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Jul-14-2010 00:03printcomments

Africa: Faces in Words

New weekly update on the breaking stories in the African nations.

Children in Africa

(PORTLAND, Ore.) - Unseen, unheard; no one should be the bearer of these two words. Unfortunately, Africa is often in the forefront of this association.

Our common humanity should change this; we should never look away because it is too distant. Our commitment to one another, to human rights, and the ability to learn should always keep us connected no matter the severity and complexity of problems.

Important insights from last week, not to be missed:

CPJ mourns death of Cameroon Pius Njaweb - The Committee to Protect Journalists extends its deep condolences to the family and colleagues of Pius Njawé, a pioneering Cameroonian journalist and a press freedom advocate, who was killed in a car accident in the United States on Monday. CPJ mourns death of Cameroon’s Pius Njawé - Committee to Protect Journalists

Al-Shabab’s celebration of the Kampala attacks is bad news for Africa - Sunday's twin suicide blasts in Kampala, which killed more than 70 people mostly football fans, are a grim reminder of the festering conflict in Somalia. The radical Al-Shabab movement has claimed responsibility and threatened to carry out more attacks against Uganda and Burundi unless the two countries withdraw their forces from Amisom, the African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia. Al-Shabab’s celebration of the Kampala attacks is bad news for Africa -

Four Journalists held hostage in Niger delta region - Reporters Without Borders is extremely concerned about the abduction of four journalists – Wahab Obba, the head of the Nigeria Union of Journalists in Lagos state,Adolphus Okonkwo of Voice of Nigeria, Sylvester Okere ofThe Champion Newspapers, and Sola Oyeyipo, another Lagos-based journalist – on 11 June near Aba, in the southeastern state of Abia. Four journalists held hostage in Niger delta region - Reporters Without Borders

Hunger Rates for Niger’s Children Reach ‘Alarmin’ Levels - Relief workers in Niger say malnutrition rates for children under age five have reached emergency levels. A deepening food crisis in the eastern Sahel threatens nearly half of Niger's 14 million people. Hunger Rates for Niger's Children Reach 'Alarming' Levels - Voice of America

Sudanese primary school expels HIV+ student - A primary school principal in Sudan’s twin capital of Omdurman have expelled one of their students who is infected with HIV according to a newspaper report. Sudanese primary school expels HIV+ student - Sudan Tribune

CPJ, African groups call for press freedom commitment- As you gather in Paris for festivities that celebrate your nations’ 50 years of independence, we, the undersigned African press freedom advocates petition for your public commitment to a free, vibrant, and self-sustaining press as a cornerstone of the development of francophone Africa in the next five decades. CPJ, African groups call for press freedom commitment - Committee to Protect Journalists

Africa: Aid Shortfalls Could Deprive 32 Million African Children of an Education - The United Nations agency tasked with promoting universal education today warned that a lack of adequate funding is undermining efforts by African countries to have an estimated 32 million children who are currently out of school back into classrooms. Aid Shortfalls Could Deprive 32 Million African Children of an Education - UN -

Fears of rape in Kenya’s slum ‘trap women’ - Fear of sexual violence is keeping poor Kenyan women away from communal toilets, and increasing the risk of disease, Amnesty International says. In a report on Kenya's slums, the human rights group said women and girls were afraid to leave their shacks at night. Fears of rape in Kenya's slums 'trap women' - The BBC

Africa: Fashionable Causes Promote Aids Awareness - The fashion industry is typically characterized by stilettos and status, but new campaigns like Designers Against AIDS (DAA) aim to transcend this image of fashion and focus attention toward world issues. Africa: Fashionable Causes Promote Aids Awareness -

Africa: EU, US Dumping Toxic Waste in Continent - European states are still using African coasts as a dumping ground of toxic waste, even after enactment of legislation aimed at ending the practice by the European Union. Africa: EU, U.S. Dumping Toxic Waste in Continent -


Alysha Atma spends many hours working on projects that support and benefit the beleaguered people of African nations who spend way too much time off the western media's radar. This writer explains that she is a culmination of all her experiences, most importantly knowledge she says, and all that she still needs to learn; lessons of love, laughter and the extraordinary giving of both young and old. She says she has the enormous fortune of learning from the best; every person around her, and the amazing strength and fortitude of those she has never met but will always strive to listen to. "I continue to work and write because I believe in the power of community and the power of one, both contradictory to each other and yet can move together in a very powerful way. I feel a responsibility to use my place, freedoms and connections here in the US to stand up and yell for those who need my voice and actions. I have seen such strength in my fellow humans that I cannot even begin to comprehend, they have traveled distances, have gone without food, water, shelter and safety for days and weeks at a time. I have a responsibility as a fellow human to put our common humanity before anything else. Everyone deserves to look towards tomorrow, to dream of a safe future and to have a peaceful present." You can write to Alysha Atma at:

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