U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has lauded efforts in bringing peace in Libya. Pompeo said on Monday that a ceasefire agreement between Libya’s warring factions was a courageous step and that all foreign fighters must leave the country in 90 days in line with the accord.
The US diplomat Pompeo, arrived in New Delhi on the first leg of an Asian trip, and said it was important that all parties support the success of the U.N.-facilitated talks in Geneva on Friday.
Meanwhile, Libya’s state oil company has announced the reopening of the last major oil field under its control, days after the country’s warring parties agreed a ceasefire deal.
The national oil corporation says it has lifted its restrictions on el-feel oilfield – meaning that it has ended all the closures of oilfields and ports brought on by a months-long blockade by forces loyal to the Khalifa Haftar – the military commander based in eastern Libya.
Gen Haftar’s forces imposed the blockade in January when they were still besieging the capital, Tripoli, but agreed to lift it in September. Libya’s economy is dependent on oil.
Flavoured HIV Drug For Children To Be Rolled Out In Africa
Aid agencies say flavoured tablet for children living with HIV will be rolled out in Africa next year. The un estimates more than one and a half million children around the world live with HIV with only half receiving any treatment.
The UN explains one thing that has made it difficult for young children to take their anti-retroviral medication has been its bitter taste. Another problem has been the cost – despite some significant progress in recent years.
Health experts say the low cost strawberry-flavoured tablet will be given in doses that are suitable for children living with HIV. That means no more crushing up of adult-sized tablets.
It is to be the first generic paediatric version of a key anti-retroviral therapy which will even be available for babies. Reports say, in a few months, children in Benin Republic, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria and Zimbabwe will receive the new tablets.
The new treatment will cost 120 dollars a year instead of its previous nearly 500 dollars a year cost.
A landmark agreement between UNITAID and the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) will see HIV treatment among children reduce by 75% in low and middle-income countries with access to more appropriate treatment.
Mali: COVID-19 And Conflict Lead To Rise In Child Trafficking
The United Nations Refugee Agency, UNHCR says child trafficking is on the rise in Mali, with more under-aged children being recruited by armed groups and forced to work in gold mines. It says the children were exposed to “the worst forms of child labour, economic exploitation, and physical, sexual and psychological abuse
UNHCR, says, the situation is worsened by conflict, covid-19 and deteriorating economic conditions. Particularly in Gao and Kidal where many areas are controlled by armed groups.
As schools remain closed because of conflict, insecurity, covid-19 or teachers’ strikes, children are reported pushed towards informal gold mines.
UNHCR says a network of humanitarian agencies has documented 230 cases of child recruitment in the first half of the year, compared with 215 cases all of last year.
It also found an estimated 6,000 children, disproportionately boys, working across eight mining sites in Mali.
The U.S State Department report says, Mali is a source, transit, and destination country for transnational trafficking, and that internal trafficking is more prevalent.
Okonjo-Iweala Named Forbes Africa Person Of The Year
Nigeria’s former Finance Minister, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has on Tuesday been named Forbes Africa Person of the Year 2020.
Forbes Africa disclosed this in a tweet saying Okonjo-Iweala who is a candidate for the office of the Director-General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), has been named “The 2020 African person of the Year.”
Reacting to the news, Okonjo-Iweala said she is “thrilled to be named Forbes Africa-CNBC ‘2020 African of the Year’ following in the footsteps of my great brothers Paul Kagame and Akin Adesina.”
She added “This award is for Africans suffering the health and economic impact of COVID-19. The energy and resilience of Africans inspires me”.