Côte d'Ivoire Prime Minister Guillaume Soro narrowly escaped a rocket attack on his plane on Friday that killed at least four people and dealt a blow to the divided country's fragile peace process. The UN Security Council and secretary general condemned the attack and said they feared for the future of a negotiated peace plan.
Western and emerging Asian powers so keen to diversify oil supply sources to feed growing needs have recast their attention to West Africa following the latest discovery of new potential reserves. British oil and gas company Tullow Oil last week annonced that it had discovered up to 600-million barrels of oil on the West Cape Three Points block off Ghana's coast.
Pressure from the international community, NGOs and civil society led to the acquittal recently of five alleged coup plotters imprisoned in Burundi in August this year. The men were arrested and charged with plotting to overthrow the government, but the accusations were widely believed to have been fabricated by elements in the government.
After a spate of arrests of members of the media over the past six months, Burundian authorities recently released three journalists who had been detained for more than a month. The Mail & Guardian spoke to them on a recent visit to Burundi. ''Everything is still in a blur,'' says Domitile Kiramvu. ''I still ask myself questions. It is too good to be true.''
Zimbabwean newspaper owner Trevor Ncube -- publisher of the Standard and the Zimbabwe Independent in that country and the Mail & Guardian in South Africa -- will contest the stripping of his citizenship in a High Court application once a date is allocated. He spoke to the M&G about the case.
Zimbabwean newspaper owner Trevor Ncube is set to contest the stripping of his citizenship in a High Court application. The case has drawn condemnation from international press bodies such as the International Press Institute, the World Association of Newspapers and the World Editors Forum.
Nearly four months after tons of toxic chemical waste were dumped in CÃ´te d'Ivoire's teeming economic capital of Abidjan, poisoning hundreds, residents are haunted by fears of long-term health complications. Poisonous fumes emitted by the petroleum waste were blamed for the deaths of 10 people out of the scores sickened by the discharge from a ship chartered by a European company.
Taliban rebels determined to keep southern Afghanistan in chaos have teamed up with drug barons against the government and its opium eradication campaign launched last week. The campaign to destroy opium poppy fields kicked off on March 8 in southern Helmand, the producer of most of Afghanistan's opium crop -- which makes up nearly 90% of the world total.
In the arid fields of southern Afghanistan, farmers in rags tend to green shoots pushing up through the brown earth: the precious crop is opium, illegal and considered against Islam. But, the men explain, they have no choice. ''Without opium, we wouldn't be able to feed our families,'' says one.
An enormous cheer rises into the Bagram sky. In a pink bikini top, miniskirt and red Father Christmas hat, the voluptuous Lilian Garcia has appeared to give thousands of GIs an early Christmas present: the superstars of American wrestling here, in the Afghan desert. Close to 5Â 000 soldiers are packed around a wrestling ring rigged up on the tarmac of the biggest United States base.