VIF News Digest: International Developments (Africa), 13–19 May, 2019
UN Security Council to discuss Cameroon's escalating crisis: VOA, 13 May 2019

The United Nations Security Council this Monday is set to informally discuss the separatist crisis in Cameroon for the first time. The discussion comes at a time when the conflict is escalating with many internally displaced persons from the English speaking regions escaping to the French speaking zones where some live in desperate conditions.

Cameroon’s Prime Minister Joseph Dion Ngute, visiting the English-speaking town of Bamenda on Saturday, has been requesting people to ask their relatives who have joined separatist fighters to come back home. Click here to read...

Sudan’s Omar al-Bashir charged in connection with killing of protesters: The New York Times, 13 May 2019

Sudan’s former president, Omar Hassan al-Bashir, has been charged over his role in the killing of protesters during demonstrations that led to his ouster last month, the nation’s public prosecutor said in a statement on Monday. The prosecutor’s office accused Mr. al-Bashir and others of “inciting and criminal complicity” in the deaths of demonstrators, according to Sudan’s official news agency.

The announcement came on a day of bloody clashes in Khartoum, the capital, between armed groups of unclear affiliation and protesters who are demanding civilian rule. The military denied any role in the violence and blamed saboteurs for the deaths. Click here to read...

Sudan crisis - clashes in Khartoum leave several dead: BBC News, 14 May 2019

At least five Sudanese protesters and a member of the security forces have died in clashes in the capital, Khartoum. They were killed in gunfire at a sit-in outside military HQ where demonstrators are demanding full civilian government. Dozens have also been injured. Protesters said soldiers were responsible, but the army blamed it on unidentified elements. Sudan has been ruled by a transitional military council since last month's toppling of President Omar al-Bashir.

It is unclear exactly what happened but activists have been talking about how they were targeted by a gunman. “He shot a bullet at me, he was 20 metres away from me, at most," Raed Mubarak told the Reuters news agency. "He saw me, and he meant to shoot me. It was intentional. He did not even shoot at my leg or up in the air, he shot at my chest, at the left, intending to hit the heart. He meant to kill me." Click here to read...

Sudan crisis: Military and opposition agree three-year transition, 15 May 2019

Sudan's military leaders have announced an agreement with the opposition alliance for a three-year transition period to a civilian administration.

The Transitional Military Council (TMC) said the alliance would have two-thirds of the seats on a legislative council. However, the two sides are yet to agree on a sovereign council - the top tier of power, where both want a majority. Sudan has been ruled by the military council since last month's toppling of President Omar al-Bashir. Click here to read...

South Africa's Ramaphosa says to speed up economic reforms, fix Eskom: Reuters, 15 May 2019

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Wednesday that he would use a new five-year term to speed up economic reforms and fix ailing state power firm Eskom, a week after his African National Congress party was re-elected with a reduced majority.

Analysts have said reforms like cutting red tape and overhauling Eskom should be post-election priorities for the ANC, after a decade of slow growth and rising joblessness in Africa’s most advanced economy. “We are in an economy that has not been growing ... in an appreciable way. That troubles us,” Ramaphosa told investors at a conference in Johannesburg, acknowledging that South Africa’s regulatory framework had discouraged investment. Click here to read...

ISIL claims attack on Niger soldiers as death toll rises to 28: Aljazeera, 16 May 2019

The death toll from Tuesday's ambush on Nigerien troops near the border with Mali has risen to 28, an army spokesman and security sources have said, as the Islamic State of Iraq & Levant (ISIL) claimed responsibility for the attack.

The bodies of 11 soldiers who had previously been reported missing were discovered on Wednesday, security sources told AFP news agency. "We have confirmation that the dead bodies of the eleven missing soldiers have been found, bringing the death toll to 28," a source told AFP on Wednesday. An army spokesman on Thursday confirmed the toll has risen to 28, Reuters news agency reported. Click here to read...

Italian oil company Eni discover new light oil in Agola's deep offshore: africanews, 18 May 2019

Italian oil company Eni, revealed on Tuesday the discovery of a new light oil in Agola’s deep offshore. With this discovery, up to 250 million barrels of light oil with further upside is expected.

The production is also estimated at 10,000 barrels of oil per day. According to the company, this operation is the fourth largest commercial discovery since Eni relaunched its exploration project in mid-2018, in Angola. The Ndungu-1 NFW well is located a few kilometers from Eni’s West Hub facilities, and has been drilled in a water depth of 1076 meters, and it reached a total depth of 4050 meters.

It follows the discoveries of Kalimba, Afoxé and Agogo; the four discoveries altogether is estimated to contain up to 1.4 Billion barrels of light oil in place. This discovery will however, boost Angola’s oil production and increase the financial wherewithal of a country still dependent on oil, despite efforts to diversify its economy. Click here to read...

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