October 25th, 2011
11:58 AM ET

Somali president speaks out against Kenyan incursion

Somalia's president has spoken out against Kenya's military incursion into his country, saying his nation's African neighbor has overstepped its bounds by pursuing Islamic militants far from its own borders.

Somali President Sharif Ahmed said Monday that the strike degrades the trust built up between the two countries over the past few decades, and called Kenya's actions "not good."

His comments contradict a joint Somali-Kenyan communique issued three days after the Kenyan incursion, declaring Al-Shabaab "a common enemy to both countries" and pledging to work together to stabilize Somalia and cooperate in security and military operations.

Kenyan forces entered Somalia on October 15 in a strike on Al-Shabaab, a Somali militant group that Kenya blames for the recent kidnappings of foreigners from northern Kenya.

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Filed under: Kenya • Somalia • World
October 24th, 2011
02:13 PM ET

1 killed, 8 hurt in Kenya blast

[Updated 2:20 p.m. ET] An explosion at a bus station in downtown Nairobi, Kenya, killed at least one person and injured eight Monday, according to the Kenyan police and Red Cross.

Charles Owino, a deputy police spokesman, confirmed the explosion and said he was awaiting more details.

Initial reports say the blast killed one person and injured eight, said Carol Nduta, a spokeswoman for the Kenyan Red Cross.

The blast follows a separate explosion that police said hurt 12 people earlier Monday at a nightclub in Nairobi.

"We have not yet linked attacks to anybody as we are still investigating," Owino said.

The explosions came a day after the U.S. Embassy in Kenya warned it had credible information of an imminent terror attack. The embassy did not offer details on who might carry out such an attack but said it had limited official U.S. government visits and urged citizens to consider deferring travel to Kenya.

The attack was likely to target places that foreigners congregate in Kenya, including malls and night clubs, the embassy said.

Kenya has been on edge since it sent troops across the border into Somalia to pursue militant with Al-Shabaab, an Islamist group that the United States and other countries view as a terrorist organization. Kenya sent in troops after the recent abductions of tourists and aid workers. It blames the abductions on Al-Shabaab, which has denied involvement.

Al-Shabaab has threatened to attack Kenya if it did not withdraw its forces from Somalia.

Owino, the police spokesman, said the nightclub attack "could be Al-Shabaab or an individual. We are still investigating."

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Filed under: Kenya • World
October 22nd, 2011
04:49 PM ET

'Imminent threat of terror attacks' in Kenya

The U.S. Embassy in Kenya on Saturday warned American citizens about an "imminent threat of terrorist attacks directed at prominent Kenyan facilities and areas where foreigners are known to congregate, such as malls and night clubs."

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Filed under: Kenya • Terrorism
October 16th, 2011
09:57 AM ET

Kenya vows to hit Al-Shabaab across Somali border

By David McKenzie, CNN

Kenyan troops are pursuing suspected Islamic militants from al-Shabaab across the border into Somalia, Kenyan government spokesman Alfred Mutua told CNN Sunday.

The move marks a dramatic shift in security tactics for the east African powerhouse, which is evoking the United Nations charter allowing military action in self-defense against its largely lawless neighbor.

"If you are attacked by an enemy, you have the pursue that enemy through hot pursuit and to try hit wherever that enemy is," said Yusuf Haji, in a news conference aired on CNN affiliate NTV.

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Filed under: Al Qaeda • Kenya • Somalia
October 13th, 2011
12:48 PM ET

Aid workers abducted in Kenyan refugee camp

Gunmen abducted two workers from the medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres from the Dadaab refugee complex in Kenya Thursday, agency staff told CNN.

The two women from Spain were part of the international staff working for MSF, also known by its English name, Doctors Without Borders, an MSF staff member said.

The attack took place in a new camp known as Ifo 3, the staffer said. He said the two women as well as their pickup were missing. The driver was shot in the neck.

A Spanish Foreign Ministry spokesman in Madrid confirmed the kidnapping. He said the women worked in logistics for the agency, but would not provide their identities or further details about the incident. He said their families have been informed.

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September 12th, 2011
08:56 AM ET

55 killed in Kenya pipeline fire, police say

[Posted at 8:56 a.m.] The fuel pipleline explosion apparently occurred about 10 a.m. local time (3 a.m. ET), possibly as a group of people were siphoning fuel from the pipeline, the officials said.

It leveled houses and burned some bodies to dust, said Carol Nduta, a Kenya Red Cross emergency medical instructor and dispatcher who traveled to the scene in Sinai slum, which surrounds the Lunga Lunga industrial area where the pipeline and a fuel depot were located.

"Almost the whole place blew up," she said.

Police confirmed that at least 55 people died. Nduta said scores more were dead, but their bodies had not yet cooled enough to recover. She said authorities expect to find more bodies in the smoking ruins of homes near the pipeline. Nduta said she believed between 100 and 130 people had died.

An unknown number of injured have been taken to hospitals, particularly Kenyatta National Hospital, Nduta said.

Although some structures continued to smoke and burn Monday afternoon, the fire seemed to be mostly under control, she said.

Nairobi police spokesman Eric Kiraithe confirmed the explosion happened as employees of the Kenya Pipeline Company tried to contain a leak in the pipeline and prevent people from stealing the leaking fuel.

[Posted at 6:31 a.m.] A fuel pipeline exploded in a densely populated Nairobi slum Monday morning, killing at least 55 people but likely more, police and Kenya Red Cross officials said.

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Jill Biden to visit largest refugee camp in effort to feed Horn of Africa's hungry
The United Nations says almost half the Somali children arriving at Dadaab refugee complex are malnourished. Many die en route.
August 8th, 2011
09:05 AM ET

Jill Biden to visit largest refugee camp in effort to feed Horn of Africa's hungry

Jill Biden, Vice President Joe Biden's wife, is in Kenya with former Republican Sen. Bill Frist and other dignitaries to emphasize the U.S. government's commitment to tackling the famine that has left more than 12 million East Africans in need of food.

During her trip, Biden will visit the Dadaab refugee complex, a camp that receives more than 1,000 Somalis a day and is home to more than 400,000 displaced people. The camp is designed to accommodate about 90,000 refugees.

The region is facing its worst drought in six decades, and the United Nations has declared a state of famine in five regions of Somalia with warnings that the situation is deteriorating and could easily spread. Though food insecurity is also affecting Kenya, Djibouti, Uganda and Ethiopia, the greatest concerns emanate from war-torn Somalia, which has known no central government since 1991.

The United Nations is working to round up $2.5 billion to address the situation, which the organization says could be ongoing for six months or more.

Biden's trip to Dadaab aims to draw attention to the plight of the Horn of Africa and highlight the Feed the Future program, a U.S. government effort aimed at "helping countries transform their own agricultural sectors to grow enough food sustainably to feed their people." She also will visit Nairobi's Kenya Agricultural Research Institute and meet with President Mwai Kibaki, Prime Minister Raila Odinga and Agriculture Minister Sally Kosgei.

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Filed under: Al Qaeda • Famine • Food • Health • Joe Biden • Kenya • Nutrition • Politics • Security • Somalia • Terrorism • United Nations • World
A view of Horn of Africa's drought from space
Animation from satellite images shows the increasing drought. (Courtesy CESBIO/ESA)
July 26th, 2011
12:19 PM ET

A view of Horn of Africa's drought from space

The worst drought in 60 years has hit the Horn of Africa region, an area in east Africa that includes Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya.

A recent satellite-derived animation from the European Space Agency illustrates the crisis as it worsened over the summer. The images above show soil moisture in the region from April to mid-July of this year. Green and blue depict higher levels of soil moisture while the increasing spread of orange and yellow illustrates areas with little to no moisture.

The drought has led to starvation and the loss of crops and livestock. Food prices have nearly tripled in some areas since last year, worsening the crisis.

The United Nations officially declared famine in parts of Somalia last week, and thousands of people have fled their homes and crossed borders in search of water, food or aid.

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On the Radar: Murdoch testimony, debt ceiling, heat wave, Vick, Gaza
News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch faces tough questioning Tuesday from British lawmakers in the phone-hacking scandal.
July 19th, 2011
08:36 AM ET

On the Radar: Murdoch testimony, debt ceiling, heat wave, Vick, Gaza

Hacking scandal: Media baron Rupert Murdoch, his son James and former News of the World CEO Rebekah Brooks are to be quizzed today by Parliament on the phone-hacking scandal and other allegations facing News International. Sir Paul Stephenson, who has resigned as chief of the London Metropolitan Police, testifies first before the Home Affairs Select Committee, followed by Scotland Yard communications director Dick Federico and John Yates, the assistant police commissioner who quit Monday.

Follow CNN's live blog of the testimony

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Filed under: Africa • Crime • Kenya • Media • News of the World • On the Radar • United Kingdom • Weather
Top al Qaeda operative reported killed in Africa
Fazul Abdullah Mohammed was believed responsible for the 1998 East African embassy bombings.
June 11th, 2011
12:07 PM ET

Top al Qaeda operative reported killed in Africa

A top al Qaeda operative in East Africa, Fazul Abdullah Mohammed, was killed at a Somali checkpoint, a senior Kenyan official said Saturday. Mohammed was long sought in Somalia for his alleged role in the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.

"There's reason to believe this senior terrorist is dead," a U.S. official who was not authorized to speak on the record said Saturday. "He was killed, it appears, at a Somali police checkpoint in or around Mogadishu."

The commander of Somalia's government forces confirmed that two men driving through a checkpoint southwest of Mogadishu late Wednesday were killed when both opened fire on soldiers there.

One of the men was a foreigner and his identity is under investigation, Gen. Abdikarin Dhega Badans said.

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ICC names top Kenyan suspects in election violence
December 15th, 2010
11:14 AM ET

ICC names top Kenyan suspects in election violence

The International Criminal Court named six Kenyan leaders, including the deputy prime minister, Wednesday suspected of organizing violence after the disputed 2007 election.

The violence left more than 1,000 people dead and displaced hundreds of thousands.

ICC top Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo released the anticipated list, which had left the political elite in the east African nation restless. The list sparked excitement across the nation, where crowds had gathered around
televisions to watch a live broadcast.

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November 17th, 2010
06:10 PM ET

Verdict reached in Ahmed Ghailani case

Ahmed Ghailani, the first Guantanamo detainee tried in civilian court, was found not guilty on all counts except one in connection with the 1998 bombing of U.S. Embassies in Africa.

Ghailani was convicted of conspiracy to destroy public property. He was charged with conspiracy and murder in the 1998 attacks on embassies in Nairobi, Kenya, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Read about deliberations in the case

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Filed under: Crime • Guantanamo • Kenya • Terrorism
November 9th, 2010
12:58 PM ET

Pirates use hijacked vessel to attack Spanish warship

Somali pirates have used a Japanese-owned freighter they seized in October to stage an attack on a Spanish warship, the European Union’s anti-piracy task force reports.

On Saturday night, pirates aboard the MV Izumi, a Panamanian-flagged vessel they captured on October 10, attacked the SPS Infanta Cristina, a Spanish corvette, as it escorted a ship chartered by the African Union’s peacekeeping mission in Somalia, according to a statement from the European Union Naval Force public affairs office.

As the pirates attacked, the Infanta Cristina placed itself between the Izumi and the AU ship, the MV Petra 1, which was carrying peacekeepers, the statement said.

“The attack was disrupted, and the pirates fled the scene,” the statement said.

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October 24th, 2010
04:51 AM ET

Pirates hijack ship near Kenyan coast

Pirates hijacked a gas vessel with a crew of 17 off the coast of Kenya, officials said Sunday.

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July 13th, 2010
11:50 AM ET

Report: Youth leading Africa's war on AIDS

Activists gather at the American consulate in Johannesburg, South Africa, last month. The nation has one of the highest AIDS rates.

AIDS is losing its stranglehold on a key demographic in Africa, according to a U.N. report released Tuesday, and it appears the driving force behind the trend is common sense.

People between the ages of 15 and 24 are among the hardest-hit by sexually transmitted infections, and 80 percent (4 million) of young HIV patients live in sub-Saharan Africa, UNAIDS reports.

Polls show that AIDS is among the foremost concerns of citizens living in many African countries, and if the U.N. data are accurate, teens and young adults in these countries have decided to reverse the trend.

“Young people are leading the prevention revolution by taking definitive action to protect themselves,” the report states. “The impact: HIV prevalence among young people is falling in 16 of the 25 countries most affected by AIDS.”

Read the report (PDF)

Among the nations leading the way – and raising hopes that they can slash their countries' 1994 AIDS rates among young people – are Botswana, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Namibia and Zimbabwe.

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June 13th, 2010
03:25 PM ET

Three killed in blast at Kenyan political rally

At least three people were killed and about 75 others injured in a blast Sunday during a political rally in Kenya at Nairobi's Uhuru Park, a Kenyatta National Hospital spokesman said.

"We have about 75 patients admitted to this hospital with four people in surgery right now," Dr. Peter Wanyoike said. "I understand there was commotion at one of the rallies," he said.

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