Todd Pitman

Japan tsunami: Nothing to do but run

Growing up in this small fishing town on Japan's north-eastern coast, 16-year-old Minami Sato never took the annual tsunami drills seriously.

Fears rise of wider conflict in DRC

The Democratic Republic of Congo's warring rivals traded accusations that Angola, Zimbabwe and Rwanda are mobilising forces to fight in the DRC.

Stats show perils of living in east DRC

Imagine living with a 50% chance of being enslaved or threatened with death. In some parts of the DRC, such a life doesn't take much imagination.

Rebels, army clash in eastern DRC

Explosions and machine-gun fire echoed through the hills of east Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on Friday, as government troops battled rebels for a third day amid a worsening humanitarian crisis that has displaced nearly 200 000 people in the past few months, a United Nations military spokesperson said.

Poachers close to wiping out hippos in DRC park

The last remaining hippos in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) are facing extinction and could be wiped out in many parts of a national park by the end of the year if intense poaching by hungry militiamen continues, conservationists said on Saturday.

Darfur peace accord sparks rising insecurity

A May deal that was supposed to help end the conflict in Darfur has instead sparked months of fighting between rival rebel factions, according to aid groups, the United Nations and beleaguered African Union peacekeepers. Fresh clashes have left countless dead in the last two months and displaced nearly 50 000 people.

UN appeals for food aid for Mauritania

The United Nations appealed for millions of dollars in aid on Friday to help combat possible food shortages in the desert nation of Mauritania. The UN World Food Programme said in a statement its relief operation there "is facing a complete break in supplies at the end of July -- exactly the time of year when food needs are at their annual peak".

Gambia releases detained BBC journalist

An international media watchdog group on Tuesday welcomed the release of a local correspondent of the British Broadcasting Corporation in Gambia, but lashed out at the tiny country for the continued imprisonment of two other reporters. Lamin Cham had been held since May 30 by Gambian authorities as part of a government crackdown on the Freedom Newspaper website.

DRC suffers ‘world’s worst humanitarian crisis’

The war-ravaged Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is suffering the world's deadliest humanitarian crisis, with 38 000 people dying each month mostly from easily treatable diseases, according to a study published on Friday in Britain's leading medical journal. Nearly four million died between 1998 and 2004 alone.

Liberians choose their leader

Liberia's Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf appeared poised on Friday to become Africa's first democratically elected female president, claiming victory after results from most of the West African country gave her an apparently unbeatable lead. With almost 91% of ballots counted, the electoral commission said 67-year-old Johnson-Sirleaf held about 59% of Tuesday's vote.

Top female politician takes lead in Liberian vote

Liberia's top female politician took a strong early lead in a presidential run-off as her millionaire soccer-star opponent charged the vote was fraudulent, throwing uncertainty over elections that had raised hopes for peace in the war-ravaged nation.

Vote counting under way in Liberia

Liberians crowded around radios on Wednesday awaiting results from the presidential run-off between a millionaire soccer star and the war-ravaged West African nation's top female politician. Final results in the race between George Weah and Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf will not be announced for two weeks.

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