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United States Africa Command Public Affairs Office 10 May 2012 USAFRICOM - related news stories

Good morning. Please see below news review for May 10, 2012. Of interest in today's clips: -- U.S. Commits $224 Million to Fight HIV in Nigeria -- Al Shabaab Arrests 100 Local Elders in South-Central Region -- Presidential Vote Splits Egypt's Strict Islamists -- Pirates Hijack Supply Ship off Nigeria's Oil-rich Niger Delta, Later Release 17 Crew Members U.S. Africa Command Public Affairs Please send questions or comments to: publicaffairs@usafricom.mil DSN (314) 421-2687 or commercial +49-(0)711-729-2687 Headline Nigeria: U.S. Commits U.S.$224 Million to Fight HIV Date Outlet

05/10/2012 Daily Trust

The United States of America (USA) has budgeted about $224,000,000 to tackle the scourge of HIV/AIDS in Nigeria.

Al Shabaab Arrests Shabelle 100 Local Elders in 05/10/2012 Media South-Central Region Network of Somalia
Fighters of Al shabaab insurgent group linked with Al Qaeda on Wednesday apprehended nearly 100 elders in three locations in central Somalia, a lawmaker confirmed to Shabelle Media.

Presidential Vote Splits Egypt's Strict Islamists

05/10/2012 Reuters

ALEXANDRIA, Egypt - At al-Taqwa mosque in Egypt's second biggest city, a preacher defends his ultra-orthodox Salafi group's decision to endorse Abdel Moneim Abol Fotouh, an Islamist who casts himself as a moderate, in this month's presidential election.

Africa and Diaspora to Hold Summit

05/10/2012 Africa Review

A Global African Diaspora summit is being planned for May 25 Africa Day at Sandton, South Africa.

Pirates Hijack Supply Ship off Nigeria's OilAssociated rich Niger Delta, Later 05/10/2012 Press Release 17 Crew Members
LAGOS, Nigeria -- An international watchdog says pirates hijacked a supply ship off Nigeria's oil-rich Niger Delta

and held it for several hours before releasing the vessel's crew.

Libyan Missiles on the Loose

05/10/2012

Washington Post

Whenever the CIA uncovers a new plot overseas, like al-Qaeda's latest scheme to blow up civilian aircraft using advanced, hard-to-detect explosives, people breathe a sigh of relief. But this is a multifront war, and almost by definition, the attack that ge...

South Africa: U.S. Agriculture Hosts Food Security Seminar

05/10/2012

BizCommunity

By 2100 the world's population will exceed ten billion and more than 80% of that population will be resident in Africa and Asia, according to the United Nations. Right now, world population growth coupled with the economic crisis and its resultant higher f...

U.S. Army Africa Commander Engages U.S. 05/10/2012 Leaders in Djibouti, AFRICOM Ethiopia
ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia -- During a whirlwind trip to East Africa, Maj. Gen. David R. Hogg, commander, U.S. Army Africa, and a small group of advisers visited U.S. Army troops at Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa in Djibouti and attended meetings wi...

Sudan War Panes Bomb South, Violating UN Resolution

05/10/2012 AFP

Sudanese war planes have launched renewed air strikes against South Sudan, violating a UN Security Council resolution to end weeks of a bitter border conflict, the South's army said Wednesday.

Kenya, Japan State Firms Join to Survey 05/10/2012 Reuters for Oil
NAIROBI - The state oil firms of Japan and Kenya have signed an agreement to survey the country in East Africa, which has become a hot spot for exploration after the discovery of oil, and assess its onshore petroleum reserves, officials said on Wednesday.

Moral Obligation to Aid Horn of Africa

05/10/2012 AFP

EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton urged world governments on Wednesday to meet a "moral obligation" to pump new emergency aid into the drought-hit Horn of Africa.

United United Nations News 05/10/2012 Nations News Centre - Africa Briefs Centre
- Tunisia must prioritize right to education as it proceeds with reforms UN expert - Children in Mali suffering from triple disaster, warns UNICEF - Security Council warns of sanctions if Guinea-Bissau political crisis continues

News Headline: Nigeria: U.S. Commits U.S.$224 Million to Fight HIV | News Date: 05/10/2012 Outlet Full Name: Daily Trust News Text: By Joshua Odeyemi The United States of America (USA) has budgeted about $224,000,000 to tackle the scourge of HIV/AIDS in Nigeria. The US Ambassador to Nigeria, Terence McCulley made this known while speaking at the

launching of 'Strengthening Integrated Delivery of HIV/AIDS Services' (SIDHAS) in Abuja on Tuesday. He noted that the project which will be executed in the 36 States of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory will span through five years (2011-2015). The US government is channeling the programme through its agency - the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Targets The project is targeted at increasing access to high-quality comprehensive HIV/AIDS and Tuberculosis prevention, treatment, care and related services through improved efficiencies in service delivery. Also, it is aimed at improving cross-sectional integration of high quality HIV/AIDS and Tuberculosis services as well as helping to improve stewardship by Nigerian institutions for the provision of high-quality comprehensive HIV/AIDS and Tuberculosis services. According to the US Ambassador, SIDHAS will assist the government of Nigeria to provide "252,000 men, women and children with anti-retroviral therapy." He added that the project will see "1.7 million pregnant women receive counseling and testing for the prevention of mother to child transmission of HIV virus." Ambassador McCulley further revealed that 41,220 pregnant women will complete antiretroviral treatment within the said time frame. Antecedent SIDHAS will build on the achievement of the Global HIV/AIDS Initiative Nigeria (GHAIN) project - the project that SIDHAS succeeded and which was funded by the US government between 2004 and 2011- in achieving its aims. The US Ambassador said "between 2004 and 2010, the Global HIV/AIDS Initiative Nigeria provided training for health workers, refurbished facilities and improved laboratory and pharmacy services, supply chain management and data collection and reporting." He added that HIV testing and counseling services were increased while referral systems were improved. Ambassador McCUlley also said "by 2011, USAID provided assistance to over 160,000 HIV positive persons in 124 states" of the country. History Nigeria's overall HIV prevalence is estimated to be 3.6 percent with substantial variations in prevalence and risk factors across regions. A 2008 analysis by the National Agency for the control of AIDS (NACA) estimated that 62 percent of new infections occur among people perceived as practicing "low-risk sex" in the general population, including married sexual partners. The analysis shows that the remaining 38 percent occur among MARPs, who constitute about 3.5 percent of the adult population, and their partners.

It is also claimed that Nigeria is the country with the third highest number of HIV infections in the world, behind India and South Africa.
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News Headline: Al Shabaab Arrests 100 Local Elders in South-Central Region of Somalia |

News Date: 05/10/2012 Outlet Full Name: Shabelle Media Network News Text: DHUSAMAREB Fighters of Al shabaab insurgent group linked with Al Qaeda on Wednesday apprehended nearly 100 elders in three locations in central Somalia, a lawmaker confirmed to Shabelle Media. Dahir Sheik Amiin Jesow, a Somali MP said the arrests took place today at three areas called Buqda-Aqable, El-Ali, Mukeyle located in Hiran, Lower Middle Shabelle regions of south and central Somalia. The Arrested elders were said to have been accused of planning to travel to Mogadishu as to join the continuing Somalia Traditional elders convenes in the capital which is intended to select a national constituent assembly that will adopt the draft constitution and the upcoming Somali parliament. Al shabab has already declared its stiff stance against Mogadishu meeting, saying he who attends it will be out of Islam, according to Sheik Ali Dhere, the spokesman of the group. Locals expressed concern the group's move against the elders and some residents demanded for immediate safe release. But fighters loyal to the group have captured and jailed.
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News Headline: Presidential Vote Splits Egypt's Strict Islamists | News Date: 05/10/2012 Outlet Full Name: Reuters News Text: By Tamim Elyan ALEXANDRIA, Egypt - At al-Taqwa mosque in Egypt's second biggest city, a preacher defends his ultra-orthodox Salafi group's decision to endorse Abdel Moneim Abol Fotouh, an Islamist who casts himself as a moderate, in this month's presidential election. "Don't consider his media statements only. He has various writings that confirm his comprehensive understanding of Islam and his desire to achieve it," Yasser Burhamy, a founder of the Salafi movement in Egypt, tells his Alexandria audience, his message recorded and posted on the group's website. The poll, expected to go to a run-off in June, is a landmark in a turbulent transition to democracy that could see Egypt elect an Islamist to replace deposed President Hosni Mubarak, who repressed proponents of political Islam throughout his 30-year rule and battled armed Muslim militants in the 1990s. The endorsement by Burhamy's influential Salafi Call and its political party, al-Nour, has pushed Abol Fotouh towards the front of the pack and undercut Mohamed Mursi, the candidate of the rival Muslim Brotherhood.

But it has divided Salafis, who number as many as 3 million devotees plus other sympathisers among Egypt's 82 million people. Their votes could help swing the May 23-24 election. Abol Fotouh's stiffest competition in the race, according to sketchy opinion polls, will be Amr Moussa, a former head of the Arab League and one-time foreign minister to Mubarak. But Abol Fotouh's chances may hinge on whether Salafis unite behind him or split. Some Salafis say they will defy their leadership and vote for Mursi or other Islamist candidates. "The youth don't have a unified vote. Some say they will follow the sheikhs' decision and others will think and decide by themselves," said Motaz Azmy, 27, in Alexandria, a Salafi stronghold where the movement emerged in the 1970s. BROAD APPEAL Some Salafis doubt Abol Fotouh's commitment to implementing Islamic sharia law, a central tenet for followers of the strict school, and believe his courting of liberals in his television and press appearances shows he is too ready to compromise. Many Salafis, though not their parties, had backed Hazem Salah Abu Ismail, a sheikh who vowed to enforce sharia, promised social justice and blamed the West for many of Egypt's ills. But he was disqualified in April when his late mother was found to have had U.S. citizenship, violating a rule that both parents of a president hold only Egyptian nationality. Abu Ismail's supporters have protested repeatedly in the streets. The Salafi al-Nour party, with the second biggest bloc in parliament, is backing Abol Fotouh, saying he combines broad popular appeal with commitment to Islamist values, even though it acknowledged some ideological differences. It said it would not back the Brotherhood's Mursi as it did not want one group "monopolising power", reflecting a long rivalry among Islamists which dates back to the 1970s. Burhamy said another Islamist candidate, Selim al-Awa, might have been a popular choice for Salafis, but argued that he lacked Abol Fotouh's ability to draw a range of voters. Such a calculation shows an unusually pragmatic streak in the Salafi camp, which for years steered clear of politics and often criticised the Brotherhood, founded 84 years ago, for compromising on principles in pursuit of political influence. The Brotherhood bore the brunt of Mubarak's repressive policies. "They have entered the political game and are presenting compromises in their speech," said Adel Soliman, head of Cairo's International Centre for Future and Strategic Studies. The Salafis' showing in the parliamentary poll shocked many Egyptians and proved they had a formidable voting machine linked to preachers in 4,000 mosques they are thought to control. Egypt has about 108,000 mosques and other Muslim places of worship. "Political decisions are weighed on the scale of what is beneficial and what is harmful," Abdel Moneim el-Shahat, a spokesman for the Salafi Call, wrote on the group's website. He voiced "reservations" about Abol Fotouh's approach, but said: "Nevertheless, we agree that applying (sharia) should start with what's possible." Not all Salafis agree, and Nour party chairman Emad Abdel Ghaffour, said it was hard to convince them, given that the fledgling party had not fielded a candidate of its own.

EXPELLED Nour officials said they had held back partly because the party was still in its infancy, having been formed shortly after Mubarak was toppled in February 2011, but also because Egypt needed a president who did not only represent one group. In similar vein, the Brotherhood had initially vowed not to run a candidate so that Egyptians would not think it was seeking to monopolise power, but the group then staged a U-turn. Abol Fotouh was expelled from the Brotherhood last year when he defied its wishes and ran for president. His break with the movement founded 84 years ago may make him attractive to some Salafis. But others oppose him, taking exception to what they see as comments dismissive of Salafis. "He described us as far-right and said things that contradict sharia ... Salafis can't convince others about him because they themselves aren't convinced," said Omar Abdel Aziz, 24, a Nour party member who said he was backing Mursi. Another group, the Religious Authority for Rights and Reform, which includes Salafi scholars as well as Brotherhood members, has endorsed Mursi, who says he is the only real Islamist in the race. Abol Fotouh repeatedly says Egypt needs "moderate" Islam, calling himself a "religiously conservative liberal" and at other times an "Islamist." He says a Christian or woman could be president, a view Salafis oppose. Since he was endorsed by Salafis, Abol Fotouh has reached out to them, promising that laws not compatible with sharia will be changed and sharia - not "the principles of sharia" as the current constitution says - would be the source of legislation. But Nour party hardliners like Abdel Aziz are unconvinced. "People voted for Nour for the sake of religion and nothing else," he said. "If Abol Fotouh wins, it will be the dark ages for Salafis and liberals will flourish."
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News Headline: Africa and Diaspora to Hold Summit | News Date: 05/10/2012 Outlet Full Name: Africa Review News Text: BY Baboucarr Ceesay A Global African Diaspora summit is being planned for May 25 Africa Day at Sandton, South Africa. The gathering will bring together leaders from African and Caribbean countries, as well as those from South American countries that have sizeable Black populations. According to Chika Onyeani and Loretta Hand-Onyeani of Global Africa Media Group, a USbased organisation active in diaspora matters, preparations are already at an advanced stage for hosting African diaspora leaders from all over the world. The deputy chairperson of the African Union Commission, Mr Erastus Mwencha, recently told a

US Black Mayors conference in New York: "Our expectation is that the Global Diaspora Summit would come out with a Magna Carta for Africa-Diaspora relations. The summit, whose organisation the AU is involved, is aimed at strengthening the commitment, particularly on the part of governments - in Africa and in countries with substantial African populations - to structured relationships between Africa and its diaspora. The summit will also define key goals and identify specific projects to which collective African efforts, governmental and non-governmental, will be directed. The real task [of the diaspora programme] would begin immediately after in the implementation of the summit's outcomes and legacy projects for development, Mr Mwencha told the US mayors. Dr Jinmi Adisa, who oversees diaspora affairs at the AU Commission, described the Diaspora project as designed to rebuild the global African family" through a multiplicity of initiatives such as an African Institute of Remittances, the African Diaspora Volunteer Corps, and a Diaspora Market Place. AU leaders meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in January this year had affirmed the date of the summit and had asked the AU Commission and South Africa to collaborate so as to host a successful diaspora gathering. They leaders requested the Commission to consider preparing a framework document on the representation of the African diaspora in AU structures and processes.
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News Headline: Pirates Hijack Supply Ship off Nigeria's Oil-rich Niger Delta, Later Release 17 Crew Members | News Date: 05/10/2012 Outlet Full Name: Associated Press News Text: LAGOS, Nigeria An international watchdog says pirates hijacked a supply ship off Nigeria's oil-rich Niger Delta and held it for several hours before releasing the vessel's crew. The International Maritime Bureau said the attack happened Tuesday off the delta. The bureau said in a short statement that the pirates boarded the tug boat and held 17 crew members hostage before releasing them. The nationalities of those held was not immediately known. The attack is just the latest to target Nigeria and West Africa's Gulf of Guinea, where piracy has escalated from low-level armed robberies to hijackings and cargo thefts. Some believe militants once involved in fighting in the Nigeria oil delta now take part in the piracy. Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
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News Headline: Libyan Missiles on the Loose | News Date: 05/10/2012 Outlet Full Name: Washington Post News Text: By David Ignatius

Whenever the CIA uncovers a new plot overseas, like al-Qaeda's latest scheme to blow up civilian aircraft using advanced, hard-to-detect explosives, people breathe a sigh of relief. But this is a multifront war, and almost by definition, the attack that gets you is the one you didn't see coming. For the past few months, I've been hearing private warnings about another threat to commercial planes namely, the spread of shoulder-fired anti-aircraft missiles from Libya after the overthrow of Moammar Gaddafi's regime. A State Department official said in February that Gaddafi had acquired 20,000 of these weapons, and that only 5,000 of them had been secured through a $40 million U.S. program to buy up loose missiles. How many are still missing? asked Andrew Shapiro, assistant secretary of state for politicalmilitary affairs, in his Feb. 2 speech. The frank answer is we don't know and probably never will. Here's the scary part: Two former CIA counterterrorism officers told me last week that technicians recently refurbished 800 of these man-portable air-defense systems (known as MANPADS) some for an African jihadist group called Boko Haram that is often seen as an ally of al-Qaeda for possible use against commercial jets flying into Niger, Chad and perhaps Nigeria. The former CIA officers have been trying for eight months to alert U.S. intelligence, without success. Here's a summary of the messages I've seen. On Sept. 9, 2011, as Gaddafi's regime was collapsing, one of the former CIA officers warned an FBI contact that Libyan missiles were moving south into the Agadez region of Niger inhabited by Tuareg tribesmen, who are believed to have links with al-Qaeda. He explained to the FBI contact that an Arab source said there are SA-7s and SA-24s (two Russian-made weapons) already on the ground in Agadez from Libya in the hands of Tuareg AQ affiliated groups. He heard nothing back. In a Sept. 12 e-mail, the former CIA officer wrote his FBI friend that the Niger contacts have determined locally that the [United States government] doesn't want to help them chase down the missiles. I suspect [the Near East division of CIA] squashed this by their normal bureaucratic warfare, he speculated. The CIA veteran still hoped that U.S. intelligence would get involved, so he provided the name and telephone number of a relative of a former Libyan intelligence officer who allegedly had helped move the missiles out of the country. On Sept. 15, he also sent the FBI contact phone numbers for the Arab source in Niger who was closely monitoring the missile movements. On Sept. 28, the frustrated ex-CIA officer wrote a U.S. military contact: The missiles are in the hands of al-Qaeda and being distributed. I would really like to know who in the agency was the roadblock and why. Still, the former CIA officer heard nothing back. In December, he wrote another FBI contact that a speed bump at the agency apparently was blocking communication. Finally, in late April, the two former CIA officers received information so urgent they felt they had to get it out, somehow. They sent to a law enforcement contact a picture of a rebel fighter aiming one of the Libyan missiles, and this explanation: The missiles and munitions that have been streaming out of Libya since the fall of 2011 have made their way to Agadez in Niger and points west. ... Boko Haram has taken possession of some of the refurbished missiles. They have brought Egyptian army ordnance technicians to refurbish and test the SA-7B missiles pictured below. ... The source claims that some 800 missiles are available in the area.

Last weekend, the CIA veterans finally heard from someone claiming to represent their former employer. The agency official was interested in talking to their Arab source. When I asked senior U.S. officials for comment, they said they hadn't heard about the specifics of this case, or the e-mail exchanges. But they agreed the Libyan missiles are a serious problem. It's probably true that a small number of Libyan MANPADS have been sold on the black market, and that al-Qaeda in the Maghreb is trying to acquire them, said a senior U.S. official. The White House commissioned an interagency task force last fall to hunt for the Libyan missiles. This is going to be a long-term risk mitigation effort, to buy down the risk, the senior official explained. That sounds sensible enough, but I wonder why nobody was listening when the former CIA officers began ringing the alarm bell.
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News Headline: South Africa: U.S. Agriculture Hosts Food Security Seminar | News Date: 05/10/2012 Outlet Full Name: Biz-Community News Text: By 2100 the world's population will exceed ten billion and more than 80% of that population will be resident in Africa and Asia, according to the United Nations. Right now, world population growth coupled with the economic crisis and its resultant higher food prices and falling consumption mean that the world, and Africa in particular, is facing a food security crisis. The pressing issue of food security, or the availability of food and a population's access to it, will be dealt with extensively at the USA Food Security Seminar in Sandton, Johannesburg on Tuesday, 22 May, hosted by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). In this one-day seminar, American and South African industry leaders will provide insights on food security, nutrition, world food trends and practical solutions for cost-effective feeding of the people of Southern Africa, including the region's most at-risk demographic, children aged five and under. "We invite stakeholders and buyers from the Southern African food industry to join us, to listen and exchange views on the issues that will be put on the table, as well as be introduced to a range of quality, cost-effective food products from the USA," says Jim Hershey, seminar facilitator and executive director of the World Initiative for Soy in Human Health (WISHH) at the American Soybean Association (ASA). Emphasis will be on protein-rich products Topics on the agenda include global food demand and rising food prices, the role of trade in transforming agriculture into food security and building a platform for long-term food security and trade in Africa, for good health and economic development. "Among the food products that will be introduced and discussed, are dry beans, peanuts, dehydrated potatoes, value-added soy proteins and seafood. This emphasis on protein-rich products is deliberate in view of the role played by protein-deficiency in stunting and the prevalence of this condition in Southern Africa," Hershey adds. Stunting, which is reflective of chronic nutritional deficiency and results in low height for age, affects an estimated 195 million children in the developing world. More than 90% of the world's stunted children live in Africa and Asia, and according to a January 2011 UNICEF news release, of the 24 countries that account for 80% of the world's stunting burden, seven are in the Eastern and Southern African region.

Soy is a step in right direction More sobering yet are the findings of South Africa's 2005 National Food Consumption Survey, which highlighted stunting as the most common form of nutritional disorder affecting South African children. The study found that 18% of children aged between one and nine were affected by stunting, while 5% showed signs of severe stunting. "On a more positive note, the good news is that there are increasing numbers of companies in Southern Africa that are looking for ways to use soy protein in the foods they offer to the market, like soy-fortified maize flour, soy beverages and textured soy products like soy mince. This is absolutely a step in the right direction, towards a future where the phrase 'nutritional deficiency' has no place in the Southern African vocabulary," says Hershey.
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News Headline: U.S. Army Africa Commander Engages Leaders in Djibouti, Ethiopia | News Date: 05/10/2012 Outlet Full Name: U.S. AFRICOM News Text: By Richard Bartell ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia During a whirlwind trip to East Africa, Maj. Gen. David R. Hogg, commander, U.S. Army Africa, and a small group of advisers visited U.S. Army troops at Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa in Djibouti and attended meetings with African Union mission leaders in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, April 24-27. Initially, Hogg traveled to Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, where he, along with USARAF Command Sgt. Maj. Hu Rhodes, USARAF's Political Adviser Alan Latimer and Security Cooperation Desk Officer Ron Stafford took part in a series of briefings with Air Force Brig. Gen. Eugene Haase, deputy commander of Combined Joint Task Force Horn of Africa. Following the CJTF-HOA briefings, Hogg met with Texas Army National Guard and U.S. Army Reserve troops currently working in and around Camp Lemonnier. Hogg explained the significance and the purpose of the trip, known as a senior leader engagement. "Senior leader engagements are important tools to establish relationships and begin partnerships with our African Land Force partners," Hogg said. "It's critical for us to develop these relationships to open doors for further military-to-military training and solid partnerships for future operations as they occur." Hogg said the trip to HOA and Ethiopia was unlike other SLEs he has taken. "This trip was unique in that we traveled to Djibouti to meet with Army personnel. It falls under our Title 10 missions, [meaning we have administrative, legal, finance and logistical oversight]. We met with our soldiers to see how they were doing and discuss any needs we can support at the USARAF level. Though these Army units fall under Adm. [Michael] Franklin at CTJF-HOA, our role is to make sure that the Army supports him," Hogg said. Hogg stopped-by to meet with members of the U.S. Army 490th Civil Affairs Battalion who provided more than 5,000 backpacks for school children at 16 schools in the Ali Sabieh area. Additionally, Hogg accompanied the civil affairs personnel to a local library to deliver books and other reading material.

U.S. Army civil affairs soldiers have created a relationship with the local library staff, frequently arranging donations of English reading and study materials and creating an English language discussion group. "I'm impressed by the accomplishments of the civil affairs team. They are doing some great things in Ali Sabieh," Hogg said. The next stop on the SLE was Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. For Hogg, it was his first official engagement in the Ethiopian capital. In Addis Ababa, Hogg and his team met with U.S. Defense Attachh officials as well as European and African Union representatives. "It was an opportunity to get to know the African Union and meet with Ugandan Brig. Gen. Jack Bakasumba, the Eastern Africa Standby Brigade commander," Hogg said. The EASB is made up of personnel from Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda, Sudan, Rwanda, Mauritius, Madagascar, Eritrea, Djibouti, Seychelles, Somalia and Tanzania, "so we're looking at ways we can work with them in the future through the CTJF-HOA." "In the near future, there may be partnership events with the EASB as observers for a USARAF exercise and perhaps a command post exercise, it's all very positive progress," Hogg said. Source: DVIDS
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News Headline: Sudan War Panes Bomb South, Violating UN Resolution | News Date: 05/10/2012 Outlet Full Name: AFP News Text: Sudanese war planes have launched renewed air strikes against South Sudan, violating a UN Security Council resolution to end weeks of a bitter border conflict, the South's army said Wednesday. "The Republic of Sudan has been randomly bombarding civilian areas," said Southern army spokesman Kella Kueth, who said the air strikes hit the border states of Upper Nile, Unity and Western Bahr el-Ghazal on Monday and Tuesday. It was not possible to independently confirm the reports of bombing, and Sudan has repeatedly denied it has bombed the South. "The people of Khartoum, they just deny," Kueth said, adding that both fighter jets and Antonov airplanes carried the air raids. Both sides say they are complying with a United Nations Security Council resolution which ordered them to stop fighting from last Friday, after international concern the rivals could return to all out war. A border war with South Sudan began in late March, escalating with waves of Sudanese air strikes against South Sudanese territory and the South's 10-day seizure of the Heglig oil field from Khartoum's army. The South's army confirmed it had pulled back 10 kilometres (six miles) south of the contested

border line, in accordance with the UN deadline Wednesday to do so. However the border is undemarcated. RELATED STORIES South Sudan defiant after week of fighting with Sudan "Yes, we have done so... but we are focusing on the bombing," Kueth added. The UN resolution threatens additional non-military sanctions if either side fails to meet its conditions, including ordering Sudan to halt air strikes. It also lays down a May 16 deadline for Khartoum and Juba to "unconditionally resume negotiations" mediated by the African Union. Troops from the rival armies are dug into fortified defensive positions along the restive border. The reported attacks come as UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay visits South Sudan to discuss the protection of civilians affected by the border fighting. Sudan has accused the South's army of occupying border areas Khartoum claims as theirs, in the frontier zone between Sudan's South Darfur state, and the South's Western and Northern Bahr el-Ghazal states. However, the South reject those claims, saying clashes there were between Khartoum's army and northern rebels. "We, the South, do not have anything to do with Darfur, we do not concern ourselves about that," Kueth said. Sudan also accuses the South of backing rebels from Darfur as well as those fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state and Blue Nile. Juba rejects the claims, and in turn accuses Khartoum of backing rebels on its territory, a tactic it used to deadly effect during their 1983-2005 civil war. The South also accuses Khartoum of occupying several parts of its territory, including the Lebanon-sized Abyei region, claimed by both sides but which Sudan's army stormed last year forcing over 100,000 people to flee southwards.
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News Headline: Kenya, Japan State Firms Join to Survey for Oil | News Date: 05/10/2012 Outlet Full Name: Reuters News Text: By Kelly Gilblom and George Obulutsa NAIROBI - The state oil firms of Japan and Kenya have signed an agreement to survey the country in East Africa, which has become a hot spot for exploration after the discovery of oil, and assess its onshore petroleum reserves, officials said on Wednesday. National Oil Corporation of Kenya (NOCK) and Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation (JOGMEC) agreed to jointly conduct geophysical surveys to help evaluate the commercial viability of hydrocarbons in Kenya.

Geophysical surveys help exploration firms determine areas where drilling is likely to have the most chance of success. The deal, which will run for an initial year and a half, underlines the interest international oil firms are showing in East Africa and the Horn of Africa following several major oil and natural gas finds in the region. Underscoring the hectic exploration activity in the region, Africa-focused Ophir Energy Plc said it planned to acquire 3D seismic data on its offshore block L15 in the third quarter of 2012 and to drill an exploratory well there in 2013. Australian explorer Otto Energy also said it had, through its Tanzanian unit, acquired interests in two blocks in the country where it plans to do an airborne survey from July. Companies discovered oil in neighbouring Uganda in 2006, and this year explorers found large natural gas deposits off the coast of Mozambique. At the end of March, Anglo-Irish explorer Tullow Oil and its partner Africa Oil Corp discovered oil in northern Kenya, the first oil find in Kenya. Tullow and Africa Oil have yet to determine whether their find in Kenya is commercially viable. Tullow said on Wednesday it planned to spend up to $750 million jointly with its partners in further drilling in Uganda this year. It said on Monday the thickness of the oil reservoir in Kenya was greater than initially expected and that it had only drilled to the most shallow depths of the planned well, a significant sign for Kenya's potential as an oil producer. About two dozen other companies are exploring for oil and gas onshore and offshore Kenya, including NOCK, which is actively exploring the 14T block in the southern part of the country's Magadi Basin. It acquired the block in November 2010. OPHIR, OTTO EXPLORATION NOCK and JOGMEC's first survey on 14T is planned for June 2012. NOCK also said the companies would complete 2D seismic surveys and electromagnetic studies. It does not have immediate plans to drill on the block. In addition to NOCK's exploration efforts, it operates more than 100 petrol stations, sells its own petroleum products and is charged with helping develop an infrastructure plan to position Kenya as an oil and gas trading hub. Ophir Energy has a 60 percent stake in Kenya's Block L9, where it is at present acquiring 3D seismic data. The data acquisition and drilling on block L15, whose licence it fully holds, is part of Ophir's wider programme for its blocks in Kenya and Tanzania. "The Lamu basin has the potential to contain both gas and liquids as demonstrated by previous wells in the area," it said in its annual report. Otto Energy said in a statement the government had approved for it to take a 50 percent working interest in the Kilosa-Kilombero and the Pangani blocks licences. The company said it had already started to reprocess aeromagnetic data on the blocks and planned to do further surveys later in the year. An airborne magnetic and gravity survey is planned to commence in July 2012.

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News Headline: Moral Obligation to Aid Horn of Africa | News Date: 05/10/2012 Outlet Full Name: AFP News Text: BRUSSELS - EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton urged world governments on Wednesday to meet a "moral obligation" to pump new emergency aid into the drought-hit Horn of Africa. "Faced with the worst droughts in 60 years, over 12 million people in Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia, Eritrea and Djibouti are in urgent need of food, water and shelter," Ashton said on the eve of an African Union international donor conference in Addis Ababa. "The situation is grave, and it is a moral obligation of the international community to offer its help," she said. Citing EU commitments she tallied at nearly $1.9bn through until 2013, she said the 27-state European Union "calls on those attending... to continue to do likewise" in raising their own levels of aid. The demands are huge, with a $1.1bn shortfall from a total $2.4bn needed, according to the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (Ocha). Somalia worst hit Somalia is the worst hit, with several southern regions in famine, where more than 390 000 children are at risk of dying from malnutrition, according to Ocha. The UN has described Somalia, where a civil war has been going on since 1991, as facing the most severe humanitarian crisis in the world. Campaign organisers have said the African Union (AU) should offer a minimum of $50m to relief efforts. The AU has so far pledged $500 000. Last week the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation pledged $350m. Humanitarian commitment raised Ashton said the EU's immediate humanitarian commitment for this year had risen from $140m to $228m, while national aid pledges from its member states totalled a further $636m. The money has been used to provide food, health care, water and sanitation facilities from Somalia to a refugee camp in Kenya. She said another $982m in long-term aid is focused on "agriculture, rural development and food security". She underlined: "Drought comes on top of many other problems facing the countries of the Horn of Africa". These involve "scarce resources, climate change, high population growth, a lack of infrastructure and market access, distorted trade patterns, and high cereal and fuel prices".

She also highlighted the role of anti-piracy efforts off the coast of Somalia.
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News Headline: United Nations News Centre - Africa Briefs | News Date: 05/10/2012 Outlet Full Name: United Nations News Centre News Text: Tunisia must prioritize right to education as it proceeds with reforms UN expert 9 May An independent United Nations expert today urged the Tunisian Government to ensure that human rights, especially the right to education, are kept at the heart of the historic reforms taking place in the North African nation. Children in Mali suffering from triple disaster, warns UNICEF 9 May The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) is warning of grave violations of child rights in northern Mali, where they are confronted not just by the food crisis in the wider Sahel region but also by displacement and the effect of an armed rebellion. Secretary-General recommends gradual drawdown of UN mission in Liberia 8 May Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has recommended that the United Nations peacekeeping operation in Liberia be reduced gradually by about 4,200 troops in three phases between this year and 2015, when it will have a residual presence of approximately 3,750 soldiers. Security Council warns of sanctions if Guinea-Bissau political crisis continues 8 May As negotiations towards finding a solution to the political crisis in Guinea-Bissau continue, the Security Council today reiterated its readiness to consider targeted sanctions against those involved in last month's military coup if the situation is not resolved.
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