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USA: Protests continue over killing of Congolese refugee, Patrick Lyoya by Michigan officer

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The death of a 26-year-old Congolese refugee, Patrick Lyoya, has ignited demands for Police reform as dozens of demonstrators gathered Saturday in a fresh protest in Grand Rapids, eastern USA.

The enraged protesters were chanting “there is no justice in this land” and “Justice for Patrick.”

Patrick Lyoya was killed in Grand Rapids, Michigan on April 4 by a Michigan police officer with a gunshot after the officer couldn’t subdue him in a duel during a traffic stop. The death of the 26-year-old Congolese-American has ignited the protests against racism and demands for Police reform.

Prior to the shooting, he appeared to be wrestling on the ground with the officer in a video recorded by the passenger in his car.

Lyoya’s death is the latest in a grim litany of Black unarmed people dying at the hands of police. Recall that 46-year-old, George Floyd, was murdered in May 2020 in the U.S. city of Minneapolis by Derek Chauvin, a 44-year-old white police officer leading to international outrage.

Patrick Lyoya’s parents said they had fled the war in DR Congo only to have their “son killed with bullets” in the United States.

Speaking at a press conference, attorney Ben Crump described the attack as an “unnecessary, unjustifiable, excessive use of fatal force” that saw the officer “escalate a minor traffic stop into a deadly execution.”

There was nothing, he said, “to justify him reaching for his service revolver, taking it and putting it to the back of Patrick’s head, and pulling the trigger. blowing his head off. “

“If it’s wrong to shoot civilians in the back of the head in Ukraine, it is wrong for the police to shoot civilians in the back of the head here in Grand Rapids, Michigan”, he added.

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Musings From Abroad

Niger, Turkey expand energy, defence cooperation

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Following Niger’s request for the departure of Western military forces and the cancellation of many Western countries’ mining contracts, Turkey and Niger decided to increase their collaboration in the areas of energy, mining, intelligence, and defence.

On Wednesday, MIT intelligence chief, Ibrahim Kalin, Energy Minister, Alparslan Bayraktar, Defense Minister, Yasar Guler, and Foreign Minister, Hakan Fidan, of Turkey paid a visit to Niamey, the capital of Niger.

The Turkish team also met with General Abdulrahman Tiani, the leader of Niger, who assumed office in July of last year following the overthrow of President Mohamed Bazoum by the military council he led and the country’s shift in allegiance.

The junta expelled the French forces, and the United States was instructed to remove its military men from the nation. Additionally, it broke security agreements with the EU.

Two months have passed since Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan and Niger’s Prime Minister Ali Mahaman Lamine Zeine met in Ankara, where the Turkish officials are currently on a visit.

Following their discussions on Wednesday, Fidan informed reporters that officials from Turkey and Niger had talked about enhancing their defence intelligence collaboration.

Guler talked about measures to strengthen defence and military training cooperation between Turkey and Niger, an official from the Turkish Ministry of defense said on Thursday.

The energy ministry of Turkey announced on Wednesday that the two nations had inked a statement of intent to assist and motivate Turkish enterprises to develop the oil and natural gas resources in Niger.

Niger is the seventh-largest producer of uranium in the world and possesses the highest-grade uranium ores in Africa.

However, a Turkish diplomatic source stated that Ankara is not looking to purchase uranium from Niger for its first nuclear power station, which is being built in Akkuyu in Turkey’s Mediterranean area by Russia’s Rosatom.

 

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Musings From Abroad

IMF lowers Botswana’s growth projection for 2024

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In a statement, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) reduced its earlier April estimate of 3.6% growth for Botswana to 1%, primarily because of decreased diamond production.

In addition, the IMF warned that a decline in mineral income would cause the budget deficit to balloon to 6% from 3.45% and urged the diamond-rich nation in southern Africa to think twice before embarking on new infrastructure projects to support the economy.

“The continued (economic) slowdown is mainly due to a fall in diamond production,” said IMF said in a statement released late on Friday.

“Some fiscal relaxation is warranted this year given the fall in mineral revenues, but the execution of the ambitious capital budget should be slowed down to contain the deterioration of the deficit and prioritize projects with the highest returns,” the IMF said.

 

The demand prognosis for diamonds, which are typically regarded as luxury goods, has decreased due to weaker consumer demand and a weakening in the global economy.

Finance Minister Peggy Serame predicted in February that the economy would expand by 4.2%, but a few months later the central bank issued a warning, stating that the ongoing challenges in the world diamond market made it doubtful that this goal would be met.

Diamond sales account for 30–40% of Botswana’s total revenue and 75% of its foreign exchange profits.

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