09292016Thu
Last update: Thu, 29 Sep 2016 09am

Africa

World - Africa

Kerry warns against military crackdowns in Nigeria SOKOTO: US Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday congratulated Nigeria on its recent military successes against Boko Haram, but warned the country will face a blowback if it "cracks down" on the Islamists with excessive force.Speaking at a press conference in the northern city of Sokoto, Kerry praised Nigeria for reclaiming swathes of territory from Boko Haram and releasing thousands of hostages over the past year. Nigeria has made "important progress", Kerry said. "Nigeria and its neighbours are degrading Boko Haram's capabilities." But Kerry cautioned against a heavy-handed response and emphasised respect for human rights. "In the wake of terrorist activity, some are tempted to crack down on anyone and everyone," Kerry said. "But extremism can't be defeated through repression or fear. Fear instilled through repression invites not confidence but contempt," Kerry said, "it creates terrorists."Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have accused Nigerian troops of excessive force and ...

World - Africa

IMF evaluates Ghana's fiscal outlook, could review assistance program ACCRA: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is evaluating Ghana's fiscal outlook for the rest of 2016 and will consider the third review of the country's $918 million assistance programme next month subject to the outcome, the Washington-based lender said on Monday. Ghana, which exports cocoa, gold and oil, signed the three-year aid deal in April last year to bring down budget deficits, inflation and a high public debt."Discussions between staff and the authorities are currently ...

World - Africa

Egypt's Sisi says Putin ready to host Mideast peace talks CAIRO: Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said his Russian counterpart and close ally Vladimir Putin wants to host an Israeli-Palestinian summit to revive peace talks, in an interview published Monday.Sisi told state newspaper editors that he believed Israel was increasingly convinced of the need for a peace deal, saying it was a "positive sign."But Palestinian infighting between the Islamist Hamas rulers of Gaza and Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas's Fatah in the West Bank remained an ...

World - Africa

Kerry in Kenya for regional security talks NAIROBI: With a peace deal unravelling in South Sudan and jihadist attacks continuing in Somalia, US Secretary of State John Kerry met with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta in Nairobi on Monday.The two discussed regional security and terrorism before Kerry met with the foreign ministers of Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda for talks focusing on a faltering peace agreement in South Sudan and looming elections in Somalia.A statement from the Kenyan presidency ahead of ...

World - Africa

Nigeria oil rebels announce conditional ceasefire WARRI: A Nigerian rebel group has announced a conditional ceasefire and agreed to hold talks with the government following months of attacks on key oil and gas facilities that have hammered the economy.In a message posted on the Niger Delta Avengers' (NDA) website late on Saturday, the group said it would "observe a cessation of hostilities," so long as the country's ruling party stops what it called harassment of innocent civilians.It said it would support ...

World - Africa

Libyan forces say advancing towards recapture of Sirte from Islamic State SIRTE: Libyan forces said on Tuesday they had taken one of the last districts in central Sirte held by Islamic State militants, battling snipers and car bombs in their campaign to recapture the entire city. Forces aligned with Libya's UN-backed government in Tripoli are three months into a campaign to oust Islamic State from their former North African stronghold and have encircled the militants in a shrinking section of the city centre. Since Aug. 1, ...

World - Africa

After IMF deal, Egypt's Sisi says will not hesitate on tough reforms CAIRO: Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said on Saturday he was committed to pushing through the reforms necessary to turn the economy around and cut public debt, days after Egypt negotiated a $12 billion loan programme with the International Monetary Fund.The IMF said on Thursday it had agreed in principle a three-year facility to support comprehensive government reforms.But the deal is subject to final approval by the IMF executive committee, and disbursement is linked to ...