Africa Update – April 2015

In This Issue:

– Leading the News

– United States – Africa Relations

– North Africa

– East Africa

– West Africa

– Sub – Saharan Africa

– General Africa News

– Excerpt from Leading the News:

Kenya –

On April 2nd, armed Al Shabaab militants strapped with explosives stormed the dormitories of Garissa University College in eastern Kenya. The siege lasted more than 15 hours and left four Somali gunmen dead. According to Kenya’s National Disaster Operation Center, at least 147 people were killed, making this the worst terror attack in the country in more than two decades. While more than 500 students were rescued, at least 79 others were injured.

On April 2nd, United Nations (U.N.) Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and head of the U.N. Educational, Cultural, and Scientific Organization (UNESCO) Irina Bokova condemned the terrorist attack on Kenya’s Garissa University College and expressed solidarity with the Kenya people. U.N. officials voiced hope the situation would quickly be brought under control and urged swift justice for those responsible for the deadly attack.

Please see full issue below for more information.

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APRIL 9, 2015

Africa Update

Leading the News

Kenya

On April 2
nd
, armed Al Shabaab militants strapped with explosives stormed the dormitories of Garissa
University College in eastern Kenya. The siege lasted more than 15 hours and left four Somali gunmen
dead. According to Kenya’s National Disaster Operation Center, at least 147 people were killed, making
this the worst terror attack in the country in more than two decades. While more than 500 students were
rescued, at least 79 others were injured. The attack was detailed here.

On April 2
nd
, United Nations (U.N.) Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and head of the U.N. Educational,
Cultural, and Scientific Organization (UNESCO) Irina Bokova condemned the terrorist attack on Kenya’s
Garissa University College and expressed solidarity with the Kenya people. U.N. officials voiced hope
the situation would quickly be brought under control and urged swift justice for those responsible for the
deadly attack. The U.N. response to the attack was articulated here.

On April 2
nd
, U.S. President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama expressed horror and
sadness at breaking news of the terrorist attack in Garissa, Kenya. The President and the First Lady
joined the world in mourning the loss of students who were pursuing an education in the pursuit of a
better life for themselves and their loved ones. They also commended the heroism of the responders
who lost their lives in the selfless protection of students and faculty. President Obama said he plans to
convey the message that Kenya’s future will be shaped by young people like those at Garissa University
College when he visits Kenya in July. President Obama’s remarks were captured here.

On April 2
nd
, the White House issued a statement condemning the terrorist attack against the innocent
men and women of Garissa University College in eastern Kenya. The White House extended
condolences to those killed, including the targeting of Christian students, as well as prayers to those
injured. Also, the White House noted the U.S. is providing assistance to the Kenyan Government and will
continue to partner with them, as well as others in the region, to take on Al Shabaab. The full statement
can be read here.

On April 2
nd
, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry condemned Al Shabaab’s terrorist attack on Garissa
University College. He extended condolences to the families and loved ones of the innocent victims who

were killed and directed thoughts to the many who sustained injuries. Further, Secretary Kerry reiterated
the U.S. stands resolutely with the government and people of Kenya in the effort to end the scourge of
terrorism. He said the attack reinforces the need for all countries and communities to unite in the effort to
combat violent extremism. Secretary Kerry’s statement was published here.

On April 2
nd
, U.S. Ambassador to Kenya Robert Godec issued a statement condemning Al Shabaab’s
attack at Garissa University College. In addition to offering condolences, Ambassador Godec expressed
profound appreciation and gratitude to the members of the Kenyan security services who risked their
lives to end the cowardly attack. He said the U.S. continues to stand with the government and people of
Kenya in their effort to end the scourge of terrorism. Ambassador Godec’s statement can be viewed
here.

On April 2
nd
, Ranking Member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee Eliot Engel (DNY) issued a
statement condemning the brutal terrorist attack at Kenya’s Garissa University College. Less than two
years after the bloody siege at the Westgate Mall, Congressman Engel said this attack is a stark
reminder of Al Shabaab’s disregard for human life and the threat the group poses to Kenya and the Horn
of Africa. Congressman Engel’s full statement was transcribed here.

On April 2
nd
, following the Al Shabaab attack in Kenya, PRI highlighted Al Shabaab’s jihadi media and
propaganda strategy. Al Shabaab has a history of reaching out directly to Western media outlets, such
as BBC, as part of its effort to shape its perception in the media and to influence certain viewers. More
information was shared here.

On April 3
rd
, U.S. President Barack Obama spoke by phone with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta to
express his and the First Lady’s condolences and those of the American people for the lives lost during
the terrorist attack in Garissa, Kenya. President Obama emphasized his support for the government and
the people of Kenya as they stand united in the face of the attack. He also said he looks forward to
meeting with President Kenyatta again in Nairobi in July, when the two leaders will discuss how to
strengthen counter-terrorism cooperation and continue to work together to build a safer and more
prosperous future for Kenya and the broader region. Their call was summarized here.

On April 3
rd
, following the terrorist attack on Garissa University College, White House officials defended
the Obama Administration’s counter-terrorism strategy against Al Shabaab in Somalia. Senior U.S.
officials, who labeled the recent attack in Kenya as an act of desperation, noted the strategy has been
effective, as Al Shabaab, which once controlled virtually all of southern Somalia, has lost more than 75
percent of its territory in recent years. In addition, Al Shabaab has lost control of the Somali port city of
Kismayo, which has drained the group’s resources. Feedback from the White House was cited here.

On April 3
rd
, U.S. State Department Acting Spokesperson Marie Harf noted the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi
has been in touch with Kenyan officials, including security services, in the wake of the terrorist attack on
Garissa University College and is providing assistance. She said Kenya is a partner in the fight against
terrorism and the U.S. has been working with Kenya to improve its counter-terrorism capabilities through
security assistance, including training and equipment for key Kenyan military and law enforcement units.
Her comments were transcribed here.

On April 3
rd
, U.S. House Foreign Affairs Africa Subcommittee Ranking Member Karen Bass (D-CA)
joined leaders around the world in condemning Al Shabaab’s terrorist attack at Garissa University
College. Congresswoman Bass offered condolences for the victims and commended the brave members
of the Kenyan security services who risked their lives to save innocent people. In addition, she pledged
to work with her colleagues in Congress to support the Kenyan Government and its people in fighting
extremism and terrorism. Congresswoman Bass’s statement can be found here.

On April 4
th
, the U.N. Security Council condemned the terrorist attack carried out by Al Shabaab in
Garissa, Kenya, stressing outrage at the heinous attack. In its statement on the attack, the Security
Council paid tribute to Kenya’s role in the fight against terrorism, in particular the role played by the
country in the fight against Al Shabaab as part of the African Union (AU) Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).
The Security Council also underlined the need to bring the perpetrators, organizers, financiers, and
sponsors of terrorist acts to justice. The Security Council’s reaction to the attack was outlined here.

On April 4
th
, in a nationally televised address, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta vowed harsh
repercussions for Al Shabaab militants who carried out the terrorist attack on the Garissa University
College. In addition to announcing three days of mourning, President Kenyatta also said there would be
a reward for the capture of the chief planner of the Garissa attack. President Kenyatta warned that Al
Shabaab extremists are deeply embedded in Kenyan communities as Al Shabaab raised its threat level,
saying it would continue their assault on Kenya to retaliate for Somali rebels killed by Kenyan troops. An
update on the situation in Kenya was provided here.

On April 5
th
, Kenyan authorities identified one of the Al Shabaab gunmen responsible for the terrorist
attack on Garissa University College as Abdirahim Mohammed Abdullahi, the son of a government
official in Mandera County. Abdullahi, who graduated from the University of Nairobi with a law degree in
2013, was reported missing last year amidst fears he had gone to Somalia to join Al Shabaab. Abdullahi
was killed by Kenyan security forces responding to the attack. For details, click here.

On April 6
th
, Kenya’s Interior Ministry identified Mohamed Mohamud, also known by aliases Dulyadin and
Gamadhere, as the mastermind of the terrorist attack on Garissa University College. According to the
Interior Ministry, Mohamud is credited with having an extensive terrorist network within Kenya and has
been tasked with leading external Al Shabaab operations in the country. A “Most Wanted” ad has been
issued for Mohamud’s capture, offering a $215,000 reward. More information on the mastermind of the
attack can be viewed here.

On April 6
th
, the Kenyan military launched airstrikes against Al Shabaab militants in Somalia in response
to the terrorist attack on Garissa University College as funeral services for the victims begun in Nairobi.
The Kenyan warplanes targeted the Gedo region of Somalia, which is directly across Kenya’s border in
western Somalia. The airstrikes began late Sunday and continued into Monday when movement was
observed at two targeted Al Shabaab camps. The camps were believed to be used to store arms and for
logistical support. More information was reported here.

On April 6
th
, Kenyan authorities noted they had started compiling a list of people suspected to have
joined Somali militant group Al Shabaab or been radicalized by Islamists. The list is expected to consist
primarily of Kenyan youths who have been reported missing. Regional governors, members of
parliament, and security officials are all expected to participate in drawing up the list. More information
can be viewed here.

On April 7
th
, while the Kenyan air force claimed it had destroyed two Al Shabaab camps in the Gedo
region of Somalia, Al Shabaab denied the camps were hit, saying the air force bombs fell on farmland.
While Kenyan Defense Forces spokesman David Obonyo said Kenyan forces had successfully carried
out the mission intended to stop fighters from Al Shabaab camps in Somalia from carrying out cross-
border raids into Kenya, Al Shabaab spokesman Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab insisted none of the
group’s bases were targeted. Both accounts of the airstrikes were presented here.

On April 7
th
, Kenyan university students organized a march on Nairobi to demand more security from the
government on campuses following the Garissa University College attack. The march was followed by a
vigil to mourn the victims of the terrorist attack. Those who attended the event at Uhuru Park wrote notes
honoring the victims and lit candles in their memory. As the country mourned the victims, some also took
to social media to humanize them by sharing their stories. The march and the vigil were described here.

On April 7
th
, Traveller24 speculated the Al Shabaab attack on Garissa University College, despite its
remote location, is likely to spark further decline of Kenya’s tourism industry. In the days immediately
after the attack, hotels and game park reserves reported that tourists had started canceling upcoming
trips. A vital part of the economy, Kenya’s tourism industry has been in decline since 2013 when Al
Shabaab attacked the Westgate Mall in Nairobi. Since then, repeat Al Shabaab attacks and travel
warnings issued by the U.S., Britain, and Australia have forced hotels to lay off staff. Additional analysis
can be seen here.

On April 8
th
, Kenyan Interior Minister Joseph Nkaissery announced the government had ordered the
closure of 13 money transfer firms to prevent militant Islamists from using them to finance attacks.
According to Minister Nkaissery, the bank accounts of 86 individuals and entities have also been frozen.
While government officials said the move was intended to prevent Somalis in Kenya from colluding with
Al Shabaab militants in Somalia, the large Somali population in the country has condemned the
government’s crackdown as blanket punishment of the community. For details, click here.

On April 9
th
, media outlets in Kenya ran a series of editorials expressing anger at the seven hour delay in
the deployment of a special forces unit that eventually ended the Al Shabaab attack on Garissa
University College. In addition, the press is upping the political pressure on the Kenyan Government to
enhance its counterterrorism efforts, as Al Shabaab has now killed more than 400 people in Kenya since
President Kenyatta took office in April 2013. Additional analysis was provided here.

Nigeria

On March 31
st
, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan called General Muhammadu Buhari to concede
defeat in Nigeria’s presidential election. With results from all of Nigeria’s 36 states counted, Buhari won
roughly 55 percent of the vote to President Jonathan’s 45 percent. Since the end of military rule in 1999,
Nigeria has been governed by President Jonathan’s Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Analysts believe
the rise of Buhari’s All Progressives Caucus (APC) could mean the beginning of a competitive two-party
system in Nigeria. The outcome of the presidential race was analyzed here.

On March 31
st
, U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee Ranking Member Eliot Engel (D-NY)
congratulated Nigerian President-Elect Muhammadu Buhari on his victory, and the people of Nigeria on
their historic elections. Congressman Engel also commended President Goodluck Jonathan for taking
the important step of graciously and swiftly handing power to his opponent, which will set the tone for a
peaceful transition. Congressman Engel also praised Nigeria for setting a strong example for other
countries across the continent that are facing close and contentious elections. Congressman Engel’s
statement is available here.

On April 1
st
, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called Nigerian President-Elect Muhammadu Buhari to
congratulate him. In addition, Secretary-General Ban spoke with President Goodluck Jonathan to
commend him for his leadership throughout the electoral process and his statesmanship in upholding the
democratic process. Secretary-General Ban also thanked the Independent National Electoral
Commission (INEC) for organizing and carrying out the elections in a professional manner and called on
all Nigerians to accept the outcome. Secretary-General Ban’s calls were summarized here.

On April 1
st
, U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein presented to the Human
Rights Council on the threat posed by Nigerian militant group Boko Haram. In his opening remarks, High
Commissioner Hussein warned that increasingly appalling atrocities perpetrated by the terrorist group
have spawned a critical human rights situation in northern Nigeria and the Lake Chad region. He also
suggested expansive economic, social, and political opportunities are key to reducing ethnic and
sectarian tensions in the region. Excerpts from High Commissioner Hussein’s presentation were
highlighted here.

On April 1
st
, U.S. President Barack Obama spoke separately with Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan
and President-Elect Muhammadu Buhari to commend them for their leadership during Nigeria’s recent
election. President Obama applauded President Jonathan for putting Nigeria and its people before
politics by conceding the election and calling on his supporters to accept the outcome peacefully.
President Obama congratulated President-Elect Buhari on his victory and thanked him for repeatedly
urging his supporters to help ensure the election process remained calm and peaceful. Further,
President Obama encouraged both leaders to work together to unify the country and sustain Nigeria’s
strong partnership with the U.S. to address challenges in the region, including the threat posed by Boko
Haram. Both calls were noted here.

On April 1
st
, Vice President Joe Biden congratulated the Nigerian people and their leaders on the
conduct of a peaceful democratic election. He noted he had spoken recently with both Nigerian
President Goodluck Jonathan and President-Elect Muhammadu Buhari and commended them on their
statesmanship in leading their supporters through the historic vote and putting their country on a more
peaceful path forward. He noted the presidential contest will set the tone for gubernatorial elections on
April 11
th
and for the days ahead as Nigerians unite to ensure a successful transition. In addition, Vice
President Biden said he looks forward to working closely with President-Elect Buhari to advance shared
interests in Nigeria’s success. Vice President Biden’s feedback can be seen here.
On April 1
st
, the White House issued a statement on the Nigerian elections. The White House noted
Nigeria has shown its commitment to democratic principles by turning out in large numbers and
sometimes waiting all day to cast their votes to decide the future of their country peacefully. The White
House commended both Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan and President-Elect Muhammadu
Buhari for their public commitments to non-violence throughout the campaign and congratulated
President-Elect Buhari on his victory. In addition, the White House applauded the efforts of the
Independent National Election Commission (INEC) and called for isolated logistical challenges to be
addressed ahead of the gubernatorial elections on April 11
th
. The full statement can be read here.

On April 1
st
, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry congratulated the people of Nigeria and the Nigerian
Government on historic and largely peaceful elections the weekend of March 28
th
. Secretary Kerry
applauded all voters who showed patience and demonstrated their commitment to participate in the
democratic process and commended Nigeria’s INEC on the orderly nature of the vote and its use of
technology in the electoral process. Additionally, Secretary Kerry lauded both Nigerian President
Goodluck Jonathan and General Muhammadu Buhari for respecting the election results and encouraging
their supporters to do the same. He thanked President Jonathan for his service and congratulated
President-Elect Buhari on his victory. Secretary Kerry’s statement was issued here.

On April 1
st
, Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Robert Menendez (D-NJ)
applauded the Nigerian people and political leaders on both sides for their commitment and dedication to
the democratic process. Senator Menendez commended President-Elect Buhari on his victory and
commended incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan for graciously conceding defeat and endorsing a
peaceful transition of leadership. He also commended the INEC and expressed optimism the
governorship and State Assembly elections on April 11
th
will proceed in the same peaceful and orderly
manner. Senator Menendez’s statement was posted here.

On April 1
st
, U.S. Senator Chris Coons (D-DE) issued a statement on the Nigerian presidential election
results. He congratulated President-Elect Buhari on his victory and urged him and President Goodluck
Jonathan to affirm the results and move forward for the good of Nigeria. Senator Coons also noted
Nigeria still faces considerable challenges that make it critical that all parties commit to a peaceful
transition of power and recognize the importance of a government with broad democratic legitimacy.
Senator Coons’ statement can be viewed here.

On April 1
st
, U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) congratulated the
people of Nigeria on their recent presidential election, noting that millions turned out in a largely peaceful
way to cast ballots, disregarding Boko Haram’s threats to disrupt the elections. Congressman Royce
urged that disputes surrounding the elections be settled in the courts and commended Nigerian
President Goodluck Jonathan for conceding defeat. He also called on President-Elect Buhari to uphold
his campaign pledged to root out rampant corruption and address the security and economic challenges
facing Nigeria, particularly combating Boko Haram. Feedback from Congressman Royce was shared
here.

On April 2
nd
, Axa SA, the largest foreign insurer in Nigeria, said the peaceful manner in which the country
is handling its first transition in political power in decades can support economic growth in both Nigeria
and the larger region. The largely peaceful election has bolstered investor confidence. Nigeria’s
insurance penetration is about a fifth of the average on the continent and less than a 20
th
of the level in
South Africa, underscoring the opportunity in a country with 177 million people. More information can be
found here.

On April 3
rd
, violence erupted in Nigeria’s delta region. In the town of Obrikom and the nearby village of
Obor in Rivers state, unidentified gunmen went on a shooting spree, killing nine people and injuring two
others. The house of a parliamentary opposition candidate, Vincent Ogbagu, was also set on fire.
Meanwhile, in Delta state, militants from the Urhobo ethnic minority group blew up a gas pipeline to draw
attention to their exclusion from lucrative pipeline protection contracts with the state oil company. Both
incidents were highlighted here.

On April 6
th
, Boko Haram militants disguised as preachers killed at least 24 people and wounded several
others in an attack near a mosque in Borno state, Nigeria. The attackers gathered people at the mosque
in Kwajafa and pretended to preach Islam until opening fire. The attack was reported here.

On April 7
th
, the U.N. Security Council condemned the recent spate of terrorist attacks perpetrated by
Boko Haram in northeast Nigeria and Chad. The Security Council extended its condolences to the
families of the victims and their sympathy to all those injured in the attacks in Kwajafa, Nigeria, and
Tchoukou Telia, Chad and reminded States that they must ensure that measures taken to combat
terrorism comply with all their obligations under international law. Details were posted here.

On April 7
th
, the Woodrow Wilson Center hosted a discussion titled, “Nigeria in Focus: An Assessment of
the 2015 Elections.” Presenters included Femi Vaughan of Bowdoin College, Carl LeVan of American
University, Johnnie Carson of the U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP), Chris Fomunyoh of the National
Democratic Institute (NDI), and Elizabeth Ramey of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for
Scholars. A webcast of the event can be watched here.

On April 8
th
, Central and West African leaders met in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, for a summit on
drawing up a joint strategy to fight Nigeria’s Boko Haram militants. Convened by the Economic
Community of Central African States (ECCAS) and the Economic Community of West African States
(ECOWAS), the purpose of the meeting was to build on the regional offensive being led by Nigeria,
Chad, Niger, and Cameroon against Boko Haram strongholds. The summit was announced here.

West Africa Ebola Outbreak

On March 31
st
, Military Times reported just 100 U.S. personnel remain in Liberia supporting Ebola-
related contingences, down from a peak of 2,800 Americans fighting Ebola in the country at the height of
the response. The sole mission of the remaining members of Operation United Assistance is to monitor
cases as they tick down to zero and stay there. An article on the current status of Operation United
Assistance can be read here.

On April 1
st
, researchers at the U.S. Walter Reed Army Institute of Research and at the National Institute
of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) reported the experimental Ebola vaccine known as VSV-
EBOV has been proven safe and effective in clinical trials that began in October. Two independent
studies found the vaccine worked fast enough and strong enough that it could be deployed to future
Ebola hotspots on short notice to quickly defuse outbreaks. The clinical trials were detailed here.

On April 3
rd
, Texas Health Resources filed a response to the March 2
nd
lawsuit filed by nurse Nina Pham
who was infected with Ebola while caring for the first Ebola patient in the U.S., Thomas Eric Duncan. In
response to Pham’s lawsuit, Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital denied allegations of poor training and
improper preparation, arguing the company and the hospital acted responsibly to protect their
employees, basing their responses on the most up-to-date federal guidelines and with leading experts on
Ebola. The full story is available here.

On April 5
th
, officials in Kailahun, Sierra Leone announced the first case of Ebola recorded in the eastern
district in nearly four months, threatening progress towards reaching zero cases. A nine-month-old boy
tested positive for the virus after death. Once the test results were received, experts from the World
Health Organization (WHO) were deployed to the area to investigate the case. Health officials believe
the boy may have been infected with Ebola during a blood transfusion or there may have been a
problem with the sample that was tested. The situation was described here.

On April 6
th
, Kelly Dale of Jhpiego, a nonprofit organization associated with Johns Hopkins University
that is partnering the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) on the West Africa Ebola
response, authored a blog post on rebuilding Liberia’s health care system. While Liberia had
experienced a period of weeks with no new cases, there has been a least one recent diagnoses and the
possibility of future cases exists. In the interim USAID and its partners are training frontline health
workers as part of broader efforts to rebuild and improve Liberia’s health care system. The blog post can
be accessed here.

On April 7
th
, the World Bank highlighted the International Development Association’s (IDA) support for
health care workers fighting Ebola in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. Since the start of the Ebola
epidemic in West Africa, almost 900 health care workers have been infected with Ebola. The World Bank
has provided personal protective equipment (PPE) and hazard payments to health care workers in the
region, including those who remain on the frontlines of the Ebola crisis helping their countries get to zero
cases. More information was shared here.

On April 7
th
, Director of Social Affairs for the AU Commission Dr. Olawale Maiyegun said Africa’s efforts
to tackle the Ebola crisis have been largely overlooked even though Africans have taken the lead in
providing frontline staff and shown themselves better placed to fight infectious diseases on the continent
than outsiders. Dr. Maiyegun argued because Africans do not have the international voice of CNN, BBC,
and France 24, much of their work was overlooked in the western media, which favored the work of
international agencies and those with the greatest media clout. His comments were captured here.

On April 8
th
, the WHO released an updated situation report with new statistics on the number of Ebola
cases in West Africa. For the week ending on April 5
th
, a total of 30 confirmed cases were reported, with
21 new cases in Guinea and 9 new cases in Sierra Leone. Liberia reported no new confirmed cases.
Additional data was analyzed here.

On April 8
th
, U.S. President Barack Obama met with his national security team to receive an update on
efforts to get to zero Ebola cases in West Africa. The President’s advisors updated him on the situation
in the region and briefed him on measures currently underway to end the epidemic in Sierra Leone and
Guinea. President Obama emphasized the urgency of getting to zero cases and directed his team to
stay engaged to prevent future outbreaks from becoming epidemics. A readout of the meeting was
provided here.

On April 8
th
, researchers reported two new Ebola vaccines have been found to protect monkeys from the
virus, with just one dose and no apparent side effects. The two new vaccines are improved versions of
an older vaccine licensed to Merck that is now being tested for efficacy in people in Liberia, but is
thought to cause side effects such as fever and joint pain. The next step will be to test the vaccines in
healthy volunteers and safety trials are expected to start this summer. More information can be seen
here.

United States – Africa Relations

White House

On March 31
st
, President Barack Obama called Egyptian President Abdul Fattah Al-Sisi to notify him of
the White House’s decision to lift a hold on the shipment of American weapons and other assistance to
Egypt in place since October 2013. President Obama told President Sisi the U.S. will send Egypt F-16s,
Harpoon missiles, and M1A1 Abrams tank kits. President Obama also noted he will continue to ask
Congress for $1.3 million in annual military assistance for Egypt. Their conversation was summarized
here.

On March 31
st
, President Barack Obama spoke with Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) President
Joseph Kabila. President Obama emphasized the importance of timely, credible, and peaceful elections
that respect the DRC’s constitution and protect the rights of all DRC citizens. President Obama assured
President Kabila the U.S. will remain engaged in the electoral process, including through the
appointment of a new U.S. Special Envoy to the African Great Lakes Region and the DRC. The two
leaders also reaffirmed their shared commitment to ending the threat of armed groups, including the
Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR). They also discussed pending adoptions in the
DRC by American families. A readout of the call was shared here.

On March 31
st
, President Barack Obama notified Congress of his decision to extend the national
emergency with respect to South Sudan beyond April 3, 2015. President Obama said the situation in
South Sudan, which has been marked by activities that threaten the peace, security, or stability of South
Sudan and the surrounding region, including widespread violence and atrocities, human rights abuses,
recruitment and use of child soldiers, attacks on peacekeepers, and obstruction of humanitarian
operations, continues to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign
policy of the U.S. For more information, click here.

On April 7
th
, the White House issued a statement on the 21
st
anniversary of the genocide in Rwanda.
The White House noted the genocide claimed the lives of more than 800,000 Rwandan men, women,
and children and marked the beginning of one hundred days of horror for Rwanda’s people. While we
remain haunted by the genocide, the White House observed we also draw hope and inspiration from the
people of Rwanda and commend their determination to continue to make important progress toward
healing old wounds and lifting people out of poverty. Additionally, the White House pledged to continue
to work in partnership with Rwanda and other nations to help prevent such atrocities and advance dignity
and peace for all. The full statement can be read here.

On April 8
th
, President Barack Obama notified Congress of his decision to extend the national
emergency with respect to Somalia beyond April 12, 2015. While noting progress in the U.S. relationship
with Somalia, including the U.S. Government announcing its recognition of the Government of Somalia
on January 2013, and nominating the first U.S. Ambassador to Somalia in over two decades this
February 2015, President Obama said U.S. sanctions against persons undermining the stability of
Somalia continue to be important. The extension of the national emergency with respect to Somalia was
noticed here.

State Department

On March 31
st
, the State Department issued a press statement expressing concern for reports of
detentions and restrictions on movement of Equatoguinean citizens for political reasons. In particular, the
State Department noted the detainment of Republican Democratic Force (FDR) opposition party leader
Guillermo Nguema Ela and the confinement of FDR member Nzo Ondo. The U.S. called on the
Government of Equatorial Guinea to release both, consistent with the Constitution of Equatorial Guinea,
and to allow political parties to register and participate freely in peaceful political activities. The full
statement was published here.

On April 2
nd
, the State Department condemned the terrorist attacks in Egypt’s North Sinai Governorate in
which at least 17 Egyptian soldiers and civilians were killed and dozens others wounded and offered
condolences to the victims, their families, and the government and people of Egypt. Additionally, the
State Department reiterated its steadfast support of Egypt’s efforts to combat terrorism in the Sinai and
throughout the country and pledged to continue to work with Egypt to address shared threats to regional
security. Feedback from the State Department can be seen here.

On April 3
rd
, the State Department issued a statement congratulating the people of Senegal on the 55
th

anniversary of their independence. The State Department noted the U.S. and Senegal are united in the
core principles of democracy, respect for rule of law, and individual liberties. In addition, the State
Department applauded Senegal’s ongoing role in promoting democracy, justice, and security throughout
the region, as evidenced by Senegal’s support for Operation United Assistance. The statement was
posted here.

On April 6
th
, the State Department announced the U.S. colleges and universities that have been selected
to host the 2015 Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders this summer. The Mandela
Washington Fellowship is the flagship program of the President’s Young African Leaders Initiative
(YALI). The Fellowship empowers young African leaders through academic coursework, leadership
training, mentoring, networking, professional opportunities, and support for activities in their
communities. Details on the program, as well as a list of the 2015 Host University Partners, can be
accessed here.

On April 7
th
, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman met with Ambassador of
Egypt to the U.S. Mohamed Tawfik at the Department of State. Their meeting was included on the State
Department’s daily appointment schedule, found here.

On April 7
th
, Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Linda Thomas-Greenfield met with South
African Ambassador to the U.S. Miniwa Johannes Mahlangu at the Department of State. Their meeting
was listed here.

On April 7
th
, Ambassador-At-Large for War Crimes Issues Stephen Rapp participated in the
commemoration of the 21
st
anniversary of the Rwandan genocide, “Kwibuka 21,” at the Rwandan
Embassy in Washington, DC. Ambassador Rapp’s participation was noted here.

On April 8
th
, the Governments of the U.S., the United Kingdom (U.K.), and Norway issued a joint
statement on the National Dialogue in Sudan. The members of the Troika expressed great
disappointment that a genuine National Dialogue has not begun in Sudan and that an environment
conducive to participatory and credible elections does not exist. The leaders reiterated a comprehensive
and inclusive National Dialogue is a necessary process for Sudan to develop a truly representative
political system and to confront fundamental issues of governance, political inclusiveness, resource
sharing, national identity, and social equality. The joint statement can be read here.

On April 8
th
, Secretary of State John Kerry participated in the U.S.-Algeria Strategic Dialogue and met
with Algerian Foreign Minister Ramtane Lamamra at the Department of State. A joint communique
issued by the Governments of Algeria and the U.S. following the Strategic dialogue can be viewed here.
Secretary Kerry’s remarks with Minister Lamamra were transcribed here.

On April 8
th
, State Department Acting Spokesperson Marie Harf confirmed that U.S. Government
personnel supported a Ugandan operation that successfully apprehended several individuals suspected
of being involved in the assassination of the principal state attorney. This support was provided at the
request of Ugandan authorities. In addition, Spokesperson Harf confirmed that one of those was a
former Guantanamo detainee who was released in 2006. Her comments were recorded here.

On April 9
th
, Secretary of State John Kerry met with Moroccan Foreign Minister Salaheddine Mezouar
and participated in the U.S.-Morocco Strategic Dialogue at the Department of State. The U.S.-Morocco
Strategic Dialogue was noticed here.

On April 9
th
, Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Linda Thomas-Greenfield met with
Congolese Ambassador to the U.S. Serge Mombouli at the Department of State. The meeting was noted
here.

On April 10
th
, Deputy Secretary of State Tony Blinken will travel to Tunis, Tunisia to meet with senior
Tunisian Government officials and civil society representatives. Deputy Secretary Blinken’s visit to
Tunisia is intended to reinforce U.S. support for Tunisia’s democracy in the face of the recent Bardo
Museum attack. Deputy Secretary Blinken’s travel was outlined here.

Department of Defense

On April 5
th
, Combined Joint Task Force – Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA), in partnership with the 1
st

Battalion 77
th
Armored Regiment of the Djiboutian Gendarmerie, kicked off a two-day training event to
share medical treatment best practices in Cheik Moussa. The event consisted of classroom and hands-
on exercises, discussing the best practices for both forces in the basic care of a patient, covering
medical techniques such as splints, arterial bleeding, amputations, and abdominal injuries. The training
event was detailed here.

On April 6
th
, joint high-speed vessel USNS Spearhead (JHSV 1) and its embarked detachment of U.S.
Navy sailors, civil service mariners, and U.S., Spanish, and British mariners conducted the Gabon phase
of Spearhead’s support to African Partnership Station in Port Gentil, Gabon. While in port, Spearhead’s
embarked military detachment conducted bilateral training with Gabon military forces to enhance
interoperability and partnership. The crew also painted and repaired a local orphanage while in port. An
article on the exercise was published here.

On April 7
th
, U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) noted that while many U.S. Navy sailors traveled to
Ghana for the first time to support Exercise Obangame Express 2015, for some Ghanaian-American
sailors, it was also an opportunity to return to their birth place. Exercise Obangame Express brought
together 23 nations, including all Gulf of Guinea countries, to increase maritime safety and security in the
Gulf of Guinea. Given that this year’s exercise was hosted by Ghana, many sailors with Ghanaian roots
were involved in planning this year’s exercise. More information was shared here.

On April 8
th
, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) notified Congress that Egypt is seeking
to buy 356 Hellfire II Missiles worth $57 million from Lockheed Martin, along with associated equipment,
spare parts, training, and logistical support. Congress now has 30 days to review the deal, which has

already been approved by the State Department as part of the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program.
Details can be seen here.

Department of Commerce

On April 8
th
, the President’s Advisory Council on Doing Business in Africa held its first meeting.
Established by Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker in November 2014, the Council is tasked with
advising the President on strengthening commercial engagement between the U.S. and Africa, with a
focus on advancing the President’s Doing Business in Africa Campaign as described in the U.S. Strategy
Toward Sub-Saharan Africa. As part of its first meeting, the Council discussed recommendations related
to investment and access to capital, trade and supply chain development, infrastructure, and marketing
and outreach. The meeting agenda can be downloaded here.

Overseas Private Investment Corporation

On April 6
th
, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) unveiled its annual report for 2014,
which takes an in-depth look at the impacts of OPIC-funded projects around the globe. This year’s report
highlights an OPIC-supported private equity fund invested in an equipment leasing business in Malawi
that provides equipment to smallholder farmers, as well as OPIC’s support for a private equity fund
investing in affordable housing in Nigeria that has leveraged $63.3 million in additional private sector
investment. The full report can be downloaded here.

Congress

On March 31
st
, Senators Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Chris Coons (D-DE), John Boozman (R-AR), Bob
Casey (D-PA), David Perdue (R-GA), Tom Carper (D-DE), Dan Coats (R-IN), Mark Warner (D-VA), John
Cornyn (R-TX), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), and Tim Kaine (D-
VA) sent a letter to South African Minister of Trade and Industry Rob Davies and Special Envoy for the
African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) Faizel Ismail expressing their concern about the lack of
progress being made in negotiations over antidumping duties that have effectively blocked the import of
American chicken for the last 15 years. The Senators noted the importance of an agreement being
reached by the nations’ respective trade groups before the Senate considers reauthorization of AGOA
this spring. The letter can be viewed here.

On March 31
st
, House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-TX) made a statement
on renewed U.S. military support for Egypt. Congressman Thornberry encouraged the Government of
Egypt to continue its democratic process and noted Egypt is a strong regional ally. Given the priority of
the U.S. bilateral relationship with Egypt, Congressman Thornberry said providing Egypt with the means
to protect Egyptians and Americans from the threat of terrorism is the right thing to do. Congressman
Thornberry’s statement can be read here.

North Africa

On April 2
nd
, the U.N. Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) strongly condemned repeated airstrikes on an
airport in the western town of Zintan that it said have endangered civilians and seriously undermined
attempts at securing a solution to the Libyan crisis. UNSMIL reminded all parties that under international
humanitarian law, the repeated attacks on civilian facilities in recent days may constitute war crimes.
Feedback from UNSMIL was posted here.

On April 2
nd
, militants in North Sinai simultaneously attacked two army checkpoints, killing at least 13
Egyptian soldiers and two civilians and wounding 18 other soldiers and one police officer. Both assaults
involved the use of car bombs followed by gunfire. The region is home to a number of militant groups,
including Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, which has pledged its allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and the
Levant (ISIL), and newer groups such as the Popular Resistance Movement and Revolutionary
Punishment. The situation in the Sinai was described here.

On April 4
th
, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed his disappointment at the failure to hold the
Sudanese pre-dialogue meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, because of the decision by the ruling National
Congress Party and its allies not to attend the meeting. Secretary-General Ban stressed that a fully
inclusive, free, and transparent dialogue is critical to addressing the root causes of the recurrent crisis in
Sudan and achieving sustainable peace. He also urged all stakeholders to continue to engage
constructively towards the early convening of a credible and inclusive National Dialogue. Secretary-
General Ban’s concern was articulated here.

On April 5
th
, Islamist militants launched two attacks in Egypt. In Cairo, a bomb explosion on a bridge in
Zamalek, which hosts many embassies, killed one policemen and injured two more officers and a
civilian. The militant group Ajnad Misr, which emerged in January 2014 and has perpetrated a number of
attacks in Cairo, claimed responsibility for the bombing. In Alexandria, militants in a microbus shot at the
Church of the Angel Rafael, wounding one police officer and three civilians before fleeing. Both incidents
were reported here.

On April 6
th
, following his visit to Tunisia last week, World Bank Vice President for the Middle East and
North Africa Hafez Ghanem authored an op-ed on the need to unite to support Tunisia so it can break
the cycle of violence and conflict feeding economic stagnation. Vice President Ghanem noted the March
18
th
attack on the Bardo Museum was a tragic event for Tunisia that demonstrated the fragility
hampering growth in the region and threatening global stability and prosperity. He also praised Tunisians
for demonstrating the political courage and determination to achieve a more democratic and inclusive
society. The op-ed can be accessed here.

On April 7
th
, the Joint AU-U.N. Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) confirmed the dropping of ten bombs, which
killed 14 civilians and wounded 18 others in Rowata, Central Darfur, on April 1
st
. U.N. officials reported a
verification patrol dispatched to Rowata witnesses another aerial bombardment during their deployment.
UNAMID condemned such aerial bombings, which it said cause widespread death, destruction, and
displacement of populations. More information was shared here.

On April 7
th
, the U.N. Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) reported around 4,500 people have recently
sought shelter on UNMISS premises in Malakal. The new arrivals bring the total number of civilians at
the site close to 26,000, with a total of 115,000 sheltering in U.N. compounds elsewhere in the country.
The new statistics bring the number of displaced people being sheltered in U.N. compounds to its
highest level since the start of the conflict in South Sudan since December 2013. An updated was
provided here.

On April 7
th
, the Consortium for Common Food Names (CCFN) sent a letter to Moroccan Ambassador
Rachad Bouhal voicing its objection to an agreement between the European Union (EU) and Morocco to
recognize a slew of one another’s geographic names for food and beverage marketing, arguing that an
overly broad set of names could lock out third-market suppliers. The CCFN has also raised concerns
about the proliferation of controversial labeling policies in other trade negotiations, including those
between the EU and Morocco. The full story is available here.

On April 8
th
, the World Bank highlighted the recent visit of a delegation of Moroccan parliamentarians to
the World Bank for a workshop on the impact of the country’s new constitution on the parliament.
Participants included Deputy Speaker of the Moroccan House of Representatives Dr. Chafik Rachadi,
Member of the Board of the Parliament of Morocco Abdellatif Berrho, and Chairman of the Finance and
Economic Development Committee of the Moroccan Parliament Said Khairoun. Details were shared
here.

On April 8
th
, AU Commission Chairwoman Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma sent a letter to U.N. Secretary-
General Ban Ki-moon urging the U.N. to add human rights monitoring to the mandate of the U.N. Mission
for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO). The U.N. Security Council is expected to vote on
renewing MINURSO’s mission later this month. For more information, click here.

On April 8
th
, the Libyan government based in Tripoli warned the internationally recognized government
led by Prime Minister Abdullah Al-Thinni that any attempts to export oil independently would be met with
military action to seize oil ports and facilities. Prime Minister Thinni’s forces hold the key oil ports of Ras
Lanuf and Es Sider and he has recently said he will seek oil sales and open a bank account overseas to
hold revenues. Both positions were addressed here.

On April 8
th
, Egypt’s public prosecutor referred 379 alleged members of the Muslim Brotherhood to court
for charges related to sit-ins in August 2013 that were broken up by security forces. The defendants are
accused of causing the deaths of two policemen at al-Nahda Square in Giza, one of two sites were
supporters of ousted President Mohamed Morsi gathered following his overthrow by the military.
Additional charges of murder and vandalism are also reportedly under consideration. The case was
described here.

On April 8
th
, Reuters reported that since the ousting of President Mohamed Morsi, some former Egyptian
army officers have joined Islamist militant groups, such as Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, which is based in the
Sinai. Advisors to current President Abdul Fattah Al-Sisi have expressed concern this trend is increasing
the threat posed by the insurgency, especially as former army officers bring knowledge of the world’s
biggest army, as well as training and strategic direction. Details can be seen here.

On April 9
th
, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said Egypt should free ousted Islamist President
Mohamed Morsi from jail and lift death sentences against his supporters before Turkey will consider
improving its bilateral relationship with Egypt. President Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood has close ties with
Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development (AK) party, which President Erdogan co-founded. Relations
between the two countries have been strained since the toppling of President Morsi and the Egyptian
military’s crackdown on protests during the transition. President Erdogan’s comments were captured
here.

East Africa

On March 31
st
, the Steering Committee of the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Africa Regional
Technical Assistance Center East (East AFRITAC) met in Kampala, Uganda, to assess activities since
May 2014, discuss the program of operations for 2015-20202, and review the work plan for FY16. The
meeting was attended by six of the seven member countries and donor representatives, including the
African Development Bank (AfDB), the U.K., the EU, Germany, and the Netherlands. The meeting was
summarized here.

On April 1
st
, the U.N. Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) called
on Tanzania to take steps to revise or repeal laws, customs, and practices that discriminate against
women. The CEDAW was reacting to its consideration of a complaint from two widows who were
prevented from inheriting their late husbands’ property and were left homeless. Details can be found
here.

West Africa

On April 1
st
, the Government of Mali and the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) launched a
new project aimed at restoring the livelihoods of some 33,000 households affected by armed conflict and
climate change in northern Mali. The project is anticipated to help 25,000 households restart food and
horticultural production and provide 8,000 pastoralist families with feed and veterinary products for cattle.
Beneficiaries will also receive training in farming and nutritional practices, with a focus on engaging
women. The project was launched here.

On April 2
nd
, the U.N. Security Council adopted a resolution authorizing the third phase of a drawdown of
the U.N. peacekeeping mission in Liberia to 3,590 military personnel and 1,515 police personnel, and
deciding the U.N. Mission in Liberia’s (UNMIL) mandate will no longer include electoral support. The
U.N. expects the Government of Liberia will fully assume security responsibilities from UNMIL no later
than June 30, 2016. For more information, click here.

On April 2
nd
, an inquiry launched in February to determine the facts surrounding a violent demonstration
in Gao, Mali submitted its final report. The inquiry into the violence, with took place on January 27
th
,
determined that members of the U.N. Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali
(MINUSMA) used unauthorized and excessive force on civilian protestors during the demonstration,
resulting in the death by gunfire of three protestors and the wounding of four others. The inquiry’s
findings were noted here.

On April 2
nd
, the Executive Board of the IMF approved emergency financial assistance under the Rapid
Credit Facility (RCF) in the amount of $10.8 million for The Gambia to enable authorities to meet their
urgent balance of payment and fiscal needs. In announcing the decision, the IMF noted while The
Gambia remains Ebola free, the crisis has caused a deep decline in tourism related activities of roughly
60 percent. A press release was published here.

On April 2
nd
, an IMF team concluded a visit to Abidjan to conduct discussions on the seventh review of
Cote d’Ivoire’s economic and financial program supported by an arrangement under the Extended Credit
Facility (ECF). By the end of its trip, the IMF mission reached agreement with officials in Cote d’Ivoire,
subject to approval by IMF management and the Executive Board, on an additional disbursement of
$67.5 million. Board consideration is expected in June. Additional information on the IMF trip to Cote
d’Ivoire can be found here.

On April 2
nd
, the World Bank highlighted the National Fadama Development Project, which has been
supporting Nigerian farmers since 1993 by helping to empower communities and strengthen agriculture
development. The project recently received $200 million in additional World Bank financing for its third
phase, which will help Nigerian farmers turn their agriculture skills into income-generating businesses
and also support the country’s Agricultural Transformation Agenda. The project was highlighted here.

On April 3
rd
, the Executive Board of the IMF approved a three-year arrangement under the ECF for
Ghana in the amount of $918 million to support authorities’ medium-term economic reform program. The
program aims to restore debt sustainability and macroeconomic stability to foster a return to high growth
and job creation, while protecting social spending. Additional analysis of Ghana’s economy was provided
here.

On April 7
th
, lawmakers in Burkina Faso modified the electoral code to prevent people from standing for
office if they had supported a failed move last year to allow then-President Blaise Compaore to seek
another term. The new law applies to elections in 2015 and 2016, including the October 2015
presidential contest, and effectively bars members of President Compaore’s government and the leaders
of his Congress for Democracy and Progress (CDP) party from running. Current ministers are also not
authorized to run for president. The revisions to the electoral code were explained here.

On April 7
th
, Ghana’s mail oil refinery was shut down due to a mechanical fault caused by a lack of
maintenance and unreliable power supply. The refinery is expected to be closed for the next month for
repairs. Ghana produces around 100,000 barrels per day of crude oil at its offshore Jubilee field and also
imports oil for domestic consumption. More information can be viewed here.

On April 8
th
, Nigerien authorities identified a suspected outbreak of avian flu on a chicken farm in Maradi.
As a result, authorities decided to isolate the farm and ban the transport of all poultry out of the town.
The suspected cases of bird flu in Niger come a week after Burkina Faso also confirmed on outbreak of
bird flu. An article on the situation can be read here.

On April 9
th
, all of Togo’s presidential candidates agreed on an updated voter roll of roughly 3.5 million
potential voters, allowing the election to proceed on April 25
th
. The vote was initially scheduled for April
15
th
, but was delayed when ECOWAS requested the lists be revised. Current President Faure
Gnassbingbe, who was widely encouraged to step down although Togo has no law on term limits, will
face four rivals in the election. More information can be seen here.

Sub-Saharan Africa

On March 31
st
, following initial discussions in December 2014, an IMF team concluded a visit to Zambia
to complete discussions for the 2015 Article IV consultation. The IMF team noted the Zambian economy
is experiencing strong headwinds, with policy uncertainties at home and external shocks dampening
economic activity. IMF officials also urged Zambian authorities to take action to contain the fiscal deficit
in order to alleviate financing pressures that are keeping interest rates high and crowding out lending to
the private sector. Additional insights on the Zambian economy were offered here.

On March 31
st
, the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved additional financing in the
amount of $73.6 million to support the implementation of the Government of Mozambique’s Second
Phase of the Roads and Bridges Management and Maintenance Program. The new funding will fill a
financing gap for flood-related road rehabilitation work in southern Gaza province following severe
flooding in the lower Limpopo River basin in 2013. The financing decision was announced here.

On April 1
st
, the IMF announced plans to lend Burundi $6.9 million to bolster the country’s economy
leading up to the June 26
th
presidential election. The IMF has also pledged to lend Burundi another
$13.9 million in 2016 to help strengthen the management of public finances and consolidate the
country’s economic reform program. Burundi continues to face economic challenges as it emerges from
more than a decade of civil war and as tensions rise over whether current President Pierre Nkurunziza
can run for another term. The full story is available here.

On April 1
st
, the Board of Directors of the AfDB approved a $123.77 million loan to Angola to finance the
country’s Institutional and Sustainability Support to Urban Water Supply and Sanitation Service Delivery
Project. The project is intended to improve water sector governance, strengthen institutional capacity
and efficiency in the water and sanitation sector institutions at central and provincial levels, and improve
access to sustainable water supply and sanitation services. A press release was issued here.

On April 1
st
, the AfDB Board approved $25.995 million in grants and loans to finance the Mahe
Sustainable Water Augmentation Project (MSWAP) in Seychelles. The project aims at achieving the
Seychelles 2008-2030 Water Development Plan (SWDP). Currently, Seychelles can only meet about 60
percent of its potable water needs due to limited storage capacity, increased demand for housing
construction, and water losses along the network. The project was outlined here.

On April 1
st
-2
nd
, the Steering Committee of the IMF’s Regional Technical Assistance center for Southern
Africa (AFRITAC South) met in Johannesburg, South Africa. Members of the Committee noted good
progress toward FY15 work program implementation, and in particular, in the areas of public financial
management, revenue administration, and real sector statistics. The Committee also endorsed a work
program for FY16 and welcomed a further increase in the share of resources allocated to low-income
countries. The meeting was summarized here.

On April 3
rd
, an IMF mission concluded a visit to Rwanda to conduct the third review of the economic
program supported by the Policy Support Instrument (PSI). Following meetings with Rwandan officials,
the IMF team observed Rwanda’s recent economic performance has been favorable, with a 7 percent
growth rate in 2014. In addition, IMF staff reported Rwanda’s near term economic output is stable.
Economic data was analyzed here.

On April 5
th
, a 15-year-old South African girl was taken off a Cape Town flight destined for Johannesburg
by authorities who suspected she was going to board an international flight to join ISIL. Minister of State
Security David Mahlobo confirmed the girl was taken off a British Airways fight and ultimately admitted
she was trying to join ISIL. Her disappearance was reported earlier by family and evidence found in her
bedroom later revealed she had been in touch with ISIL recruiters. For more information, click here.

On April 6
th
, Human Rights Watch called on the DRC Government to investigate the late night burial of at
least 421 bodies in Maluku last month. While the Government claims the bodies were those of dead
fetuses, still-born babies, and unclaimed corpses, the human rights groups suspects the bodies might
belong to people killed in anti-government protests in January or a crackdown on Kinshasa criminals.
The full story can be accessed here.

On April 6
th
, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace hosted a briefing titled, “The Fate of South
Africa’s Nuclear Material.” Speakers included Douglas Birch and R. Jeffrey Smith of the Center for Public
Integrity, Matthew Bunn of Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, Thomas
Wheeler of the South African Institute of International Affairs, and Togzhan Kassenova of Carnegie’s
Nuclear Policy Program. Event details were posted here.

On April 7
th
, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon recognized the 21
st
anniversary of the Rwandan
genocide and said the world should use the International Day of Reflection on the Genocide in Rwanda
to look back on the past and to confront the challenges of the present to prevent such atrocities from
happening again. Secretary-General Ban added that conflicts and atrocity crimes in many parts of the
world are continuing to divide communities, kill and displace people, undermine economies, and destroy
cultural heritage and the international community’s first duty is always to prevent these situations and
protect vulnerable human beings in distress. Secretary-General Ban’s comments were captured here.

On April 7
th
, France announced plans to declassify documents relating to Rwanda’s 1994 killings. The
Government of Rwanda has welcomed the release of the papers, which include documents from
diplomatic and military advisors and minutes from ministerial and defense meetings, as Rwanda has
repeatedly accusing France of complicity in the genocide because of its support of the Hutu nationalist
government that carried out the mass slaughter of ethnic Tutsis. France has repeatedly denied the
accusations, insisting that French forces had been working to support civilians. The full story is available
here.

On April 7
th
, police in Goma arrested five members of a pro-democracy youth group Lucha in the eastern
DRC as they protested against the illegal detention of activists in Kinshasa. Roughly 40 demonstrators
were detained in the capital on March 15
th
during a news conference organized by Congolese and West
African pro-democracy advocates intended to promote youth participation in politics. The youth activists
in Goma has been encouraging residents to participate in five minutes of protest by whistling, honking
horns, and banging on pots and pans at the time of their arrest. The full story is available here.

On April 8
th
, Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe traveled to Johannesburg, South Africa to meeting
with President Jacob Zuma. During his visit to South Africa, President Mugabe was expected to
participate in a business forum to review two-way trade, which is heavily weighted about 12-to-one in
South Africa’s favor. The trip marks President Mugabe’s first official state visit to South Africa in 21
years. His visit was outlined here.

On April 8
th
, DRC military leaders said FDLR rebels from Rwanda had killed ten soldiers in an ambush
on Monday, representing the deadliest attack since the start of a military campaign against armed
groups in February. According to reports, two colonels were among those killed and several other
soldiers were injured in the attack in North Kivu province. The ambush was reported here.

On April 8
th
, Germany’s KfW Group announced a $338 million loan for South African power utility Eskom
to make the country’s power grid fit for an increasing share of renewable generators. The loan will help
connect solar and wind power plants by modernizing transmission and distribution networks. Eskom
currently provides 95 percent of South Africa’s electricity. The loan was announced here.

On April 9
th
, the University of Cape Town in South Africa removed a statue of British imperialist Cecil
Rhodes, which has been covered for the past several weeks following student demonstrations in support
of its removal. Students have argued the statue served as a symbol of racism on the campus. Details
can be viewed here.

On April 9
th
, police in Malawi were ordered to shoot anyone attacking albinos as part of the latest bid to
crack down on a rising wave of violence in East Africa whose body parts are prized in black magic. The
latest order came from Malawi’s Inspector General of Police Lexan Kacham, who authorized police to
shoot anyone caught abducting albinos. The policy order was noted here.

General Africa News

On April 1
st
, Amnesty International released its annual Death Sentences and Executions 2014 report.
The report finds terrorism is responsible for an increase in the number of death sentences imposed in
Africa over the past year, as the number of people sentenced to death in Africa more than doubled since
2013. At least 1,444 death sentences were imposed on the continent in 2014, up from 605 in 2013. The
report’s findings were highlighted here.
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