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Gunmen attack in northern Nigeria KANO: Gunmen attacked a church in volatile northern Nigeria during a Christmas Eve service, killing six people including the pastor, before setting the building ablaze, residents and police said on Tuesday, as the pope deplored "savage acts of terrorism" against Christians in Africa's most populous nation.   The raid in Yobe state is the latest violence likely to be blamed on radical Islamist sect Boko Haram, which has repeatedly targeted churches during times of worship, including multiple attacks last year on Christmas Day, during its deadly insurgency.   Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2012 ...

Egypt poised to give official poll results CAIRO: Authorities in Egypt are to release official results on Tuesday of a constitutional referendum that the ruling Islamists say they have already won but which the opposition alleges was marred by fraud.   The numbers, to be given out by the electoral commission at a news conference scheduled for 7:00 pm (1700 GMT), are unlikely to resolve the country's political crisis.   The opposition National Salvation Front has already vowed that "the referendum is not the end of ...
Central African rebels seize another town: military BANGUI: Rebels waging an offensive in the Central African Republic seized the major north-central town of Kaga-Bandoro on Tuesday, a military source said.   "The rebels came into town in vehicles and on motorcycles, and started using heavy weapons to fire at strategic points: a military base, police stations, the customs office.   Members of the Central African armed forces resisted briefly then began to retreat towards Sibut," about 130 kilometres (80 miles) south, the source said.   Kago-Bandoro is the fourth regional capital to ...
Mandela to spend Christmas in hospital  JOHANNESBURG: Ailing icon Nelson Mandela will spend Christmas Day in hospital, the South African government said Monday, dashing hopes for a festive end to his longest stay in care since being released from prison in 1990.   "Former president Nelson Mandela will spend Christmas Day in hospital, his doctors have confirmed today, on 24 December 2012," the presidency said in a statement.   The 94-year-old Nobel Peace laureate and South Africa's first black post-apartheid president, was admitted to a ...
Hundreds of children in foster homes in eastern DR Congo: UN GOMA: Several hundred children remain separated from their parents a month after fighting over the key eastern DR Congo city of Goma displaced nearly a million people, aid agencies said Monday.   Since the M23 rebels seized Goma on November 20 and withdrew 11 days later, 776 children including 429 girls, aged between six months and 14 years, remain in the care of foster families, the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) said.   The fighting in the mineral-rich region sparked ...
Baby dies of cold in Morocco RABAT: A 40-day-old baby has died of the cold in Morocco's Atlas mountains, witnesses said Monday, after a winter freeze and reports that four other infants had earlier perished in similar circumstances.   Habiba Amelou died on Friday morning in the village of Anifgou after suffering from a severe cough, according to two witnesses.   "I spoke to her father, who was heartbroken. She was 40 days old and died from a severe cough caused by the cold," Mounir ...
Darfur battle leaves rebels in rare KHARTOUM: Rebels in Sudan's troubled Darfur region on Monday reported the rare seizure of a town from government control after fighting that resulted in arrests and casualties.   The Sudan Liberation Army's (SLA's) Abdelwahid Nur faction took control of Golo, a major town in the Jebel Marra area, at about mid-day on Monday after fighting when government militia tried to attack a rebel position, the group's spokesman Ibrahim Al-Hillu told AFP.   Hillu said the rebels seized heavy machine ...


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