Tuesday May 21, 2013
Africa: Faces in WordsAlysha Atma Salem-News.com African Affairs Correspondent
New weekly update on the breaking stories in the African nations.
(PORTLAND, Ore.) - Unseen, unheard; no one should be the bearer of these two words. Unfortunately, Africa is often in the forefront of this association.
Our common humanity should change this; we should never look away because it is too distant. Our commitment to one another, to human rights, and the ability to learn should always keep us connected no matter the severity and complexity of problems.
Important insights from last week, not to be missed:
Zimbabwe: Children Crossing Borders in Search of HIV Treatment -A new type of migration is taking place in Zimbabwe. While in the past people crossed the borders into South Africa and Botswana seeking work and fleeing from their repressive circumstances, now a silent migration of HIV-positive children seeking antiretroviral treatment (ART) is taking place. Children in Zimbabwe Cross Borders in Search of HIV Treatment - allafrica.com
Arbitrary detention of two journalists amid upsurge in violence - Reporters Without Borders is very concerned about the illegal detention of journalists Abdul Ilah Haydar Shae and Kamal Sharaf for the past week. They were arrested in Sanaa on 16 and 17 August at a time when government forces are stepping up a military offensive in the south of the country against militants linked with Al-Qaeda. Arbitrary detention of two journalists amid upsurge in violence - Reporters Without Borders
Children abused, killed as witches in Nigeria - Just after midnight, the pastor seized a woman's forehead with his large hand and she fell screaming and writhing on the ground. "Fire! Fire! Fire!" shouted the worshippers, raising their hands in the air. Pastor Celestine Effiong's congregants are being delivered from what they firmly believe to be witchcraft. And in the darkness of the city and the villages beyond, similar shouts and screams echo from makeshift church to makeshift church. Children abused, killed as witches in Nigeria
Cote d’Ivoire/Nigeria: Combat Trafficking for Prostitution - Authorities in Côte d'Ivoire and Nigeria should investigate and close down networks that traffic Nigerian women and girls to Côte d'Ivoire for forced prostitution, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch also called for collaboration among regional neighbors to improve border efforts to combat trafficking. Combatting Trafficking for Prostitution - Human Rights Watch
‘I will close down newspapers that lie’ - Malawian President Bingu wa Mutharika threatened on Thursday to shut down newspapers he accused of lying that up to one million Malawians will need food aid. "I will close down newspapers that lie and tarnish my government's image," a visibly angry Mutharika said as he opened a week-long agriculture fair in the commercial capital Blantyre. I will close down newspapers that lie - iol.co.za
Refugees Pursue University Education at Camp in Northern Kenya – A university education is not what you expect to get at a refugee camp in Africa. But it, indeed, is possible at a camp in northern Kenya. Under such harsh conditions, obtaining a university degree seems like an impossible dream. But refugee students can get a degree at the Kakuma Refugee Camp in northern Kenya. The University of South Africa and the Jesuit Refugee Service have teamed up to offer bachelor degrees at the Kakuma Distance Learning Center. Refugees Pursue University Education at Camp in Northern Kenya - Voice of Africa News
Kenyan ambassador: We will all pay for ignoring Somalia - Kenya's new ambassador to the United States, Elkanah Odembo, has a message to the United States: Ignore Somalia to your own peril. For the last half-decade, Somalia's near-anarchy has taken a particularly pernicious turn toward a brand of Islamist fundamentalism not seem since the Taliban. "You can’t make this investment in Afghanistan and Pakistan and not worry about where the terrorists are going to," warns Odembo. "And the one place that we know for certain they are going to is Somalia." We will all pay for ignoring Somalia - MedeshiValley.com
Togo bans paper over story on president’s half-brother - The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns Wednesday's ruling by a criminal court judge in Togo to indefinitely ban the distribution of a Benin newspaper that had raised questions about the alleged involvement of a half-brother of President Faure Gnassingbé in drug trafficking. Story on President's half-brother leads to ban
New film on children in the DRC coincides with report of further violence - Coinciding with new reports of the gang rape of nearly 200 Congolese women is the launch of a new film looking specifically at young people in the DRC. As well as being highly informative, for each view of Children Of The Congo – From War To Witchesmoney is donated to the Eastern Congo Initiative. New film on children in the DRC coincides with report of further violence - ch16.org
Alysha Atma spends many hours working on projects that support and benefit the beleaguered people of African nations who spend way too much time off the western media's radar. This writer explains that she is a culmination of all her experiences, most importantly knowledge she says, and all that she still needs to learn; lessons of love, laughter and the extraordinary giving of both young and old. She says she has the enormous fortune of learning from the best; every person around her, and the amazing strength and fortitude of those she has never met but will always strive to listen to. "I continue to work and write because I believe in the power of community and the power of one, both contradictory to each other and yet can move together in a very powerful way. I feel a responsibility to use my place, freedoms and connections here in the US to stand up and yell for those who need my voice and actions. I have seen such strength in my fellow humans that I cannot even begin to comprehend, they have traveled distances, have gone without food, water, shelter and safety for days and weeks at a time. I have a responsibility as a fellow human to put our common humanity before anything else. Everyone deserves to look towards tomorrow, to dream of a safe future and to have a peaceful present." You can write to Alysha Atma at: email@example.com
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