UN Envoy Regrets Killing of a Journalist in Mogadishu: "The Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General (SRSG) for Somalia, Nicholas Kay, has learnt with deep sorrow of the death of Mohamed Mohamud Tima'adde, a reporter with Universal TV, on the evening of 26 October.
Mohamed succumbed to injuries he sustained on 22 October, when he was ambushed and shot several times in Mogadishu's Wadajir district by unknown assailants who managed to escape.
He becomes the seventh journalist to be murdered in 2013; Somalia continues to be one of the most dangerous places to practice journalism in the world.
SRSG Kay noted that the media had a crucial role to play in fostering peace and stability in Somalia, and stressed the need to protect journalists and press freedom in the country.
"My heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Mohamed Mohamud Tima'adde, and to all media practitioners in Somalia," SRSG Kay said. "UNSOM continues to work with the Federal Government of Somalia to strengthen the security and justice sectors in order to ensure that the streets of Somalia are safer and violent criminals are brought to justice.""
'via Blog this'
Monday, October 28, 2013
Residents of the flashpoint Abyei region claimed by both Sudan and South Sudan were voting on Monday in an unofficial referendum to decide which country they belong to, a move likely to inflame tensions in the war-ravaged region, officials said.
"The people are voting to choose to join South Sudan or to be part of Sudan," Rou Manyiel, chairman of the Abyei civil society organisation, told AFP.
Patrolled by some 4,000 Ethiopian-led UN peacekeepers, the area is home to the settled Ngok Dinka, closely connected to South Sudan, as well the semi-nomadic Arab Misseriya, who traditionally move back and forth from Sudan grazing their cattle.
Only the Ngok Dinka are voting in the referendum -- although organisers insist it is open to all -- and the Misseriya have already angrily said they will not recognise the results of any unilateral poll.
Abyei was meant to vote on whether to be part of Sudan or South Sudan in January 2011 -- the same day Juba voted overwhelmingly to split from the north -- as part of the 2005 peace deal which ended Sudan's civil war.
That referendum was repeatedly stalled, and Sudanese troops stormed the enclave in May 2011 forcing over 100,000 to flee southwards, leaving a year later after international pressure.
Ngok Dinka leaders last week said they would press ahead with their own vote.
However, the United Nations and AU have warned that any such unilateral move could inflame tensions in the oil-producing zone and risk destabilising the uneasy peace between the longtime foes.
"There are long queues of people, but things are peaceful and calm," Manyiel added, a senior Ngok Dinka community leader. "They began to vote on Sunday and they will finish voting on Tuesday, the third day."
Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir met last week with his southern counterpart Salva Kiir amid pressure to settle Abyei's future -- one of the most important and sensitive issues left unresolved since Juba broke free two years ago -- but despite calling talks "fruitful" no breakthrough deal was made.
An AFP photographer in Abyei said long lines of residents were lining up to cast their vote, with ballot papers marked with two symbols to chose from: a pair of clasped hands symbolising a vote to be part of Sudan, and a single hand if people want to join South Sudan.
Abyei, once oil-rich but with production now tailing off, is a key area of emotional and symbolic significance for both the fledgling South and the rump state of Sudan.
On Sunday, the African Union accused the Sudan government of preventing an AU delegation from visiting Abyei, accusing Khartoum of blocking it "for contrived security reasons".
Last week Misseriya leader Mukhtar Babo Nimir told AFP his people had the option of also holding their own unilateral referendum if, as they have now done, the rival Ngok Dinka hold their own ballot.
Sudan and South Sudan clashed heavily last year along their un-demarcated border, after furious rows over oil.
International pressure eventually reined the two sides back in, with leaders signing a raft of deals, most of which however are yet to be implemented.
When South Sudan split away, it took with it oil fields accounting for 75 percent of the reserves -- with production totalling some 470,000 barrels per day -- that Sudan used to call its own.
Landlocked South Sudan complained that the north was demanding too much to use its pipelines and port facilities, and the shutdown cost both countries billions of dollars.
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|Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni addresses the public during inauguration of Uhuru Kenyatta as Kenya’s fourth President at Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani, on Tuesday. [Photo: Govedi Asutsa/Standard]|
By David Ohito
Kenya: Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni stirred fresh International Criminal Court debate during President Uhuru’s inauguration ceremony on Tuesday in Nairobi.
Museveni, who is also the the Comesa chairman, was among dignitaries attending the swearing in and handing over ceremony held at Moi International Sports Centre Kasarani.
“I want to salute the Kenyan voters on one issue – the rejection of the blackmail by the International Criminal Court (ICC) and those who seek to abuse this institution for their own agenda” Museveni said in statement.
Said Museveni; Furthermore, " I was one of those that supported the ICC because I abhor impunity. However, the usual opinionated and arrogant actors using their careless analysis have distorted the purpose of that institution. They are now using it to install leaders of their choice in Africa and eliminate the ones they do not like."
He added: "What happened here in 2007 was regrettable and must be condemned. A legalistic process, especially an external one, however, cannot address those events. Events of this nature first and most importantly, need an ideological solution by discerning why they happened. Why did inter community violence occur? Was it for genuine or false reasons? Even if you assume they were genuine reasons as a hypothetical argument, why should villagers attack one another? Would the villagers have been responsible for whatever mistakes that would have occurred?"
Musveni who previously supported ICC and the arrest of Ugandan fugitive Joseph Kony said : "Instead of a thorough and thoughtful process, we have individuals engaged in legal gymnastics! In Uganda’s case, between 1966 and 1986, we lost about 800,000 persons killed by the leaders who were in charge of the country. How did we handle that sad history? Have you ever heard us asking ICC or the UN to come and help us deal with that sad chapter of our history?"
He argued: "We only referred Joseph Kony of LRA to ICC because he was operating outside Uganda. Otherwise, we would have handled him ourselves. Equally, Kenyan actors are the ones best qualified to sit and delve into their history in order to discover the ideological stimuli the Kenyan society needs. I, therefore, use this opportunity to salute the Kenyan voters again, rejecting that blackmail and upholding the sovereignty of the Kenyan people. The people of Kenya extended hospitality to Ugandans when they had to run out of their country because of criminal rule in Uganda."
Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto are facing crimes against humanity charges at the ICC following the disputed 2007/8 presidential election that left over a thousand dead.