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Nigeria’s Chibok girls: Schoolgirl ‘not one of 276’

Nigeria's Chibok girls: Schoolgirl 'not one of 276'

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Eighty-two Chibok girls were released in a prisoner swap earlier this month

A schoolgirl who escaped Nigeria's militant Islamists is not one of the 276 Chibok girls abducted in 2014, contrary to earlier reports, a presidential aide has told the BBC.

Although this girl went to the same school in Chibok, she was abducted in a separate incident, Femi Adesina said.

The 15-year-old girl was found by government troops while she was escaping.

Boko Haram has captured thousands of people in north-eastern Nigeria.

The abduction of the 276 Chibok girls is the most high-profile case but many others have never had any media attention or support, aid organisations say.

Africa Live: more updates on this and other stories What fate awaits the freed Chibok girls? Chibok abductions: What we know The man who brought back the Chibok girls

Three years since the abduction, 113 Chibok girls remain in captivity.

A total of 103 of the girls have been released so far, including 82 earlier this month in a prisoner swap.

The 82 girls, who met Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari on 7 May, are expected to be reunited with their families later this week.

They are believed to have been swapped for five Boko Haram commanders.

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Media captionThe released Chibok girls received an official welcome in Abuja

Last month, President Buhari said the government remained "in constant touch through negotiations, through local intelligence, to secure the release of the remaining girls and other abducted persons unharmed".

Aside from the Chibok girls, Boko Haram has kidnapped thousands of other people during its eight-year insurgency, which is aimed at creating an Islamic caliphate in north-eastern Nigeria.

The government says more than 30,000 people have been killed, and hundreds of thousands forced to flee their homes.

Aid agencies are warning of a famine in the area, as people have not been able to farm for several years.

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DR Congo jail-break: Bundu dia Kongo leader flees Kinshasa prison

DR Congo jail-break: Bundu dia Kongo leader flees Kinshasa prison

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Red Cross officials have been recovering bodies following the raid on the prison

Gunmen from a Christian sect have stormed a prison in the Democratic Republic of Congo's capital, freeing their leader and about 50 other inmates, a government spokesman says.

Shots were fired and vehicles torched as Ne Muanda Nsemi was freed from the jail in Kinshasa, witnesses said.

Police are suspected to have shot dead several prisoners, witnesses added.

Mr Nsemi is a self-styled prophet and the leader of an outlawed group seeking to revive the ancient Kongo kingdom.

He was arrested, along with his three wives and son, in March following clashes between his supporters and police.

Africa Live: more updates on this and other stories Voodoo rebels take on president More about DR Congo

Mr Nsemi leads the Bundu dia Kongo movement, which is campaigning to restore a monarchy in parts of DR Congo, Congo-Brazzaville, Angola and Gabon.

He was an MP when he was arrested in Kinshasa after police accused him of inciting violence.

"Followers of the Bundu Dia Kongo attacked Makala prison at dawn and broke out around 50 prisoners including their guru, Ne Muanda Nsemi," government spokesman Lambert Mende said, AFP news agency reports.

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Supporters of the self-styled prophet have previously clashed with the security forces

A major operation is underway in Kinshasa to recapture the prisoners, reports the BBC's Mbelechi Msoshi from the city.

He saw Red Cross officials loading the bodies of several prisoners into vehicles and and transporting them to the morgue.

In January 2016, every prisoner except one escaped from a jail in eastern DR Congo. They included murder and rape convicts.

Rights groups say prisons in the country are over-crowded and badly guarded.


Ne Muanda Nsemi: The man behind the unrest

Former chemistry professor at the University of Kinshasa Comes from the minority Bakongo ethnic group Claims to have received a revelation from the "Archangel of the Kongo" in 1969 Formed the Bundu dia Kongo (BDK) movement in 1986 Wants to re-establish the Kongo kingdom that once straddled four modern-day states. Supporters and security forces involved in violent clashes Elected to parliament in 2006 as an independent Formed the Bundu dia Mayala political party in 2010 after BDK banned Arrested in March after security forces besiege his home for two weeks Escapes from jail on 17 May

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Ethiopian politician Yonatan Tesfaye guilty of terror charge

Ethiopian politician Yonatan Tesfaye guilty of terror charge

Image copyright Yonatan Tesfaye Image caption Yonatan Tesfaye now faces a sentence of up to 20 years

Ethiopian opposition politician Yonatan Tesfaye has been found guilty of encouraging terrorism for comments he made on Facebook.

He was arrested in December 2015 as a wave of anti-government protests in the Oromia region was gathering momentum.

The authorities objected to several posts including one in which he said the government used "force against the people instead of peaceful discussion".

Ethiopia has been criticised for using anti-terror laws to silence dissent.

Amnesty International described the charges as "trumped up", when they were confirmed in May 2016.

Updates on this and other African news stories

A section of Ethiopia's anti-terror law says that anyone who makes a statement that could be seen as encouraging people to commit an act of terror can be prosecuted.

In a translation of the charge sheet by the Ethiopian Human Rights Project that details the Facebook comments, Mr Yonatan allegedly said: "I am telling you to destroy [the ruling party's] oppressive materials... Now is the time to make our killers lame."

Mr Yonatan, who was a spokesperson for the opposition Blue Party, is due to be sentenced later this month and faces up to 20 years' imprisonment.

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Protesters from Oromia and Amhara have been complaining about political and economic marginalisation

The government faced unprecedented protests from November 2015 as people in the Oromia region complained of political and economic marginalisation.

The protests also spread to other parts of the country.

More than 600 people died in clashes between security forces and the demonstrators as the authorities tried to deal with the unrest, according to the state-affiliated Human Rights Commission.

The government introduced a state of emergency last October to bring the situation under control.

Opposition leader Merera Gudina was arrested last December for criticising the state of emergency and he is still being held.

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Ivory Coast mutiny: Government announces deal with soldiers

Image copyright AFP Image caption Rebel soldier spokesmen told Reuters there was no deal

The Ivory Coast government says it has reached a deal with soldiers involved in a four-day revolt over pay.

Defence Minister Alain-Richard Donwahi appeared on state TV to announce a settlement had been reached.

But only minutes later two spokesmen for the rebels told Reuters there was no agreement. Mr Donwahi gave few details of the accord.

The dispute, over what the mutineers say are unpaid bonuses, began on Friday and spread through major cities.

Defying a government order to lay down their weapons, the soldiers opened fire in four cities on Monday.

Shots rang out near the presidential palace in the main city, Abidjan, the second city, Bouaké, and in areas vital to the cocoa industry.

Image copyright AFP Image caption The revolt broke out over disputed bonuses

The mutineers helped the president take office in 2011. The former rebels make up about 8,400 of Ivory Coast's 22,000-strong army.

Announcing the putative deal, Mr Donwahi said: "After talks, an agreement has been reached on ways of ending the crisis.

"As a result, we appeal to all soldiers to free up the corridors (town entrances), return to barracks and respect peace".

Rejecting the latest government announcement, two spokesmen for the rebel soldiers told Reuters they wanted more money.

One, Sgt Seydou Kone said: "They proposed five million CFA francs (each) to be paid tomorrow. But we want seven million to be paid in one payment and immediately."

It is unclear how many of the soldiers the men are representing.

Africa Live: Updates on this and other stories Why are Ivory Coast troops up in arms? Find out more about Ivory Coast

Pro-government forces had backed off from advancing towards Bouaké, the epicentre of the mutiny, apparently because they want to avoid a fight, the BBC's Tamasin Ford reported earlier from Abidjan.

On Sunday, armed forces' chief of staff General Sékou Touré vowed to end the mutiny, but the mutineers said they would fight back if loyalist troops intervened.

Mutineers at the army headquarters in Abidjan's financial district, near the presidential palace, had been shooting in the air, forcing schools and offices to shut, our reporter says.

Gunfire was also heard at the Akouédo barracks, in a suburb where many middle-class Ivorians and expats live, she says.

Pro-government forces responded by closing roads in the city, while French troops were deployed to guard French-owned transport firm Bolloré, a major investor in Ivory Coast.

Sustained gunfire also broke out at the entrance and centre of Bouaké, which for many years was the main rebel-held city.

One person was killed by a stray bullet on Sunday after mutinous troops seized control of Bouaké.

Other areas hit by unrest include San Pedro, the biggest cocoa exporting city in the world, and Daloa, a major trading hub in Ivory Coast's cocoa belt.

Image copyright AFP Image caption Bouaké has been at the heart of the mutiny

Cocoa is the West African state's main foreign currency earner.

The mutiny has raised fears of a resurgence of the violence seen during Ivory Coast's 10-year civil war, which ended in 2011.

Pro-Ouattara forces from Bouaké swept into Abidjan at the time, helping Mr Ouattara take office after his predecessor Laurent Gbagbo refused to accept defeat in elections.

Many of the rebels were rewarded for their backing by being given jobs in the army.

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Ivory Coast: Army launches operation ‘to restore order’ after mutiny

Ivory Coast: Army launches operation 'to restore order' after mutiny

Image copyright AFP Image caption The mutinous soldiers took control of Bouaké, the second-largest city

Ivory Coast's military says it has launched an operation to "restore order" after three consecutive days of protests by mutinous soldiers.

The soldiers took to the streets in several cities over a pay dispute and blocked off the second largest city, Bouaké, on Saturday.

They have said they are willing to fight if the army intervenes.

Popular opposition to the rebellion has been growing, culminating in a march against the soldiers in Bouaké.

Six people were wounded when the soldiers opened fire on protesters during Saturday's demonstration.

'Troops advancing'

In a statement released at 1700 GMT on Sunday announcing that a military operation was underway, armed forces' chief of staff General Sékou Touré said many of the mutinous soldiers had listened to earlier calls for them to stand down.

But he said that some soldiers were continuing to disobey orders, which is why the operation had been launched.

Troops are advancing towards Bouaké, Reuters news agency reports.

In January, the soldiers forced the government into paying them about $8,000 (£6,200) each in bonuses to end a rebellion.

They were due to receive a further payment this month and several thousands of mutineers had been unhappy they were not consulted when on Thursday a spokesman for the group said they would drop their demands for the remaining money.

Soldiers block major Ivory Coast city Deal struck between army and state Ivory Coast profile

The government has said it will not negotiate with the disgruntled soldiers.

The mutiny has raised fears of a resurgence of the violence seen during Ivory Coast's 10-year civil war, which ended in 2011.

Many of the mutineers in January are former rebels who joined the army after the conflict.

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Karabo Mokoena murder: Suspect charged in South Africa court

Image copyright kayfab_27 Image caption Karabo Mokoena's killing is being seen as symbolic of the wider violence faced by women in South Africa

The man believed to be the boyfriend of a 22-year-old woman, whose killing has shocked South Africa, has been charged with her murder at a court in Johannesburg.

Karabo Mokoena's mother wept as she arrived at the hearing.

A widespread online campaign to find Ms Mokoena was called off on Wednesday when her father confirmed her death.

The case has sparked a fierce debate about the levels of violence faced by women in South Africa.

South Africa crippled by rape culture More on this and other African stories

The suspect, who has not yet pleaded, will remain in custody after the case was adjourned until 24 May, local Jacaranda News reports.

Police are still waiting for DNA tests to confirm the identity of the body, which they said was "badly burned".


A woman's life in South Africa: Pumza Fihlani, BBC News, Johannesburg

Being a woman in South Africa is like being trapped in a locked room - you can hear someone walking outside and you know someone will come one day and you won't be able to stop them.

There is nothing you can do to stop him.

Nothing can protect you - not the pepper spray in your bag, not the self-defence classes you got as a gift for your birthday when your breasts developed, not travelling in groups, not the NO you've been taught to say should that day come - nothing.

It is learning to be "vigilant" before you even know what it is to feel safe.

It is feeling unsafe everywhere, all the time.

African societies are built on patriarchy - every young girl grows up knowing that a man is the head, that he is powerful, that he is a go-getter, a conqueror. We are taught to admire these very traits about you, and I do. But dear God I am afraid of you - and with good reason.

The statistics in this country are not in my or any woman's favour. They say that one day I, or someone I know, will be your victim.


The hashtags #RIPKarabo and #MenAreTrash have been trending across the country as women call for an end to violence against them.

The case has prompted an outpouring of anger and grief in South Africa, mostly by women who took to social media to share stories of abuse they had suffered at the hands of their partners.

One woman's account of how a man had abducted and viciously beat her while she was returning home from a shopping centre in Johannesburg was shared by thousands of people on Twitter:

Image copyright Twitter

Others shared similarly harrowing tales of violence against women by their partners.

Image copyright Twitter

There were also those who were keen to point out that Karabo Mokoena's case, though widely publicised, was by no means unique.

Image copyright Twitter

South Africa has among the highest rates in the world for the rape and murder of women.

More than 40,000 cases of rape are reported every year, figures which are thought to only represent a fraction of actual attacks.

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Ebola: WHO declares outbreak in DR Congo

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption The world's deadliest Ebola outbreak hit West Africa in 2014-2015

The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared an Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

At least one person has died after contracting the virus in the country's north-east, the WHO says.

The Congolese health ministry had notified the WHO of a "lab-confirmed case" of Ebola, it added on Twitter.

More than 11,000 people died in the Ebola outbreak in West Africa in 2014-2015, mainly in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia.

Updates on this and other African stories Why Ebola is so dangerous DR Congo profile

The last outbreak of Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo was in 2014 and killed more than 40 people.

Of the nine people suspected to have contracted the deadly virus, three died, with one case of Ebola confirmed through tests at the national laboratory in the capital Kinshasa, WHO Congo representative Allarangar Yokouide said in a statement.

People began to get sick on or after 22 April in Bas-Uele province in the country's far north, he added.

The region affected lies 1,300km (800 miles) north-east of Kinshasa, close to the border with the Central African Republic.

"It is in a very remote zone, very forested, so we are a little lucky. But we always take this very seriously," WHO Congo spokesman Eric Kabambi told Reuters news agency.

The WHO described the outbreak as "a public health crisis of international importance".

It said the first teams of experts, including epidemiologists, biologists and hygiene specialists had been dispatched and were due to arrive in the affected region by Friday or Saturday.


No need to panic: Tulip Mazumdar, BBC Global Health correspondent

While this outbreak will be extremely worrying for communities in this remote part of northern DR Congo, it is important to remember that the country has stamped out more Ebola outbreaks than any other place on earth. It is well practiced in fighting the deadly virus.

Ebola was first identified in DR Congo (then Zaire) in 1976. Since then, there have been at least nine outbreaks in the country. The last was in 2014, when - at the same time - parts of West Africa were fighting a separate outbreak, the worst in history.

DR Congo was able to bring an end to its epidemic within four months. In West Africa, which had never experienced an Ebola outbreak before, it took two years.

Authorities in the DR Congo will need to act quickly to contain the virus, and ensure it doesn't spread to more populated areas.

This time, for the first time, health officials have another weapon they can use. The world has an experimental vaccine that could be deployed if needed.


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