Africa News Roundup: Food Crises in Somalia and West Africa, Senegalese Elections, South Sudan Violence, and More

Christian Science Monitor: “Famine ends in Somalia, as drought looms in West Africa.” For more, see Reuters on the United Nations’ declaration that Somalia’s famine is over, and AFP on UN warnings concerning food insecurity in West and Central Africa.

Kenya claims to have inflicted over 100 casualties on Somalia’s rebel movement al Shabab in yesterday’s fighting.

IRIN reports on political conflicts in northern Kenya:

Politically motivated violence in the northern Kenyan town of Moyale, which has left dozens dead and tens of thousands displaced in recent weeks, shows little sign of abating and there are fears that the clashes could continue until elections are held for new local government positions.

The main two pastoralist communities involved, the Borana and the Gabra, have a long history of sometimes violent competition over resources.

But by many accounts, an unintended consequence of Kenya’s new devolutionary constitution has raised the stakes considerably. The prospect of real political and budgetary power – concentrated since independence in distant Nairobi – rather than water, pasture and cattle-raid vendettas, now drives the violence.

The Economist offers a somewhat mixed view of the political situation in Senegal, whose presidential elections are only twenty-two days away. On the one hand, The Economist‘s sub-header says, “West Africa’s beacon of democracy loses its lustre.” On the other, the magazine predicts, “Even if there are further violent protests in the run-up to the poll, Senegalese democracy should survive.”

The BBC on South Sudan:

At least 37 people have been killed in South Sudan during a shoot-out at a peace meeting aimed at ending recent violence, officials said [on Friday].

Officials from three states and the UN had met for talks in the remote town of Mayendit in Unity state in an effort to reduce inter-ethnic tensions.

Those killed in the gun battle included civilians, but most were police.

The talks were called after a series of clashes, including one in which 74 people died earlier this week.

Thousands of people have been displaced in the violence.

Northern Mali’s Tuareg rebellion has sent thousands of Tuareg refugees into neighboring Mauritania. See World Politics Review for a backgrounder on the rebels in Mali.

What are you reading today?

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