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Boko Haram kills seven in Borno

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….As Israeli raids kill 2 Hamas activists in northern Gaza***

Boko Haram jihadists have killed seven villagers in a dawn raid in Nigeria’s restive northeast, local militia and a resident said Tuesday.

Gunmen in trucks and on motorcycles late Monday attacked Munduri, a village 13 kilometres (eight miles) north of Borno state capital Maiduguri, firing guns and rocket-propelled grenades, according to resident Abdullahi Bunu.

“The attackers seized seven people and beheaded them before setting fire to the entire village,” militia leader Umar Ari told AFP by telephone from Maiduguri.

Those who were decapitated were the village chief and his wife, Bunu said.

“We returned this morning and found the entire village burnt along with all our food supplies and livestock”.

Boko Haram has intensified its armed campaign in recent weeks, including against military targets in which dozens of troops are believed to have been either killed or missing.

The rebels have split into two groups, and it was not immediately clear which was behind the latest attack.

A faction loyal to Abubakar Shekau is notorious for indiscriminate killings of civilians while the Abu Mus’ab Al-Barnawi faction — which is affiliated to the so-called Islamic State — largely focuses on attacking the military.

Five people were killed in a similar raid last week in Gasarwa village, near the garrison town of Monguno.

The attacks contrast with repeated claims by the military and the government that Boko Haram has been defeated and that it is safe for people displaced by Islamist violence to return home.

The jihadists’ nine-year campaign to establish a hardline Islamic state has killed an estimate of 20,000 people and displaced over 2.6 million from their homes.

In the meantime,  two Palestinian, belonging to Islamic Hamas movement, were killed on Tuesday by Israeli artillery fire in northern Gaza Strip, according to Hamas’s military wing, al-Qassam Brigades.

Qassam identified the two militants as Ahmed Murjan and Abdul Hafiz al-Selawy from the Jabaliya refugee camp in northern Gaza.

Meanwhile, security sources said that the Israeli army artillery targeted an observation point used by Qassam militants in northern Gaza Strip, killing two of the Brigades’ activists.

Israel has not commented on the attack yet.

However, Israeli media reported that an Israeli force came under fire near the borderline in northern Gaza.

The tension in Gaza has been high since the Palestinians launched massive anti-Israel rallies in March, known as “the Great March of Return’’, which demanded the lift of the blockade Israel has imposed on Gaza since 2007.

About 158 Palestinians have been killed and more than 17,000 others injured by Israeli gunfire during the rallies, which take place every Friday.

There have been reports about talks between Palestinian factions, Egypt, the UN and Israel to reach a long-term truce in the besieged enclave.

A high-level delegation from Hamas has also arrived in Gaza Strip since on Thursday after talks with Egyptian officials.

Additional report from Guardian NG

Foreign News

Sri Lankan President Thanks Seychelles Defence Forces For Rescuing Sri Lankan Vessel From Somali Pirates

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President Ramkalawan says Seychellois military boarded boat with utmost courage to take complete control

 The Seychelles Defence Forces (SDF) Special Forces and Seychelles Coast Guards on board Coast Guards vessel Topaz led a successful operation to regain control of a Sri Lankan vessel hijacked by armed Somali pirates.

Seychellois special military forces boarded the boat with utmost courage to take complete control of the vessel and rescue our Sri Lankan brothers.

The Commander in Chief of the Seychelles, President Wavel Ramkalawan has spoken to the Chief of Defence Forces, Brigadier Michael Rosette to congratulate the Special Forces and Coast Guards team on a well-executed and successful mission.

“This is the spirit of the Seychelles Defence Forces. Professionalism, courage, and bravery are the tenets of the new spirit in the force. Though small, we will make our contribution to attaining maritime security, peace, and determination in the fight against terrorism to ensure that the world, especially in our part of the Indian Ocean remains a safe and peaceful region. Once again, I reiterate the  pride and confidence of the Seychellois nation in the Seychelles Defence Forces.”

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GoG: Promoting Trans-boundary Management For Sustainable Socio-Economic Development

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…Mission builds upon previous efforts by AU-IBAR in the beneficiary countries (Benin and Togo) for the national validation of the report on the State of the Transboundary Marine Environment (SoME)

NAIROBI, Kenya, January 23, 2024/ — From January 21st to 27th, 2024, AU-IBAR is on a mission in the republics of Benin and Togo. The mission is dedicated to supporting the implementation of a Transboundary Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) initiative between the two nations. Funded by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), under the project “Conservation of Aquatic Biodiversity within the Framework of the Africa Blue Economy Strategy,” this initiative holds the promise of fostering socio-economic development through the judicious use of marine resources.

Collaborative Efforts: AU-IBAR is collaborating with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) body, the Abidjan Convention, and the World Bank-funded West African Coastal Area Management (WACA) Project. The SIDA-funded project, implemented by AU-IBAR, involves an assessment to map the extent of Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) usage in Africa as a management tool for the conservation of aquatic biodiversity and ecosystems in the west, central, and northern regions of Africa.

Mission Objectives: This mission builds upon previous efforts by AU-IBAR in the beneficiary countries (Benin and Togo) for the national validation of the report on the State of Transboundary Marine Environment (SoME). The current objective is to secure joint expert validation of the SoME report and obtain high-level political endorsement for the provisions of the jointly validated report, demonstrating the commitment of both countries to the cause. Participants in the joint validation workshop include WACA project-nominated committee members from Benin and Togo, representatives from the Abidjan Convention, and government authorities from both nations, alongside relevant AU-IBAR staff.

Political Commitment: The opening statements during the joint meeting saw representatives from the Governments of Benin and Togo, the Executive Secretary of the Abidjan Convention, and the representative of the Director of AU-IBAR express unwavering commitment to the transboundary marine management process. Both the Director of AU-IBAR and the Executive Secretary of the Abidjan Convention reiterated their support for the Governments of Benin and Togo in realizing their shared vision for the sustainable management of coastal and marine resources in the designated shared maritime boundary.

Key Outcomes: The pinnacle achievement of the joint meeting is the validation of the study report on the state of the marine environment between Benin and Togo. This validation marks a significant milestone towards establishing the transboundary MSP between the two countries. AU-IBAR Director, DR Huyam Salih, emphasized that this accomplishment is a crucial step forward in enhancing aquatic biodiversity conservation and environmental protection in the Gulf of Guinea.

Conclusion: The joint expert consultation workshop serves as a testament to the collaborative efforts aimed at promoting transboundary management of shared marine aquatic ecosystems in the Gulf of Guinea. The validated report and political commitment from Benin and Togo are integral to realizing the socio-economic development potential inherent in the sustainable use of marine resources. As AU-IBAR continues its mission, the hope is that this initiative will serve as a model for other regions seeking to harmonize efforts for the conservation and management of their shared marine ecosystems.
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U.S.-British Strikes In Yemen Left 5 Dead, Say Houthi Rebels

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The U.S. and British military strikes in Yemen have left five Houthi fighters dead and six others injured, the Iran-aligned rebels said on Friday, vowing retaliation.

“The American and British enemy bears full responsibility for its criminal aggression,’’ the Houthi military spokesman Yehya Saree said in a statement.

Saree said the massive attack had targeted several Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen including the capital Sana’a.

“It will not pass unanswered and without punishment.

“The Yemeni Armed Forces will not hesitate to target sources of threat and all hostile targets on the ground and in the sea,’’ he said. 

  • dpa
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