news in brief

Guinea - France
Guinea: Minister Kouchner accused of plotting Camara’s attempted assassination
France’s Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner was, allegedly, involved in a plot to kill the leader of Guinea’s ruling junta, the country’s military rulers say, according to BBC. Junta spokesman Idrissa Cherif declared that Mr. Kouchner had “activated some networks” in order to “change the situation” in the West African country. France’s government said the claims were “completely groundless.” - Friday 11 December 2009 - 11:44

Somali pirates release Greek cargo ship
Somali pirates Thursday freed the Greek cargo ship “Ariana” for a ransom of 2.5 million dollars, bringing a seven-month captivity of 24 Ukranian crewmen to an end, La Croix reported. - Friday 11 December 2009 - 01:00

Burkina Faso - Guinea
Guinea: Junta and Opposition to meet
According to TV5, the Guinean junta and the coalition of political parties and civil societies have been invited to meet on Sunday in Ouagadougou to talk about the present situation in their country, indicated the Burkina Faso President and mediator of the Guinean crisis, Blaise Compaoré. - Friday 11 December 2009 - 00:41

US suspends aid to Niger
Following international criticisms over Niger President’s forced rewriting of his country’s constitution earlier this year in order to extend his mandate and expand his powers, the government of the United States of America has suspended a $20 million aid programme to the west African country. An unnamed official cited by Reuters said the loan was withdrawn due to the US government’s belief that Mamadou Tandja’s power expansion is illegal. - Friday 11 December 2009 - 00:39

Egypt building strong underground wall on Gaza border
Egypt is building an underground wall along its border with the Gaza Strip in order to seal off tunnels dug by smugglers operating between the two territories, reports Courier International. According to the Israeli journal Haaretz, “The wall will be nine to 10 kilometers long, and will go 20 to 30 meters into the ground, Egyptian sources said. It will be impossible to cut or melt.” - Friday 11 December 2009 - 00:32

Ghana - International
Ghana-South Korea: Ghana and South Korea sign $10b deal
The government of Ghana, the South Korean government and STX Group of South Korean have signed a deal for a $10 billion housing deal. According to ghanabusinenessnews, the South Korean is seeking to win more construction contracts from sub-Saharan Africa, which accounted for 2.4 percent of its orders by value at the end of November. - Wednesday 9 December 2009 - 18:08

Malawi-Tanzania: Child killed during earthquake
A one year old was killed and twelve others were injured after a series of moderate earthquakes stuck Malawi and Tanzania, collapsing homes in a region near a new uranium mine, writes AFP. At least 12 tremors ranging between 4.8 and 5.1 on the Ritchter scale hit the northern Karonga district since Sunday morning. - Wednesday 9 December 2009 - 18:07

Nigeria: Amnesty claims Nigeria police kill at will
Nigerian police are carrying out a shocking level of extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances, Amnesty International has reported. The rights group’s three-year inquiry details cases of prisoners tortured to death and shootings at roadblocks. According to BBC, the police complain they are poorly trained and that criminals are often better armed than they are. - Wednesday 9 December 2009 - 17:57

Mali - Mauritania - France - Spain
Mali-Mauritania-France-Spain: Al Qaeda claims European kidnappings
A spokesman claiming to represent Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) had claimed responsibility for the kidnappings last month of four Europeans in Mali and Mauritania. “Two units o the valiant mujahedeen managed to kidnap four Europeans in two distinct operations: the first in Mali where Frenchman Pierre Camatte was seized on November 25th and the second in Mauritania where three Spaniards were held on November 29” said a tape according sent to Al Jazeera. - Wednesday 9 December 2009 - 17:57

Guinea: Junta suspends international talks
According to France 24, Guinea’s military rules announced, Tuesday December 8, that they were temporarily suspending their participation in international talks to resolve Guinea’s domestic political crisis until Captain Moussa Dadis Camara recovers from his wound. Camara was flown to undergo emergency surgery after he was shot on December 3rd, in what is believed to be a failed assassination attempt, by his former aide de camps Aboucabar Toumba Diakite. - Wednesday 9 December 2009 - 17:56

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