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Two police officers, seven other killed, including two police, in Mali border attack

A peace agreement signed in 2015 by the Bamako government and armed groups has failed to restore stability.

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Two police officers, five others killed in Mali border attack
Malian Police officers pose on their vehicle in Anderamboukane, Menaka region. (Photo by Agnes COUDURIER / AFP)

Four civilians, two Malian police officers, and a customs official were killed in an attack on a border post on Mali’s border with Burkina Faso, security sources and government officials said Monday.

“Armed men attacked the border post at Kouri on Sunday night,” a local policeman said, who asked not to be identified. 

“Two gendarmes, a customs officer and four civilians, including two Ghanaians, were killed.”

Another security source confirmed the toll and said the two Ghanaians were lorry drivers.

“The assailants arrived on three motorbikes and in a car,” the source said. “They fired at the gendarmes, the customs officers and the civilian truck drivers.”

“Right now, we can’t confirm who the attackers were. They arrived in Kouri from two directions. We were told that they took the soldiers’ boots as they left.” -Government official said.

Kouri is a major crossing point for goods entering or leaving Mali.

Mali has been fighting extremism since Islamist militias seized the north of the country in 2012 before being pushed back by French troops in 2013.

A peace agreement signed in 2015 by the Bamako government and armed groups has failed to restore stability. 

Southern Mali, in particular, has been rocked by a string of attacks near the country’s border with Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast.

In December last year, Mali’s security service said it had arrested four suspected jihadists who had been planning attacks in the three countries.

They were arrested near Koutiala, near the Burkina border, it said.

The four had taken part in a double attack in the capital Ouagadougou in March 2018 and in the kidnapping of a Colombian nun, Gloria Cecilia Narvaez Argoti near Koutiala in February 2017, the security service said.

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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
(File photo)

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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