking it down could prolong the LRA crisis. CS Monitor


Rwandan president drops call for genocide apology
Rwandan President Paul Kagame said he was no longer seeking an apology from France for its alleged role in the 1994 Rwandan genocide, during a meeting with French President Nicolas Sarkozy in Paris on Monday. France 24


South Africa: Judge bans song as hate speech
A Johannesburg court has ruled that an old anti-apartheid struggle song with lyrics about shooting white farmers, "Dubula iBhunu" ("Shoot the Boer"), amounts to hate speech. Julius Malema, leader of the ruling African National Congress's Youth League, revived the song last year by singing it to crowds at political rallies, whipping up a storm of controversy in South Africa. Malema was taken to civil court by an Afrikaner lobby group, which argued the song incites violence in a country where white farmers feel they are being targeted in violent attacks. Globalpost


Counter-Piracy and Maritime Security Conference in the Seychelles
Rear Admiral Duncan Potts, Operational Commander EU NAVFOR, participated at the "Anti Piracy and Maritime Security Conference" between 6-9 September in the Seychelles. Hosted by a number of the Republic of Seychelles Ministries and the South Asia and Africa Regional Port Stability Cooperative (SAARPSCO), the conference was a valuable opportunity for discussions and developing professional relations with regional government representatives as well as international maritime industry and business leaders. Defence Professionals


Danish piracy solution: go fishing instead
Danish authorities are working on an initiative that they hope will see Somali pirates exchange their Kalashnikovs for fishing rods. As large trawler tankers have withdrawn from waters off the Horn of Africa because of the ever-present threat of hijacking, a task-force has noted a potentially lucrative business prospect in the area caused by an increase in fish stocks. Ice News


USAID Seeks Short- and Long-Term Answers to East Africa Crisis
The needs of some 12.7 million people of East Africa facing food shortages are urgent, but U.S. aid agencies are looking to the region's future, even as they help people survive immediate hardships. The United States is providing more than $600 million in humanitarian assistance, and other donors are providing hundreds of millions more. But the assistance strategy guiding the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) takes aim at the next crisis that looms in the years ahead.


How rising global food prices could affect Africa
Remember 2008, when the economy crashed and global food prices went through the roof? It was a time when protestors took to the streets in 35 countries, and in the case of Madagascar, toppled their own elected government. It was also a time when the world's markets started investing in agriculture as if it was oil. Well, buckle up, because food prices are on the rise again, according to a new report issued last week by the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). CS Monitor


East Africa Wants to Trade Beyond the EU
The East African Community (EAC) and European Union head back to negotiations on Monday to resolve the controversy over the delay in signing an economic partnership agreement between the two trading blocs. Economic partnership agreements (EPAs) between the EU and the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) group of countries are aimed at promoting trade between the two groupings. But since 2007 talks between the EAC and the EU have lagged. IPS


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Please note: The following news items are presented here for informational purposes. The views expressed within them are those of the authors and/or individuals quoted, not those of the Africa Center for Strategic Studies, the National Defense University, or the Department of Defense.
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