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Three Chinese Nationals whose detention was claimed by the Oromo Liberation Army OLA since 15th of May for their "involvement in mining operations around Mendi District in Western Wellaga Ethiopia" are reportedly released and handed over to representatives of the International Committee of Red Cross ICRC.

In an earlier statement from OLA it was indicated that "they are all in safe hands and in good health." 

 

The release and hand over of the three Chinese citizens who were in similar claim identified as Mr Huang, Mr He, Mr Wang 

Addis Ababa (Horn24) 

Ethiopian soldiers armed with machine guns sniper rifles and grenades raided a hospital in Ethiopias war-torn northern Tigray region earlier this week in retribution doctors says for a CNN investigation that revealed Ethiopian and Eritrean troops were blocking humanitarian aid to patients there.

Medical staff at the University Teaching and Referral Hospital in the besieged city of Axum, in Tigrays central zone, said that the soldiers stormed the hospital in the early hours of Sunday morning. 

The Oromo Liberation Front OLF has said that it has indeed abducted three Chinese Nationals working as mine workers in Mendi District in Western Ethiopia.

In the statement they say

  "We have detained three Chinese Nationals involved in the mining operation of Mendi, West Wellaga Zone, they are in safe hands and in good health." an OLF-OLA statement said on Monday.

A photo of the three Chinese Nationals was released together with the statement. 

The statement claimed that members of the local farming communities had not been adequately compensated after being evicted from their farms. 

OLF-OLA claimed that local authorities have no authority to allocate land for such huge projects. 

Last week Ethiopia parliament designated group like OLF-OLA as 'terrorists' organizations due to its link to violence. 

Somalia President  Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed called early Wednesday for election and a return to dialogue after the extention of his mandate by two year sparked the worst political violence in years.

Popularly known as FARMAAJO, the President addressed the nation at 1am local time. 

Mogadishu has in recent days experienced gun fights from rival political sides. Fighters supporting the opposition are still holding out in the city hours after the presidential speech. 

In the speech President Farmaajo called for residents to return back to the city.  Over a hundred thousand Mogadishu residents have fled the city after violence erupted. 

'I hereby call upon all the signatories of the 17 September agreement to come together immediately for urgent discussions on the unconditional implementation of the above mentioned agreement' said Farmaajo.

The agreement paved the way for indirect elections whereby special delegates are chosen by clan elders who become lawmakers. The lawmakers in turn choose the president. 

The President's speech came after the Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble met the leaders of two regional states  of Galmudug and Hirshabelle had earlier backed him, rejected the mandate extension on Tuesday 

On Wednesday evening she had the task of announcing to Tanzanians that President John Magufuli had died and now Vice-President Samia Suluhu Hassan has taken his place as the country's head of state.

First elected as Magufuli's running mate in 2015, she was re-elected last year along with him and, according to the constitution, she should serve out the rest of the five-year term in the top job.

She becomes Africa's only current female national leader - the Ethiopian presidency is a largely ceremonial role - and joins a short list of women on the continent to have run their countries.

The 61-year-old is affectionately known as Mama Samia - in Tanzanian culture that reflects the respect she is held in, rather than reducing her to a gendered role.

But she was a surprise choice for a running mate in 2015, leaping over several other more prominent politicians in the Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) party, which has been in power in one form or another since independence in 1961.

First elected to a public office in 2000, she came to national prominence in 2014 as the vice-chairperson of the Constituent Assembly, created to draft a new constitution. There her calm demeanour in managing occasional outbreaks of pandemonium and the way in which she dealt with some of the more outspoken members earned her plaudits

In terms of personality she strikes a contrast with Magufuli.

Where he appeared impulsive, not afraid to speak off the cuff and let his feelings be known, she is more thoughtful and considered.

She is also said to be a good listener who believes in following the correct procedures.

'Capable leader'

One MP, January Makamba, who worked with her in the vice-president's office, has called her "the most underrated politician in Tanzania".

"I have observed at close quarters her work ethic, decision-making and temperament. She is a very capable leader," he said.

But where this places her in terms of policy is not yet clear. Most significantly she has to decide whether to continue her predecessor's sceptical approach to dealing with coronavirus.

 

courtesy BBC Africa news

President Joe Biden is deploying one of his closest allies on Capitol Hill to East Africa to urge an end to the growing conflict in Ethiopia that has already killed thousands and forced hundreds of thousands to flee their homes.

Delaware Sen. Chris Coons, once a top contender to be Biden’s secretary of state, is departing on a temporary diplomatic mission to meet with Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed to address the crisis in Ethiopia’s northern region of Tigray.

 

Coons is expected to depart on Thursday for Ethiopia, where he will meet with Abiy and officials from the African Union over several days to discuss the situation in Tigray, according to a senior White House official who spoke on condition of anonymity.

His trip comes after months of fighting in Tigray following Ethiopia’s military campaign to oust the former regional ruling party, the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front, in a conflict marked by widespread allegations of ethnic cleansing, sexual violence, and massacres of civilians.

Coons told Foreign Policy in a statement that he shares the administration’s concerns with the “deteriorating situation in the Tigray, which threatens the peace and stability of the Horn of Africa region.”

 

 

“I look forward to engaging with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali and conveying the President’s concern,” he said.

U.S. officials and regional experts warn that if left unchecked, the conflict could spiral into a full-blown regional crisis and cause knock-on destabilizing effects in Ethiopia’s neighboring countries. Human-rights groups accused forces from neighboring Eritrea of systematically massacring hundreds of unarmed civilians in Tigray in November, shortly after the outbreak of the conflict.

Coons, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and chairman of the powerful Senate appropriations subcommittee that oversees funding for diplomacy and foreign-aid programs, has joined a growing chorus of voices in Washington condemning the wave of violence in northern Ethiopia.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken, testifying before Congress on March 10, condemned what he called “acts of ethnic cleansing” in Tigray and called for an independent investigation into the violence and “full accountability.” The U.S. government has thus far stopped short of declaring the full conflict as “ethnic cleansing”—a legal determination that requires an interagency review process.

“What’s happening in Ethiopia has had, and will continue to have, devastating consequences for thousands of innocent people, and it poses a direct threat to regional peace and security,” Linda Thomas-Greenfield, Biden’s ambassador to the United Nations, told the U.N. Security Council on March 4. “The onus to prevent further atrocities and human suffering falls squarely on the Ethiopian government’s shoulders.”

Ethiopian Orthodox Christians celebrated this year's Epiphany in colorful processions in different parts of the country.

The celebration occur amidst a period of conflict in different parts of the country. In the Tigray state the Ethiopian National Defense Army is still controlling an uneasy calm after weeks of armed conflict with the TPLF.

This state of affairs in Metekele and Tigray region did not deter Ethiopian Orthodox Christians from celebrating this holy day in their religious calendar. 

By

Kenya's economy is expected to bounce next year (2021), the World Bank said on Wednesday, as it emerges from a projected decline in the output of this year caused by the coronavirus crisis.

East Africa’s biggest economy is expected to contract by 1.0-1.5 percent this year (2020) as the pandemic takes it toll and pushes 2 million people into poverty the world bank said in the report.

The government forecast a 6.4% growth.

The world bank said its forecast for growth in 2021 still faced significant risks due to the uncertainty around the length and severity of the pandemic, unpredictable weather conditions and the pace of the global economic recovery. 

Kenya Finance Minister Ukur Yatani added that Kenya planned to make a final decision about joining the G20’s Debt Service Suspension Initiative that is aimed at helping poor countries weather the pandemic. 

 

 

An attack at Dabacity on an ambulance carrying a patient from Katulo, Mandera northern Kenya by Al-Shabaab has let one dead and one in critical condition. Two others were left with minor injuries.

A Kenyan security team repulsed the attack and provided safe passage for the the injured to Elwak Sub-County hospital.

On board the ambulance were ; Hafsa Alio the patient that was referred to Elwak, Osman Ibrahim the driver, Adan Abdulrahman nurse accompanying the patient, mother and husband to the patient whose names are yet to be established.

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