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Sudan/Ethiopia in view as IGAD summit holds in Nairobi, Kenya

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The 39th extraordinary meeting of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) will on Tuesday in Nairobi.

The heads of state and government from the eight-member countries of the body will gather to discuss “matters of mutual concern in the region.”

The summit comes after weeks of border skirmish between the Sudanese and Ethiopian militaries, both IGAD members.

The body which is a sub of the African Union (AU), was formed due to the recurring and severe droughts and other natural disasters between 1974 and 1984 caused widespread famine, ecological degradation and economic hardship in the Eastern Africa region.

IGAD Executive Secretary Workneh Gebeyehu visited Sudan at the weekend, where he met with the junta’s Sovereignty Council president Lt-Gen Abdel Fattah al-Burhan.

“I am very confident that our leaders will discuss the issues that concern the region, the challenge of peace and security, and the drought situation resulting from climate change,” he said while in Khartoum last weekend.

The tensions broke out between the countries after Sudan accused Ethiopia of executing seven of its troops last month. Ethiopia however denied that accusation and blamed local militia, leading to Sudan forces firing into the disputed area days later.

The AU in a statement appealed for the warring parties to exercise “complete refrain from any military action, whatever its origins,” and called for dialogue between Sudan and Ethiopia to resolve any dispute

 

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Tunisia: Government, labour union, UGTT, agree on IMF intervention

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In Tunisia, the government of president Saide has finally reach agreement with the country’s main labour and commerce unions for economic reforms.

The pressure groups agreed with the government on Friday to start talks on Monday over economic reforms required by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a rescue programme.

According to the state news agency ,TAP, quoting a government statement, Prime Minister Najla Bouden, UGTT labour union chief Noureddine Taboubi and UTICA commerce union chief Samir Majoul had agreed a “social contract” to tackle national challenges.

The UGTT which represents a vast syndicate of workers, has been a major critic of IMF economic reforms proposed by the government, including subsidy cuts, a public sector wage freeze and the restructuring of state-owned companies. It previously said, such reforms would increase the suffering of Tunisians and lead to an imminent social implosion.

In May, Tunisia reached an agreement with the European Union to secure a €300 million loan facility to cushion the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.

The North Africa country is seeking $4 billion in IMF support amid the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic and the war in Ukraine, though diplomat sources told Reuters any IMF programme approved would be unlikely to reach that level.

Efforts to secure the IMF bailout have been complicated by Tunisia’s political upheavals since President Kais Saied seized most powers a year ago, shutting down parliament and moving to rule by decree.

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Mali’s Prime Minister, Choguel Maiga, on “forced rest” by doctors

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The Prime Minister’s office in troubled West African country, Mali has revealed that doctors have put the PM, Choguel Maiga on compulsory rest.

The doctors’ order comes after months of intense exertion, his office said on Saturday. The office however denied media reports that he had been hospitalised after suffering a stroke.

An exert from his Facebook account reads “After 14 months of working without a break, the prime minister, head of government, Choguel Kokalla Maiga was placed on forced rest by his doctor”

“He will resume his activities next week, God-willing.”

Maiga, who is a former opposition leader, was named prime minister by the ruling junta of Colonel Goita June last year.

Maiga has been one of the government’s most outspoken voices in repeated public rows with West African neighbours and international partners who have criticised its military cooperation with Russian mercenaries and repeated election delays.

Mali has been in the eye of terror storm since war started in January 2012 between the northern and southern parts of Mali in Africa with several insurgent groups, Jihadist and separatist fighters with affiliations with Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State group.

Despite, insecurity being one of excused reasons for Colonel Goita’s military take government, much does not seemed to have been achieved as the country is still prone to continues terrorists attacks.

 

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