[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Mali, South Sudan, Somalia, Mauritania, Djibouti, and Comoros Islands and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the On the Margins Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each month's roundup to email@example.com.]
Dreams of Comoros oil boom hang on seismic survey (22 May 2019) Comoros will find out the extent of its oil and gas exploration potential upon the completion of a seismic survey by Tullow Oil.
Comoros swears in president after controversial elections (27 May 2019) Comoran President Azali Assoumani was sworn in for a second term after a controversial election in March 2019, where he received sixty percent of the vote. Assoumani's opponents in that election boycotted the inauguration to protest the election's legitimacy.
Comoros president pardons 17 jailed opposition figures (30 May 2019) Comoran President Azali Assoumani pardoned twenty-two jailed opposition figures, and commuted death sentences of several others. He claimed he wanted to restart dialogue with his political opponents, many of whom boycotted his inauguration for a second term.
Wednesday's Cosafa Cup Review: Comoros set up Quarter Final (29 May 2019) Comoros advanced to the Cosafa cup with a 2-1 victory over Mauritius.
Perils of a rail link built with Chinese funds (18 May 2019) A Chinese-funded electric railway linking Ethiopia and Djibouti is not working as promised, with frequent electrical outages.
Kenya Partners with Djibouti to Construct US $59m Submarine Cable (28 May 2019) Djibouti and Kenya announced they will collaborate to build an undersea cable connecting Djibouti City with Mombasa, Kenya. The cable is known as the DARE (Djibouti Africa Regional Express) and connects to several existing and planned systems of ICT cables.
India, France to hold anti-submarine drills off Djibouti (3 May 2019) At the end of May 2019, France and India are planning to hold military exercises off the coast of Djibouti.
Indian, French submarines carry out 35-hour long drill off Djibouti coast - The Week (29 May 2019) Indian and French submarines took part in a joint naval exercise off of the coast of Djibouti.
Armenia, Djibouti establish diplomatic relations (23 May 2019) Armenia and Djibouti signed an agreement establishing permanent diplomatic relations between the two countries at the United Nations in New York. The diplomats expressed hope that Armenia and African nations could enjoy greater cooperation in the future.
Mali: Returning to a destroyed land (29 May 2019) Religious extremist militias have suffered defeats militarily in Timbuktu, but their influence is pervasive in society and in the educational system.
Severe floods in Mali claim at least 15 lives (17 May 2019) Severe floods in Bamako caused fifteen deaths and property damage on 16 May 2019.
Unidentified armed men kill 4 civilians in Central Mali (11 May 2019) Armed men killed four civilians in Central Mali, in a region of the country beyond the control of the peacekeeping forces currently deployed there.
Canada must not abandon Mali (27 May 2019) A Canadian MP criticizes plans by the current government headed by the Liberal Party to begin withdrawing Canadian peacekeeping forces from Mali.
The President of Mauritania Is Silencing My Brother (3 May 2019) Mauritanian activist Abderrahmane Weddady has been arrested for exposing a ponzi scheme perpetuated by Sheikh Ali Rada al-Said, a popular Islamic cleric. Al-Said promised to purchase houses at above market values in return for IOUs, and was exposed by Weddady, a businessman who noticed an alarming fall in housing prices.
Mauritania: Blogger Mkhaïtir's Fate Lies in the Hands of the President (31 May 2019) Human Rights Watch (HRW) calls for the release of a detained Mauritanian activist, Mohamed Ould Cheikh Mkhaïtir on blasphemy charges.
Aura Energy produces saleable yellowcake in Mauritania (26 May 2019) Australian-listed Aura Energy announced it had produced saleable yellowcake Uranium as part of exploratory operations in Mauritania.
Mauritania: Allow Ex-Guantanamo Detainee to Travel | Human Rights Watch (14 May 2019) The Mauritanian government has violated the human rights of Mohamedou Ould Slahi by denying him a passport. Human Rights Watch calls on Mauritanian authorities to either issue him a passport or explain the reason for not doing so.
FFC denies proposing to cede presidency to Sudan's military council (22 May 2019) The opposition Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC) in Sudan have denied they proposed to give the presidency of the transitional council to the military. Some opposition factions appear to be more amenable to a role for the military than others.
Floating Restaurant Brings New Experience at Lido Beach (23 May 2019) Somali restauranteur Abdulkadir Mohamed opens risky floating restaurant venture in Lido beach in Mogadishu.
Suicide Bomber nabbed as he attempted to detonate an explosive against Sufi leadership (24 May 2019) Somali Sufi leaders were gathered in the town of Guri-el to celebrate their victory over al-Shabaab. They narrowly escaped a suicide bombing when the alleged bomber was apprehended before he could carry out a plot targeting them.
Australia bans somali taxi driver for asking blind passenger directions among 30 other traffic offences (16 May 2019) Somali-Australian taxi driver Hawa Add has lost her taxi certification after more than thirty traffic offenses. In one incident she allegedly asked a blind passenger for directions.
Former Somali army commander living in Virginia found liable for torture during country's civil war(21 May 2019) A Virginia jury found Col Yusuf Abdi "Tukeh" Ali liable for 500,000 dollars for human rights violations against former Somali herder and refugee Farhan Warfaa.
Somalia Authorities Decline to Release Journalist Despite Court Order (31 May 2019) Somali authorities have refused a court order to release journalist Ali Mumin. Mumin was detained by Somali authorities after making provocative comments on social media.
The problems of fused parliament-cabinet membership in Somalia (12 May 2019) Farhan Isak Yusuf criticizes the participation of MPs in the Somali cabinet, which he says reduces the ability of parliament to hold the executive branch to account.
Suspended Flights Further Threaten Fragile Somali-Kenyan Relations (16 May 2019) Kenya has banned flights from Somalia into the capital of Nairobi as part of an ongoing dispute over maritime resource boundaries.
Is Oil Exploration in Somalia More of a Curse Than Blessing? (26 May 2019) If Somali society has been divided by clashes over access to land, water, and other resources, the author asks if introducing oil production to the equation might make things worse.
National Umma Party rejects Sudan general strike (27 May 2019) The opposition Umma Party announced its opposition to a general strike by other anti-regime groups on 26 May 2019. The party said it would only support a general strike if all opposition parties agreed through a joint body.
Saudi Arabia’s sudden interest in Sudan is not about friendship. It is about fear (5 May 2019) Saudi Arabia is increasing its involvement in Sudan, and supporting the military crackdown. One Saudi motivation may be the desire to prevent similar events happening in Saudi Arabia.
Sudan's protesters announce two-day general strike next Tuesday (25 May 2019) Sudanese regime opponents announced a proposed general strike for Tuesday 27 May 2019.
Opposition present vision on Sudan’s future to junta (2 May 2019) The Sudanese opposition Forces of Freedom and Change (FFC) described their vision for Sudan's future to the transitional military council. Participants included the Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA) and representatives of the larger FFC movement.
The Counterrevolution Begins in Sudan (22 May 2019) As of 22 May 2019 the military regime and its civilian opponents had broken off negotiations leading to potential strikes and political stalemate.
Sudan's military council hints at early election in six months (8 May 2019) The Sudanese military council's leaders implied they intended to hold elections in six months, while the opposition argued that any elections held under by the military under this timetable would lack legitimacy.
Nearly six million Sudanese in need of food aid (17 May 2019) As the military and opposition argue over who will form the new government in Sudan, there are over six million people in need of food aid.
Kiir urges South Sudan's partners to work for peace enforcement (24 May 2019) South Sudanese President Salva Kiir urged his opponents to collaborate to ensure implementation of the recent peace agreement.
Mass Logging Negative on Climate Change, Huge Revenue Lost in Yei River State (26 May 2019) The rebel Sudanese People's Liberation Army in Opposition (SPLM-IO) has conducted logging operations in Yei River state. These logging operations can worsen climate change and destroy tree species attractive to visitors.
Security Council renews arms embargo on South Sudan (31 May 2019) The United Nations Security council voted 10-0 with five abstentions to extend the arms embargo against South Sudan for six more months. The five abstentions included Russia and three African nations.
Amid Protest Plan, South Sudan Peace Deal Totters After Leaders Miss Deadline (14 May 2019) South Sudanese youth activists announced a new round of planned demonstrations after the leaders of the country's two warring factions missed a deadline for an agreement.
What do we know about UN Resolution 2469 (2019) and The Final Status of Abyei? (29 May 2019) The UN Security council extended the mandate for peacekeepers in Abyei with a reduced troop ceiling.