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  1. Police surround home of Senegal's Ousmane Sonko

    The Newsroom

    BBC World Service

    Police in the Senegalese capital Dakar have surrounded the home of the main opposition leader, Ousmane Sonko, after deadly unrest erupted over a jail sentence pronounced against him.

    Mr Sonko wasn't in court on Thursday when he was sentenced to two years in prison for immoral behaviour.

    But the justice minister said he could be jailed at any time.

    At least nine people were killed in Dakar and the southern city of Ziguinchor when Mr Sonko's supporters clashed with police.

    Senegal's government blocked some social media and insisted it would maintain order.

  2. Angola denies IMF pressure behind rise in fuel prices

    BBC Monitoring

    The world through its media

    Angola has denied that it was abolishing fuel subsidies as a result of pressure from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

    Finance Minister Vera Daves said on Thursday that the withdrawal of fuel subsidies came as a result of a sovereign decision by the Angolan government.

    It follows government's decision to raise the price of petrol from 160 kwanza ($0.27) to 300 kwanza ($0.51) per litre, which came into effect on Thursday.

    The measure does not affect public service vehicles and motorcycles - whose operators will get a non-transferable pre-paid card that they will use to buy fuel.

  3. Caster Semenya book praises being 'born different'

    Caster Semenya in 2018
    Image caption: 'My life has had its struggles, but it has mostly been a joy,' the Olympian says

    South African athlete Caster Semenya is publishing a memoir later this year, saying she hopes the book will show "how the world can welcome those born different".

    Semenya is an intersex woman and has spoken about the ordeals she's faced in her career - including having to take testosterone-suppressing drugs, and offering to show her vagina to athletics officials when she was 18 to prove she was female.

    The Race To Be Myself will be published in October by Merky Books, the publishing imprint started by British-Ghanaian rapper Stormzy.

    Semenya says the public may know her for her Olympic feats, yet "there is still so much I need to relate about strength, courage, love, resilience and being true to who you are."

  4. Zambia's state house clarifies row over handbags

    A handbag
    Image caption: An earlier complaint said women had not allowed into a state house event with their bags

    State house in Zambia has dismissed accusations that women are being barred from carrying handbags to its functions.

    This follows a complaint about “gender-insensitive security measures” witnessed at a recent event at the official residence of the president.

    Grace Sinkamba, from the Non-Governmental Gender Organisation's Coordinating Council, said it amounted to discrimination against women and girls.

    But state house spokesperson Clayson Hamasaka said no woman had been denied access to the building “solely due to carrying a handbag”.

    He said that those who decline to have their bags screened forfeit their right to enter.

  5. Security chiefs must work better together - Tinubu

    Nigeria's new president promises security reforms

    Chris Ewokor

    BBC News, Abuja

    Nigeria President-elect Bola Ahmed Tinubu arrives to attend swearing-in ceremony at Eagle Square venue in the capital, Abuja, Nigeria on May 29, 2023
    Image caption: President Bola Tinubu was sworn in earlier this week

    Bola Ahmed Tinubu has promised reforms to deal with Nigeria's insecurity, in what was his first official meeting with security and intelligence chiefs since becoming president.

    Terrorism and an Islamist insurgency are entrenched in the north-east of the country, banditry and armed militias are common in the north-west and central Nigeria - while separatist agitations, oil theft and sea piracy threaten the south.

    His predecessor, Muhammadu Buhari, famously promised and failed to defeat Islamist insurgents.

    But newly sworn-in President Tinubu "has made it very, very clear that he's determined to build on whatever gains have been made and to reverse misfortunes and turn the tide in our favour," said national security adviser Babagana Monguno after Thursday's meeting in Abuja.

    Better co-ordination, consultations and timely reporting were all needed to improve the way security agencies work together, Mr Tinubu said.

    At his swearing-in on Monday, Mr Tinubu said health, education and infrastructure development would also be major priorities for his government.

  6. Deadly clashes after Senegal's Sonko sentenced

    Grant Ferrett

    BBC World Service

    Sonko's supporters gather to protest after Senegalese opposition leader Ousmane Sonko jailed for 2 years for corrupting youths in Dakar, Senegal -  1 June 2023
    Image caption: Riot police clashed with protesters after the opposition leader was given a two-year jail sentence

    At least nine people were killed during clashes between riot police and protesters in Senegal after the opposition leader, Ousmane Sonko, was given a two-year jail sentence.

    The casualties were announced by Interior Minister Antoine Diome in a late-night news conference after a day of violence across the country.

    Mr Diome said that social media, such as Facebook and WhatsApp, had been blocked.

    Some of the worst clashes were in the southern city of Ziguinchor, where Sonko is the mayor.

    The prison term - which was handed down in his absence - could prevent the opposition leader from contesting a presidential election next year.

    He was found guilty of immoral behaviour, but cleared of rape

    The ruling means he was found to have acted immorally towards an individual younger than 21. The charges stemmed from allegations made by a massage therapist. He denied any wrongdoing.

    The Senegalese government says it will take all necessary steps to protect people and property following the deadly unrest.

  7. Eswatini MPs who challenged king's rule convicted

    Will Ross

    Africa editor, BBC World Service

    Mswati III, Eswatini king at the certificate handover ceremony at Moses Mabhida Stadium on October 29, 2022 in Durban, South Africa.
    Image caption: Eswatini's Mswati III is Africa's last absolute monarch

    A court in Eswatini has found two lawmakers guilty of murder and terrorism for their role in a wave of protests that hit the country in 2021.

    Mduduzi Bacede Mabuza and Mthandeni Dube face up to 20 years in jail.

    The two were detained after taking part in pro-democracy protests in what is Africa's last absolute monarchy.

    They pleaded not guilty to inciting unrest.

    Amnesty International said the convictions were evidence of the country's continuing crackdown on dissent.

    The demonstrations were violently crushed by the security forces leaving dozens of people dead.

    Eswatini has been rule by King Mswati III since 1986 and political parties are banned from taking part in elections.

    Protesters, angered by economic decline, have become increasingly vocal in demanding political reform.

  8. US sanctions Sudanese firms for fuelling war

    Will Ross

    Africa editor, BBC World Service

    The US government has issued sanctions against four Sudanese companies and several individuals for fuelling the war between rival military forces.

    It said the sanctions would cut off key financial flows to the army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) - who get a lot of their funding from the country’s gold mines.

    Seven weeks of conflict have forced close to 1.5 million people from their homes.

    On Wednesday at least 18 civilians were killed during fighting between the rival military forces at a market in southern Khartoum.

    This picture taken on May 2, 2023 shows a destroyed medical storage in Nyala, the capital of South Darfur province
    Image caption: The conflict has caused much destruction in Sudan
  9. Swiss court upholds sentence of Liberian warlord

    The Newsroom

    BBC World Service

    An appeals court in Switzerland has upheld a 20-year jail sentence against a former Liberian warlord convicted of rape, murder and cannibalism.

    Lawyers say Alieu Kosiah was also found guilty of the additional charge of crimes against humanity, which had been added by prosecutors.

    The former rebel commander was found guilty of war crimes in 2021.

    The case was the first of its kind in Switzerland, or anywhere else, for atrocities committed during Liberia's multiple civil wars which lasted from 1989 to 2003.

    Hundreds of thousands of people were killed and mutilated during the conflict.

  10. Eritrea's leader urges Russia to play 'historical role'

    BBC Monitoring

    Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with Eritrea's President Isaias Afwerki at the Kremlin in Moscow on May 31, 2023
    Image caption: The leaders of the two countries met at the Kremlin

    Eritrea's President Isaias Afwerki has called on Russia to perform its "historical responsibility" of promoting global peace and justice, the Eritrean Ministry of Information's website, Shabait, has reported.

    Mr Isaias made the comments during a meeting with President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Wednesday.

    Eritrea and Russia enjoy cordial relations.

    Eritrea is one of a few countries to oppose UN resolutions to condemn Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.

    Mr Isaias added that "the unipolar world order", dominated by the US, had contributed to the "spiral of crises and destruction" around the world.

    His four-day visit to Russia came barely a week after a similar visit to China, during which he held talks with President Xi Jinping and other senior government officials.

    Eritrea is a one-party state where Mr Isaias has been in power since independence from Ethiopia in 1993.

  11. Rocket attack kills 17 in Sudan market - medics

    BBC Monitoring

    At least 17 people were killed and 106 others wounded on Wednesday after rockets hit a market south of the capital Khartoum, a Sudanese doctors' union said.

    This is the largest number of people killed by shelling in an attack around the capital since fighting between the Sudanese army and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) started on 15 April.

    The attack came as talks, brokered by the US and Saudi Arabia to end the conflict, collapsed.

    "The Mayo area [Market 6] witnessed violent and bloody shelling this afternoon, which left 17 people dead and more than 106 wounded," the Sudanese Doctors' Syndicate said in a post on its Facebook page.

    It brings the civilian death toll in the conflict to 883.

    Destroyed vehicles are pictured outside the burnt-down headquarters of Sudan's Central Bureau of Statistics, on al-Sittin (sixty) road in the south of Khartoum on May 29, 2023
    Image caption: Destroyed vehicles are seen outside the burnt-down headquarters of Sudan's Central Bureau of Statistics in the south of Khartoum on Monday
  12. Internet disrupted in Mauritania after protests

    The Mauritanian government on Wednesday cut off the internet on mobile phones, a day after demonstrations linked to the death of a young man in police custody.

    All internet connections on mobile phones were down, but landlines continued to work and economic activity continued, the AFP news agency reported

    Demonstrations took place in the capital Nouakchott, and in Boghé in the south of the country, to demand "justice for Omar Diop".

    Mr Diop was arrested on Monday evening in Nouakchott after taking part in a fight, according to the police.

    He died a few hours later in hospital with respiratory problems.

    An autopsy and inquest are under way to determine the circumstances of the death, the interior ministry said.

  13. Zimbabwe passes bill to punish 'unpatriotic acts'

    Shingai Nyoka

    BBC News, Harare

    Emmerson Mnangagwa
    Image caption: Emmerson Mnangagwa became president after forcing Robert Mugabe to step down in 2017

    Zimbabwe’s parliament has voted in favour of a controversial bill to punish citizens for "unpatriotic acts" , including imposing heavy fines or even the death penalty on them.

    Critics have called it a dark day for democracy.

    The so-called patriot clause of the Criminal Law Act targets those who harm the "national interest of Zimbabwe”.

    It includes any citizen who meets a representative of a foreign country with the aim of encouraging sanctions against Zimbabwe or overthrowing the government.

    Many senior government officials and state-owned companies are under Western sanctions over alleged human rights abuses,

    They’ve long blamed the opposition for this and want to stop meetings between the opposition and foreign officials.

    Parliament voted 99 to 17 in favour of the law - one of the most controversial of Emmerson Mnangagwa’s presidency.

    It will now go to the senate before it is signed into law.

    Critics say the legislation is unconstitutional as it would violate freedom of association and the right to free speech.

    An opposition official told the BBC that the way to end sanctions is to uphold human rights, not to criminalise criticism.

    The controversial changes were passed as part of a series of amendments to the Criminal Law Act.

    Lawmakers also voted in favour of minimum sentences for rape.