Andrew Cawthorne

‘Slum tourism’ stirs controversy in Kenya

It's the de rigueur stop off for caring foreign dignitaries. It reached a worldwide audience as a backdrop to the British blockbuster The Constant Gardener. Any journalist wanting a quick Africa poverty story can find it there in half an hour. And now at least one travel agency offers tours round Kenya's Kibera slum, one of Africa's largest.

Global ‘anti-Davos’ forum to debut in Africa

African rights champions like Archbishop Desmond Tutu and environmentalist Wangari Maathai will join thousands of fellow campaigners when the continent hosts a global anti-capitalist jamboree this weekend. Organisers predict more than 80 000 people will descend on Nairobi to campaign over trade, poverty, war and the environment.

Somali PM says Islamists preparing attack on govt

Somali Islamist forces backed by 4 000 foreign fighters are moving into position for an attack on the interim government's base, Somalia's prime minister said on Wednesday. ''I don't think that they are ready for dialogue, for peace and stability to prevail in Somalia. In that case, war may become inevitable,'' Prime Minister Ali Mohamed Gedi said.

Somalia is ‘epicentre of jihadism’

Somalia has replaced Sudan as the ''epicentre of jihadism'' in East Africa since the rise of a powerful Islamist movement, according to an author who has just finished a book on the Horn of Africa nation. ''The most potent expression of jihadism in the region has occurred in stateless Somalia,'' says Gregory Alonso Pirio.

Eritrea masses troops at border

Ethiopia's tiny neighbour Eritrea has nearly 10 000 soldiers and militia inside a United Nations buffer zone on their disputed border in a ''flagrant'' breach of a ceasefire, Prime Minister Meles Zenawi said. His figure was far higher than the 1 500 soldiers the United Nations last week accused Asmara of moving to the border.

Somali refugees strain food aid at Kenya camps

The growing tide of Somalis fleeing conflict at home has raised the number of refugees in Kenya to the highest for a decade and is threatening to exhaust food aid stocks, the United Nations warned on Tuesday. About 24 000 people have entered the Dadaab camps in northern Kenya since the start of the year, the UN World Food Programme said.

Oxfam: Africa famine response ‘too little, too late’

Food emergencies in Africa are occurring three times more often now than in the mid-1980s, but the global response to famine continues to be ''too little, too late'', the international aid agency Oxfam said on Monday. Conflict, HIV/Aids and climate change are exacerbating food shortages for sub-Saharan Africa's 750-million people, with innovative solutions and long-term support needed to break the cycle.

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