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Ethiopian activists sue Facebook parent company, Meta, over wartime hate speech

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Two Ethiopian activists have filed a lawsuit against Facebook’s parent company, Meta, over wartime hate speeches allegedly posted and promoted on the social media platform amid “heated rhetoric over their country’s deadly Tigray conflict.”

The petitioners, a former Amnesty International human rights researcher, Fisseha Tekle, and the son of a University professor, Meareg Amare, who was killed weeks after posts on Facebook inciting violence against him, filed the lawsuit on Wednesday in neighboring Kenya, which is home to the platform’s content moderation operations related to Ethiopia.

In the lawsuit, the petitioners allege, among other things, that “Meta hasn’t hired enough content moderators to moderate hate speeches, that it uses an algorithm that prioritises hateful content and that it acts more slowly to crises in Africa than elsewhere in the world.”

“This legal action is a significant step in holding Meta to account for its harmful business model,” said Mwangovya in a statement where he pointed out that the Facebook posts targeting the late professor were not isolated cases.

The lawsuit which is backed by Kenyan-based legal organisation, the Katiba Institute, seeks the creation of a $1.6 billion fund for victims of hate speech in war-torn Ethiopia.

Facebook spokesman, Ben Walters, when contacted by media outlets to comment on the lawsuit, said he could not comment on the lawsuit because they haven’t received it.

“We have strict rules which outline what is and isn’t allowed on Facebook and Instagram. Hate speech and incitement to violence are against these rules and we invest heavily in teams and technology to help us find and remove this content.

“Facebook continues to develop its capabilities to catch violating content in Ethiopia’s most widely spoken languages,” he said.

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Angola inaugurates new satellite control centre for ANGOSAT-2

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Angola has inaugurated its first satellite control centre with the main task of monitoring the activity of the country’s satellite, ANGOSAT-2.

While inaugurating the Centre on Friday at the Funda area of Luanda, the southern African country’s capital, President João Lourenço said the fully equipped centre with technical and technological means will be maintained by its technical experts with the help of Russia after the launch of the ANGOSAT-2 in October last year.

“With the launch of this satellite and its commissioning, Angola will win in all services, so we will improve our telecommunications and our social communication and will also benefit from this important project,” President João said.

“Therefore, further investments to ensure that our telecommunications contribute to the development of the country and the services of our economy, not just of Angolan society, will continue to be made.

“It has been said here that in terms of fibre optics and therefore cable transmission and investment that we are making today to connect Angola to the neighbouring country, specifically the DRC,” the President added.

The Satellite Mission and Control Center, according to local media, is an intelligent infrastructure with multiple engineering advantages, capable of guaranteeing the tracking, monitoring and operation of satellites.

Angola had, in December 2017, launched its trial satellite ANGOSAT-1 alongside the Russian rocket, but it was soon to be lost after it had lost control as soon as it entered orbit.

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Egyptian e-sports platform, GBarena, buys Tunisia’s Galactech, for $15m

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Egyptian e-sport startup, GBarena, has acquired the Tunisia-based online tech platform, Galactech, in a swap deal worth $15 million.

GBarena which is the leading Middle Eastern e-sports platform, gounded in 2016 by Mustafa Zaza and Bishoy Mesdary, in its bid to create an online gaming community the connects gamers with tournament organisers and customers, said in a statement on Friday that its quest to provide its customers with a platform where they can manage their tournaments through fully automated processes informed its decision to acquire the Tunisian firm.

Galactech, founded in 2019 by Houcem Maiza and Houssem Zouaghi, has over 200,000 active users and with the acquisition,will support GBArena’s plans to expand into the GCC, including Saudi Arabia, Dubai, Tunisia, and the Middle Eastern esports industry.

The acquisition marks a milestone transaction for GBarena in anticipation of closing its Series A later this year, with participation from investors in the US, Singapore and the MENA region.

“Our goal has always been to provide our users with an unparalleled e-sports experience, no matter where they’re located in the world. With our acquisition of Galactech, we can now ensure that our users from North Africa will have access to identical features and content they have come to expect from us while providing them with extensive opportunities for growth and development within the esports community,” CEO Samer Wagdy said.

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