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Pakistan: 4 killed in clashes with police near shut Afghan border | Pakistan News

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Islamabad, Pakistan – At least four people have been killed and 28 wounded in clashes between protesters and security forces in the western Pakistani border town of Chaman, according to local officials.

The clashes began on Thursday when thousands of protesters – who have been holding a sit-in demanding that the border crossing with Afghanistan be reopened – stormed government offices near the border, local officials said.

“Four people were killed, including a woman, in that clash,” said Zakaullah Durrani, a senior government official. “And there was firing until 1am [local time, 21:00 GMT on Thursday].”

On Friday morning, protesters once again attempted to damage government property, Durrani said, prompting fresh clashes that wounded eight people, including three security personnel.

Meanwhile, government officials held a high-level meeting on Friday, before planned negotiations with the protesters later in the day, Durrani told Al Jazeera.

Security issues, pandemic

Chaman border crossing is one of the main crossings between Pakistan and Afghanistan in the former’s Balochistan province.

The government has, in the past, allowed free movement of local labourers across the border into Afghanistan and back to Pakistan to engage in trade and daily wage labour.

But the border has been shut to pedestrians for weeks due to security concerns and the coronavirus pandemic, according to Zia Langove, Balochistan home minister.

It was briefly reopened earlier this week, before security concerns forced its closure, Langove told reporters on Thursday. The fresh closure of the border prompted the ongoing sit-in protest.

Langove blamed the violence on “miscreants” among the protesters who he alleged were attempting to prompt security forces to fire on the crowd.

“Those labourers tried to cross the border and they also attacked the [government-run] quarantine centre and [National Database and Registration Authority] centre there,” he said. “There was firing, and those miscreants who tried to take advantage of the situation, they also played a role to fan the flames.”

Balochistan is Pakistan’s largest but least populated province, and suffers widespread poverty and deprivation. The province has a 1,000km-long (621 miles) border with Pakistan’s western neighbour Afghanistan.

In areas like Chaman, the border has historically been porous, with the international boundary running through the middle of many villages.

The daily wage labourers holding the protest have demanded the border be reopened so that they can return to their jobs, which require crossing the boundary.

Asad Hashim is Al Jazeera’s digital correspondent in Pakistan. He tweets @AsadHashim.
Additional reporting by Saadullah Akhtar in Quetta.

Pakistani soldiers keep guard as citizens return from Afghanistan at the border-crossing town of Chaman [Fi;e: Drazen Jorgic/ Reuters]





Source – www.aljazeera.com

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Just in: Chad President Edriss Deby Killed By Rebels While Visiting Soldiers on Front-line

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Chad President Idriss Déby has been killed, the national army confirmed Tuesday afternoon.

According to a confirmation from the national army of Chad read on national radio, the newly re-elected President Idriss Déby has died of wounds he received while commanding his army in battles against rebels in the north.

In a swift change of fate, after news had come in that Chad’s veteran president, Idriss Déby had won a sixth term in the latest provisional results in on Monday by 79.3%, an announcement broadcast  on national radio today has announced his death.

According to the army spokesperson, Général Azem Bemrandoua Agouna, the military had been pushed back by a column of insurgents who were advancing on the capital, N’Djamena.

Déby, was expected to give a victory speech after receiving the provisional results, but opted instead to visit Chadian solidears on the front lines, said his campaign director Mahamat Zen Bada.

 

The post Just in: Chad President Edriss Deby Killed By Rebels While Visiting Soldiers on Front-line first appeared on ChimpReports.



Source – chimpreports.com

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Uganda Commends Japan for Support to Refugees

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Government has applauded Japan for its generous support towards the refugee communities in Uganda.

This year, Japan contributed to Uganda, $9.8 million (approximately 36 billion shillings) which according to the Japanese Ambassador to Uganda, Hidemoto Fakuzawa, is aimed at mitigating the impacts of COVID-19 pandemic to the vulnerable population, including; refugees, host community members among others.

Over the years, Japan has made various contributions to Uganda to address the emerging issues ranging from refugees, infrastructure, health among others.

From 2016 to 2020, Japan contributed approximately 35 million dollars (127 billion shillings) to the Government of Uganda by utilizing the supplementary budget to provide humanitarian support and emergency response.

Speaking to reporters at the Uganda Media Centre on Tuesday, Amb Fukuzawa said, “This year, the Government of Japan decided to make a new contribution of about of approximately 9.8 million dollars (approximately 36 billion shillings) to Uganda.”

The contribution was through 8 agencies, namely; United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), UNFPA, UN Women, UNICEF, WFP, UNDP, IOM and IFPRI.

“Japan recognizes that the humanitarian situation in refugee hosting areas is devastating, especially under the spread Of COVID-19,” said Amb Fukuzawa.

The 2021 contribution, Amb Fukuzawa said, has been made with specific focus on mitigating the impacts of the Covid-19 to the vulnerable population, including; refugees, host community members, women and children in Uganda.

Uganda is one of the biggest refugee hosting countries in the world, and has an open door policy for refugees.

Regarding the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, Amb Fukuzawa pledged Japan’s support to Uganda to fight the deadly disease that has claimed millions of lives globally.

“Japan will always be by your side and support the Government of Uganda as a member of the international community,” he said.

In 2020, Japan contributed 1.4 million dollars through UNICEF and 3.8 million dollars through the Ministry of Health to provide emergency assistance for prevention of further spread of the covid-19 pandemic.

Meanwhile, Japan has continued to support Uganda in the field of social – economic development especially in northern Uganda.

 

On February 11, 2021, Amb Fukuzawa signed a bilateral agreement on behalf of Government of Japan in form of exchange of notes with Finance Minister, Matia Kasaija for the project to improve National Roads in refugee hosting areas of West Nile sub region.

By providing a grant of approximately 36.8 million dollars to the Uganda Government, Amb Fukuzawa said that Japan “is hoping to contribute to stabilization of the society and promotion of sustainable economic growth in northern Uganda.

The Minister of Relief, Disaster Preparedness and Refugees, Hilary Onek applauded Japanese Government for the “generosity exhibited towards the refugee community.”

“The Government of Uganda commends the Government of Japan for their tireless efforts and support to Uganda, indeed Japan will always remain a true partner to Uganda,” he said.

As of March 2020, Uganda refugee population is at 1,470,858 individuals, and is on the rise.

“Our numbers continue to grow even with the restrictions on registration of new arrivals because of new birth registration and registration of persons who arrived before the lockdown in March 2020, that had since resumed in most settlements especially in West Nile,” said Onek.

The post Uganda Commends Japan for Support to Refugees first appeared on ChimpReports.



Source – chimpreports.com

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Chad President Idriss Deby has died: Army spokesman | Chad News

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President Idriss Deby, who won a 6th term on Monday, has died of injuries suffered on the frontline, an army spokesman said.

Chad’s President Idriss Deby has died of injuries suffered on the frontline where he had gone to visit soldiers battling rebels, an army spokesman said on Tuesday.

The news came a day after Deby won a sixth term, as per provisional election results released on Monday.

The 68-year-old Deby, who came to power in a rebellion in 1990, took 79.3 percent of the vote in the April 11 presidential election, the results showed.

More soon.



Source – www.aljazeera.com

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