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Tunisia assembly begins to wade through electoral law TUNIS: Tunisia's National Constituent Assembly or parliament on Friday began voting article by article on a new electoral law to govern legislative and presidential elections due before the end of 2014.Just 139 of a total of 217 deputies were on hand to examine the articles before the assembly's vice president, Meherzia Laabidi, adjourned to try to reach an agreement how to proceed.By 1500 GMT, just two items had been adopted and 168 others remain to be voted on by April 27, the date set by the assembly to conclude its consideration of the law.The clause-by-clause process had already been delayed pending the adoption of another law allowing the creation of a body responsible for reviewing its constitutionality, which finally happened this week.The planned elections aim to create permanent institutions in the country that spawned the Arab Spring but remains plagued by prolonged political crises, social conflict and the rise of ...

Strike-hit South Africa platinum miners unveil new pay offer JOHANNESBURG: The world's three biggest platinum producers have made a new pay offer to end a strike which has crippled their South African operations for 12 weeks, a spokeswoman said on Friday.The new terms would raise the total pay and benefits for an underground miner at the Implats, Amplats and Lonmin companies by 7.5-10.0 percent a year on average.The total remuneration package would rise to 12,500 rand ($1,188, 860 euros) a month by July 2017, ...
Gunmen kill 20 at South Sudan UN base: US envoy UNITED NATIONS: Gunmen killed at least 20 people and wounded 70 others when they stormed a UN base in South Sudan, the US envoy to the world body said.Ambassador Samantha Power strongly condemned the "brazen, inhuman attack on unarmed civilians." The United Nations had previously said dozens of civilians from a rival tribe had been wounded in the "unprovoked" attack before peacekeepers fought them off.Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2014 ...
115 Nigeria schoolgirls still missing after kidnap: principal LAGOS: A Nigerian school principal on Thursday denied reports from the military that most of the students kidnapped from her school by Islamists were now safe, saying that only 14 of the 129 taken had escaped. "The report from the military is not true," Asabe Kwambura told AFP, referring to an official claim that only eight of the girls were still being held. She specified that Wednesday's report from the area's Governor Kashim Shettima that ...
South Africa's Zuma booed at election rally: report JOHANNESBURG: Disgruntled residents in a small South African town booed President Jacob Zuma Wednesday during an election campaign of the ruling ANC three weeks ahead of general polls, according to a report.Rally-goers reacted angrily while Zuma -- under fire for multimillion-dollar state-paid renovations to his private home -- was answering questions from the stage, according to City Press newspaper.Angry residents left early and pelted stones at cars, according to the newspaper.The residents are from the ...
Ailing Bouteflika eyes 4th term as Algeria heads to polls ALGIERS: Algerians vote Thursday in a presidential election, with incumbent Abdelaziz Bouteflika widely expected to win despite his chronic health problems, warnings of fraud and opposition calls for a boycott.More than 260,000 police have been deployed to protect the 50,000 polling booths set up across Africa's largest country, where 23 million Algerians are eligible to vote in a contest between six candidates after the polls open at 0700 GMT.The 77-year-old president, who rose to power ...
South Sudan oil-state battles 'grave' concern: UN JUBA: United Nations peacekeepers said on Thursday they are "gravely concerned" at heavy fighting in South Sudan's key oil state of Unity, after rebels seized the town of Bentiu in a renewed offensive.The surge in fighting in the four-month-long conflict comes amid warnings by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon that more than one million people are at risk of famine in the war-torn young country.Peacekeepers from the UN mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) patrolling the ...


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