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/ 16 May 2008

Burma: 78 000 dead from cyclone

Burma said on Friday that more than 133 000 people were dead or missing in the cyclone disaster, nearly doubling the toll from the worst disaster in the country’s history, which hit two weeks ago. State television said 77 738 were dead and 55 917 missing — with 19 359 people injured — according to the latest figures.

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/ 16 May 2008

New storm deepens misery in cyclone-hit Burma

Torrential tropical downpours lashed Burma’s Irrawaddy Delta on Friday, deepening the misery of an estimated 2,5-million destitute survivors of Cyclone Nargis and further hampering aid efforts. Burma state television raised its official death toll on Thursday to 43 328. Independent experts say the figures are probably far higher.

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/ 15 May 2008

Foreign powers lean on Burma to open up aid drive

Western powers kept up the pressure on Burma’s generals on Thursday to allow a massive aid effort as relief workers struggled to help an estimated 2,5-million people left destitute by Cyclone Nargis. The European Union’s top aid official has warned that the military government’s restrictions on foreign aid workers were increasing the risk of starvation.

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/ 14 May 2008

Burma tightens access to disaster zone

Burma tightened access to its cyclone disaster zone on Wednesday, turning back foreigners and ignoring pleas to accept outside experts who could save countless lives before time runs out. A top European Union humanitarian official said there was now a risk of famine, after the storm destroyed rice stocks in a main farming region.

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/ 8 February 2008

Kenyan rivals seek to end bloodshed

Kenya’s political rivals tried to inject some momentum on Friday into slow-moving peace talks brokered by former United Nations head Kofi Annan, aimed at ending weeks of bloodshed. Four people were killed overnight in tribal violence in the Kisii region of Nyanza province in western Kenya, two of whom were ”hacked to death”, police said.

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/ 2 February 2008

Rebels advance on Chadian capital

Fighting broke out between Chadian rebels and government forces just north of the capital on Saturday, both sides said, as France prepared to evacuate its nationals in the face of the rebel advance. ”Fighting between government forces and rebels has started at about 20km north of Ndjamena,” a military source said.

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/ 8 December 2007

EU, African leaders seek new era

Leaders of Europe and Africa opened a landmark summit on Saturday designed to forge a new partnership of equals, but with strains showing over trade and Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe’s presence. ”We are here … to write a new page in the history of Europe and Africa,” Portuguese Prime Minister Jose Socrates said in an inaugural address.

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/ 20 November 2007

Bangladesh cyclone death toll nears 3 500

Urgently needed supplies of food, water and medicine were on Tuesday nearing people in remote areas of Bangladesh where a devastating cyclone has left millions homeless and thousands dead. With roads now cleared of hundreds of trees that had blocked aid convoys, officials said relief was finally starting to get through to the most inaccessible areas.

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/ 17 November 2007

Bangladesh cyclone toll nears 1 100

Military ships and helicopters were trying on Saturday to reach thousands of survivors of a super cyclone that killed nearly 1 100 people and pummelled impoverished Bangladesh with mighty winds and waves. Cyclone Sidr smashed into the country’s southern coastline late on Thursday night with 250km/h winds that whipped up a 5m tidal surge.

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/ 9 October 2007

SA-EU trade the focus of ministerial meeting

A review of the free-trade treaty between the European Union and South Africa is to top the agenda of a South Africa-EU troika ministerial meeting in Pretoria on Wednesday. South Africa’s ambassador to the EU, Anil Sooklal, said it is hoped the mid-term review of the trade treaty could be finalised during the troika meeting.

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/ 22 September 2007

Urgent appeals sounded for Africa flood relief

Aid agencies have appealed for millions of dollars to help more than one million Africans affected by deadly floods that have swept across the continent. The floods have killed at least 200 people and displaced hundreds of thousands in 17 countries since the summer, including Burkina Faso, Ghana, Togo, Uganda and Kenya.