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Eleven Kidnapped Teachers Freed In Cameroon

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Eleven teachers kidnapped in Cameroon have been freed. Unidentified men took them hostage on Tuesday during a raid on two schools in the town of Kumbo.

Representative of the church that runs the schools, Samuel Fonki says the teachers had been freed but gave no further details when contacted by the media.

Authorities gave no immediate comment on the release.

10 days before that incident gunmen had stormed a school in another western town, and killed seven children. No one has claimed responsibility for either of the raids.

More than 3,000 persons have died since 2017 in the conflict between the Cameroonian government and the Anglophone separatists who want to break away from the primarily French-speaking state.

Human rights groups say both sides have committed widespread atrocities, with the separatists often targeting schools that fail to comply with their demands to close.

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Somalia Expels Kenyan Envoy In Row Over Alleged Poll Interference

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Somalia has expelled Kenya’s ambassador, and Somalia has recalled its own diplomat from Nairobi, after accusing Kenya, its neighbour, of interfering in the electoral process in Jubbaland, one of Somalia’s five semi-autonomous states.

Somalia did not go into details on the alleged interference, but Kenya has denied any wrongdoing and has dismissed what it called “unsubstantiated allegations.”

Kenya’s foreign ministry said on Monday it had not received any official communication from Somalia about the expulsion of its ambassador.

It then asked all political actors in Somalia to stay true to their political commitments. It also said they should avoid distracting actions, and engage constructively to ensure timely implementation of the elections calendar.

Relations between the two countries have been tense over the ownership of potential oil and gas deposits, some of which lie off the coast of Jubbaland. In February last year, Kenya recalled its ambassador after Mogadishu decided to auction oil and gas exploration blocks at the centre of their maritime rights dispute. The two countries restored ties in November last year.

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Rwanda Opens Specialized Schools For Disabled

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Rwanda has opened a rehabilitation center for persons with disabilities which has been instrumental in caring for people with various disabilities.  School officials say the center has continued to play an active role in teaching basic courses to people with disabilities, as well as providing them with basic medical care.

They also say vocational training is needed for people with disabilities in order to help them create their own jobs.

Since 2017, close observers of the problems of people with various disabilities have shown that the illness has reduced with time, which has helped in changing the perception of the Rwandan society.

The officer with the United Nations development program in charge of people with disabilities, Liliane Akadata, says isolation remains a challenge for people with disabilities.

The United Nations and its partners have raised money to help children with disabilities improve their technological skills.  European Union ambassador to Rwanda, Nicola Bellomo, says the organization will continue to work with the Rwandan government to improve the lives of the underprivileged without leaving behind people with disabilities.

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Ivory Coast, Ghana Halt US Company’s Cocoa Scheme

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Ivory Coast and Ghana are cancelling all cocoa sustainability schemes that U.S.-based Hershey corporation runs in their countries. They accuse the chocolate maker of trying to avoid paying the cocoa premium that is aimed at combating farmer poverty.

In a letter addressed to the company, Ivorian and Ghanaian cocoa regulators accuse Hershey of sourcing unusually large volumes of physical cocoa on the ice futures exchange in order to avoid the premium, known as a living income differential.

Ivory Coast and Ghana, which produce two-thirds of the world’s cocoa, said they are also barring third-party companies from running sustainability schemes in the west African nations on behalf of Hershey.

Ivory Coast and Ghana also said they are reviewing their membership of the federation of cocoa commerce, a UK-based international organization that aims to promote, protect and regulate the cocoa trade.

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