Category: Sub-Saharan Africa

‘Nigeria: More than 200 killed in Boko Haram attack,’ 24 (UAE), 7 May 2014

An attack by extremist group Boko Haram Tuesday night has left at least 200 dead in a village in northeastern Nigeria. Continue reading

‘Boko Haram leader: The kidnapped girls will be sold according to God’s laws,’ Al-Masry Al-Youm (Egypt), 5 May 2014

The leader of the Nigerian Islamist militant group Boko Haram, Abu Bakr Shekau, said that the 223 kidnapped schoolgirls will be sold as slaves and forced to marry. Continue reading

‘Protesters injured in gunfire with police in Darfur,’ al-Hayat (Saudi Arabia), 17 February 2014

SudanAt least two protesters were injured in a camp for internally displaced persons on the outskirts of the capital city of Central Darfur, Zalingei, when police opened fire on a demonstration. Continue reading

‘Morocco, Togo and Zimbabwe in Sochi,’ el-Khabar (Algeria), 7 February 2014

The African continent is being represented by three countries at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Representatives from Morocco, Togo and Zimbabwe will compete in the games. All participants are of mixed heritage, and have chosen to represent the countries of either a mother or father from one of the three nations. Interestingly, the article claims that Morocco is the sole Arab country represented at the games, while Lebanon also has two athletes participating. Meanwhile, Algeria did not permit its sole entrant, an alpine skier, to register for the games.

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‘Al-Mahdi: Sudan on edge of Intifada and Civil War or Constitutional Convention’, an-Noor (Mauritania),15th December 2013

جانب من الاشتباكات التي شهدتها السودان قبل أشهر احتجاجا على الغلاء/ عدسة: أ.ب

جانب من الاشتباكات التي شهدتها السودان قبل أشهر احتجاجا على الغلاء/ عدسة: أ.ب

A leader of the Sudanese opposition, Sadiq al-Mahdi, claims that the al-Bashir regime is facing a critical time ahead and warns that domestic political discord and the additional existence of six armed militias  in the country could lead Sudan into a civil war if the situation does not change.

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‘Ministry of Agriculture opens investigation into Greek Waste’, al-Ayam (Sudan), 7th December 2013

ayamIn response to plans to send several tons of Greek sewage waste to Sudan and Sudanese fears of potential damage to the environment and domestic agriculture, the Sudanese Minister of Agriculture and Forestry has called for stronger restrictions on ‘fertilizer’ imports.

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Ottawa – Canadian Prime Minister: The world lost one of its greatest statesmen with Mandela’s passing, Arab News (Canada), 7 December 2013

Screen Shot 2013-12-07 at 10.13.51 AMCanadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper added his voice to the chorus of praise from world leaders about Nelson Mandela’s legacy. Harper, like many of his counterparts, was involved with groups that advocated to keep Mandela in prison during his 27-year sentence. Mandela’s passing has brought about a flurry of hypocritical statements from world leaders like PM Harper who actively supported Apartheid-era South Africa.

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Fatah: Mandela a global leader and with his passing our people have lost a great friend, Ma’an (Palestine), 6 December 2013

From Palestine, Fatah released statements regarding the passing last night of Nelson Mandela. Fatah expressed its condolences to the South African people for the loss of a great world leader, highlighting his support for the Palestinian cause and friendship with the late Yasser Arafat.

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Washington classifies Nigerian militant group “Boko Haram” as a terrorist organization, BBC Arabic (London), 13 November 2013

The United States government has classified Nigerian Islamist militant group Boko Haram as a terrorist organization. Boko Haram, which seeks to implement Shari’a law in northern Nigeria, has carried out attacks resulting in thousands of deaths in the country, and is allegedly tied to Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM).

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‘Nigerian Women Protest to Demand Marriage Subsidy’, BBC Arabic, 28 September 2013

سيدات نيجيريات يتظاهرن طلبا لإعانتهن على الزواج

التقاليد تلزم المرأة في ولاية زمفرة بتأثيث بيت الزوجية

قالت حكومة ولاية زمفرة الواقعة شمال غربي نيجيريا إن المطلب الذي تقدمت به ثمانية آلاف سيدة نيجيرية لإعانتهن على الزواج سيؤخذ في الاعتبار

وكانت مجموعة من السيدات قد تظاهرن في مدينة غوساو لتسليم عريضة إلى الشرطة الدينية في الولاية التي تستند في أحكامها بشكل جزئي إلى الشريعة الإسلامية

وطبقا للتقاليد هناك، يطلَب من المرأة النيجيرية شراء الأثاث لمنزل الزوجية، إلا أن ذلك يعد مطلبا باهظ الثمن بالنسبة لبعض السيدات اللاتي يبحثن عن شريك حياتهن

وتنتمي تلك السيدات إلى جمعية تدعى جمعية زمفرة للأرامل، وهي جمعية تعمل على دعم المطلقات والأرامل واليتيمات اللاتي يبحثن عن زوج مسلم مناسب لهن

ونقلت صحيفة بريميم تايمز النيجيرية عن بعض السيدات في المسيرة، التي نظمت الخميس، قولهن: “لا يستطيع بعضنا تحمل نفقات وجبتين في اليوم، لأنه لا يوجد هناك رجال يعينوننا

مجلس الحسبة
وأفاد عبد الله محمد شنكافي، مسؤول الشؤون الدينية في حكومة ولاية زمفرة، لبي بي سي أنه يتفهم مطلب تلك السيدات وحاجتهن لتلقي الإعانة المالية

وقال شنكافي لبرنامج “فوكاس أون أفريكا” الذي تبثه بي بي سي: “ما تسعى وراءه تلك الأرامل هو الزواج. وفي نيجيريا بشكل خاص، هناك العديد من التقاليد التي تتطلب أموالا في عملية الزواج

وأضاف: “يعد هذا هو السبب وراء تظاهرهن وسعيهن للفت انتباه الحكومة

وأكد شنكافي على أنه سيجري تحليل مطالبهن تلك، وأن زمفرة تسعى جاهدة لمساعدة من يعيشون حياة فقيرة

فيما يقول بشير عبد الله، الصحفي في بي بي سي، إن ولاية كانو التي تقع أيضا شمالي من نيجيريا وتضم مجلس الشرطة الدينية –أو ما يعرف بمجلس الحسبة- عادة ما تنظم حفلات زواج جماعي للفقيرات من الأرامل والمطلقات

ويتكفل مجلس الحسبة بمصاريف ملابس الزواج، ومهر العروس الذي يطلب من الزوج، بالإضافة إلى الأثاث الذي تتحمله الزوجة

إلا أن شنكافي يقول إن بعض المشكلات التي تعانيها الميزانية قد تؤدي إلى بطء في الوصول إلى حل لتلك السيدات
وأضاف: “مساعدة اثنين على الزواج تمثل مشكلة، أما مساعدتهما بعد ذلك على تحمل أعباء الحياة فتلك مشكلة أخرى

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Translation

Nigerian women protest to demand marriage subsidy

The government of Zamfara state, located in northwestern Nigeria said that the demand presented to by 8,000 Nigerian women for assistance in marriage will be taken into consideration.

A group of women demonstrated in the city of Gusau to deliver a petition, which is partially based upon Islamic Sharia law, to the religious police of the state.

According to traditions there, Nigerian women are asked to purchase furniture for the marriage home, however this is an expensive requirement for most women who are looking for a life partner.

These women belong to an association called the Zamfara Widows Association, which works to support divorcees, widows and orphans who are looking for Muslim husband suitable for them.

Nigerian newspaper Premium Times reports that some women in the march, which was organized on Thursday, said that “some of us are unable to bear the expenses of two meals a day, because there are no men for us.”

Hisba Committee
Abdullah Mohammed Chankafi, an official for religious affairs in the government of Zamfara, told the BBC that he understands the demand of these women and their need to receive financial aid.

Chankafi told the “Focus On Africa” program, which is aired by the BBC: “What these widows are pursuing is marriage. In Nigeria, specifically, there are a many traditions which require money in the process of marriage.”

He added: “This is the reason behind their demonstrations and attempt to draw the attention of the government.”

Chankafi confirmed that he will undertake an investigation into their demands, and that Zamfara is striving to assist those living in poverty.”

As BBC journalist Bashir Abdullah says, the state of Kano, also located in northern Nigeria, has a Committee of Religious Police – or what is known as the Hisba Committee – that usually organizes mass weddings for poor widows and divorcees.

The Hisba Committee takes care of the expenses for wedding clothes and the dowry, which is requested by the husband, in addition to the furniture borne by the wife.

However, Chankafi says that some of the current budget problems could lead to a slowdown in reaching a solution for these women.

He added: “helping two people get married represents one problem, but helping them bear the burdens of life is itself another problem.”

Translation by Kevin Moore.

Article available at BBC Arabic.

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