Nigerian President says Boko Haram leader injured by airstrikes

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 29, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

Nigerian president Muhammadu Buhari on Sunday confirmed that the leader of Boko Haram had been injured in the airstrikes carried out by the country’s military.

On Tuesday, the Nigerian Armed Forces reported that they had wounded Boko Haram’s leader Abubakar Shekau in an air attack, also killing several other senior commanders of the group. Read the rest of this entry »

Mali FM visits Sudan to discuss security issues

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 29, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

The Malian Minister of Foreign Abdoulaye Diop will start an official visit to Khartoum on Monday, Sudan’s Foreign Affairs Ministry disclosed.

According to the Foreign Ministry spokesperson Gharib Allah Khidir, Diop would extend an invitation from Mali’s President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta to President Omer al-Bashir to attend the summit meeting of La Francophonie heads of state and government in Bamako next January. Read the rest of this entry »

UK, Egypt discuss bilateral relations

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 29, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry met with members of the Egyptian-British Parliamentary Friendship on Sunday.

During the meeting, they discussed the diplomatic relations between Egypt and the UK. Shoukry reviewed the importance of those relations and their significance for both countries, in light of the UK’s role in the international relations arena and in the Middle East in particular, ministry spokesperson Ahmed Abou Zaid said. Read the rest of this entry »

Libya government forces make final push in Sirte

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 29, 2016

Libya’s pro-government forces on Monday cornered Daesh group extremists in their last holdouts in the coastal city of Sirte, after heavy fighting that left dozens of dead and wounded.

The battle for Daesh’s North African stronghold was launched more than three months ago by forces loyal to the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA).

Loyalist forces have been backed by US air raids for almost a month, amid international concern over the extremists’ growing influence. Read the rest of this entry »

Libya: 18 pro-govt fighters killed in battle for Sirte

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 29, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

imgEighteen fighters loyal to Libya’s UN-backed unity government were killed and 120 others wounded in clashes on Sunday with the Islamic State group in Sirte, a medical source said.

A field hospital for the forces backing the Government of National Accord listed the names of the 18 fighters killed in the coastal city, as loyalist forces pushed into the last areas held by ISIS in Sirte.

The pro-GNA forces are pressing a months-long campaign to retake the city from the jihadists, who overran it in June 2015.

UN chief concerned about Western Sahara tensions

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 29, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Sunday urged Morocco and the Polisario movement campaigning for the independence of Western Sahara to withdraw soldiers and fighters from a buffer strip who have sent tensions soaring.

Ban said he was “deeply concerned over the tense situation that has developed in the narrow buffer strip in southwestern Western Sahara” between the Moroccan berm that marks Rabat’s area of control and the Mauritanian border. Read the rest of this entry »

Tunisia attack kills three soldiers

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 29, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

imgThree Tunisian soldiers were killed in a “terrorist attack” on Monday near Mount Sammama, a hideout for jihadists at war with the authorities, security sources said.

The attack left six other soldiers wounded, without giving further details. Read the rest of this entry »

UN council plans South Sudan visit to push for regional force

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 29, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

The UN Security Council is planning a trip to South Sudan next week to persuade President Salva Kiir to accept a new regional protection force or face an arms embargo, diplomats said on Friday.

Ambassadors from the 15-member council are scheduled to travel from September 2 to 7 for meetings on the proposed 4 000-strong force to be deployed in Juba to strengthen the UN peacekeeping mission. Read the rest of this entry »

Sudan, South Sudan agree to reopen border

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 25, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

Sudan and South Sudan have agreed to reopen their common border and extend an oil transit agreement that allows landlocked South Sudan to use Sudan’s pipelines to export its oil, South Sudan’s officials said on Tuesday.

The agreements were reached during the visit by a delegation from South Sudan headed by First Vice President Taban Deng Gai to Sudan. Read the rest of this entry »

South Sudan clashes leave at least 150 dead

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 25, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

Fighting between government troops and opposition forces in South Sudan’s northeastern state of Jonglei last Friday left 153 people dead, a government army spokesperson said.

Lul Ruai Koang claimed that the opposition troops linked to the Sudan People’s Liberation Army-In-Opposition (SPLA-IO) attacked the Pajut military base in Duk County, but declined to give details on the causalities. Read the rest of this entry »

Tunisian forces raid militants camp in Kef

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 25, 2016

imgSpokesman for Tunisia’s National Defence Ministry, Colonel-Major Belhassen Oueslati announced that a camp of militants had been discovered on the heights of Kef.

Tunisia forces discovered the camp during combing operations on the heights of Kef, Ouergha and Touiref, he pointed out. Read the rest of this entry »

Algeria: army kills terrorist in north of the country

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 25, 2016

img21The Algerian army killed a “terrorist” and seized his weapon in northern Algeria, the Defense Ministry said on Wednesday.

The militant was killed in an ambush set up by anti-terrorist units in Guedjati city in Batna province, 550 km southeast of capital Algiers, the ministry said in a statement. Read the rest of this entry »

Algeria, Nigeria discuss security cooperation

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 25, 2016

Algerian Minister of Maghreb Affairs, African Union and the Arab League Abdelkader Messahel said Sunday his country and neighbouring Niger share identical views regarding the fights against terrorism and illegal immigration.

“These issues that have been the subject of broad exchange of views and, as usual, our views are totally consistent,” Messahel said. Read the rest of this entry »

US deploys attack helicopters to strike ISIS in Libya

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 25, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

imgThe United States has begun using attack helicopters to target the Islamic State group in the jihadists’ Libyan former stronghold of Sirte, a defence official said on Tuesday.

American jets have since the start of August been helping fighters loyal to the Government of National Accord (GNA) retake the coastal city of Sirte, conducting dozens of strikes on ISIS fighting positions and equipment. Read the rest of this entry »

Kerry warns against military crackdowns in Nigeria

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 25, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

US Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday congratulated Nigeria on its recent military successes against Boko Haram, but warned the country will face a blowback if it “cracks down” on the Islamists with excessive force.

Speaking at a press conference in the northern city of Sokoto, Kerry praised Nigeria for reclaiming swathes of territory from Boko Haram and releasing thousands of hostages over the past year. Read the rest of this entry »

Ex-Dutch general to lead probe into South Sudan attacks

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 25, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has appointed a retired Dutch general to lead an independent investigation into allegations that UN peacekeepers did not take action to prevent multiple cases of abuse and sexual violence against civilians and foreigners in South Sudan’s capital in July. Read the rest of this entry »

Libya is looking for more US military assistance

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 25, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

Libya’s unity government has asked Washington, which is backing an air campaign against the Islamic State group in Sirte, to step up its military assistance, the US Africa Command said on Thursday.

Fayez al-Sarraj, leader of the Government of National Accord (GNA), made the request during talks on Wednesday in Stuttgart with Africom’s commander Thomas Waldhauser and US special envoy for Libya, Jonathan Winer. Read the rest of this entry »

Libyan tribes sign deal to halt fighting in eastern Libya

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 22, 2016

imgLibyan tribal leaders have signed a reconciliation deal in Tunisia with a view to halting fighting in eastern Libya and the city of Benghazi.

Speaking to reporters early Saturday, Mohamed al-Moghrabi, a representative of tribes in the northwestern city of Misurata, underlined keenness on maintaining Libya’s territorial integrity.

“We reject all forms of military coups,” he said. Read the rest of this entry »

Libya: Govt forces report gains against Islamic State in Sirte

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 22, 2016

Libyan government forces have reported major gains against Islamic State militants in the coastal city of Sirte.

Our forces “have managed to control the internal security headquarters” in the city, Mohamed al-Ghosri, a spokesman for the government’s ongoing anti-IS campaign, told Anadolu Agency on Sunday.

He said government forces have also advanced into neighborhood Number One, a major IS stronghold in the city. Read the rest of this entry »

Head of US central command ends visit to Egypt

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 22, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

imgThe commander of the United States central command concluded a two-day official visit, departing from Egypt on Friday morning.

During his visit, Joseph Votel met with Defence Minister Sedki Sobhi, the Egyptian Armed Forces chief of staff Mahmoud Hegazy, and a number of top military officials. Read the rest of this entry »

Algeria condemns Turkey attack, calls for cooperation against terrorism

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 22, 2016

Algeria on Sunday condemned the attack that targeted a wedding ceremony in Turkey, while urging the international community for wider cooperation in the fight against terrorism.

The Algerian Foreign Ministry described the terrorist attack that hit Turkey on Saturday night as a “perfidious act.” Read the rest of this entry »

Kerry in Kenya to discuss regional security

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 22, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

US Secretary of State John Kerry arrived on Sunday in Kenya to hold talks with leaders of the East African nation that are expected to focus on regional security and extremism.

Kerry’s plane touched down at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport on Sunday night, where he was welcomed by Foreign Affairs Minister Amina Mohamed. Presidential spokesperson Manoah Esipisu had said earlier that Kerry will hold discussions with President Uhuru Kenyatta on regional security and stability. Read the rest of this entry »

Libya forces launch air ops to cut off IS jihadists

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 22, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

imgAir force units of Libya’s unity government launched an operation on Saturday to cut off potential escape routes for jihadists holed up in the coastal city of Sirte, loyalist forces said.

The forces of the Government of National Accord (GNA), on their Facebook page, said the surveillance operation covered central Libya as well as the western region up to the border with Tunisia. Read the rest of this entry »

Turkey wants to repair ties with Egypt

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 22, 2016

Turkey wants to repair its ties with Egypt, after relations soured over the removal of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in 2013, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said on Saturday.

Relations between Ankara and Cairo took a nosedive after the Egyptian military deposed Morsi on July 30, 2013.

Morsi, a Muslim Brotherhood leader, had been a close ally of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development Party-led (AKP) government. Read the rest of this entry »

Kerry heading to Africa for talks on counterterrorism

Author : Mircea Birca | Monday, August 22, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

imgSecretary of State John Kerry will be in Africa on Monday for talks in Kenya and Nigeria on countering terrorism before visiting Saudi Arabia to discuss the conflict in Yemen.

Kerry first meets with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on regional issues including the upheaval in neighbouring South Sudan and security in Somalia, where home-grown, al-Qaeda-linked extremist group al-Shabab continues to launch deadly attacks in the capital. Read the rest of this entry »

Egypt, US discuss ways to counter terrorism in the region

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 18, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

The ongoing efforts to counter terrorism in the Middle East featured high on the agenda of talks held in Cairo on Thursday between Commander of the US Central Command General Joseph L. Votel and Egypt’s Defense Minister Sedki Sobhi. Read the rest of this entry »

Algerian army destroys 3 caches in Jijel, Boumerdes

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 18, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

imgThree caches for terrorists containing homemade bombs, one RPG-7 rocket and explosives have been destroyed Tuesday by detachments of the People’s National Army (ANP) in the provinces of Jijel and Boumerdes, the National Defence Ministry announced Wednesday in a communiqué.

“As part of the fight against terrorism, detachments of the ANP discovered and destroyed on 16 August 2016 in Jijel (5th military region) and Boumerdes (1st military region) three caches for terrorists containing two homemade bombs, one RPG-7 rocket and explosives,” the same source added. Read the rest of this entry »

IS launches wave of suicide attacks on Libya forces

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 18, 2016

Islamic State group jihadists in Libya have carried out nine suicide bombings in one day in a failed bid to hold a central district of Sirte, pro-government forces said on Wednesday.

The attacks on Tuesday in the coastal city left nine pro-government fighters dead and 82 wounded, said Reda Issa, a spokesperson for forces allied with the unity government. Read the rest of this entry »

South Sudan rebel leader flees country

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 18, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

A spokesperson for South Sudan’s opposition and rebel group says that their leader Riek Machar has fled the country.

Mabior Garang of the SPLM-IO said on Thursday that Machar had gone to a safe country within the region. Read the rest of this entry »

UN chief disappointed by failure of Sudan peace talks

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, August 18, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

UN chief Ban Ki-moon has expressed disappointment over the failure of talks between the Sudanese government and rebels on a ceasefire in Darfur and two other conflict zones.

The talks on a cessation of hostilities in Darfur, Blue Nile and South Kordofan were held in Addis Ababa last week after three prominent rebel groups signed a roadmap brokered by African Union mediators for ending the conflicts in the three areas. Read the rest of this entry »

Mali: Dozens killed in clashes between militia group and separatists

Author : Mircea Birca | Wednesday, August 17, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

Dozens of people have been killed in a violent clash between a pro-government militia group and a separatist umbrella organization in northern Mali, a local source told Anadolu Agency Friday.

The clashes started on Tuesday in Kidal between fighters of the pro-government group, GATIA, and armed members of the separatist Coordination of Movements of Azawad (CMA), Fahad Ag Almahmoud, GATIA secretary-general said. Read the rest of this entry »

US conducts more airstrikes against IS in Libya

Author : Mircea Birca | Wednesday, August 17, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

imgThe US on Wednesday conducted several more airstrikes against the so-called Islamic State (IS) in Sirte, Libya.

The strikes, coordinated with the Libyan government, struck seven IS fighting positions, four vehicle-borne bombs, a pickup truck with a mounted rifle, 12 fighting positions, and one command-and-control vehicle, US Africa Command announced today.

These airstrikes bring the total number to 57, in support of what has been called Operation Odyssey Lightning, which began August 1.

Libya: pro-govt forces retake central area of Sirte

Author : Mircea Birca | Wednesday, August 17, 2016

imgLibyan pro-government forces said they seized control Aug. 16 of another central district of Sirte as they tried to flush out the last Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) fighters in the coastal city.

Dozens of U.S. air strikes this month have helped to weaken ISIL’s hold on Sirte, which the jihadists seized last year and established as their main base outside Syria and Iraq.

Backed by tanks and mortar fire, forces loyal to Libya’s Government of National Accord (GNA) on Aug. 16 retook an area of central Sirte known as District Two, military officials said. Read the rest of this entry »

Egypt says to help Lebanon overcome political deadlock

Author : Mircea Birca | Wednesday, August 17, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

The visiting Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shukry said on Tuesday that his country will help Lebanon to overcome its political crisis.

“We will provide the needed support to help Lebanon out of its political crisis,” Shukry said after separate meetings with Lebanese Speaker Nabih Berri, Prime Minister Tammam Salam and Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil. Read the rest of this entry »

42 killed in troubled east DR Congo

Author : Mircea Birca | Wednesday, August 17, 2016
Posted in category Africa, Africa News, Eurasia, Eurasia News

At least 42 civilians have been killed in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, a local official said on Sunday, in what the government described as a massacre in revenge for military operations in the area.

Three days of national mourning have been declared following Saturday night’s mass killing, the latest in a series of massacres that have left more than 600 people dead in and around the troubled town of Beni since 2014. Read the rest of this entry »