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On the Margins Roundup (November)

[Photo of Juba, South Sudan taken from the International Space Station (ISS) during Expedition 12. Image from Wikimedia Commons.] [Photo of Juba, South Sudan taken from the International Space Station (ISS) during Expedition 12. Image from Wikimedia Commons.]

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Mali, South Sudan, Somalia, Mauritania, Djibouti, and Comoros Islands and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the On the Margins Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each month's roundup to] 


Somalia’s Watergate Scandal President’s Chief of Staff outmaneuvered in his bid to steal over 100 million dollar.

Al-Shabaab's Westgate Siege was all about Somalia “Many are wondering if al-Shabaab's attack in Nairobi is a sign of its new global orientation. The answer is no.”

Somalia’s al-Shabaab claim suicide attack on central town “Our main target was Ethiopian and Djibouti troops who invaded our country,” al-Shabaab’s military operation spokesman told Reuters.

Al-Shabaab rebuilds forces in Somalia as African Union campaign stalls Extreme Islamist group is now "an extended hand of al-Qaeda," declares Somali president Hassan Sheikh Mohamud.

Somali remittances: Dahabshiil granted Barclays reprieve Somali money transfer firm wins temporary injunction preventing Barclays from cutting its banking services.

War-torn Somalia's first florist lets romance blossom again Mogadishu first florist opens for business and hopes to rekindle traditional courtship rituals.

The Rise and Fall of Somalia’s Pirate King Expecting to consult on a movie based on his life as a seafaring bandit, Afweyne was instead arrested by Belgian police and charged with the crimes of piracy and hostage taking.

The business of piracy Video of Stuart Yikona from the World Bank discussing the sophisticated financial flows that are fed by piracy in the Horn of Africa.  What needs to be done to halt them?


Mauritanie: Une Démocratie Raciale ou l´Autre Apartheïd? Mauritania: A racial democracy or the other apartheid?

Mauritania, Country With Most Slaves Per Capita, Must End Brutal Practice: UN Despite becoming the last country worldwide to abolish slavery, in 1981, "Mauritania has most slaves in world."

Global Slavery Index Mauritania has highest prevalence of modern slavery in the world, says inaugural Global Slavery Index.

Modern Slavery in Mauritania An in depth piece on how protection for slave masters helps perpetuate slavery in Mauritania

Opposition party to boycott Mauritania 'sham polls' One of Mauritania's main opposition parties announced it was pulling out of the 23 November elections despite an earlier pledge to take part.

Marche de la COD « On boycotte les élections… » Report on the powerful march of the opposition against upcoming November’s municipal and legislative elections.

L’Ambassadeur de France prêt pour une médiation entre pouvoir et opposition The Ambassador of France in Mauritania is ready to mediate between the government and the opposition on the issue of elections, according to the Coordination of Democratic Opposition (COD)

Elections : Impression de faux bulletins de vote ? ….du nouveau! The corruption scandal to obtain the printing market of ballots in the presidential election of 2009 continues its way through the British courts.

AQMI promet d'attaquer les intérêts occidentaux en Mauritanie Al-Akhbar is reporting that AQIM has put out a video promising to attack Western interests in Mauritania. 


Les raisons de la déstabilisation des Comores The reasons for the destabilization of the Comoros.

Comores : Le coup d’état permanent The author examines the ongoing political challenges destabilizing Comoros.

Appel pressant aux militaires The author makes an urgent appeal to the military to intervene on behalf of Comorians.

Sambi reconnaît la fraude électorale de 2010 Former President Ahmed Sambi now recognizes that the Constitutional Court has been completely "bought" to validate a bogus election in 2010.

L'Ex qui se prétend futur Président! Former president Ahmed Abdallah Mohamed Sambi officially launched his party, declaring himself a presidential candidate for 2016.

Journée Maore: pour le rapprochement des jeunes des quatre îles The movement Ngo'shawo is trying to prove that youth can be a vector for rapprochement between the four islands.

Comoros Islands: tropical charm off the beaten path Named after the Arabic word for "moon," Qamar, this poetically named but little-known archipelago is located between Madagascar and Mozambique.


Groundbreaking Rendition Case to be Heard by African Commission Human rights organizations confront Djibouti’s role in the C.I.A. program.

U.S. military investing heavily in Africa Preparing for Africa to be its next battleground, the US military plans include a 1.2 billion dollar, twenty-five-year plan to improve Camp Lemonnier in Djibouti.

World Bank and Djibouti Sign Agreement to Explore Geothermal Energy Djibouti’s financing agreements with the World Bank will launch a project to tap into the volcanic riches as a source of geothermal power.

UN Committee urges Djibouti to curb violence against women The United Nations Human Rights Committee has urged the government of Djibouti to effectively enforce laws aimed at protecting women from violence.

Djibouti opposition requests independent mediators Djibouti opposition sent some of it members to the African Union to request mediation between them and the government, after talks stalled in September.


Death in the desert The author reports on the French journalists murdered in Mali.

Mali, les journalistes de RFI tués à Kidal n’ont pas été « criblés de balles » : ce qu’on vous dit et ce qu’on vous cache “RFI journalists killed in Kidal were not riddled with bullets, what you are told and what is hidden from you.”

Nord-Mali : qui sont ceux que la France refuse de combattre ? Who are those that France refuses to fight in northern Mali?

The Role of the US Air Force in the French Mission in Mali “We can emphasize the very substantial support the USAF is providing to France in terms of ISR, air-to-air refueling, and logistic transport assets.”

Piecing Together the Jigsaw Prospects for improved social relations after the armed conflict in northern Mali.

Are the Blue Helmets Going Green? After the Haiti cholera scandal, the UN Mali mission has become the first tasked with assessing its own environmental impacts. 

Music, Culture & Conflict in Mali Music is Mali’s most famous cultural asset and has shaped the country’s history for centuries. A new book by Andy Morgan recounts how it has suffered under Islamist occupation.

Big Step for Justice in ‘Disappearance’ Case Judge takes big step toward justice by charging and questioning security force members about forced disappearances.

Mali coup leader summoned before judge Amadou Sanogo, alongside twenty of his officers, were arrested over alleged violence committed under his command.

Rebels in northern Mali seek independence An exclusive report from northern Mali where Arab fighters call for self-rule in region they call Azawad.

South Sudan

Tracking Malnutrition and Hunger in South Sudan How do malnutrition and hunger in South Sudan relate to the hunger season?

Saving sight in South Sudan River blindness is endemic in South Sudan, but treatment and education is being delivered to the most afflicted regions.

North or South Sudan: Abyei's contentious vote on self-determination  The referendum in Abyei will not alone end the political crisis over the oil-rich region, but it may force the hand of both Juba and Khartoum.

Sudan woman in legal limbo over refusal to cover hair The court is waiting for the prosecutor to send the file back to court for additional hearings, Amira Osman Hamed says.

Thousands of South Sudanese on road home from Sudan: Church Africa Inland Church moves 3,500 South Sudanese back to their ancestral homeland from Sudan in the first major repatriation for months.

Canada provides urgent humanitarian assistance to the people of South Sudan Canada is providing lifesaving assistance enabling them to provide emergency food assistance to displaced populations.

A lost childhood: Life as child soldier in South Sudan In this podcast, Gen Lomax speaks about his lost childhood as he was taken from his parents at the age of twelve to become a child soldier.

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