Daily Archives: July 5, 2018

Fair Game? Lions Eat Poachers on S. Africa Reserve

At least three suspected poachers who were apparently hunting for rhinos have been mauled to death and eaten by lions on a game reserve in South Africa, the owner said on Thursday.

The men entered the Sibuya Game Reserve on the southeast coast armed with a high-powered rifle and an axe in the early hours of Monday and were found dismembered the following day.

“They strayed into a pride of lions — it’s a big pride so they didn’t have too much time,” reserve owner Nick Fox, 60, told AFP.

“We’re not sure how many there were — there’s not much left of them.

“There seems to be clothing for three people. I’ve not heard of it before in our area.”

Police forensics officers were on the scene conducting tests on the remains of the victims, Fox added.

“We went in yesterday — I got our vet to dart [anaesthetise] all the lions,” he said.

“I think we had a stroke of luck here that the lions got to them before they got to the rhinos.”

“We lost three rhino in March 2016.”

Fewer than 25,000 rhinos remain in the wild in Africa due to a surge in poaching.

Rhinos are targeted to feed booming demand for rhino horn in China, Vietnam and other Asian countries, where it is believed to have medicinal qualities.

Fox said that the reserve was still open to guests despite the incident.

“It’s still business as usual, it doesn’t change anything we do,” he said.

“The comments on our Facebook are all talking about karma and warnings.”

Source: Voice of America

Nigeria’s Ruling APC Party Splits Over President Buhari

Nigeria’s ruling party has split after a faction declared that it no longer supports the government of President Muhammadu Buhari, threatening his hopes of a securing a second term in an election scheduled to take place this year.

A group of politicians who were part of the All Progressives Congress (APC) told a news conference in Abuja late on Wednesday they had formed a new faction, led by former Buhari ally Buba Galadima and called Reformed-All Progressives Congress (R-APC).

“The APC has run a rudderless, inept and incompetent government that has failed to deliver good governance to the Nigerian people,” Galadima, national chairman of the R-APC, said, describing the new faction as the authentic representatives of the APC.

Source: Voice of America

ICC Issues Second Warrant for Libyan Commander Over Killings

Judges at the International Criminal Court (ICC) on Thursday issued a second arrest warrant for Mahmoud al-Werfalli, a Libyan National Army (LNA) commander accused of executing dozens of prisoners.

The court said it had reasons to believe that Werfalli had personally shot dead 10 persons in front of the Bi’at al-Radwan Mosque in Benghazi, Libya, on Jan. 24, saying it would be the eighth such incident in which he is accused of committing murder as a war crime.

In August last year the court issued its first arrest warrant for Werfalli for the murders of 33 people in seven other earlier incidents. It said he was accused of either personally carrying out those killings, or ordering the commission of them.

Earlier this year, video emerged which purportedly showed Werfalli personally shooting dead 10 blindfolded prisoners at the scene of a car bombing in Benghazi in January.

In February he handed himself in to military authorities in eastern Libya because of the ICC investigation, but was released a day later, according to a military source.

A spokesman for the LNA said in March Werfalli would not be handed over to the ICC, because of the integrity and strictness of the Libyan justice system.

The LNA is the dominant force in eastern Libya. It rejects the internationally recognized government in Tripoli and is aligned with a separate government based in the east.

The ICC has jurisdiction over war crimes in Libya after a referral by the United Nations Security Council in 2011 and has been investigating alleged atrocities there.

Source: Voice of America

Ethiopia Fires Prison Officials, Confronts Torture Claims

Ethiopia’s government has fired five prison officials as it confronts allegations of torture and other abuses of inmates as part of a wave of reforms. Among those fired is the federal prison chief who until recently defended the treatment of inmates as “fair.”

The firings came ahead of a new Human Rights Watch report released Thursday that documents widespread arbitrary detention, torture, rape and humiliation over several years in Ethiopia’s eastern Somali region. It urges new Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed to investigate the “horrific” situation.

Abiy has admitted that security forces have tortured people but has yet to “tackle Ethiopia’s culture of impunity and ensure accountability,” said Felix Horne, senior Africa researcher at Human Rights Watch.

Ethiopian government officials were not immediately available for comment. State television in recent days has broadcast interviews with inmates who alleged rights violations against them.

“I was kept in solitary confinement in complete darkness for most of my detention,” one former prisoner who was held for three years told Human Rights Watch. “I was only taken out at night for torture. They did many things to me � they electrocuted my testicles, they tied wire around them and they put a plastic bag with chili powder over my head. I often had a gag tied in my mouth so I wouldn’t scream too much.”

The Human Rights Watch report says the abuses occurred in a prison called Jail Ogaden and that the prison’s security forces, including the Somali region’s notorious paramilitary force, the Liyu police, are implicated. The unit reports to the Somali region president, Abdi Mohamoud Omar, the report says, urging regional leaders to hold security forces accountable.

While the report focuses on a single region, Human Rights Watch said torture is a serious problem throughout Ethiopia and it regularly receives allegations of abusive interrogations countrywide. The report describes a brutal pattern of abuses with little access to medical care, family, lawyers or even food.

Most of the detainees were suspected of having links to the armed Ogaden National Liberation Front, one of three armed groups that were removed from Ethiopia’s terror list this week.

Source: Voice of America


KHARTOUM– President Omer Al-Bashir of Sudan has left for Djibouti to participate in the 1st African-Chinese Trade Forum beginning in the Eritrean capital on Thursday.

President Al-Bashir, who left for Eritrea Wednesday, will also attend the inauguration of the port at the Djibouti Free Zone.

He was accompanied by Minister in the Presidency Dr. Fadul Abdalla Fadul, Foreign Minister Dr. Al-Dirdiri Mohamed Ahmed, the Director of the Security and Intelligence Service, Lieutenant-General Salah Abdalla and the State Minister and Director of the President’s Offices, Hatim Hassan Bakhit.

Meanwhile, the president on Wednesday also received a message from Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed regarding bilateral relations and ways of cementing them in the interest of the peoples of both countries.

The message was delivered by Ethiopian Foreign Minister, Dr. Workneh Gebeyeh, who was accompanied by his Sudanese counterpart, Dr. Al-Dirdiri Mohamed Ahmed.

Foreign Minister Al-Dirdiri Mohamed Ahmed said that the Ethiopian Prime Minister’s message came in the context of the co-ordination between President Al-Bashir and the Ethiopian Prime Minister on bilateral relations and regional issues.