The IPIS briefing offers a selection of articles, news and updates on natural resources, armed conflict, Business & Human Rights and arms trade. Every month, an editorial and related publications shed a light on a specific topic in IPIS’ areas of research.
In focus: Congo’s Oil Saga: A story of shadowy deals, environmental burden, and civil society protest.
In the news: In Tigray, Sexual Violence Has Become A Weapon Of War; Kenya Opens New Small Arms Factory; The Death Of Chadian President Idris Déby Itno Threatens Stability In The Region.
New subscribers can register here to receive the briefing and updates on IPIS’ new maps and reports.
This briefing is produced with the financial assistance of the European Union. The contents of this document are the sole responsibility of IPIS and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.
CONGO’S OIL SAGA: A STORY OF SHADOWY DEALS, ENVIRONMENTAL BURDEN, AND CIVIL SOCIETY PROTEST
Theodore Trefon noted in 2016 that “Oil has become big business in the DRC and the subject of major deal making – more often than not by dubious partners. It is shrouded in secrecy and controlled by the presidency” (1). The oil and gas sector of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) ranked 84th (among 89 assessments) in the 2017 Resource Governance Index, as a result of “a failing enabling environment and lack of transparency in revenue management”. The DRC has a proven oil reserve of 180.000.000 barrels, although its total oil potential is estimated to be over 5 billion barrels. Oil is currently only produced offshore in the Atlantic Ocean, at a daily rate of about 25.000 barrels.
However, since several years oil companies are exploring potential onshore hydrocarbon reserves in the DRC. Some of these oil deposits are located in environmentally sensitive areas, such as protected national parks. The Congolese government has been (and still is) criticized for granting oil exploration permits in these vulnerable zones, by international and local non-governmental and civil society organisations, as well as by local communities. More in general, it seems that the DRC will continue to invest in the fossil fuels industry, notwithstanding the increased worldwide awareness of climate change.
In February 2021 Congolese civil society and environmental organisations, some of them active in the province of North Kivu, addressed an open letter to president Félix Tshisekedi, requesting the cancellation of all oil exploration and production permits in Virunga National Park, and to abandon the plan, which the previous Minister of Hydrocarbons Rubens Mikindo (UDPS) had announced in January 2021, to launch tenders for 19 new oil blocks (9 in the Central Congo basin, 3 in the coastal Congo basin, 4 in Lake Tanganyika and 3 in Lake Kivu).
The authors of the open letter point out that oil exploitation in Virunga would endanger the rich and unique eco-systems, and negatively affect health and livelihood of local communities. They argue that by granting oil licences the DRC would make a non-sustainable choice at the very moment that global awareness of the importance of renewable energy transition is growing.
Virunga is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in North Kivu that stretches along the border with Uganda and Rwanda, comprising the northern Rwenzori Mountains, the centrally located Lake Edward (that straddles the border with Uganda) and southern tropical forests and volcanoes (where the endangered mountain gorilla lives). School children and teachers in Bukavu, South Kivu, protested in support of the civil society’s demand for the cancellation of oil permits in Virunga National Park, at the occasion of Global Climate Strike on March 19, 2021.
Already in September 2018, Alliance pour les Moyens d’Existence Verts, a consortium of civil society organisations from North Kivu, submitted a petition against any future oil production projects in the national parks of Virunga and Salonga (the latter another UNESCO World Heritage Site in the heart of the Congo Basin, harbouring an important bonobo population), which was signed by about 23.000 members of local communities in North Kivu.
The immediate cause of the 2018 protest was the intention of the Kabila-government to declassify parts of the Virunga and Salonga Parks by redrawing boundaries, in order to open up these protected areas to oil exploration. Early 2019 and end 2020, fishermen of Lake Edward, united in the association Fédération des Comités des Pêcheurs Individuels du Lac Edouard (FECOPEILE), asked newly elected president Félix Tshisekedi, to prohibit oil extraction in Virunga National Park in general, and in Lake Edward in particular, and to safeguard local communities.
In the past two decades the Congolese government signed controversial agreements with several international oil companies. In 2007 it granted UK-based SOCO International a concession on oil Block V that overlaps a part of Virunga National Park (including Lake Edward). The company started to conduct seismic surveys in Virunga in 2014. According to Global Witness, SOCO’s oil exploration activities in Virunga were accompanied by corrupt practices and harassment of local activists and communities. Eventually, under local and international pressure SOCO decided to stop its oil activities in Virunga.
The French company Total together with South African SacOil also obtained a concession (oil Block III) in an area that partly lies within Virunga Park. Total declared already in 2013 that it would not start oil drilling in the national park. The fact that Total committed to withdraw from Virunga, did not deter the company to explore other controversial opportunities: it started operating the Tilenga project for development of oil resources in Uganda’s Lake Albert region, a project that might impact negatively Murchison Falls National Park and local farmer communities, and that is opposed by French and Ugandan non-governmental organisations. Oil produced by Total will be transported to the Tanzanian port of Tanga by a new cross-border pipeline that will be constructed by East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP). (See IPIS Briefing October 2020.)
Early 2018 the Compagnie Minière Congolaise SPRL (CoMICo), a firm owned by the shadowy UK-registered Central Oil and Gas Ltd. (40%), obtained presidential approval for a Production Sharing Agreement (PSA). The agreement allowed CoMiCo to start exploration of three oil blocks in the Central Congo Basin (Cuvette Centrale), one of them overlapping parts of Salonga National Park: Global Witness revealed that this deal was legally questionable.
In the final weeks of Kabila’s presidency, another controversial deal was closed: a PSA that was already signed in 2007 between the South African company DIG (Divine Inspiration Group) Oil and the Congolese state, for three oil blocks in the Central Congo Basin including a field that coincides spatially with Salonga National Park, received presidential approval in December 2018.
Not surprisingly, also the Israeli businessman Dan Gertler has been showing up in the oil chapter of Congo’s ongoing natural resources saga. Gertler, a close friend of former president Joseph Kabila, built a fortune by closing highly questionable mining and oil deals in the DRC (2). It is telling that the Biden-administration recently reimposed sanctions on Gertler for corruption in DRC’s mining sector. The controversial billionaire was involved in two geopolitically sensitive oil deals: one concerns offshore oil blocks in a zone of the Atlantic Ocean that has been the subject of border issues between the DRC and Angola; the other is about oil blocks in the region of Lake Albert, which is located on the border between the DRC and Uganda.
Nessergy, a company owned by Dan Gertler’s holding company Fleurette Group, signed in 2006 an agreement with the Congolese government, granting it rights to offshore oil blocks for about 500.000$. Nessergy’s oil rights were sold back in 2012 to the Congolese and Angolese governments for a hundred of times higher price, a transaction that according to Global Witness, lacked transparency. DRC and Angola had started negotiations to establish a so-called economic Common Interest Zone, to settle issues over disputed oil-rich maritime territory: Global Witness stated that the oil rights of Nessergy accounted for half of the Common Interest Zone. The agreement on the Common Interest Zone remained dead letter for a long time, but early 2020, president Tshisekedi and his Angolese colleague Joao Lourenço restarted negotiations about joint oil exploration in this common area.
Trefon (Congo’s Environmental Paradox, p. 109-110) notes that exploration licences regarding oil blocks I and II on the Congolese side of Lake Albert have been granted over the years to different consortia. In 2006 the oil blocks were granted to UK-based Tullow Oil, a company also active at the Ugandan side of Lake Albert (besides Tullow, also Total and the China National Offshore Oil Corporation are exploring at the Ugandan side of the lake); in 2008 a deal was signed with DIG Oil; and in 2010 the Congolese government signed a contract about these blocks with Caprikat and FoxWhelp, two obscure companies which are registered in the Virgin Islands and are linked to Dan Gertler.
Trefon explains the rescission of the contract with Tullow from a geo-strategic point of view, arguing that ‘it was a deliberate strategic move to undermine Ugandan capacity to move forward with prospecting and ultimate drilling’ (the relationship between the DRC and Uganda has gone sour as the result of border disputes such as in the region of Lake Albert). Dubious oil agreements that were signed by Kabila’s administration, have left an unpleasant legacy for the Tshisekedi government. In November 2018 the International Chambre of Commerce in Paris ordered the Congolese government to pay $617m to South African DIG Oil (3).
The company blamed the Congolese state that it took more than 10 years to get presidential approval for contracts for oil blocks in the Cuvette Centrale, preventing the company to start exploration, and that block I in Lake Albert, for which DIG Oil previously signed a contract with the Congolese government, was afterwards awarded to Caprikat and Foxwhelp. According to information obtained by Africa Intelligence (15/03/2021), some members of the inner circle of president Tshisekedi, including the new Minister of Finance Nicolas Kazadi (UDPS), prefer a negotiating strategy, instead of continuing the legal battle. Kazadi seems to be involved in negotiating a ‘deal’ with DIG Oil, which would reduce the compensation from $617m to $300m, in exchange for new oil exploring permits. Africa Intelligence recently revealed in its issue of 13/04/2021, that Kazadi has familial ties with Nozi Mwamba, founder and shareholder of DIG Oil.
Though some of his (ex-)ministers seem to be involved in potentially dubious oil deals, or have been promoting oil exploration in environmentally sensitive area, president Tshisekedi confirmed at the Leaders’ Summit on Climate 2021, 22-23 April, the DRC’s commitment to contribute to the global fight against climate change, in the context of sustainable development and poverty reduction.
The new minister of Hydrocarbons, Didier Budimbu, has the difficult task to improve governance, transparency and profitability of the Congolese oil sector. The question remains if he will be able (or willing) to outline a hydrocarbon policy, that takes into account concerns about global warming in general, and endangered Congolese eco-systems in particular.
(1) Trefon, T. (2016). Congo’s Environmental Paradox: Potential and Predation in a Land of Plenty. London: Zed Books.
(2) The State vs the people: Governance, mining and the transitional regime in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Amsterdam: Fatal Transactions.
(3) Judgment of the Paris Court of Appeal (DIGOIL v. DRC), 7 November 2018.
(4) Photo credit: WWF.
Threat to Africa’s parks | April 2021 | Le Monde diplomatique
Powerful oil companies have set their sights on the huge potential reserves under Sub-Saharan Africa’s wildlife sanctuaries, which will be far cheaper to exploit than deep offshore deposits. Resistance from civil society and NGOs can do little to stop them.
Rooting for our forests | 9 October 2020 | Transparency International
We take forests for granted. We forget they’re the reason we breathe, until they burn. We don’t know of all the ways they keep us safe, until we’re sick. We ignore how our way of life threatens them, until they’re gone.
Oil rights in Salonga National Park could be null and void, Global Witness analysis reveals | 1 February 2019 | Global Witness
Global Witness reveals today that an opaque Guernsey-owned company’s oil rights threatening a protected national park in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) could be null and void, according to our legal analysis.
Congo Basin forest loss dominated by increasing smallholder clearing | 7 November 2018 | Science Advances
A regional assessment of forest disturbance dynamics from 2000 to 2014 was performed for the Congo Basin countries using time-series satellite data. Area of forest loss was estimated and disaggregated by predisturbance forest type and direct disturbance driver. An estimated 84% of forest disturbance area in the region is due to small-scale, nonmechanized forest clearing for agriculture. Annual rates of small-scale clearing for agriculture in primary forests and woodlands doubled between 2000 and 2014, mirroring increasing population growth. Smallholder clearing in the Democratic Republic of the Congo alone accounted for nearly two-thirds of total forest loss in the basin.
Congo to Destroy UNESCO World Heritage Sites in search for Oil | 11 October 2018 | African Exponent
Congo’s Virunga National Park, the oldest national park in Africa and the Salonga National Park, home to endangered Gorillas have been handed over by Congo’s President to a UK oil company, Soco, to be destroyed for oil exploration.
DR Congo explores oil drilling allowed in wildlife parks | 30 June 2018 | BBC
The Democratic Republic of Congo government is looking into whether to allow oil exploration in two protected wildlife parks, Virunga and Salonga. The move is strongly opposed by environmental activists, who say drilling would place wildlife at risk and contribute to global warming.
Oil Extraction Imperils Africa’s Great Lake | 4 November 2016 | Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences
An international group of scientists sound the alarm in Science about the plans to extract oil and gas from the African Great Lakes. 70 researchers from 17 countries, including 10 Belgians, express their concerns about possible oil and gas extraction in the Great Lakes region in East Africa.
IN THE NEWS
BUSINESS AND HUMAN RIGHTS
Could a UN treaty force mining companies to behave responsibly? | 27 April 2021 | Open Democracy
In June 2020, a statement signed by more than 200 organizations around the world publicly denounced transnational mining companies for ignoring the threat of the pandemic and continuing to operate as normal.
As due diligence matures and grows to cover mineral supply chains across the globe, policymakers, stakeholders, and industry are looking for data to inform their decision-making. The application of this Monitoring and Evaluation Framework (M&E Framework) will improve understanding of how due diligence is being implemented and if it is helping to achieve the aims of the DDG — and, if not, why. Like most policy interventions, to date the results of due diligence in mineral supply chains appear mixed, with progress, shortcomings and ambiguous outcomes spread across multiple dimensions. This is where the real value of the M&E Framework lies; to make sense of the mechanisms by which the policy environment and uptake of due diligence bring about impacts, particularly in mineral producing countries and communities. The aim, in turn, is to generate actionable data that can help stakeholders scale up what’s working and address what isn’t.
Swiss End Sponsor Deal With Glencore on Reputation Concerns | 24 April 2021 | Bloomberg
Switzerland’s Department of Foreign Affairs has ended sponsorship agreements with dozens of companies including mining and trading giant Glencore Plc because of image concerns, the NZZ am Sonntag newspaper reported.
RDC : des sujets chinois accusés d’exploiter “abusivement” les minerais et de “torturer” leurs employés en Ituri | 24 April 2021 | L’Interview
Des sujets chinois sont accusés d’exploiter abusivement des matières précieuses dans la province de l’Ituri à l’Est de la République démocratique du Congo. En territoire de Mambasa par exemple, la convention pour le respect des droits de l’homme (CRDH) dénonce également des tortures dont sont victimes les employés de ces Chinois.
Gold refiners ‘seemingly ignore’ conflict and human rights red flags | 23 April 2021 | Investment Week
Precious metals investors are likely to be exposed to companies not carrying out the “most basic checks” of imported gold, which could be supporting those who mine gold illegally, according to civil society organisation Global Witness.
EU Drives a New Approach to Supply Chain Sustainability | 22 April 2021 | Navex Global | JD Supra
In a recent vote, the EU Parliament backed a legislative initiative paving the way for a new EU directive on Corporate Due Diligence and Corporate Accountability. As part of this initiative, lawmakers called for the urgent adoption of an EU-wide regulation that will require companies to identify, address and remedy the environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks in their supply chains. A new law is expected to follow in the coming months.
Corporate Human Rights Responsibility – Why a strong Supply Chain Act is important | 22 April 2021 | HRW
On February 12, German government ministers put forward a draft law on corporate human rights due diligence in supply chains. On March 3, the German cabinet adopted the proposal, and it will soon be debated in parliament. And on March 8, the European Parliament made a call to “urgently adopt binding requirements” in the EU to prevent and address adverse impacts on human rights, the environment, and good governance in companies’ supply chains. If these efforts come to fruition, new laws will put in place clear rules for what companies and their investors will have to do to respect human rights.
Business and human rights: a (r)evolution of the law? | 21 April 2021 | Herbert Smith Freehills LLP
Over the last decade, the law on business and human rights has shifted considerably. Instruments calling on businesses to respect human rights have traditionally been understood as non-binding “soft” law, but are now being given teeth, resulting in businesses increasingly being held to account for actions which have adverse impacts on human rights. This (r)evolution of the law has gained momentum in recent years – in tribunal and court decisions, through grievance mechanisms and other non-traditional forums, in new investment agreements and in domestic legislation – and the trend looks likely to continue.
International Trade as the New Front Against Transnational Crime | 20 April 2021 | White & Case LLP | JD Supra
Governments worldwide are sharpening their focus on money laundering executed through international trade. Anti-money laundering obligations on entities beyond traditional financial institutions continue to expand. Companies active in international trade, regardless of where they are located, should take notice as their supply chains continue to come under greater scrutiny.
Friends of the Earth: UK support for Mozambique gas plant fuelling conflict | 15 April 2021 | The Guardian
The UK government is facing fresh calls to abandon its £750m plan to support a gas export terminal in Mozambique over fears the fossil fuel project is stoking the insurgency in the north of the country, which has left thousands of people dead and displaced hundreds of thousands.
Indigenous Peoples Cry for Protection: As Human Rights Defenders Zoom on West Africa | 15 April 2021 | FrontPageAfrica
Grassroots Frontline Environmental, Land and Human Right Defenders in West Africa convened from 29 – 31 March 2021, to discuss the situation affecting their work by way of the zoom technology. It was by all means a meeting of multidimensional profiles – with the high and the lowly in society interfacing. Credit to the Mano River Union Civil Society Natural Resource Rights and Governance Platform and its affiliate organization, Green Advocates International-Liberia, the progenitor of the initiative.
ESG: Greenwashing and the EU Taxonomy Regulation – Part 1 – Greenwashing, What is it? | 15 April 2021 | Matheson
Sustainable finance refers to the concept of making financial investments in projects with environmental objectives by taking into account environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) considerations. Predominantly to date, how we have seen this implemented has been through green or sustainability linked loans. Specifically, green loans are loans made available to borrowers to finance or re-finance green projects. Sustainability linked loans are loans which provide an incentive to borrowers if they achieve certain agreed sustainability linked performance objectives.
Fighting the ‘International Thief Thief’ with Global Magnitsky Sanctions | 15 April 2021 | JustSecurity
In his day, the late, great Nigerian musician and Afrobeat innovator Fela Kuti was, among many other things, an anti-corruption and human rights activist. Not unlike Sergei Magnitsky, Fela fought back against corruption and suffered terribly at the hands of the State. And now, decades after Fela decried “International Thief Thief,” his son Femi is singing “You Can’t Fight Corruption With Corruption” on a new album.
Reauthorizing and Strengthening the Global Magnitsky Act | 14 April 2021 | JustSecurity
The U.S. House of Representatives’ Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission held a hearing recently to discuss the reauthorization of the Global Magnitsky Act, which authorizes the president to impose sanctions on foreign individuals accused of committing human rights abuses or engaging in corruption, and which sunsets in 2022.
Cobalt and the Congo: A Sustainable Green Energy Transition Cannot Be Built on Human Exploitation | 13 April 2021 | PRIO Blog
General Motors, one of the United State’s most important automakers, announced in January 2021 that it would phase out petroleum-powered cars and trucks and sell only zero-emission vehicles by 2035. Although one of the auto industry’s most ambitious moves, electric vehicles (EVs) cannot be produced or driven without cobalt, we cannot discuss this ferromagnetic metal without referring to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The DR Congo is the world’s leading source of mined cobalt, supplying 100,000 metric tons or approximately 70% of the world cobalt mine production of 140,000 metric tons in 2019.
The ILA Guidelines for the Sustainable Management of Natural Resources : a roadmap for investment regulation? | 13 April 2021 | Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP
The International Law Association’s new guidelines on the Role of International Law in the Sustainable Management of Natural Resources for Development (Guidelines) were officially launched in the UK in March. The Guidelines are a helpful tool for States and private actors alike to shape their conduct in line with the priorities of the international community and avoid unnecessary disputes down the line.
Human Rights Due Diligence in Supply Chain Contracts: A Shared Responsibility of Buyer and Supplier? | 12 April 2021 | Mayer Brown | Eye on ESG
This month, the American Bar Association (the “ABA“) published a Report on its suggested Model Contract Clauses to Protect Workers in International Supply Chains (the “MCCs“). While the MCCs are not put forward as a binding standard, they do provide food for thought for companies who are seeking to align their supply chain contracts with the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (the “UNGPs“), and the increasing tide of mandatory human rights due diligence legislation.
Jewellery industry makes slow progress on responsible supply chains | 10 April 2021 | Financial Times
“Jewellery is beautiful, pure, talismanic. Mining is everything it is not — dirty, ugly, abusive.” So says Greg Valerio, a jeweller and activist who was awarded an MBE in 2016 for his work in Fairtrade gold and with gold-mining communities in South America and Africa.
European Commission adopts report on corporate due diligence and accountability | 10 April 2021 | Global Compliance News
On 10 March 2021, the European Parliament adopted a legislative initiative report setting out recommendations to the European Commission on corporate due diligence and accountability, including a draft directive. The report proposes the introduction of a mandatory corporate due diligence obligation to identify, prevent, mitigate and account for human rights violations and negative environmental impacts in business’ supply chains. It demonstrates the European Parliament’s strong support for the EC’s sustainable corporate governance initiative and proposed new legislation regarding mandatory human rights and environmental supply chain due diligence, expected in Q2 this year.
EU Conflict Minerals Regulation: What You Need to Know | 8 April 2021 | Navex Global | JD Supra
On January 1, 2021, the Conflict Minerals Regulation (EU Regulation 2017/821) came into full force across the EU. This new law aims to ensure that importers of certain materials originating from conflict-affected and high-risk areas source these materials responsibly by laying down supply chain due diligence obligations.
UK halts funding for Oxfam over sexual misconduct claims | 8 April 2021 | The Guardian
Oxfam suspends two aid workers amid sex exploitation claims in DR Congo | 2 April 2021 | BBC
The UK has halted aid funding for Oxfam following allegations of sexual misconduct made against staff in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The charity confirmed last week that two members of staff in the DRC were suspended as part of an ongoing investigation into allegations of abuses of power, including bullying and sexual misconduct.
Who’s fixing up human rights issues in renewables supply chains? | 7 April 2021 | Power Technology
It’s well documented that consumers are increasingly in the spotlight for their environmental, social, and governance (ESG) practices and stances. For renewable energy, the issue is compound: people don’t want to materially support companies with perceived unethical business practices and consumers are generally distrusting of companies that purport to have a role in green transitions while turning a blind eye to humanitarian or ecological abuses in their supply chains.
The EU’s Increasing ESG Regulation and its Implications for Business | 7 April 2021 | Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP | JD Supra
The European Union (EU) is currently at the vanguard of environmental, social and governance (ESG) measures. Two areas of development in particular are likely to have widespread repercussions for businesses: newly implemented obligations for ESG disclosures and likely forthcoming mandatory human rights, environmental and governance due diligence. These measures involve both new obligations of disclosure as well as, potentially, substantive obligations to address ESG issues connected to companies’ businesses.
Uganda approves Resettlement Action Plan for EACOP | 30 April 2021 | Construction Review Online
The government of Uganda through the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development has approved the Resettlement Action Plan for the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) project. This approval is specific to Uganda section of the project, and paves way for the implementation of the second phase of the land acquisition and resettlement process which involves completing the acquisition of land and securing the rights to the land, including payment of compensation and resettlement of affected households.
Growth in Burkina Faso gold mining fuels human trafficking | 30 April 2021 | The Associated Press
For months, human traffickers beat and drugged Blessing, hauling the 27-year-old from one gold mine encampment to the next, where each night she was forced to sleep with dozens of men for less than $2 a person. The madam who lured Blessing to the landlocked West African nation of Burkina Faso with promises of a hair salon job, threatened to kill her if she tried to run away.
Tanzania gold refinery starts producing in drive to boost gold revenues | 30 April 2021 | Mining Weekly
A new gold refinery set to be the biggest in Tanzania has begun production in a step towards the government’s aim of processing more of the precious metal domestically.
Total suspends gas project in Mozambique over Palma attack | 28 April 2021 | The East African
Total SE of France has declared an indefinite suspension of work on $20 billion natural gas project in Mozambique’s northern Cabo Delgado province due to militant attacks close to its site.
Ghana sends in army to enforce mining ban near rivers and lakes | 28 April 2021 | Reuters
Ghana’s military has launched a nationwide operation to clear illegal miners out of its water bodies, the West African country’s lands minister said in on Wednesday.
Race on to restore Uganda’s forests | 26 April 2021 | The Independent (Uganda)
Zoka Central Forest Reserve, a small 1,259 hectare tropical forest found in Adjumani District in northwest Uganda, was first gazetted as a central forest reserve in the 1940s. Part of the bigger 10,000 hectare East Moyo Wildlife Reserve famous for being home to rare and critically endangered flying squirrels, Zoka had remained untouched for about 100 years; until powerful illegal loggers invaded it recently to burn charcoal and steal its luxuriant Mahogany hardwood.
DRC cobalt standard to empower artisanal, small-scale miners – Trafigura | 26 April 2021 | Mining Weekly
The Democratic Republic of Congo’s (DRC’s) newly established mining company – Entreprise Générale du Cobalt (EGC) – will ensure the country’s artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) sector benefits from the energy transition through the establishment of legal and ethical channels for off-taking of the cobalt produced in the country, commodity trading company Trafigura corporate responsibility head James Nicholson said on April 26.
DRC: Urgent need to reverse wildlife habitat loss | 26 April 2021 | AFRIK 21
Twenty-four non-governmental organisations based in the Democratic Republic of Congo have sent a letter to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Environment, requesting his involvement in the fight against the decline of animal and plant species throughout the country. According to scientists, wildlife populations have fallen by an average of 68% between 1970 and 2016, the main cause being the degradation and loss of their natural habitat.
China’s dominance of rare earths supply is a growing concern in the West | 25 April 2021 | South China Morning Post
Western countries are becoming concerned about their reliance on China for supplies of rare earth elements and other scarce metals and minerals that are essential for the manufacture of electric car batteries, satellites, weapons, wind turbines and solar panels.
Japan’s global rare earths quest holds lessons for the US and Europe | 23 April 2021 | Quartz
In 2010, the Japanese government had a rude wakeup call: Beijing had abruptly cut off all rare earth exports to Japan over a fishing trawler dispute. Tokyo was almost entirely dependent on China for the critical metals, and the embargo exposed this acute vulnerability.
Oil, gas an ‘illusionary’ quick fix | 23 April 2021 | Mail & Guardian
The growth of an offshore oil and gas industry is unlikely to have benefits nationally or locally, despite claims that it will bring significant economic development to South Africa. This is the thrust of a new report, Who Stole our Oceans: A Literature Review of the Socioeconomic Consequences of Offshore Oil and Gas Activities in South Africa.
Why Rare Earths Are the Key to Just About Everything | 22 April 2021 | Foreign Policy
When then-U.S. President Donald Trump offered to buy Greenland in 2019, the world thought—or hoped—he was kidding. “It must be an April Fool’s Day joke … but totally out of [season]!” Lars Lokke Rasmussen, a former Danish prime minister, tweeted. (Current Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen’s response—“Greenland is not for sale.”—was a little blunter.) But Trump’s proposal could also be seen as a strategic move, if one overlooks the fact that Greenland wasn’t actually on the market.
Caught between rare earths and Chinese dominance — the story behind everything no one is telling you: Part ¼, Part 2/4; Part ¾; Part 4/4 | 22 April 2021 | Mining.com
This is a four-part article series on the reality of how and why China retains its dominance in the Rare Earth (RE) industry. Part one investigates how China built its multi-commodity monopolies across the technological spectrum. Part two provides a brief historical overview on what China learned from its Rare Earth monopoly. Part three looks at how China turned Rare Earth metals, alloys & magnets into ‘utility goods’ for its domestic economy. The final part of this article series explores how China’s current monopolistic strategy feeds on the ‘Free Market’ actions of its adversaries and explores a possible solution to overcome Chinese global control in Rare Earths.
Lapsset project works still on, nine years later | 22 April 2021 | The East African
As the region looks forward to the commencement of works on proposed joint Uganda, Tanzania East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP), Kenya’s $1.5 billion Lokichar to Lamu Crude Oil Pipeline under the Lamu Port-South Sudan Ethiopia Transport Corridor (Lapsset) project has been in the works since 2012.
Diamonds: Investigation into bankruptcy of former industry number one | 21 April 2021 | Brussels Times
The Antwerp prosecutor has started an investigation into the mysterious bankruptcy of the company that formerly stood in first place among the city’s diamond dealers. Eurostar Diamond Traders, owned by the family of 71-year-old Kaushik Mehta, was at one point the diamond city’s major trader in both rough and cut diamonds. Then suddenly in 2019 the business was declared bankrupt.
Des forêts d’Afrique centrale particulièrement vulnérables aux changements globaux | 21 April 2021 | CIRAD
African forest maps reveal areas vulnerable to the effects of climate change | 21 April 2021 | Nature
Une étude internationale, coordonnée par des chercheurs de l’IRD et du Cirad, révèle la composition des forêts tropicales d’Afrique centrale et leur vulnérabilité à l’augmentation des pressions climatiques et humaines attendues dans les prochaines décennies. Grâce à l’utilisation d’un jeu de données exceptionnel – portant sur l’inventaire de plus de 6 millions d’arbres répartis dans cinq pays – les chercheurs ont réalisé les premières cartes continues de la composition floristique et fonctionnelle de ces forêts, leur permettant d’identifier les massifs les plus vulnérables. Ces résultats sont publiés dans la revue Nature le 21 avril 2021.
Uganda: Roadmap to Uganda’s First Oil | 20 April 2021 | The Monitor | AllAfrica
Following the recent conclusion of key oil agreements related to the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (« EACOP ») project, Uganda is at the Final Investment Decision (FID) to develop the necessary infrastructure for crude oil production. The international oil companies (« IOCs ») now have the green light to start awarding major project contracts.
Why the US is worried about its critical minerals supply chains | 20 April 2021 | Greenbiz
When U.S. companies build military weapons systems, electric vehicle batteries, satellites and wind turbines, they rely heavily on a few dozen « critical minerals » — many of which are mined and refined almost entirely by other countries. Building a single F-35A fighter jet, for example, requires at least 920 pounds of rare earth elements that come primarily from China.
Tanzania set to export purified gold – minister | 20 April 2021 | IPPMedia
Tanzania to start exporting purified gold soon following the launch of Mwanza Precious Metal Refinery within this month, Minister for Minerals Doto Biteko revealed at the weekend.
Métaux rares : Pourquoi la pandémie oblige à repenser nos stratégies d’approvisionnement | 20 April 2021 | 20Minutes
Découvrez, chaque jour, une analyse de notre partenaire The Conversation. Aujourd’hui, deux universitaires nous expliquent pourquoi les modèles d’approvisionnement en métaux et terres rares doivent être réformés.
Tanzania: Govt Strict On Mercury Importation | 19 April 2021 | Tanzania Daily News | AllAfrica
The government has expressed its commitment to strengthen control measures on the importation and use of mercury, to avert health and environmental effects.
If someone were to put me on the spot and ask me to name an environmentalist group, I’d probably blurt out the first thing that comes to mind, Greenpeace. There are obvious reasons for this: Greenpeace has been around for more than 50 years, and it has done a masterful job of bringing environmental concerns to the world’s attention and keeping them there. The group has a strong track record when it comes to advocacy and awareness, and it has a global reach. It’s truly one of the most visible non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in the world.
Kibali rejects Sokimo claim | 19 April 2021 | Mining Weekly
Kibali Goldmines said on April 18 that it had learned that the Congolese parastatal Société Minière de Kilo-Moto (Sokimo) was attempting, for a second time, to extort certain benefits from the company by filing new proceedings with the commercial court in Kinshasa.
European And UK Critical Raw Materials (CRM) Supply Chains – The Weakest Links | 19 April 2021 | Vivien & Associes
In our second article of this series we looked at the geological, geopolitical and ESG considerations involved in the establishment of UK and EU non-Chinese rare earth elements (REE) to permanent magnet supply chains (NCSC). To be of value, a NCSC must be able to demonstrate its “resilience” to both internal and external events and disruptions. The Covid pandemic shone a spotlight on global supply chains and their “resilience” in the face of diverse disruptions such as lockdown and quarantine, confirming the truth of the aphorism that “a chain is no stronger than its weakest link”.
Congo Nears Settlement of Block Held by U.S.-Sanctioned Tycoon | 15 April 2021 | Bloomberg
The Democratic Republic of Congo is considering settling a $619 million arbitration case by awarding a South African junior oil company almost half that amount in cash and new oil and mining permits.
Uganda: Gold Exporters to Pay $200 in Taxes for Every Kilogramme | 15 April 2021 | The Monitor | AllAfrica
Gold exporters will be required to pay $200 or Shs740,000 for each exported kilogramme of the precious metal, according to the Mining (Amendment) Bill 2021. The Bill, which has already been passed by Cabinet, is still before Parliament awaiting deliberations. It will apply to both gold and other minerals.
New law would allow Uganda to take stakes in private mining | 14 April 2021 | Reuters
Uganda’s cabinet has approved a draft mining law that would allow the government to own shares in private mining operations and impose steep penalties for violations in the sector, including prison terms of up to seven years.
European and UK Critical Raw Materials (CRM) Supply Chains – The Missing Links (pdf) | 13 April 2021 | Vivien & Associés
In this, the second of a series of articles on non-Chinese rare earth elements (REE) to permanent magnet supply chains (NCSC), we consider some of the challenges to their creation including geological, geopolitical and ESG considerations.
Cobalt – RDC : le géant chinois CATL s’offre une participation dans une mine pour 137,5 millions de dollars | 12 April 2021 | La Tribune Afrique
Leader mondial des batteries, le géant chinois CATL débloque 137,5 millions de dollars pour acquérir 25% de la mine de Kisanfu en République démocratique du Congo (RDC), l’une des plus grandes sources de cobalt non développées au monde. De quoi garantir l’augmentation de sa production de batteries pour véhicules électriques.
Rare earths project diversifies sector | 12 April 2021 | MiningWeekly
Increased interest in a green economy and critical minerals is leading to new mining and investment opportunities in Tanzania such as ASX-listed rare earths mining company Peak Resources’ Ngualla rare earths project.
Artisanal miners could help Congo become world’s fourth-largest cobalt producer | 11 April 2021 | Mining.com
Congo’s Entreprise Générale du Cobalt (EGC) could become the world’s fourth-largest cobalt producer in 2021, a new Roskill report states. According to the market analyst, if the state-owned company is able to capture all of the 8,000 tonnes of cobalt expected to be produced by artisanal and small-scale miners in the African country, then it may become a major player, only behind Glencore, ERG and China Molybdenum.
Uganda, Tanzania, oil firms sign accords to build $3.5 billion pipeline | 11 April 2021 | Reuters
Uganda, Tanzania and oil firms Total and CNOOC on Sunday signed agreements that will kickstart the construction of a $3.5 billion crude pipeline to help ship crude from fields in western Uganda to international markets.
DRC: Gécamines takes over the artisanal cobalt mining sector | 8 April 2021 | The Africa Report
Officially launched on 31 March, EGC – a new subsidiary of Gécamines – is intended to formalise and clean up a previously opaque artisanal mining sector. It will partner with Swiss commodities giant Trafigura, the US NGO Pact, and the UK auditors Kumi, using blockchain technology to track minerals as they pass through the system.
Critical Raw Materials Supply Chains – Europe’s and the UK’s Response – Forging the Links (pdf) | 6 April 2021 | Vivien & Associés
“To solve global warming, we have to fully electrify the entire economy, including the transportation fleet. There are currently 1.3 billion cars on the planet. By mid-century, that will be close to 3 billion, just light duty cars. To make all of those electric vehicles, as opposed to internal combustible engine, you’ll need more than $5 trillion worth of cobalt, nickel, lithium and copper. That’s incremental, in addition to all the demand for those materials, for just business as usual activities.” CEO Kurt House, KoBold.
RDC : le cobalt artisanal a généré près de 800 millions USD en 2020 | 5 April 2021 | ZoomEco
La contribution de creuseurs artisanaux est une donne non négligeable dans la prise en compte des statistiques relatives à la production des minerais en République démocratique du Congo (RDC). C’est le credo d’Albert Yuma Mulimbi, Président du Conseil d’administration de la Gecamines, lors du lancement officiel des activités de l’Entreprise Générale de Cobalt (EGC), le 31 mars dernier.
How Western Mali could become a gold mine for terrorists | 1 April 2021 | ISS | DefenceWeb
A flourishing gold mining economy in Kayes offers violent extremist groups an opportunity to expand their membership and reach.
Chinese-made Type 59G main battle tanks in service with Chad armed forces | 26 April 2021 | ArmyRecognition
According to pictures released on Twitter showing Type 59 MBT (Main Battle Tank) in the streets of N’Djamena after the death of the president in a battle with the rebels. China would have delivered an undisclosed number of Type 59G main battle tanks to Chad. According to the SIPRI (Stockholm International Peace Research Institute arms trade database, Chad has ordered in 2007, 30 main battle tanks from China, without specifying the type of tank that was purchased.
Nigeria: Senate Moves to Strengthen Laws Against Illegal Arms, Says Nigeria Under Siege | 20 April 2021 | This Day | AllAfrica
The Senate yesterday painted a gloomy picture of the security situation in the country, saying the nation was under serious siege from non-state actors whose activities were threatening the continued existence of Nigeria.
Kenya opens new small arms factory | 13 April 2021 | DefenceWeb
Arms factory launched: President Uhuru Kenyatta set to commission small arms factory in Ruiru (video) | 8 April 2021 | KTN News | Youtube
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta has opened a new $37 million small arms factory as the country seeks to improve self-reliance on defence and security equipment.
Niger : importante saisie d’armes dans la région d’Agadez | 13 April 2021 | Niamey et les 2 jours
Deux véhicules ayant quitté la Libye en direction du Niger, ont été interceptés par des éléments de forces de sécurité en poste à Ingall, lors d’une patrouille ce dimanche.
Mambas join G5 Sahel efforts in Niger | 12 April 2021 | DefenceWeb
Sixteen Mamba armoured personnel carriers (APCs) have joined the G5 Sahel Joint Force in northern Niger as part of efforts to combat terrorism, transnational organised crime and trafficking.
Stockpiling munitions carries risks. The basic steps that can stop catastrophic explosions | 8 April 2021 | The Conversation
A series of massive blasts recently rocked Equatorial Guinea’s city of Bata. The explosions, at an army barracks, killed over 100 people and destroyed military buildings as well as people’s homes around the site. President Teodoro Obiang Nguema stated that the explosions were “caused by negligence of the unit in charge of storing explosives, dynamite and ammunition at the Nkoa Ntoma military camp”.
Kenyan army interested in getting Otokar Arma 8×8 armored vehicles | 8 April 2021 | ArmyRecognition
The Kenyan army is currently considering various options for the procurement of new armored vehicles, including Turkish manufacturer Otokar’s Arma 8×8 tactical armored vehicle, according to the African press echoed by Daily Sabah.
Benchmarks to assess the arms embargo on South Sudan – Report of the Secretary-General (S/2021/321) | 7 April 2021 | UN Security Council | ReliefWeb
The present report is submitted pursuant to the letter from the President of the Security Council dated 16 December 2020, in which the Council requested the Secretary-General to provide recommendations on benchmarks to assess the arms embargo on South Sudan.
Ghana has officially received first Otokar Cobra 2 4×4 armored vehicles | 6 April 2021 | ArmyRecognition
According to pictures released by the Official Website of The Presidency Republic of Ghana, the Turkish company Otokar has delivered Cobra 1 and Cobra 2 4×4 armored vehicles to Ghana armed forces.
U.S. Conventional Weapons Destruction in Africa – Stabilizing Conflict-Affected Areas and Setting the Stage for Development | 5 April 2021 | U.S. Department of State | AllAfrica
Since 1993, the United States has provided more than $509 million to support Conventional Weapons Destruction (CWD) programs throughout Africa. This assistance helps create conditions for lasting security and economic growth by reducing the availability of small arms and light weapons (SA/LW) and improvised explosive device (IED) components used by terrorists and extremist groups. CWD programs also improve civilian security and lay the groundwork for sustainable development by clearing landmines and unexploded ordnance (UXO).
Les «Rafale papers» | April 2021 | Mediapart
L’Agence française anticorruption (AFA) a découvert qu’en marge du contrat à 7,8 milliards des Rafale vendus en 2016 par la France à l’Inde, Dassault a engagé 1 million d’euros en faveur d’un intermédiaire poursuivi pour blanchiment. Mais l’AFA a enterré le dossier. Une enquête de Mediapart sur une affaire d’États qui met aussi en cause la justice et les autorités politiques.
Dispersion de mercenaires hors de Libye: l’inquiétude gagne l’ONU et les pays d’Afrique | 29 April 2021 | Corbeau News
Le Conseil de sécurité de l’ONU a tenu jeudi sa première réunion consacrée au risque d’une dispersion des mercenaires présents en Libye dans les pays de la région, illustrée par les évènements au Tchad qui ont conduit à la mort de son président. Lors de la réunion, des frictions ont opposé les Etats-Unis et la Russie à l’évocation du groupe Wagner, réputé proche de Moscou et dont l’implication dans l’offensive récente des rebelles tchadiens a été avancée de source américaine.
The death of Chadian President Idris Déby Itno threatens stability in the region | 29 April 2021 | Brookings
The sudden death on April 19, 2021 of Chadian President Idriss Déby Itno is creating a very dangerous vacuum in Central Africa and the Sahel. Déby, who ruled Chad for 30 years, was killed while fighting rebels trying to overthrow his government.
Experts meet in Uganda over escalation of conflict in Horn of Africa | 29 April 2021 | Daily Monitor (Uganda)
Experts from member states of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) held a meeting here Wednesday to find ways to prevent a further escalation of conflict in the Horn of Africa. Present at the meeting were experts from Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda under the Conflict Early Warning Mechanism Committee of Permanent Secretaries.
Central African troops and Russian mercenaries accused of abuses in anti-rebel offensive | 29 April 2021 | The New Humanitarian
Central African Republic’s army and its allies have driven back a rebel group that seized towns around the country amid contested elections in December, but rights groups and residents told The New Humanitarian they committed a string of abuses in the process.
ACLED Regional Overview – Africa (17-23 April 2021) | 28 April 2021 | ACLED | ReliefWeb
Last week in Africa, Chadian President Idriss Deby Itno was killed on the battlefield by rebel fighters, prompting a military takeover of the government; international forces maintained a prominent role in combatting entrenched Islamist and domestic militant insurgencies across the Sahel and central Africa; and dozens of fatalities were reported during ongoing intercommunal violence in South Sudan and Ethiopia.
Forces opposed to Somali president control parts of Mogadishu | 28 April 2021 | DefenceWeb
Gunmen opposed to Somalia’s Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed had control of strategic parts of the capital Mogadishu on Monday, Reuters journalists saw, after factions in the security forces clashed at the weekend over his term extension.
Burkina Faso : les deux Espagnols disparus dans l’est du Burkina Faso ont été tués (ministre) | 27 April 2021 | Sahel Intelligence
Burkina Faso ambush: Spaniards and Irishman killed after abduction | 28 April 2021 | BBC
Les deux Espagnols portés disparus après une attaque d’un groupe armé lundi, dans l’est du Burkina Faso, ont été tués, a confirmé mardi la ministre espagnole des Affaires étrangères, de l’UE et de la Coopération, Arancha Gonzalez Laya.
Nord-Kivu: l’armée réfute sa collaboration avec les groupes armés | 27 April 2021 | Radio Okapi
Les forces armées de la RDC (FARDC) réfutent les allégations selon lesquelles il existerait une collaboration entre elles et le groupe armé Nduma defense of Congo rénove (NDC/R) de Chuo Bwira Gilbert, le chef d’une des factions de NDC\Rénové dans les territoires Walikale et de Masisi, dans la province du Nord-Kivu. La mission de l’armée n’est pas celui de collaborer avec les groupes armes, mais de les traquer, a indiqué le major Ndjike Kaiko, porte-parole des opérations Sokola 2, le lundi 26 avril.
Sahel: La France au cœur des tensions | 27 April 2021 | Maghreb Online
Il y a presque dix ans, des analystes avaient prédit que le Tchad serait la prochaine zone à risque en Afrique. Situé au cœur d’une région tampon du Sahel, charnière entre le Maghreb et l’Afrique noire, ce territoire devint rapidement en raison de facteurs plus que favorables (chute de Gueddafi et guerre en Libye, instabilité politique au Mali et au Niger, troubles au Burkina Faso..) un gigantesque sentier ou pullulent les groupes armés terroristes, la contrebande des armes et les trafiquants de drogue.
Nigeria urges U.S. to move Africa Command headquarters to continent | 27 April 2021 | Reuters
The United States should consider moving its military headquarters overseeing Africa to the continent, from Germany, to better tackle growing armed violence in the region, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari said on Tuesday.
RCA : arrivée massive des rebelles de l’UPC à Zémio, incendie des maisons au centre-ville | 27 April 2021 | CorbeauNews
Les rebelles de l’Unité pour la paix en Centrafrique (UPC), dirigée par le sulfureux mercenaire tchado-nigérien Ali Darassa, en provenance de la ville de Mboki, sont arrivés dans la sous-préfecture de Zémio, située à 1113 kilomètres au sud-Est de Bangui, dans la préfecture de Haut-Mbomou. Ils terrorisent les populations, et procèdent à la destruction de quelques maisons au centre-ville.
Somali opposition fighters cordon off parts of Mogadishu as political feud turns violent | 27 April 2021 | France24
Heavily armed Somali opposition fighters held positions in parts of Mogadishu on Monday, a day after clashes with government troops erupted over the president’s bid to extend his mandate, in the country’s worst political violence in years.
Gas fields and jihad: Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado becomes a resource-rich war zone | 26 April 2021 | Mongabay
On Monday, French energy giant Total declared force majeure on its multibillion-dollar light natural gas (LNG) project in northern Mozambique, formally withdrawing all of its employees from the region and indefinitely suspending its operations. The declaration came after heavily armed militants carried out a surprise attack on the nearby town of Palma, a commercial center in the northern coastal province of Cabo Delgado, in late March. Days of sustained fighting in the town took place just 10 kilometers (6 miles) from Total’s worksite, a $20 billion offshore LNG facility that is currently the largest foreign investment project in Africa.
De GSPC à AQMI : Djihadisme et folie sanguinaire | 26 April 2021 | Maliweb.net
Depuis plusieurs années, les organisations terroristes se réclamant du djihad écument le Sahel, avec des acronymes étranges et parfois rébarbatifs, qui changent par moments, comme au rythme de leurs intérêts dans le sable mouvant du désert. D’où viennent-ils ? Comment les premiers mouvements sont-ils constitués ? Pourquoi cette folie sanguinaire partie du Moyen-Orient s’est-elle répandue sur la bande sahélo-saharienne ? Le regard d’un lecteur que nous avons bien voulu partager avec vous.
UN deplores torture of Burundian refugees in Tanzania | 26 April 2021 | The East African
The United Nations is pointing a finger at Tanzania and Burundi for subjecting refugees and asylum seekers who fled Burundi to new repression and torture. A report prepared by a panel of UN experts said arbitrary arrests, enforced disappearances and forced returns have allegedly been carried out by the Tanzanian police and intelligence services in cooperation with the Burundian intelligence .
Chad’s Military Rulers Name Civilian Prime Minister; Opposition Protests | 26 April 2021 | VoA
Chad’s new military rulers named a civilian politician, Albert Pahimi Padacke, as prime minister of a transitional government on Monday, a week after President Idriss Deby’s battlefield death, but opposition leaders quickly dismissed the appointment.
Gunfire Erupts in Mogadishu as Somalia’s Political Feud Turns Violent | 25 April 2021 | NYT
Gunfire erupted across the Somali capital, Mogadishu, on Sunday as security forces loyal to the president clashed with units that appeared to have sided with his rivals, stoking fears that Somalia’s simmering political crisis is spilling over into violence.
Tchad: le Conseil militaire de transition refuse de négocier avec les rebelles du Fact | 25 April 2021 | RFI
La junte militaire au pouvoir au Tchad oppose une fin de non-recevoir aux rebelles du Fact. Leur chef Mahamat Mahadi Ali se disait prêt à un cessez-le-feu si un dialogue inclusif était engagé. Ce dimanche soir, le porte-parole du Conseil militaire de transition leur répond via un communiqué transmis à la presse. « L’heure n’est ni à la médiation ni à la négociation avec des hors-la-loi », a déclaré le général Azem. La junte appelle à la « coopération » du Niger pour capturer les rebelles du Fact.
Ituri: les Hema menacent de prendre les armes pour se défendre des attaques de CODECO et FPIC | 25 April 2021 | MediaCongo.net
La cérémonie funèbre des victimes de la dernière attaque menée par les miliciens FPIC dans la localité Nyara a eu lieu ce samedi 24 avril 2021 dans l’entité voisine de Shari, en présence de plusieurs visages emblématiques de la communauté Hema et des membres du gouvernement provincial.
Al-Qaïda au Maghreb Islamique (AQMI) : L’origine de la terreur | 24 April 2021 | Maliweb.net
Au sahel, Al-Qaïda au Maghreb Islamique fût le premier groupe terroriste armé à être active. Cette organisation reste encore vivante grâce à ses activités criminelle au Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso, Mauritanie et l’Algérie. Son réseau est beaucoup plus étendu au Mali et Niger par le fait de la porosité des frontières. Le Sahara, qui est une zone incontrôlée est l’endroit par excellence d’exercer et de mener des attaques terroristes contre les forces de défense et de sécurité de différents États.
Beni: Un terroriste ADF capturé par l’armée et 7 civils tués par la milice | 24 April 2021 | Politico.cd
Les Forces Armées de la République Démocratique du Congo (FARDC) annoncent l’arrestation d’un combattant membre du groupe rebelle ADF et d’un de leurs collaborateurs, la journée de jeudi 22 avril 2021.
Total operations potentially face another Islamic State-linked insurgency in Uganda | 23 April 2021 | ISS | Daily Maverick
On 24 March, Islamist insurgents attacked the northern Mozambican coastal town of Palma, killing dozens of people and looting and destroying buildings. The incident forced French energy giant Total to abandon its multibillion-dollar liquid natural gas processing plant at nearby Afungi.
Chad faces an uncertain future | 23 April 2021 | Mail & Guardian
Chad’s President Idriss Déby Itno has died in combat just a day after securing re-election, opening a period of uncertainty in a country that is a crucial strategic ally of the West in the region. His son, Mahamat Idriss Déby, was immediately named transitional leader as head of a military council and both the government and parliament were dissolved, but the army vowed “free and democratic” elections after an 18-month transitional period.
Africom commander says Africa is too important for Americans to ignore | 23 April 2021 | DefenceWeb
Africa is a fascinating continent of tremendous possibilities but also tremendous dangers, and the US ignores the nations of Africa at its own peril, the commander of US Africa Command said during an interview.
Assassinat du chef d’Etat-major du SSNMC/A au Soudan du Sud | 23 April 2021 | Benin WebTV
Le chef d’Etat-major d’une des oppositions armées du Soudan du Sud, le Général Abraham Wana Yoane, a été tué dans une attaque en Ouganda, selon une confirmation du groupe armé.
Chad family feud intensifies transition tensions after Idriss Déby’s death | 23 April 2021 | BBC
The swiftly executed transfer of power in Chad to Gen Mahamat Idriss Déby after his father’s death appears to be threatened by family divisions and fractures in the military that could have serious consequences.
Génocide du Rwanda : les responsables Français doivent être jugés | 23 April 2021 | Jean Claude Alt & Benoît Muracciole | La Croix
Tribune Jean Claude Alt, administrateur ASER, expert des droits de l’Homme et Benoît Muracciole, Président ASER. Ils espèrent que la sortie de ce rapport permette d’exiger que justice soit rendue pour prévenir de nouvelles complicités au sein du gouvernement français
Frontière Tchad-RCA : L’armée centrafricaine se met en alerte maximale | 22 April 2021 | Alwihda Info
Dans un communiqué, l’État-major des forces armées informe la population centrafricaine que les unités des FACA situées à la frontière de la RCA et le Tchad, dans le nord de la République, sont en état pour empêcher les rebelles des groupes armés illégaux de franchir les frontières centrafricaines.
Au Tchad, les connexions libyennes des rebelles pourraient embarrasser Paris | 22 April 2021 | l’Opinion
Le groupe armé à l’origine de la mort d’Idriss Déby a été pendant quatre ans employé par le maréchal Haftar, un des protagonistes du conflit libyen, soutenu par la France tout comme l’ancien président tchadien.
Where Did Chad Rebels Prepare for Their Own War? In Libya | 22 April 2021 | NYT
Fighting as mercenaries for years, the rebels were ready to pull off their own stunning feat: an invasion that resulted in the death of Chad’s strongman ruler.
Ethiopia rights commission said armed group has taken control of county | 22 April 2021 | Reuters
An armed group has taken control of a county in western Ethiopia, reportedly killing civilians and kidnapping public servants, the state-appointed Ethiopian Human Rights Commission said.
China’s base in Africa now big enough to host aircraft carriers, AFRICOM boss says | 21 April 2021 | Stars & Stripes
China’s naval base in the East African nation of Djibouti is now large enough to host aircraft carriers, marking the latest sign that Beijing is looking to expand military efforts in the region, U.S. Africa Command’s top leader said. China, which opened its Djibouti base in 2017, has steadily grown its footprint and operates just seven miles from Camp Lemmonier, the U.S. military’s operational hub in the Horn of Africa.
Communique de presse N°012/B.E/2021 | 21 April 2021 | Le Front pour l’Alternance et la Concorde au Tchad
Le délai accordé par le FACT à la famille d’Idriss DEBY ITNO pour l’inhumer prend fin ce jour 21 avril 2021 à minuit. Par conséquent, le Front pour l’Alternance et la Concorde au Tchad informe l’opinion nationale et internationale de ce qui suit…
In Darfur’s rebel-held mountains, the war is far from over | 21 April 2021 | The New Humanitarian
Armed groups from Sudan’s western region of Darfur – and other parts of the country – signed a peace deal in October with the transitional government, which took power following the revolution that ousted long-serving ruler Omar al-Bashir in 2019. But after trekking to a rebel base in the far-flung Jebel Marra mountains in early March, The New Humanitarian found the conflict is far from over…
RCA : retour des mercenaires de Wagner à destination de Yalinga, dans la Haute-Kotto | 21 April 2021 | CorbeauNews
Après la ville de Bria, chef-lieu de la préfecture de Haute-Kotto, dont ils ont bouclé et mise à sac plusieurs quartiers avant-hier et hier, les mercenaires russes et syriens de la société des paramilitaires Wagner viennent de quitter la ville à destination de Yalinga, située à 170 kilomètres à l’Est, avec un objectif d’atteindre les villes de Nzako et Bakouma au plus tard la fin de ce mois.
Mozambique : une action militaire internationale s’impose contre les djihadistes | 21 April 2021 | ADIAC
Depuis plus de trois ans, les shebab ravagent la province de Cabo Delgado, à majorité musulmane, située à la frontière avec la Tanzanie. Après leur attaque qui a eu lieu en mars dernier à Palma, ville stratégique du nord-est, faisant des dizaines de morts et des milliers de déplacés, la région redoute les prochaines actions de la guérilla djihadiste et en appelle au soutien de la communauté internationale.
Deby’s Son to Lead Chad as Interim President | 21 April 2021 | VoA
Chad’s new leader – Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno | 21 April 2021 | BBC
Chad’s Interim President Faces Power Struggle | 21 April 2021 | VoA
The son of the late President Idriss Deby Itno of Chad has been named interim president of the central African nation by a transitional military council.
Tchad: le Conseil militaire annonce qu’il cédera le pouvoir à un gouvernement civil (video) | 21 April 2021 | AFP | Youtube
Le vice-président du Conseil militaire tchadien de transition, le général Djimadoum Tiraïna, déclare que le « Conseil militaire de transition remettra le pouvoir à un gouvernement civil après des élections libres et démocratiques dans un délai de 18 mois », alors que la mort du président Idriss Déby Itno, au pouvoir depuis 30 ans et partenaire-clé des Occidentaux contre les jihadistes au Sahel, a ouvert une période d’incertitude au Tchad où les rebelles ont promis de marcher sur la capitale N’Djamena.
SSPDF and SPLA-IO to jointly contain insecurity in Eastern Equatoria | 21 April 2021 | Radio Tamazuj
The Eastern Equatoria State council of ministers, during their third security meeting on Monday, resolved that the SSPDF and SPLA-IO forces will work together to combat spiking insecurity in the state.
The Roots of Repression and the Prospects for Democracy in Tanzania | 20 April 2021 | The Conversation | AllAfrica
Nobody was surprised that President John Magufuli won a second term in Tanzania’s 2020 general elections. The ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi has been in power since independence in 1961, and has never come close to losing power nationally.
Pillage, mise à sac par les mercenaires de Wagner, la situation devient de plus en plus grave dans la ville de Bria | 20 April 2021 | CorbeauNews
48 heures après l’arrivée dans la ville des mercenaires de la société russe Wagner, la situation devient de plus en plus tendue à Bria, chef-lieu de la préfecture de Haute-Kotto. « Ce que nous vivons aujourd’hui à Bria est indescriptible. Il y’a beaucoup de souffrance parmi la population », selon un notable local qui décrit la scène comme du jamais vu dans la ville.
Ituri : journée ville morte à Bunia pour protester contre l’insécurité persistante | 20 April 2021 | Actualite.cd
Ituri : deuxième jour de grève à Bunia pour protester contre l’insécurité | 21 April 2021 | Actualite.cd
Les activités sont paralysées ce mardi 20 avril à Bunia, à l’appel à une journée ville morte décrétée par la société civile en vue de s’insurger contre l’insécurité incessante dans la province de l’Ituri. Il s’agit d’une première de grève sur une série de trois journées ville morte.
Ituri: les FARDC repoussent des miliciens FPIC/Codeco à Nyara, 5 civils tués (Bilan provisoire) | 20 April 2021 | politico.cd
Les Forces Armées de la République Démocratique du Congo (FARDC) basées dans le secteur opérationnel de l’Ituri rapportent avoir repoussé ce mardi 20 avril, une attaque coalisée des miliciens FPIC et Codeco (Bon Temple) qui visait l’une des positions de l’armée régulière située à Nyara, à ± 6km de Bunia, dans le Groupement Ndena, chefferie de Babelebe dans le territoire de Djugu.
Mali: Killings, ‘Disappearances’ in Military Operations | 20 April 2021 | HRW
Malian soldiers have allegedly killed at least 34 villagers, forcibly disappeared at least 16 people, and severely mistreated detainees during counterterrorism operations in Mali’s central Mopti region, Human Rights Watch said today.
Thousands flee fresh clashes in Central African Republic | 20 April 2021 | UN News
Recent fighting between government forces and rebels in northern Central African Republic (CAR) has forc ed more than 2,000 refugees into neighboring Chad over the past week, the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) said on Tuesday.
Chad’s Idriss Deby, a longstanding French ally in the troubled Sahel | 20 April 2021 | France24
Chad’s strategic interest to France, Western allies | 20 April 2021 | Reuters
Idriss Deby Itno, who was on course for a sixth term as Chad’s president before he died from injuries sustained in battle, had earned a reputation as a stalwart French ally in the fight against jihadist insurgencies in the Sahel – despite accusations of authoritarianism.
DR Congo seeks over $4bn in reparations from Uganda at ICJ | 20 April 2021 | al Jazeera
Lawyers for the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) on Tuesday told the International Court of Justice that they are seeking $4.3bn in reparations payments from neighbouring Uganda for its role in the conflicts in the country’s mineral-rich Ituri province.
Tchad : le président Idriss Déby Itno est décédé | 20 April 2021 | Jeune Afrique
Idriss Déby Itno est décédé, ce mardi 20 avril. Selon la télévision nationale tchadienne, le chef de l’État aurait succombé à des blessures reçues au combat ces derniers jours dans la région du Kanem face aux rebelles du Front pour l’alternance et la concorde au Tchad (FACT).
Massacres threaten to engulf Darfur, where revenge has substituted for justice | 20 April 2021 | Washington Post
For almost all the 38 years Abdulwahab Mohamed Abdalla has been alive, scorched-earth ethnic warfare has kept him on the run. His is one of the generations scarred by war here in Darfur, where blood feuds run deep. Hundreds of thousands have been killed. For decades, justice has remained elusive, and revenge has been the most common recourse.
The Bewildering Search for the Islamic State in Congo | 20 April 2021 | The Nation
n 2003, three American college friends set out for Uganda. As they traveled through the north of the country, they were so moved by the suffering caused by the conflict between the government and the warlord Joseph Kony that they started an NGO called Invisible Children to spread awareness about the crisis and raise money for relief projects. Their work eventually drew the attention of Shannon Sedgwick Davis, a young Texas lawyer and CEO of the Bridgeway Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Bridgeway Capital Management, a multibillion-dollar hedge fund with investments in oil, pharmaceuticals, and consumer products.
Wie wordt beter van het geweld in Oost-Congo? | 19 April 2021 | MO*
De aanvallen van gewapende groepen zoals ADF-Nalu in Oost-Congo volgen elkaar in sneltempo op. De bevolking is de terreur meer dan moe. Maar ook het burgerprotest tegen geweld wordt met geweld beantwoord: de Congolese ordediensten grijpen hardhandig in en schieten met scherp op de manifestanten. Wat is er aan de hand?
Mozambique: «L’insurrection islamiste risque de déstabiliser le pays et la région» | 19 April 2021 | Le Figaro
Le Mozambique est en proie à une insurrection islamiste dans le nord-est du pays. Cette crise risque d’aggraver la situation économique de cet État d’Afrique de l’est, explique l’ancien ambassadeur de France au Mozambique Christian Daziano.
Rwanda report blames France for ‘enabling’ the 1994 genocide | 19 April 2021 | The Associated Press
A Foreseeable Genocide: The Role of the French Government in Connection with the Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda | 19 April 2021 | Levy Firestone Muse LLP | Rwandan Government
The French government bears “significant” responsibility for “enabling a foreseeable genocide,” a report commissioned by the Rwandan government concludes about France’s role before and during the horror in which an estimated 800,000 people were slaughtered in 1994.
Tchad: un groupe armé appelle à soutenir la rébellion | 19 April 2021 | Le Figaro
Who are the rebels threatening to take Chad’s capital? | 21 April 2021 | Reuters
Les combats ont fait rage samedi entre les forces nationales tchadiennes et les rebelles du Front pour l’alternance et la concorde au Tchad (Fact). Dans ce contexte, plusieurs partis d’oppositions et des organisations de la société civile ont signé ce week-end un appel au cessez-le-feu. Ils demandent également à Idriss Déby l’ouverture d’un dialogue national inclusif pour apaiser les tensions, laissant au président tchadien une semaine pour se décider.
Tchad: au moins 300 rebelles et cinq militaires tués dans le Nord | 19 April 2021 | Sahel Intelligence
Plus de 300 éléments du Front pour l’alternance et la concorde au Tchad (FACT), qui menaient une incursion depuis huit jours dans le nord du pays, ont été éliminés le samedi par l’armée tchadienne. Cinq militaires tchadiens ont été également tués dans ces affrontements et 36 autres blessés.
US, UK issue warnings in face of rebel incursion in northern Chad | 19 April 2021 | RFI
The Chadian army says the offensive in the northern provinces of Tibesti and Kanem is over, with the loss of 300 rebel lives. Despite this, the United States says rebel fighters appear to be moving towards the capital N’Djamena and have ordered non-essential staff to leave. Meanwhile, vote counting continues in the wake of tense presidential elections.
US imposes bans on Uganda government officials accused of human rights violations | 19 April 2021 | Jurist
US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken on Friday announced visa restrictions on Ugandan government officials accused of human rights violations and repressive acts during the January 14 general elections and campaign period.
Communique de presse N°009/B.E/2021 | 18 April 2021 | Le Front pour l’Alternance et la Concorde au Tchad
Haut Commandement des Forces de la Résistance Nationale: Le Front pour l’Alternance et la Concorde au Tchad informe l’opinion nationale et internationale que ses Forces de la Résistance Nationale ont procédé à la libération de la Région du Kanem ce jour 18 avril 2021. Les opérations de ratissage des villes et garnisons libérées de la province du Kanem se poursuivent à l’heure où nous rendons public ce présent communiqué et le bilan vous sera déclaré dans les heures qui suivront.
Cabo Delgado through a human rights lens: Amnesty International sounded the alarm but nobody listened | 18 April 2021 | Daily Maverick
In the past few months, Mozambique has captured international headlines for the ‘insurgency’ taking place in the resource-rich province of Cabo Delgado. The insurgency has been brewing for years under the radar of the international community, and human rights groups have spoken out consistently over the growing instability in the north of Mozambique.
Communique de presse N°008/B.E/2021 | 17 April 2021 | Le Front pour l’Alternance et la Concorde au Tchad
Haut Commandement des Forces de la Résistance Nationale : Le Front pour l’Alternance et la Concorde au Tchad tient à porter à la connaissance de l’opinion nationale et internationale que ses Forces de la Résistance Nationale contrôle la totalité de la Région du BET depuis le 17 avril 2021 et sont, en ce moment même, en passe de contrôler la Région du Kanem.
Communique de presse N°007/B.E/2021 (sic) | 16 April 2021 | Le Front pour l’Alternance et la Concorde au Tchad
Haut Commandement des Forces de la Résistance Nationale: L’offensive des forces de la résistance nationale du Front pour l’Alternance et la Concorde au Tchad (FACT) se poursuit sans relâche. Dans ce cadre, nous informons l’opinion nationale et internationale de la prise le 15 avril 2021 de la garnison stratégique de Gouri à 200 kilomètres de Faya. Surpris par la puissance de feu de nos vaillants combattants, l’ennemi, malgré l’appui logistique de l’aviation française, est mis en déroute totale.
A Plea to the UN to Address Sexual Violence in Conflict | 16 April 2021 | HRW
When Caroline Atim, founder and director of the South Sudan Women with Disabilities Network, spoke to the UN Security Council this week, I watched her hands intently and listened to her sign language interpreter, as she described the devastating impact of sexual violence in the South Sudan conflict.
L’Auditeur militaire de Garnison de Kipushi, Emmanuel Ngoie Senga, a remis officiellement au Commandant de Corps pour la Protection des Parcs Nationaux et Réserves Naturelles (CorPPN), le Général major Massi Pamba en séjour dans le Haut-Katanga ce 13 avril, des armes et munitions saisies auprès des miliciens arrêtés dans les parcs nationaux de l’Upemba et Kundelungu. Les armes remises au Commandant CorPPN sont notamment des AK47, des fusils de chasse calibre 12, plusieurs cartouches ainsi que des arcs et flèches.
Final report of the Panel of Experts on South Sudan submitted pursuant to resolution 2521 (2020) (S/2021/365) | 15 April 2021 | UN Security Council | ReliefWeb
Since February 2020, the slow pace of reforms by the Government of South Sudan and its selective implementation of the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan has hindered improvements in the protection of civilians and prospects for long-term peace. More than a year of political disputes and disagreements over how to implement the Agreement has widened existing political, military and ethnic divisions in the country and has led to multiple incidents of violence between the two main signatories to the Agreement – the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), led by the President, Salva Kiir Mayardit, and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-Army in Opposition (SPLM/A-IO), led by the First Vice-President, Riek Machar Teny.
I was abducted by Museveni’s regime. This is what I saw | 15 April 2021 | African Arguments
For the last few years in Uganda, I had taken stories of President Yoweri Museveni’s government kidnapping political opponents with a pinch of salt. Even as I campaigned as a parliamentary candidate for the opposition Alliance for National Transformation (ANT) ahead of the 14 January 2021 elections, I presumed that presidential challenger Bobi Wine was exaggerating when he claimed that thousands of his supporters were being abducted.
The Clandestine War on Africa: France’s Endgame in Mali | 15 April 2021 | CounterPunch
In a recent report, the United Nations Mission in Mali, known as MINUSMA, concluded that, on January 3, French warplanes had struck a crowd attending a wedding in the remote village of Bounti, killing 22 of the guests.
At least one killed in anti-UN protest in eastern Congo | 15 April 2021 | Reuters
At least one person was killed by security forces on Thursday during protests against United Nations peacekeepers in Oicha, a town in the restive east of the Democratic Republic of Congo, the town’s mayor said.
Double meurtre des experts de l’ONU au Kasaï: un témoin parle de « préméditation » | 15 April 2021 | VoA
Une journaliste française a été entendue jeudi comme témoin au procès des auteurs présumés du meurtre dans le sud-est de la République démocratique du Congo de deux experts des Nations unies, en mars 2017, en marge du conflit dans la région du Kasaï.
Warlord Seeking Lenient Sentencing Describes Upbringing in Brutality | 15 April 2021 | Court House News
Raised in the Lord’s Resistance Army before becoming its leader, Dominic Ongwen sought to reduce his prison sentence for dozens of war crimes on Thursday by recounting the disturbing details of his years as a child soldier.
Victims Want Life Sentence for Ugandan War Atrocities | 14 April 2021 | Court House News
While prosecutors told the International Criminal Court that Dominic Ongwen should be given 20 years in prison for atrocities he committed against Ugandans as a leader in the Lord’s Resistance Army, lawyers representing the victims have asked for the maximum sentence of life.
Russian mercenaries accused of rights violations in Central African Republic | 14 April 2021 | DW
In Central African Republic, the government relies heavily on Russian mercenaries and weaponry to fight rebels. UN experts are now accusing the Russians of gross human rights violations.
Paul Kagame: the hidden dictator | 14 April 2021 | New Statesman
New book asks why world ignores repression by Rwandan leader | 12 April 2021 | The Associated Press
Do Not Disturb” said the sign outside Room 905 of Johannesburg’s Michelangelo Towers hotel on 1 January 2014. When the police finally broke in they found the garrotted body of Patrick Kare-geya, Rwanda’s former head of external security, on the bed. Karegeya had fallen out with the regime he had helped create, and was murdered by a Rwandan hit squad as he helped build an opposition movement in exile.
Sahel counter-terrorism takes a heavy toll on civilians | 14 April 2021 | ISS | DefenceWeb
Military operations that cause civilian deaths and violate human rights are fuelling terrorist groups’ propaganda. National and foreign forces deployed to fight terrorism in the Sahel are increasingly harming civilians. Figures from the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project (ACLED) indicate that security forces caused more civilian fatalities in Mali and Burkina Faso in 2020 than violent extremist groups or communal violence.
Communique de presse N°006/B.E/2021 | 13 April 2021 | Le Front pour l’Alternance et la Concorde au Tchad
Haut Commandement des Forces de la Résistance Nationale: Le Front pour l’Alternance et la Concorde au Tchad (FACT) informe l’opinion nationale et internationale que les Forces de la Résistance Nationale ont procédé à la libération totale de la région du Tibesti. Nos forces ont intercepté et détruit un hélicoptère de combat de la milice du dictateur, hier aux environs de 17h, heures locales, et son équipage est porté disparu. Ce qui porte à trois le nombre des appareils du dictateur détruits par les vaillants combattants du FACT.
RCA : recrudescence des violences sexuelles à Bangui | 13 April 2021 | MSF
Depuis fin décembre et la reprise des combats en République centrafricaine, la capitale Bangui connaît un regain d’agressions sexuelles, un problème systémique décuplé par des années de guerre civile.
Mozambique : la crainte d’autres attaques des groupes djihadistes | 13 April 2021 | AFP | Connaissance des energies
Leur attaque sophistiquée et meurtrière contre Palma, ville stratégique du nord-est du Mozambique, a permis aux jihadistes de se ravitailler en nourriture et en armes: depuis leur départ, plane la peur du prochain raid.
Gunmen raid over 200 head of cattle in Uror County | 13 April 2021 | Radio Tamazuj
Over 250 head of cattle were stolen during a raid by a group of armed bandits in Pieri Payam, Uror County of Jonglei State over the weekend, local authorities said.
Foreign fighters and the trajectory of violence in northern Mozambique | 13 April 2021 | War on the Rocks
On March 24, fighters from Ansar al-Sunna Wa Jamma (ASWJ) — a U.S. State Department-designated foreign terrorist organization that it calls “ISIS-Mozambique” — launched a multi-day assault on Palma, a coastal town of roughly 75,000 people located in Mozambique’s hard-pressed province of Cabo Delgado. The operation — which reportedly involved covert infiltration, multiple points of simultaneous attack, and maritime support — was well-coordinated, with clear evidence of prior planning and intelligence gathering.
ONU et mercenaires russes en Centrafrique : le pacte du silence ? | 12 April 2021 | Afrique Décryptages | IFRI
Alors que la Mission multidimensionnelle intégrée des Nations unies pour la stabilisation au Mali (MINUSMA) a enquêté sur une frappe aérienne de l’armée française au début de l’année et a conclu à une bavure, la Mission multidimensionnelle intégrée des Nations unies pour la stabilisation en Centrafrique (MINUSCA) reste étrangement sourde et aveugle aux agissements douteux de la société de mercenariat russe Wagner depuis plusieurs années.
Rwanda : lettre d’espoir depuis Kigali | 12 April 2021 | Vincent Duclert | La Croix
Tribune Président de la commission d’historiens qui a récemment remis son rapport sur le rôle de la France au Rwanda durant le génocide des Tutsis, Vincent Duclert, reçu le 9 avril par le président rwandais Paul Kagame, nous fait part depuis Kigali de sa réflexion.
Sahel : les accusations de viols commis par des soldats tchadiens fragilisent la Force conjointe du G5 | 12 April 2021 | Le Monde
Le témoignage est glaçant. « Ils se sont introduits dans notre case, ont tenu en respect mon mari avec une arme et, ensuite, ils se sont livrés à leur sale besogne, à tour de rôle. » Le visage à peine dissimulé par un voile de couleur vive, une jeune femme ose raconter son viol, au micro de la chaîne de télévision Canal 3 Niger. Un reportage diffusé début avril qui a choqué l’opinion publique de ce pays d’Afrique de l’Ouest, où les agressions sexuelles restent taboues.
Communique de presse N°003/B.E/2021 | 11 April 2021 | Le Front pour l’Alternance et la Concorde au Tchad
Le Front pour l’Alternance et la Concorde au Tchad (FACT) informe l’opinion nationale et internationale qu’en date du dimanche 11 avril 2021 à l’aube, les forces de la résistance stationnées à Tanoua, ont mené de vastes opérations militaires dans la région du Tibesti.
Les différentes garnisons sur nos itinéraires, notamment Wour et Zouarké sont tombées sans résistance aux mains de nos vaillants combattants.
« La guerre contre les groupes armés tire à sa fin. Il est temps de faire le compte », a déclaré un cadre influent de la société paramilitaire russe Wagner. D’après lui, l’État centrafricain doit 127 milliards de francs CFA à sa société de mercenariat. Comment le gouvernement va-t-il rembourser cette colossale dette ? Les solutions sont trouvées. Lesquelles ?
Volunteer Militia Becomes Latest Target For Burkina’s Jihadists | 10 April 2021 | Barron’s
A volunteer force set up to help Burkina Faso’s beleaguered military fight jihadists has suffered huge casualties since it was created less than 16 months ago. According to an AFP tally, more than 200 members of the Volunteers for the Defence of the Motherland (VDP) have died since January 2020.
Mozambique: AFRICOM’s Newest Adventure | 10 April 2021 | LA Progressive
White faces in fatigues – I’m sure that’s just what most Mozambicans were hoping to see upon their shores. After all, it certainly isn’t the first time. Ever since the Portuguese started planting trading posts and forts on what was known as the Swahili Coast around the year 1500, an arrival of armed whites has never really ended well for the locals. Now, if half a millennium late to the party, America recently shipped an army special forces detachment to the country.
Conflict-related sexual violence: Report of the Secretary-General (S/2021/312) | 9 April 2021 | UN Security Council | ReliefWeb
The present report, which covers the period from January to December 2020, is submitted pursuant to Security Council resolution 2467 (2019), in which the Council requested me to report annually on the implementation of resolutions 1820 (2008), 1888 (2009), 1960 (2010) and 2106 (2013), and to recommend strategic actions.
RCA : Ces mercenaires qui nous font peur | 9 April 2021 | CorbeauNews
Ces dernières semaines, les Forces armées centrafricaines (FACA) ont vaillamment combattu contre les combattants de la Coalition pour le changement (CPC). Soutenus par leurs alliés, de nombreuses villes ont été libérées, parfois sans combat, les forces de la CPC quittant les lieux comme des lapins avant même l’entrée des militaires et de leurs alliés. A chaque fois, les forces pro-gouvernementales auraient été accueillies par une ovation populaire. Mais pour certains Centrafricains, la joie a été de courte durée.
Uganda says it has signed security agreement with Egypt amid tensions over Ethiopia dam | 8 April 2021 | Reuters
Uganda and Egypt have signed a military intelligence sharing agreement, the east African country said late on Wednesday, against a backdrop of rising tensions between Egypt and Ethiopia over a hydropower dam on a tributary of the Nile river.
ACLED Regional Overview – Africa (27 March-2 April 2021) | 8 April 2021 | ACLED | ReliefWeb
Last week in Africa, a failed coup attempt was staged in Niger; the Sudanese government unilaterally closed the main border crossing with Ethiopia, amid ongoing fighting in the region; and Islamist militants launched an assault on a United Nations peacekeeping base in Mali.
Police fire shots at anti-UN protesters in eastern Congo | 8 April 2021 | Reuters
Congolese police detained scores of protesters and fired live rounds on Thursday to disperse crowds demanding the departure of the United Nations peacekeeping mission from the city of Beni, local authorities and witnesses said.
RCA : la présence massive des éleveurs peuls dans la localité de Bangassou inquiète la population | 8 April 2021 | CorbeauNews
À Bangassou, dans la préfecture de Mbomou, la présence massive des éleveurs peuls a été signalée à 45 kilomètres de la ville. Les populations parlent des éleveurs armés, et s’opposent catégoriquement à leur installation dans la localité. Ce qui pousse les autorités locales à mener de campagne pour le vivre ensemble, mais le risque de confrontation est réel.
Implementation of the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Region – Report of the Secretary-General (S/2020/306) | 7 April 2021 | UN Security Council | ReliefWeb
The present report is submitted pursuant to Security Council resolution 2556 (2020), in which the Council requested the Secretary-General to report every six months on the implementation of the commitments under the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Region and its linkages with the broader security situation in the region. It provides an overview of peace and security developments in the Great Lakes region since the issuance of the previous report (S/2020/951) and covers the period from 16 September 2020 to 15 March 2021.
The Rise and Rise of the Special Criminal Court (Part I) | 7 April 2021 | Opinio Juris
The Rise and Rise of the Special Criminal Court (Part II) | 7 April 2021 | Opinio Juris
One of the most interesting and exciting landscapes in the field of international criminal law at the moment is the Special Criminal Court (‘SCC’ or ‘Court’). Located in Bangui, Central African Republic (‘CAR’), the SCC is a hybrid international court with a mandate to try individuals accused of “serious violations of human rights and international humanitarian law”, including war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide in CAR from 1 January 2003 (Art. 3, para. 1, Statute).
Ituri : 5 personnes tuées par les miliciens de la CODECO à Katsu | 7 April 2021 | Radio Okapi
Cinq personnes ont été abattues à l’aide de machettes mardi 6 avril, par des présumés assaillants de la milice CODECO à Katsu, à environ 40 kilomètres, au nord de Bunia dans la chefferie de Mambisa en territoire de Djugu.
Cabo Delgado: Consequences of a failing state | 7 April 2021 | DefenceWeb
More than a week after last month’s attack on Palma, the Mozambican authorities claimed to be in control of the town. There is still no independent verification of this and the area remains cut off from cellphone communication.
Mozambique: What next for Cabo Delgado — dialogue or disaster? (Part Two) | 7 April 2021 | Daily Maverick
This week the Southern African Development Community Troika meets to discuss the deepening crisis in Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado province. They would do well to listen to the pleas of activists in Mozambique who are calling for national dialogue and regional development rather than further militarisation.
UN experts alarmed by CAR Russian trainers | 7 April 2021 | DefenceWeb
A group of UN experts expressed alarm at increased recruitment and use of private military and foreign security contractors by the government of Central African Republic (CAR) and their close contact with UN peacekeepers.
At least 100 killed in border clashes between Ethiopia’s Somali and Afar regions | 7 April 2021 | DefenceWeb
Border clashes between Ethiopia’s Afar and Somali regions have killed at least 100 people, a regional official said on Tuesday, the latest outbreak of violence ahead of national elections in June.
Major group quits Central African Republic rebel bloc | 6 April 2021 | Anadolu Agency
Ali Darassa Mahamat, leader of the Union for Peace in the Central African Republic (UPC), said in a statement that his group will “withdraw from the Coalition of Patriots for Change (CPC).”
The Secret Wars of Africa’s Sahel | 6 April 2021 | Gulf News
In a recent report, the United Nations Mission in Mali, known as MINUSMA, concluded that, on January 3, French warplanes had struck a crowd attending a wedding in the remote village of Bounti, killing 22 of the guests.
France to open archive for period covering Rwandan genocide | 6 April 2021 | The Associated Press
Génocide au Rwanda : le rapport Duclert ne livre qu’une part de vérité | 2 April 2021 | François Robinet | Jeune Afrique
Rapport de la Commission de recherche sur les archives françaises relatives au Rwanda et au génocide des Tutsi (1990-1994) remis au Président de la République le 26 mars 2021 à Paris (pdf) | 26 March 2021 | Vincent Duclert | Vie publique
France’s role before and during the 1994 Rwandan genocide was a “monumental failure” that the country must acknowledge, the lead author of a report commissioned by President Emmanuel Macron said, as the country is about to open its archives from this period to the public.
Women abducted in South Sudan released, hundreds remain missing | 5 April 2021 | UN News
Fifty-eight women and children of more than 600 who were abducted last year during vicious intercommunal fighting in South Sudan, have been reunited with their families, the UN Spokesperson told reporters on Monday.
Mozambique: Poverty and inequality fuel violent extremism (Part One) | 5 April 2021 | Daily Maverick
On 24 March 2021, insurgents commenced a sophisticated and bloody attack on the town of Palma, in the far north of Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado province. The attack lasted for five days, according to some reports, and has made world news.
Ituri : Arrestation de 7 rebelles ougandais venus appuyer les miliciens CODECO à Djugu | 4 April 2021 | MediaCongo.net
Un groupe des sept rebelles d’origine ougandaise a été arrêté dans la nuit du 2 au 3 avril 2021 à Siro, village situé à plus de 8 Kilomètres de Ndrele dans le territoire de Djugu, en province de l’Ituri.
ISIS, Beheadings and Billions in Investments: What Is Happening in Mozambique | 4 April 2021 | Haaretz
In the battle for Mozambique’s Palma more than 2,600 people have been killed. The humanitarian crisis has also dramatically increased, from 90,000 displaced at the start of 2020 to more than 670,000 now.
SPLM-N Al-Hilu sign MOU with Democratic Unionist Party | 3 April 2021 | Radio Tamazuj
The Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) faction led by Abdel-Aziz Al-Hilu on Thursday signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Sudanese Democratic Unionist Party in Juba.
Chad arrests soldiers accused of rapes in Niger | 3 April 2021 | Reuters
Chad’s government said on Saturday that soldiers accused of at least three rapes in Niger, including that of an 11-year-old girl, have been arrested and will face punishment.
RDC-Ituri: entre CODECO, FRPI, FPIC et ADF, la situation davantage préoccupante | 3 April 2021 | Actualite.cd
United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo: Report of the Secretary-General (pdf) | 18 March 2021 | United Nations
António Guterres, secrétaire général des Nations unies, a publié son dernier rapport sur la situation en RDC. Il couvre la période du 2 décembre 2020 au 18 mars 2021. Sur la situation en Ituri, le N°1 de l’ONU note que la situation sécuritaire s’est dégradée davantage.
Ituri : 21 miliciens CODECO condamnés à perpétuité pour crimes de guerre et crimes contre l’humanité | 2 April 2021 | Radio Okapi
Le tribunal militaire de garnison de Bunia dans la province de l’Ituri a condamné jeudi 1er avril, à perpétuité, vingt et un assaillants de la milice CODECO. Ils sont accusés de guerre et crimes contre l’humanité par meurtre, déportation et persécution, des faits commis dans le territoire de Djugu.
RCA : les cadres du mouvement armée 3R annonce bizarrement la mort du sulfureux chef rebelle Abbas Sidiki | 2 April 2021 | CorbeauNews
The Death of a Warlord in the Central African Republic | 16 April 2021 | HRW
Mort d’Abbas Sidiki : ce qui s’est vraiment passé | 16 April 2021 | Radio NdekeLuka
Annoncé par les proches du pouvoir à plusieurs reprises pour mort , le chef rebelle Abbas Sidiki est revenu miraculeusement à la vie après quelques semaines de l’annonce de son décès. Cette fois, c’est son mouvement armé 3R qui l’annonce dans un communiqué ce jour 2 avril 2021. Selon ce communiqué, l’homme serait mort le 25 mars 2021 au centre de santé du village Kamba-Kota, dans l’Ouham. Infos ou intoxes ? Affaire à suivre….
DRC’s Allied Democratic Forces Is Spreading Violence In Secrecy | 1 April 2021 | OWP
The Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) have been spreading violence throughout the Eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo for decades now. However, this group is feared not only for its violence, but also for its secrecy. Recently, an attack on the Bulongo village left a dozen villagers dead overnight, the ADF is blamed, but nothing can prove for a fact that they are culpable.
The US has placed sanctions on ISIS-DRC, but does the group even exist? | 31 March 2021 | African Arguments
On 10 March, the US Department of State designated a rebel group operating in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as a foreign terrorist organisation. Referring to it as the “Islamic State of Iraq and Syria – Democratic Republic of the Congo (ISIS-DRC)”, it placed the group under strict sanctions. It suggested that the rebel group – also known as Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) – has become part of the so-called Islamic State’s Central Africa Province and warrants heightened action.
ETHIOPIA – TIGRAY CONFLICT
‘Clean out our insides’: Ethiopia detains Tigrayans amid war | 29 April 2021 | The Associated Press
Ethiopia has swept up thousands of ethnic Tigrayans into detention centers across the country on accusations that they are traitors, often holding them for months and without charges, the AP has found. The detentions, mainly but not exclusively of military personnel, are an apparent attempt to purge state institutions of the Tigrayans who once dominated them…
Ethiopia – Tigray Conflict, Fact Sheet #7 | 28 April 2021 | USAID | ReliefWeb
Increased insecurity and ongoing communications disruptions continue to hinder humanitarian response efforts in Tigray. The DART and USG leadership continue to express concern regarding reports of protection violations, as well as advocate that the GoE take steps to increase humanitarian access and allow the importation of communications equipment.
Ethiopia’s Tigray War Is Fueling Amhara Expansionism | 28 April 2021 | Foreign Policy
The war in Tigray, the northernmost region of Ethiopia, is ostensibly about political control. The federal government’s stated objective is to arrest the political and military leadership of the ousted regional government in what it still refers to as a law enforcement operation. But among the ethnic Amhara political elite, it is seen as a war to regain territories lost in 1991. Being the second-largest ethnic group in the country, the Amhara militia and special forces have been pivotal in the war campaign. Western and southern parts of Tigray are thus currently being incorporated under Amhara administration and control despite protests from the interim regional government in Tigray.
Eritrean troops block, loot food aid in Tigray: documents | 27 April 2021 | France24
Eritrean soldiers are blocking and looting food aid in Ethiopia’s war-hit Tigray region, according to government documents obtained by AFP, stoking fears of starvation deaths as fighting nears the six-month mark. Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed sent troops into Tigray in November to detain and disarm leaders of the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), the regional ruling party that once dominated national politics.
The United States is pressing Ethiopia to end the conflict in its Tigray region that has been raging for almost six months. U.S. officials are also calling for allied Eritrean troops to withdraw from the region. The United States will continue to pause non-humanitarian assistance to Ethiopia to pressure Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government to do more to stop the “deteriorating humanitarian and human rights crisis,” officials said.
In Tigray, Sexual Violence Has Become a Weapon of War | 27 April 2021 | Foreign Policy
In recent weeks, women in Tigray, Ethiopia, have started coming forward with the most painful stories imaginable about how they have been sexually violated and tortured by soldiers of the Ethiopian and Eritrean armies.
U.S. Africa Envoy: Ethiopia Crisis Could Make Syria Look Like ‘Child’s Play’ | 26 April 2021 | Foreign Policy
The Biden administration this month brought Jeffrey Feltman, a seasoned former senior U.S. and United Nations diplomat, out of semi-retirement to assume the newly created role of special envoy for the Horn of Africa, where multiple crises threaten to unravel the entire region.
“Dying by blood or by hunger”: The war in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, explained | 24 April 2021 | Vox
The bodies of the two brothers were left for more than a day. Their families knew they were there, but the soldiers wouldn’t let them collect the bodies. The soldiers left behind witnesses, though: two boys, barely teens, tied to a tree nearby, after the soldiers forced them to spend the night on the ground, between the bodies of the murdered men.
The United Nations Security Council has voiced « deep concern » over a humanitarian crisis in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region for the first time since conflict erupted there five months ago, calling for reported atrocities to be investigated.
How Twitter became a battlefield to shape Ethiopia’s Tigray conflict narrative | 23 April 2021 | Daily Maverick
Despite limited access to information about the Tigray conflict, aggressive social media campaigns – both pro- and anti-government – sprung from the Ethiopian diaspora in a bid to shape the dominant narrative for an international audience, DFRLab has found.
UN Official: May be ‘Many Months’ Before Full Scale of Tigray Rapes Known | 22 April 2021 | VoA
« Testimonies of some rape survivors reveal the brutal and heinous war being waged on the bodies of women and girls, » Pramila Patten, the U.N. special representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict said during a discussion about Tigray at Georgetown University’s Institute for Women, Peace and Security on Wednesday.
‘A Tigrayan womb should never give birth’: Rape in Tigray | 21 April 2021 | al Jazeera
Displaced people from Ethiopia’s western Tigray region report cases of rape, looting and extrajudicial killings allegedly perpetrated by Amhara forces.
‘No end’ to conflict in Ethiopia’s Tigray region | 21 April 2021 | Modern Diplomacy
Disturbing reports have continued to emerge of widespread abuse of civilians in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, nearly six months since conflict erupted, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said on Tuesday.
Reasons the international community is unable to end the war in Tigray | 21 April 2021 | Ethiopia Insight
The war in Tigray has resulted in a catastrophic humanitarian crisis. International and domestic observers had released reports on gang rapes, extrajudicial killings, destruction of property, and deaths from starvation. On 19 November, the European Union announced, “Progress remains very limited in Tigray, fighting is ongoing, and humanitarian access is still being prevented.” The United States and European countries have called for a cessation of hostilities and peace talks. These calls, however, have fallen on deaf ears.
Video shows the horror of rape as weapon of war in Ethiopia’s Tigray region | 19 April 2021 | France24
A horrifying video showing a doctor operating on a woman who was brutally raped in Ethiopia’s conflict-torn Tigray region has been circulating widely on WhatsApp since early March. The surgery took place in a hospital in Adigrat, in the north of the Tigray. Our team spoke to several sources who told us about what happened to this woman, who is now living in a safe house. Her story highlights the massive and widespread rape of woman in the conflict in the Tigray that began in late 2020.
UN warns sexual violence being used as weapon of war in Ethiopia’s Tigray region | 16 April 2021 | RFI
The United Nations aid chief has told the Security Council that sexual violence is being used as a weapon of war in Ethiopia’s Tigray. The US ambassador to the UN said Washington was « horrified by the reports of rape and other unspeakably cruel sexual violence » in the region, adding that Eritrean forces must be removed from Ethiopia « immediately ».
Eritrean Troops Continue to Commit Atrocities in Tigray, U.N. Says | 15 April 2021 | NYT
Eritrean troops continue to commit atrocities in the northern Ethiopian region of Tigray, despite assurances by Ethiopia’s prime minister, Abiy Ahmed, that they were leaving, a senior United Nations official said Thursday.
UN Security Council Needs to Act on Ethiopia’s Tigray Region | 15 April 2021 | HRW
Today is the fifth time the United Nations Security Council will discuss the conflict in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region behind closed doors. Five months into one of the world’s gravest humanitarian and human rights crises, the UN’s most powerful body needs to end its paralysis and support concrete measures to deter further abuses.
The Tale of Eritrean Withdrawal from Tigray: But Where is the Border? | 15 April 2021 | African Arguments
During a session in parliament on March 23, 2021 Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed of Ethiopia publicly acknowledged Eritrean involvement in his country’s ongoing civil war in Tigray but indicated that it would take some time for Eritrea’s forces to withdraw. Three days later, the Prime Minister issued a statement announcing that the government of Eritrea had “agreed to withdraw its forces out of the Ethiopian border” and that the Ethiopian army “will take over guarding the border area effective immediately”.
Women in Ethiopian conflict zone tell of gang rapes and violence by soldiers | 15 April 2021 | Business Day
The young mother was trying to get home with food for her two children when she says soldiers pulled her off a minibus in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, claiming it was overloaded. It was the beginning of an 11-day ordeal in February, during which she says she was repeatedly raped by 23 soldiers who forced nails, a rock and other items into her vagina, and threatened her with a knife.
Sexual Violence in Ethiopia’s Tigray Region, 30 March 2021 | 12 April 2021 | Insecurity Insight | ReliefWeb
On 4 November 2020 the Ethiopian army began a military offensive against the Tigray region’s ruling party, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF). Four months later the ongoing conflict has killed thousands of civilians, displaced over two million, forced thousands of refugees to flee to Sudan, and caused widespread destruction.
In Ethiopia’s war, a retreat worthy of African ideals | 9 April 2021 | The Christian Science Monitor
Over the past quarter century, Africa’s leaders have steadily erected standards to better manage their own affairs. These are meant to strengthen the rule of law through fair elections, safeguard human rights, and promote prosperity through economic cooperation and joint peacekeeping. The African Union, the continent’s loose alliance of nations, even established a peer review process to hold politicians accountable to their new principles.
Ethiopia: conflict in Tigray threatens to finish Abiy’s dream of unity | 8 April 2021 | Financial Times
At a makeshift shelter in a school in Mekelle, capital of Ethiopia’s Tigray region, Gezae Wolderaphael, an aquiline-featured young sesame farmer, shows what he says are rifle butt and knife wounds on his face and shoulder. The injuries, he says, were inflicted by members of an assortment of forces who surrounded him in the western Tigrayan town of Mai Kadra last November after Abiy Ahmed, Ethiopia’s prime minister, ordered federal troops to take control of the region. “They put a gun in my mouth,” he adds, before stabbing him and leaving him for dead in the street.
Ethiopia’s Perilous Propaganda War | 8 April 2021 | Foreign Affairs
Late last month, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed finally admitted the worst-kept secret in Africa: that soldiers from neighboring Eritrea are fighting alongside Ethiopia’s military in the Tigray region of the country. For the last five months, Abiy’s government has waged a military offensive there against the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), which once dominated Ethiopia’s government and regarded Eritrea as an enemy.
Ethiopia targeting Tigray with ‘starvation crimes’ as military tactic | 6 April 2021 | RFI
Famine is looming in Ethiopia’s war-torn Tigray region as military operations specifically target food systems with systematic looting and pillaging of food and farms forming part of efforts to use hunger as a weapon of war, according to a new report published on Tuesday.
Starving Tigray. How Armed Conflict and Mass Atrocities Have Destroyed an Ethiopian Region’s Economy and Food System and Are Threatening Famine (pdf) | 6 April 2021 | World Peace Foundation | ReliefWeb
« They have destroyed Tigray, literally. » Mulugeta Gebrehiwot speaking by phone from Tigray January 27, 2021 The people of Tigray, Ethiopia, are suffering a humanitarian crisis that is entirely man-made. This special report from the World Peace Foundation documents how Ethiopian and Eritrean belligerents in the war in Tigray have comprehensively dismantled the region’s economy and food system. We provide evidence of their ongoing actions to deprive people of objects and activities indispensable to their survival—actions that amount to international crimes. We track the process of deprivation conducted in a widespread and systematic manner. We indicate where it is leading: in coming months, to mass starvation and a risk of famine; in the longer term, to sustained food insecurity and dependence on external assistance.
Why peace will be elusive in Ethiopia’s civil war in Tigray | 5 April 2021 | Ethiopia Insight
Despite a promise from Abiy Ahmed that Eritrean troops will leave the region, it is likely the war will continue unabated until at least the start of the rainy season in June, and quite possibly beyond.
Ethiopia: 1,900 people killed in massacres in Tigray identified | 2 April 2021 | The Guardian
Tigray: Atlas of the Humanitarian Situation (pdf) | March 2021 | University of Ghent | Researchgate
Almost 2,000 people killed in more than 150 massacres by soldiers, paramilitaries and insurgents in Tigray have been identified by researchers studying the conflict. The oldest victims were in their 90s and the youngest were infants.
Evidence suggests Ethiopian military carried out massacre in Tigray | 2 April 2021 | BBC
An investigation by BBC Africa Eye has uncovered evidence that a massacre in northern Ethiopia was carried out by members of the Ethiopian military. It also reveals the precise location of the atrocity, in which at least 15 men were killed.
G7 warns of human rights abuses in Ethiopia’s Tigray | 2 April 2021 | DW
G7 foreign ministers have expressed concern about human rights violations in Ethiopia’s conflict-ridden Tigray. They also welcomed an announcement that Eritrean troops would withdraw from the region.
‘They Told Us Not to Resist’: Sexual Violence Pervades Ethiopia’s War | 1 April 2021 | New York Times
Rape is being used as a weapon as fighting rages in remote parts of Tigray region. “Even if we had shouted,” one woman said, “there was no one to listen.”
Dawit was watching television at a relative’s one-room apartment in Axum, a historic city in Ethiopia’s war-torn, northern Tigray region, in early March when a news bulletin flashed up on the screen. Graphic, unverified footage had surfaced of a mass killing near Dawit’s hometown of Mahibere Dego, in a mountainous area of central Tigray. In the shaky video Ethiopian soldiers appeared to round up a group of young, unarmed men on a wind-swept, dusty ledge before shooting them at point-blank range — picking them up by an arm or a leg and flinging or kicking their bodies off a rocky hillside like ragdolls.
‘You don’t belong’: land dispute drives new exodus in Ethiopia’s Tigray | 29 March 2021 | Reuters
The dusty buses keep coming, dozens a day, mattresses, chairs and baskets piled on top. They stop at schools hurriedly turned into camps, disgorging families who describe fleeing from ethnic Amhara militia in Ethiopia’s Tigray region.
The Horn Of Africa Civil Society Forum Report On Tigray (pdf) | 26 March 2021 | The Horn of Africa Civil Society Forum | Mekete Tigray UK
In 2018 Prime Minister (PM) Abiy started a very much welcome peace process with Eritrea. An initiative for which he received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2019. However, it is now clear that the talks between PM Abiy and President Isais were not about peace and normalisation of relationships; they were high-level secret preparations for war against Tigray. A Tigray whose autonomy and whose political elites emerged as mutual enemies requiring removal, especially following the September regional elections.