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Bashir to be questioned over ‘financing terrorism’, state prosecutor

Al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden lived in Sudan between 1992 and 1996.

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Sudan’s prosecutor general has ordered the questioning of ousted president Omar al-Bashir over money-laundering and “financing terrorism”, the official SUNA news agency reports.

“The acting public prosecutor general Al-Waleed Sayyed Ahmed has ordered the questioning of former president Omar al-Bashir… under anti-money laundering and financing terrorism laws,” SUNA said.

A source in the prosecutor general’s office confirmed the state media report to the press.

Bashir, who swept to power in an Islamist-backed coup in 1989, ruled Sudan with an iron fist for three decades. 

During his rule the country was placed on Washington’s list of state sponsors of terrorism over its alleged links with Islamist militants.

Al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden lived in Sudan between 1992 and 1996.

In October 2017, Washington lifted a 20-year-old trade embargo imposed on Sudan, but kept the country on the terrorism blacklist.

Since last year however, the two countries have been in talks to remove the country from the blacklist, but these have now been suspended since Bashir was ousted by the army on April 11.

“That is a conversation that we are not able to engage at the moment,” a top State Department official, Makila James, told AFP last month during her visit to Khartoum.

“All of that is suspended as we try to assess what is the reality on the ground, what is the way forward,” she said.

Last month Sudan’s army ruler General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan said that more than 113 million dollars worth of cash in three currencies had been seized from Bashir’s residence.

He said a team of police, army and security agents found seven million euros ($7.8 million), $350,000 and five billion Sudanese pounds ($105 million) during a search at Bashir’s home.

Vast crowds join ‘million-strong march’

Huge crowds of demonstrators flocked to join a “million-strong” march Thursday outside Sudan’s army headquarters to demand that the ruling military council hand power to a civilian administration.

Protesters gathered in greater numbers than recent days, packing all the roads and bridges leading to the central Khartoum complex, said correspondents on the scene.

Talks between protest leaders and the generals over transfer of power remained deadlocked.

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19 die from road accident in Nigeria

The accident occurred late Sunday at Dinyar Madiga village, 85 kilometres (52 miles) from Kano, Nigeria’s second largest city

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19 die from road accident in Nigeria
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Nineteen people were killed when four vehicles collided on a busy road in northern Nigeria’s Kano state, a road safety official said Monday.

The accident occurred late Sunday at Dinyar Madiga village, 85 kilometres (52 miles) from Kano, the state capital, said Zubairu Mato of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC).

“A total of 19 people died in the accident involving four vehicles, including two buses and two cars,” Mato said, adding that seven others were seriously injured.

“The speeding vehicles collided while trying to dodge potholes,” he said.  

Accidents are common on Nigeria’s poorly maintained roads, caused majorly by reckless driving, speeding, and disregard for traffic rules.

In April, 19 wedding guests were killed in nearby Jigawa state when their overloaded bus skidded off the road and crashed after a tyre burst.

READ: Horror: Road accident kills 19 wedding guests in Nigeria, 21 injured

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Botswana’s government will appeal ruling decriminalising homosexuality

The government’s chief legal advisor, said he would take the case to the court of appeals

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Activists leave Botswana High Court in Gaborone

Botswana’s government will appeal a June high court ruling that decriminalised homosexuality, the attorney-general said Friday.

Abraham Keetshabe, the government’s chief legal advisor, said he would take the case to the court of appeals after reading the 132-page ruling of the high court, which he said had “erred in arriving at (its) conclusion”.

Under Botswana’s 1965 penal code, homosexuality is punishable by a jail term of up to seven years.

But high court judge Michael Elburu ordered the laws be amended in a June 11 ruling that was widely hailed.

“We say the time has come that private, same sexuality must be decriminalised,” Elburu said. “It is a variety of human sexuality.”

The judge’s ruling was welcomed by the UN agency UNAIDS, the United States, and rights groups.

In May, Kenya’s high court upheld laws against same-sex relations, shocking activists campaigning to roll back anti-gay laws and stigma still widespread in Africa.

At present, 28 out of 49 countries in sub-Saharan Africa, including Botswana, have laws penalising same-sex relationships, according to Human Rights Watch.

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Petrol pipeline fire kills two in Nigeria

The inferno was caused by vandals who broke open a state-run pipeline in order to steal petrol -Emergency official

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Petrol pipeline fire kills two in Nigeria
TEMILADE ADELAJA: REUTERS

Two people were killed and over 30 vehicles burnt on Thursday after thieves breached a fuel pipeline in Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial hub, causing an explosion, emergency services said.

The incident, which happened in the early hours in the Ijegun area, is the latest in a long string of such accidents.

“We have recovered two burnt bodies and rescued eight others with severe burns,” Lagos State Emergency Mangement Agency (LASEMA) head Femi Osanyintolu told reporters.

He said more than 30 vehicles caught fire.

The inferno was caused by vandals who broke open a state-run pipeline in order to steal petrol, he said.

Security agents intercepted the thieves as they were transferring the petrol to their trucks, Osanyintolu said.

“In a bid to escape arrest, the vandals spilled some of the petrol into drainages and set it on fire,” he said.

“The fire then spread back to the point where the vandals had siphoned the fuel and exploded,” he said.

Osanyintolu said firefighters were battling to put out the inferno, adding that the toll might rise further.

Ibrahim Farinloye, spokesman for the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), told reporters the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), which owns the pipeline, had been informed.

“Vandals are responsible for the incident and some of them are affected in the inferno,” he said. 

He said the area had been cordoned off, and called on the NNPC to shut down the pipeline to cut off the fire.

Nigeria, Africa’s largest oil producer and exporter, runs a network of pipelines that transport crude and petrol across the vast nation.

Hundreds of lives have been lost in recent years from fuel theft that culminates in a fire or explosion.

On Monday, at least 45 people were killed and more than 100 injured in Ahumbe, in the central state of Benue, when a petrol tanker crashed and then exploded as a crowd gathered to scoop leaking fuel.

Related: Fuel tanker blast kills 10 in Nigeria

In June, at least 30 people were killed in a petrol tanker fire in southern Rivers state.

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