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Mali’s Neighbours Tell Junta To Transfer Power To Civilian Rule

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Niger president Mahamadou Issoufou,

Mali’s west African neighbours, ECOWAS member states, have once again asked the country’s military junta who took power in a coup thirteen days ago, to immediately return to civilian rule.  They also said the military leaders must hold elections within a year.

In a virtual summit held on Friday, the 15-nation regional group, ECOWAS, called for the “troops to return to their barracks” and for an election to be held in 12 months.

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Niger president Mahamadou Issoufou, who currently chairs ECOWAS, said the regional bloc is committed to lifting sanctions gradually in exchange as the coup leaders complied with its demands. ECOWAS had suspended Mali from its institutions, shut borders and halted financial flows with the country following the overthrow of president Ibrahim Boubacar Keita.

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The soldiers have released Keïta, on Thursay as one of ECOWAS’ demands when envoys met with the military junta last week.

The junta – known as the national committee for the people’s salvation – has talked about a transition lasting up to two years.

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ECOWAS also called for the quick establishment of a government that will tackle Mali’s various challenges and, in particular, prepare for legislative and presidential elections within 12 months.

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Tunisian Leader Proposes Death Sentence For Murderers

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Tunisian Leader Proposes Death Sentence For Murderers

Tunisian president Kais Saied has said murderers should be sentenced to death following the rape and killing of a young woman in the north African country.

President Saied told a national security council meeting on Tuesday, “those who commit murder should be sentenced to death.

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The public outrage over the woman’s murder –a 29-year-old Rahma Lahmar, sparked calls for executions to restart. Lahmar, went missing for a few days and her mutilated body was found north of the capital, Tunis, on Friday last week after she had been raped.

READ:  Security Council Adopts Resolution To Extend UN Peacekeeping Mission In Mali

Police say they have arrested a suspect who has since confessed to the killing. Many in the country are calling for the killer to be hanged. Tunisia abolished the death penalty in 1991.

READ:  Mali Elections: Opposition To Reject Poll Result

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South African Airways Suspends Operations Over Funding

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South African Airways Suspends Operations Over Funding

South Africa`s national carrier, South African Airways’ operations have been suspended with immediate effect.

SAA administrators said they were putting the struggling state-owned carrier under “care and maintenance” until funding for a restructuring plan was found.

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Some media reports say, this means the airline will not schedule any further flights after completing repatriation flights that have already been scheduled.

The airline was put in bankruptcy protection in December after heavy financial losses in the past few years. The COVID-19 pandemic has worsened the situation.

READ:  Cameroon Deploys Army Ahead Of Elections

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Ivory Coast Lifts Ban On Protests Ahead Of Polls

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Ivory Coast Lifts Ban On Protests Ahead Of Polls

Ivory Coast has lifted a ban on protests. The ban on public demonstrations in the country ends today, Wednesday just as the opposition plans to begin a campaign of civil disobedience against president Alassane Ouattara’s third term bid.

President Ouattara’s candidacy has caused tension in the country and led to protests. At least 10 persons have been killed since riots broke out last month.

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The opposition is demanding changes to the constitutional court, the electoral commission, and the withdrawal of Ouattara’s candidacy. President Ouattara has accused the opposition of scaring the public in order to disrupt the electoral process.

Ivory coast authorities have barred political candidates including former president Laurent Gbagbo and former prime minister Guillaume Soro from running because of previous convictions. Their supporters have condemned the government for excluding them from the presidential election and threatened to hold protests.

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International crisis group has urged the Ivorian authorities to allow former president Laurent Gbagbo and exiled ex-speaker Guillaume Soro to return to the country.

The United Nations special envoy for west Africa -Mohamed Ibn Chambas during a visit to Abidjan last week, urged peaceful elections in ivory coast as the nation prepares to head to the poll in October.

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