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The Africa Report: 7 October

EWN’s Africa Correspondent Jean-Jacques Cornish reports on the day’s top African news

US Special Forces. Source: Commons Wikipedia

LIBYA QUESTIONS USA ABOUT RAIDS

The Libyan government has requested an explanation from Washington regarding the raid in which an al-Qaeda leader was captured over the weekend.

US Special Forces carried out one of two African raids on Libyan territory on Saturday, capturing al-Qaeda leader, Anas al-Liby.

US Secretary of State John Kerry referred to the raid in Tripoli as proof that if you belong to a terror organisation, you can run from US authorities, but you cannot hide.

Libya, despite declaring their support of the US war on terror, have questioned Washington's adherence to issues of state sovereignty.

The Libyan government has also expressed concern that al-Qaeda will look to retaliate within their borders.

Al-Liby, whose real name is Nazih Abdul-Hamed al-Ruqai, is believed to be one of the masterminds behind the 1998 attacks on US embassies in east Africa which claimed the lives of 220 people.

The second US raid on African soil was in Somalia where troops were searching for one of the al-Shabaab masterminds behind the Westgate mall siege in Nairobi, but did not capture their target.

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80 MORE BODIES FOUND ON SUNKEN MIGRANT SHIP

The death toll from the sunken migrant ship off the Lampedusa coastline has increased by 80.

In a tragic attempt to escape Africa and enter Europe, 134 of 520 people had initially drowned, approximately 150 were rescued, and at least 200 people are still missing.

Refugees from Eritrea and Somalia made up the 520 aboard.

On Sunday, Pope Benedict, who made a controversial move earlier this year by welcoming refugees in Lampedusa, called for silent prayers for the lost lives at Lampedusa.

Whilst the Pope called for the prayers, the Italian coastguard rescued two more stricken vessels carrying 200 more refugees.

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RWANDA SUFFERS US SANCTIONS

The United States has stepped up international criticism of child soldier recruitment in Rwanda by enforcing sanctions on the east African country.

Rwanda has repeatedly been accused of backing M23 rebels in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

M23 rebels are suspected of recruiting child soldiers and the US has now enforced sanctions on the militants' alleged backers.

Rwandan president Paul Kagame's government has responded to the US withdrawal of military aid to Kigali, saying the accusations against them are unfounded and without any factual evidence.

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