Benghazi chaos: Exclusive testimony as battles rage in Libya's second city

 
On May 28, soldiers from the Libyan army began bombarding neighbourhoods in the country’s second biggest city, Benghazi. They were targeting the bases of two armed Islamic groups: the 17 February Brigade and Ansar al-Sharia. Since then, fighting has spread across the city. Read eyewitness testimony from residents caught in the crossfire...
 

“Forty days of train travel… only to miss our match”

 
They were close to fulfilling a dream: playing in the Katanga football league, a yearly tournament in Lubumbashi that pits the top teams of this southern province in Democratic Republic of Congo against one another. But thanks to a series of train-related mishaps, the players of FC Tanganyika were forced to forfeit after turning up to the final two weeks late. Read more...
 
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Children with cancer abandoned at Kenya’s largest hospital

 
Paediatric cancer wards are sobering places in any country. But at Kenyatta National Hospital in Nairobi, a large number of children are not just sick but alone. Read more...
 
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'Free everybody': Moroccans mobilise online for political prisoners

 
Over the last month and a half, Moroccan authorities have arrested eleven activists from the 20-February movement, including a famous rapper. The arrests sparked a public outcry that played out both in the streets and online. Soon, activists began using the slogan “Free Koulchi” (free everybody) to call for the release of all political prisoners, not just those arrested in the past few months. Read more...
 
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Extremists force girls out of school in Pakistan

 
Over the past few weeks, girls and their supporters have been holding protests in remote areas of Pakistan’s troubled Balochistan province, where dozens of schools have been forced to close due to threats from extremists. Read more…
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Iranian Internet users are far from “Happy”

Many Iranians have not forgiven their regime for imprisoning for two days the young men and women who had lip-synced Pharrell Williams’ hit song “Happy” in Tehran. Moreover, even though the actors were released (after being forced to disavow their video), the clip’s creator is still in jail. As a result, new videos are taking an inverted approach to the famous song, accusing the Iranian government of infringing its citizens’ right to be “happy”. Read more...

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Threat of rape used to pressure women in Iran to wear hijab

Our Observers in Iran tell us that a disturbing photo of a mutilated woman has been widely circulated via text message, accompanied by threats of rape for women who do not wear headscarves and conservative clothing. This comes at a time when an increasing number of Iranian women are pushing back against the Islamic Republic’s compulsory dress code. Read more...

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Burkina’s bogus butts

 
In Bobo-Dioulasso’s markets, prosthetics shaped like female backsides have become a best seller. According to our Observer, large behinds are very trendy in Burkina Faso these days. Read more...
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Evangelical churches in Cameroon oppose polio vaccinations for children

 
The government has launched a massive polio immunisation campaign in western Cameroon to counter the disease, which primarily affects children. The operation has overall been successful but is nonetheless encountering pockets of resistance, including, notably, from evangelical churches that are fighting tooth and nail to prevent the vaccination of children. Read more...
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