Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Another woman journalist jailed for reporting rape allegations in Sudan

Sudan Tribune Sudanese female journalist in a protest against censorship (FILE)

25 Jul 2011 16:01 Africa/Lagos

Sudan / Another woman journalist jailed for reporting rape allegations

PARIS, July 25, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- Amal Habani, a woman reporter for the daily Al-Jarida, was today sentenced to a fine of 2,000 pounds (600 euros) or a month in jail for reporting a woman activist's claims that she was raped by members of the security forces. As Habani refused to pay the fine, she was immediately taken to Omdurman women's prison, northwest of the capital, to begin serving the jail sentence.

Photograph of women protesting against rape in war torn Sudan.Credit: Rights Monitoring Organization.

Habani was convicted by Judge Modather Al-Rasheed of the Khartoum media court, who fined her editor, Saadeldin Ibrahim, 5,000 pounds (1,500 euros). Agence France-Presse quoted her lawyer as saying they were found guilty of publishing false information and violating journalistic ethics.

She is the second woman journalist working for Al-Jarida to be tried in the past three weeks for reporting human rights activist Safia Ishag's rape allegations. Fatima Ghazali was convicted on 5 July and was taken to Omdurman prison the same day. She was released two days later after paying her fine.

Seven other journalists and media contributors are due to be tried or are still the subject of judicial investigations for the same reason. They are Faisal Mohamed Salih, Babikir Omer Al-Garrai, Abdalla Al-Shaik, Mohamed Latif, Faiz Al-Selaik, Mohamed Osman and Dr. Nahid Al-Hassan.

More information: http://en.rsf.org/sudan-ten-journalists-hounded-and-18-06-2011,40485.html

Source: Reporters without Borders (RSF)

26 Jul 2011 07:40 Africa/Lagos

Regional Conference On Migration In Africa Promotes Circular Labour Migration

GENEVA, July 26, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- Migration experts are meeting this week in the Ghanaian capital, Accra, to discuss how Africa and the European Union can benefit from organized labour migration.

The conference which opened yesterday, 25 July, 2011, has been organized by the IOM through funds from the EU's AENEAS 2006 programme, which provides financial and technical support for countries on migration and asylum. It is attended by officials from EU, Africa and Canada as well as major international bodies, such as the African Union, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Southern African Development Commission (SADEC)

The conference builds on a previous event which took place in 2008, during which IOM with funds from the AENEAS 2006 programme, launched a Labour Migration Project for West Africa (LAMIWA). The project aimed at reversing the negative trends of increased irregular migrations from Ghana, Nigeria and Senegal to Europe, with Libya as the main transit country.

The conference is assessing the overall benefits of the LAMIWA programme on the participating countries, namely Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal and Italy. It also aims to gain understanding of different approaches taken by regional bodies to labour mobility.

One of the key areas for discussion is circular migration - a scheme whereby migrant workers from Africa enter the European labour market for a limited period of time in line with specific country entry quotas and then return home once their contracts are over.

This scheme will benefit migrants and both origin and the host countries. The countries of origin will benefit from the skills and knowledge acquired by the migrant workers, technology transfer, unemployment reduction and the remittances. Host countries will have access to migrant workers willing to fill short-term labour market needs.

Through LAMIWA project, a pilot scheme for circular migration scheme is taking place between Ghana and Italy. As part of the scheme, an initial group of twenty selected Ghanaian migrant workers will depart later this week for Italy where they will spend three months working in the agricultural sector. IOM will provide pre-departure counselling, including information on contract and working conditions as well as return and reintegration assistance in Ghana upon completion of the contract.

Apart from initiating circular migration scheme between Ghana and Italy, the funds provided by EU's AENEAS 2006 programme, have enabled IOM to provide assistance to the governments of Ghana and Nigeria in drafting labour migration policies, and support for the two governments' efforts to reduce irregular migration in the region.

In addition, AENEAS 2006 funding facilitated IOM to conduct national assessment of labour migration policies, legislation and practices in Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal and Libya.

Source: International Office of Migration (IOM)

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Friday, July 08, 2011

GI-NET/SDC hails South Sudan Independence and calls for end to S. Kordofan Violence


(Juba, South Sudan) – Tom Andrews, President of Genocide Intervention Network/Save Darfur Coalition issued the following statement from Juba in recognition of Independence Day for the Republic of South Sudan:

“On behalf of our organization’s activist members and partner organizations, I extend heartfelt congratulations to the Republic of South Sudan and its people as the country celebrates its independence and the world’s newest nation.

“We pay tribute to those whose actions and advocacy compelled the world’s attention and international engagement that led to the signing of the historic 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement and ultimately, South Sudan’s independence. South Sudanese civil society leaders, faith organizations and individuals – joined by vibrant faith communities and activists in the United States and around the world – made it impossible for the world to continue ignoring decades of indescribable human loss and suffering.

“Activists in the United States and around the globe raised their voices again to compel U.S. and international involvement when the January referendum for independence was in jeopardy. And we must continue to speak out and call for international support for peace in this vulnerable nation and region.

“Even today, as we celebrate South Sudan’s independence, north Sudan’s military is attacking civilians in South Kordofan and blockading delivery of life-saving food, water, medicine and fuel. The Khartoum regime also continues to target civilians and block progress toward peace in Darfur. We call on the Obama administration to issue tough economic sanctions against north Sudan’s president Bashir and his cronies, to issue a call for an international investigation of the crimes against civilians that are being committed throughout in Sudan, and to declare support for an expanded UN protection force in the contentious border region to save the lives of those who are being targeted by the Khartoum regime.”


The Save Darfur Coalition and Genocide Intervention Network merged to create a more powerful voice dedicated to preventing and stopping large-scale, deliberate atrocities against civilians. The organization remains committed to its work to end the crisis in Darfur and bring peace to all of Sudan as well as to end violence in other areas of mass atrocities such as Congo and Burma. The merger creates the world’s largest anti-genocide organization, with a membership base of hundreds of thousands of committed activists globally, an unparalleled nationwide student movement, more than 190 faith-based, advocacy and human rights partner organizations, and a network of institutional investors collectively representing more than $2 trillion in assets under management.

~ Ann Brown Communications



A referendum on independence for Southern Sudan was held in January 2011, with 98.83% of the electorate opting for secession. ThePresident of Sudan, Omar al-Bashir, accepted the results and issued a Republican Decree confirming the outcome of the referendum.[6]Southern Sudan will formally declare its independence from the north on Saturday 9 July 2011, creating Africa’s newest nation.

In April 2011, President Omar Al-Bashir stated that he would not recognise the independence of South Sudan if its government claims theAbyei region, which is part of South Kordofan state in northern Sudan. The two sides clashed over the region in May, which resulted in its seizure by the north.