Africa Center for Strategic Studies 

Media Review for September 19, 2011

More than 20 killed in Burundi attack
Armed raiders killed more than 20 people and wounded dozens others when they stormed a Burundi bar and opened fire on patrons, in one of the country's worst attacks in recent months, an official said Monday. AFP


Joint EAC, US military exercises
A joint military training exercise involving officers from defence forces of EAC partner states and the United States Africa Command (Usafricom) started at the Chukwani Military Centre in Zanzibar yesterday. The Tanzanian minister for Defence and National Service, Dr Hussein Mwinyi, flagged off the command post exercise, hailing the partner states' continued cooperation in defence. The Citizen


Kenya: Shabaab Recruits Train in Mombasa
A Yemeni terror suspect arrested by the Anti Terrorism Police Unit in May has revealed how a Kenyan is recruiting both locals and foreigners to fight for Al Shabaab. Fifteen Yemenis, Somalis and a Pakistani were recruited into Al Shabaab and smuggled into Kenya for training and indoctrination earlier this year. The Nairobi Star


Somalia bans foreign aid workers from rebel areas
Somalia has banned foreign aid workers and journalists from entering areas controlled by al Shabaab insurgents after members of a Turkish charity took food to famine victims in an area under the Islamist group. Nearly all aid agencies have already barred their expatriate workers from operating in Somalia as famine grips the country, due to the risk of kidnapping as the hard-line militants linked to al-Qa'ida control most of the southern part of the country after retreating from the capital. The Independant


Eritrean Leaders Held Incommunicado for a Decade
The human rights group, Amnesty International, has launched a campaign for the release of opposition politicians arrested ten years ago by one of the world's most oppressive governments. But it is not even certain they are still alive. allAfrica


Thousands of Eritreans flee forced conscription
"I didn't want to be a soldier," he says with a shy smile, revealing a mouthful of crooked teeth. Getting out, however, was a harder challenge. He is one of thousands of youngsters risking death to sneak across Eritrea's heavily militarized border every month into neighbouring Sudan and Ethiopia. Times Live


Sound the alarm: East Africa is defenceless
Two tragedies that occurred in the East African region in the past week - a slum fire in Kenya and a ferry accident in Tanzania - caught Nairobi and Dar es Salaam off guard and exposed the bloc's frail disaster management mechanisms. The East African


Sudan: New Conflict Displaces Thousands
The Sudanese government says that a majority of the tens of thousands of people displaced by the fighting in the country's Blue Nile state have started returning to the area. This is despite reports by local and international aid agencies that say people are still fleeing the region. IPS


Sudan, South Sudan sign deal on cross-border arrangements
Sudan and South Sudan have signed an agreement to monitor their shared borders and open crossing points a few days after Khartoum said it was experiencing an influx of southerners returning to the north. Sudan Tribune


South Sudan delays membership in regional bloc
The EAC leadership has been waiting for Africa's newest country to re-apply to join the regional bloc after becoming independent on July 9 and even went an extra mile to put on hold Khartoum's application pending Juba's acceptance. Even though Juba is eager to sign on, a string of challenges associated with the country's infancy have overshadowed the process. Daily Nation


Violence erupts on Liberia-Ivory Coast border
At least 15 people have been killed in an attack on the Ivory Coast's armed forces in the country's southwest, according to state television. The state-run RTI network said on Saturday the attack happened overnight on Thursday and it appeared the assailants had come across the Liberian border into the Tai region of Ivory Coast. Al Jazeera


Liberia: Upcoming elections threaten security
Liberia's Oct. 11 general and legislative elections are seen as a barometer of the nation's security, one term into President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf's administration and eight years since the end of a brutal civil conflict that persisted over two decades and took more than 250,000 lives. The vote will also determine whether the U.N. will maintain its peacekeeping force in the small West African nation, according to Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, chair of the Liberia U.N. Peacebuilding Commission. Globalpost


As Congo subdues some armed groups, new ones emerge
Congolese President Kabila said his government has managed to gain control of eastern Congo's armed groups, but the emergence of new armed groups undermines his success. CS Monitor


Has Africa lost Libya?
Colonel Gaddafi's overthrow has highlighted the country's Arab heritage and created divisions within the continent. The Guardian


Libya rebels launch assaults on Gaddafi's last strongholds
Libyan rebel forces launched offensives against Gaddafi loyalists on Friday but fierce resistance and poor organisation stopped them taking two strongholds whose control is vital to consolidate the grip of the post-revolutionary regime. Rebels occupied the airport at Sirte, a symbolically important town which was Muammar Gaddafi's birthplace and which sits on the main road between Tripoli and Benghazi. The Guardian


UN Approves Libya Seat For Former Rebels
The United Nations gave strong backing to Libya's former rebels Friday, handing their National Transitional Council the country's U.N. seat and then lifting and modifying some sanctions imposed on Moammar Gadhafi's regime. NPR


NTC postpones forming government amid clashes
As Libya's National Transitional Council forces struggled to eliminate pockets of pro-Gaddafi resistance in Sirte and Bani Walid, the country's interim leaders indefinitely put off forming a new government after failing to meet a Sunday deadline. France 24


Egypt and Ethiopia to review Nile river dam
Ethiopia and Egypt have agreed to review the impact of a planned $4.8bn Nile river dam, which Addis Ababa announced in March, in a bid to open a "new chapter" in once-strained relations. Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi and his Egyptian counterpart, Essam Sharaf, made the announcement at a joint news conference following talks in Cairo on Saturday. AlJazeera


Tumult of Arab Spring Prompts Worries in Washington
While the popular uprisings of the Arab Spring created new opportunities for American diplomacy, the tumult has also presented the United States with challenges - and worst-case scenarios - that would have once been almost unimaginable. What if [...] Egypt, emerging from decades of autocratic rule under President Hosni Mubarak, responds to anti-Israeli sentiments on the street and abrogates the Camp David peace treaty, a bulwark of Arab-Israeli stability for three decades? The New York Time


Why Niger is so ambivalent about Qaddafi loyalists' arrival
Several pieces in the last few days have reported on the different sentiments that exist in Niger regarding the presence of former Libyan ruler Col. Muammar Qaddafi's lieutenants and supporters in Niger. The ambivalence that characterizes the Nigerien population's feelings toward the Libyan conflict also seems to extend to the Nigerien government, whose policies toward post-Qaddafi Libya are somewhat mixed. CS Monitor


Niger calls for help to monitor its border with Libya
The government of Niger on Friday called for international assistance to track what it said was a huge number of weapons and people that have flooded into the country from Libya in the weeks since the government of Moammar Gadhafi collapsed. It also announced that it would not return Gadhafi figures who've fled here if they might face the death penalty at home. McClatchy News


South Africa: Malema hearing postponed
A disciplinary hearing that could decide the political fate of South African firebrand Julius Malema has been postponed until October, the ruling African National Congress said. Malema, leader of the ANC's youth wing and named this week by Forbes magazine as one of the most powerful men in Africa, faces suspension or expulsion from the ruling party if found guilty on charges which include bringing the ANC into disrepute. Sowetan


Mozambique holds 'pirate hunters'
Four Americans and one Briton, who say they were trying to free a boat seized by pirates, have been arrested in Mozambique and accused of possessing illegal weapons. They were detained at the airport in the country's third city, Nampula, police say. The men reportedly say they work for the US security firm GreySide. The US embassy says the group has no connection to the US government. BBC


De Beers to shift its UK gem works to Botswana
BOTSWANA, the world's leading producer of diamonds, is set to also become the largest seller of rough diamonds after a new 10- year agreement with De Beers that was announced on Friday. The deal will see De Beers move its rough diamond sorting and trading division from London to Gaborone by the end of 2013. Business Day


Senegal: In Blunt and Sometimes Crude Rap, a Strong Political Voice Emerges
A revolution led by rappers says something about a country's politics or its music, or maybe both. In Senegal, the political mainstream appears stagnant and the musicians anything but, which explains why laid-back musicians with stage names like Fou Malade ("Crazy Sick Guy") and Thiat ("Junior") are leading a vigorous demonstration movement against the country's octogenarian president, who does not want to leave office. The new York Times


Spelling Out Growth
Africa has big potential, but those that wish to invest need a healthy appetite for risk and deep pockets. [...] The African growth story has been pushing the continent's markets incrementally toward mainstream acceptance, even those south of the Sahara. When sub-Saharan Africa's aggregate gross domestic product growth fell to 3% in 2008, in the midst of the financial crisis, it was the first time since the turn of the century that the figure had dropped below 5%. The Wall Street Journal


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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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