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KW 38: France says head of Isis in Sahara has been killed, ECOWAS imposes sanctions on Mali and Guinea, Algeria’s former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika dies at 84

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France says head of Isis in Sahara has been killed: French military forces have killed the leader of a West African affiliate of „Islamic State“ (Isis) by drone strike, and vowed to continue hunting down jihadist leaders to restore stability in the Sahel. French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted last week that Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi was neutralized by French forces but gave no further details. It was not announced where al-Sahrawi was killed, though Isis is active along the border between Mali and Niger.,

ECOWAS imposes sanctions on Mali and Guinea: West Africa’s main regional bloc on Thursday imposed sanctions against the junta in Guinea and those slowing Mali’s post-coup transition – its toughest response yet to a run of military takeovers. The move was agreed at an emergency summit of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in Accra to respond to last week’s putsch in Guinea and perceived slow progress towards constitutional rule in Mali following a coup last year.

Algeria’s former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika dies at 84: Former Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has died at 84, the presidency said on Friday, more than two years after he stepped down under pressure from mass protests and the army. Bouteflika, a veteran of Algeria’s war for independence, had ruled the North African country for two decades before his resignation in April 2019 after street demonstrations rejecting his plan to seek a fifth term. He had rarely been seen in public before his departure since a stroke in 2013.

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Africa’s rainforests are disappearing: African mountain rainforests store more carbon than originally thought, but the rainforest belt around Mount Kilimanjaro is shrinking. „The loss of forest on Kilimanjaro amounts to about 50% in the last 140 years,“ explained Andreas Hemp, a biologist and researcher at the University of Bayreuth. On Kilimanjaro, according to Hemp, it is mainly the dry climate and illegal logging that contribute to forest loss. At least Kilimanjaro has now become part of a national park and is thus better protected.

African crypto market grows by 1,200% in one year: The continent is the third-fastest growing bitcoin economy globally, powered by retail users seeking to save and transfer money. Bitcoin adoption in Africa has skyrocketed over the past year, growing over 1,200%, according to a report by Chainalysis. The increased activity in the region has been fueled by retail investors, who resort to bitcoin every day for savings, remittances, and peer-to-peer (P2P) trading.

Ethiopian human rights activist Daniel Bekele receives German Africa Award 2021: Daniel Bekele, currently Chief Commissioner of the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC), will receive the German Africa Award for his fight for democracy and human rights. The prize is the highest award of its kind in Germany. It honors outstanding personalities from the African continent who are committed to peace, reconciliation, and social progress.

Sudan floods have killed more than 80 since July
German defense minister Kramp-Karrenbauer questions Mali mission
WHO warns of new Covid mutations in Africa
Nigeria: Thousands of former Boko Haram fighters lay down their arms according to army reports


Russian mercenaries in Mali: There are indications that the government in Mali is discussing a paramilitary operation with the Russian mercenary force „Wagner“. Malian and Russian authorities are said to be on the verge of signing an agreement to this effect. This was revealed by the Reuters news agency at the beginning of the week, causing a stir in European diplomatic circles. Mali reacted promptly: The government wants to expand its relations to ensure the security of the country — nothing has yet been signed with Wagner, a spokesperson for the country’s defense ministry said according to media reports.

Raffle to fight vaccine skepticism: Not enough people in Africa are vaccinated and vaccine skepticism is also a growing cause for concern. The 35-year-old South African Jolene Samuels has found a creative answer and convinced hundreds with her raffle. In the beginning, she raffled off four bottles of wine and a perfume from her own household among people who wanted to be vaccinated. Now, thanks to the support of friends and other motivated people, she can raffle off a prize twice a day via Facebook. The only entry requirement is to send a vaccine certificate. „Some people have written to me saying that my raffle was the final push for them to finally get vaccinated,“ said Samuels. She believes that vaccination skepticism is partly due to the fact that messages about vaccination programs are often too complicated, whereas on social networks simple messages with simple words are shared.


Only 3.6% of people in Africa have full vaccination protection.


„If Mali’s government makes such agreements with Russia, it contradicts everything that Germany, France, the EU and the UN have been doing in Mali for 8 years.“

German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer on the future of the UN military mission in Mali.


Europa-Park rebuilds its Africa raft ride after racism allegations: Many people love the raft ride through the „jungle“ at Europa-Park. But a new racism debate surrounding the ride has put the attraction in a new light. The theme park reacted quickly and made small corrections. A major reconstruction will follow soon. A seminar paper by two students from Freiburg apparently got the ball rolling.