Monday, April 20, 2015

Ethiopians Shocked by Islamic State Killings

Many in Ethiopia are reeling from the news that several Ethiopians were killed in Libya by the Islamic State group, which over the weekend released a video purporting to show the killings.

The killings, which have shocked many in the predominantly Christian country, were condemned by Pope Francis and U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

The victims were planning to go to Europe by boat from Libya but were captured and then killed by the Islamic extremists, said grieving family members and government officials. Ethiopia's government on Monday declared three days of mourning.

Pope Francis on Monday sent a letter to the patriarch of Ethiopian Tewahedo Orthodox Church, Abuna Matthias, expressing "distress and sadness" at the "further shocking violence perpetrated against innocent Christians in Libya.

Ethiopia's Desisa Wins Boston Marathon; Kenya's Rotich First Among Women

Ethiopia's Lelisa Desisa has won the elite men's Boston Marathon and Caroline Rotich of Kenya finished first in the elite women's division.

Delisa, who previously won the race in 2013, won today with a time of 2:09:17. Yemane Adhane Tsegay (2:09:48), also of Ethiopia, finished second; Kenyans Wilson Chebet (2:10:22) and Bernard Kipyego finished third and fourth, respectively. Dathan Ritzenhein, seventh, was the highest-placed American. Defending champion Meb Keflezighi, also American, finished eighth in 2:12:42.

Rotich crossed the finish line on Boylston Street with a time of 2:24:55. Mare Didaba (2:24:59) and Buzunesh Deba (2:25:09), both of Ethiopia, finished second and third. American Desiree Linden finished fourth with a time of 2:25:39.

Desisa last won the race in 2013 — the same year as the deadly bombing near the race's finish line. He returned his medal to the city in honor of those killed and wounded.

Ethiopian bloggers on trial in case seen as crackdown on free expression

Yikanu Yelma, Soliyana Shimeles' mother, describes the search of her house by security forces following the arrests of the Zone9 bloggers. Her daughter Soliyana, who has been charged in absentia, was out of country during the arrest, and is one of three Zone9 members who now live abroad. (Simona Foltyn/Washington Post)
April 20 at 3:30 AM
They met online in 2010 while raising money for a charity case: nine young, university-educated Ethio­pian professionals. Eventually, they decided to launch a blog about social and civic issues in Africa’s second-most-populous nation.
“Initially, it was not about political activism or about criticizing the government. It was to connect with like-minded people,” said Soliyana Shimeles, 28, one of the founders of the blog Zone 9.
Today, six of the bloggers are in jail facing terrorism charges in what human rights and press-freedom advocates call an example of an alarming crackdown on government critics.
The Zone 9 bloggers are accused of “creating serious risk to the safety or health of the public” under the country’s controversial anti-terrorism law passed in 2009. The charges further allege the bloggers were linked to Ginbot 7, an opposition movement based abroad that the government labeled a terrorist group in 2011. The bloggers have pleaded innocent.
Their attorney, Ameha Mekonnen, has complained that the charges offer few particulars. The trial began at the end of March but was adjourned until after the national elections in May. If convicted, the defendants could receive death sentences.

White House condemns ISIS video that purportedly shows killing of Ethiopian Christians in Libya

The White House Sunday evening condemned a video purportedly showing a mass execution of Ethiopian Christians in Libya by terrorists affiliated with Islamic State.
"We express our condolences to the families of the victims and our support to the Ethiopian government and people as they grieve for their fellow citizens," National Security Council spokesperson Bernadette Meehan said in a statement. "That these terrorists killed these men solely because of their faith lays bare the terrorists' vicious, senseless brutality."
In the video released Sunday, Islamic State militants in Libya shot and beheaded groups of captive Ethiopian Christians. The attack widens the circle of nations affected by the group's atrocities while showing its growth beyond a self-declared caliphate in Syria and Iraq.
The release of the 29-minute video comes a day after Afghanistan's president blamed the extremists for a suicide attack in his country that killed at least 35 people -- and underscores the chaos gripping Libya after its 2011 civil war and the killing of dictator Muammar Qaddafi.
It also mirrored a film released in February showing militants beheading 21 captured Egyptian Christians on a Libyan beach, which immediately drew Egyptian airstrikes on the group's suspected positions in Libya. Whether Ethiopia would -- or could -- respond with similar military force remains unclear.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Hundreds of Migrants Believed Dead in Shipwreck Off Libya

Boat capsizes after passengers rush to one side
ROME—As many as 700 migrants are believed to have died in a shipwreck off the Libyan coast, piling pressure on European leaders who have been stymied in their search for a solution to the migration problem by rising anti-immigration sentiment, chaos in Libya and the crush of asylum seekers in some countries.

According to the Italian Coast Guard, a 20-meter-long fishing boat, which was heavily overcrowded and had departed from Libya, launched a distress call during the night Saturday. The Italians sent a Portuguese mercantile vessel, the King Jacob, to help the boat, but when the migrants, all sub-Saharan Africans, saw the ship approach, they rushed to one side, capsizing the boat, said the coast guard.

Ethiopia condemns Libya killings, not sure if its citizens

ADDIS ABABA, April 19 (Reuters) - Ethiopia said on Sunday it had not been able to verify that about 30 people shown in a video being shot and beheaded by Islamic State in Libya were
Ethiopian Christians, but said it condemned the "atrocious act." "We have seen the video but our embassy in Cairo has not been able to confirm that the victims are Ethiopian nationals,"
government spokesman Redwan Hussein told Reuters. "Nonetheless, the Ethiopian government condemns the atrocious act."

He said Ethiopia, which does not have an embassy in Libya, would help repatriate Ethiopians if they wanted to leave Libya.

ISIS ‘executes’ Ethiopia Christians in Libya-Pictures

ISIS group on Sunday released a video purporting to show the executions of some 30 Ethiopian Christians captured in Libya.
One group of about 12 men are seen being beheaded by militants on a beach

ISIL claims massacre of Ethiopian Christians in Libya

Video released online shows one group of captives being shot and another group being beheaded on a beach.
A new video from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) purportedly shows the group killing captured Ethiopian Christians in Libya.
The 29-minute video released online on Sunday shows two groups of dark-skinned captives. It says one group is held by an ISIL affiliate in eastern Libya and the other by an affiliate in the south.
A masked fighter delivers a long statement before the video switches between footage of the captives in the south being shot to death and the captives in the east being beheaded on a beach.
The footage released online shows one group of about 12 men being beheaded by armed men on a beach and another group of at least 16 being shot in the head in a desert area.
It was not immediately clear who the captives were.

Mediterranean migrants: Hundreds feared dead after boat capsizes

Hundreds of people are feared to have drowned after a boat carrying up to 700 migrants capsized in the Mediterranean Sea, the Italian coastguard says.
A major rescue operation is under way after the vessel carrying "between 500 and 700 migrants" capsized at midnight local time, in Libyan waters south of the Italian island of Lampedusa.
So far 28 people have been rescued.
Earlier this week, 400 people were feared to have drowned when their vessel capsized north of Libya.
'Biggest tragedy'
Italian ships, the Maltese Navy and commercial vessels are all involved in the rescue operation, 130 miles (210km) off the coast of Lampedusa and 17 miles (27km) from the Libyan coast.
The Italian coastguard's spokesman told the BBC the operation was still focused on search and rescue, "but in time it will be a search [for bodies] only".
Twenty ships and three helicopters were currently involved in the rescue, he added.
Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said rescuers were "literally trying to find people alive among the dead floating in the water".

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Ethiopians Sweep 2015 B.A.A. Invitational Mile

BOSTON —Athletes from Ethiopia took the top spots in today’s seventh annual BAA Invitational Mile on the streets of Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood. Dejen Gebremeskel and Dawit Seyaum broke the blue Boston Athletic Association finish tapes on Boylston Street just a few meters from the Boston Marathon finish line in 4:04.1 and 4:35.4, respectively. Seyaum’s time was an event record.

Gebremeskel, the 2012 Olympic 5000m silver medalist, decided from the starter’s gun that a hard early pace was the best route to victory. After the first of three circuits, he had a small lead on Britain’s Chris O’Hare and America’s Duncan Phillips, but expanded his lead to two seconds by the end of the second lap. In the final circuit, Gebremeskel overwhelmed the field, leaving O’Hare nearly three seconds behind by the finish.

Over 250,000 East African refugees trapped in Yemen

Many refugees and asylum-seekers from Somalia, Ethiopia and Eritrea say they have nowhere else to go
Tens of thousands of East African refugees and asylum-seekers are at risk of being left behind in Yemen’s roiling violence, deprived not only of safe options for evacuation but also of a home country that might take them in, activists and U.N. officials said this week.
Since pitched fighting between Yemen’s Houthi rebels and forces loyal to the ousted president erupted in March, escape from the country has been arduous even for foreign citizens and wealthy Yemenis. Airports are under fire and commercial transportation cut off, forcing the most desperate to charter simple power boats and make harrowing journeys across the Red Sea.
But for the over 250,000 registered Somali, Ethiopian and Eritrean refugees and asylum-seekers, the situation is even more trying. The U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and its partners have a contingency plan to receive 100,000 refugees in Somalia’s relatively stable regions of Somaliland and Puntland, and another 30,000 in Djibouti, but that process will unfold over the next six months. And it is barely underway.

Media Crackdown in Ethiopia

Ethiopia's parliamentary elections are set to be held May 24th, but there is little doubt the ruling party will win an overwhelming majority amidst a crackdown on independent media and political dissidents. This week on Global Journalist, we look at why and how the restrictions on the media in Africa's second-most populous country began, and speak with a journalist who spent more than a year in prison for reporting.
This week's guests include:
  • Martin Schibbye, a Swedish journalist and co-author of thebook, "438 Days," chronicling his time in prison.
  • Endalk Chala, a co-founder of Zone 9, a group of bloggers advocating human rights and free speech in Ethiopia.
  • Leslie Lefkow, the deputy director at Human Rights Watch's Africa division
This week's show is audio-only.

Harvard Portrait-Jelani Nelson

Jelani Nelson lights up when he talks about algorithms. The soft-spoken assistant professor of computer science is a rising star in a field made vital as data proliferate exponentially faster than the growth of computational power or storage. Algorithms, well-defined procedures for carrying out computational tasks, speed the way to answers. Nelson has a knack for speed: online, where he is known as “minilek”—a handle chosen in youth when he was growing up on St. Thomas, and derived from the name of an early ruler of Ethiopia, whence his mother hails—he has excelled with equal ease in coding competitions and typing contests (topping out above 200 words per minute). Though he is a theorist now, solving real problems quickly “cements the concepts in your mind,” he says.

Ethiopia terminate the contract of coach Mariano Barreto

The Ethiopian Football Federation (EFF) says it is terminating the contract of head coach Mariano Barreto.
The Portuguese, a former Ghana coach, took charge of the Walia Antelopes last year, signing a two year contract.
But a disappointing reign saw Ethiopia finish bottom of their 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying group.
An official statement, sent to BBC Sport, says the EFF will pay an undisclosed amount of money to Baretto for ending the contract early.

For years, silence. And then at 16 he said, 'love you, mama'

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (CNN)"I didn't know what to do. I didn't know how to help my child." These are the words no parent ever wants to say.

And yet for Zemi Yenus, this was her reality.

After years of carving out a successful career as a beautician in Los Angeles, the Ethiopian cosmetologist and mother of two had returned to her hometown of Addis Ababa. The year was 1996. Eager to dispense her learned knowledge back into the community, she went on to establish Niana School of Beauty, the country's first licensed beauty school. Business was booming and with 6,000 students the school was proving a hit with aspiring beauticians.

But life at home was hard. Yenus' second child Jojo was struggling at school. Four years older than his brother Bilal, he wasn't developing in the same way.

South Africa descends towards a new apartheid

  • Anti-immigrant protests have been ongoing in South Africa for two weeks and at least five people have been killed
  • Foreign nationals have been loading trucks with their wares as they flee Johannesburg and neighbouring towns
  • Protesters are angry about foreigners in the country when unemployment is high and wealth isn't distributed equally
  • Immigrants wielding machetes have clashed with police as they hunt for locals that targeted foreign shop owners 

Police battled to contain a wave of violence in South Africa last night as gangs of migrants armed themselves with machetes to fight off anti-foreigner attacks by locals.
Five people have died since vigilantes started looting and attacking shops owned by immigrants, mainly from other parts of Africa.
Police fired stun grenades and rubber bullets as immigrant gangs confronted the vigilantes, and last night in parts of Johannesburg officers formed a human barrier to keep the two sides apart.  
More than 200 immigrants had to take refuge in a police station and dozens of businesses were closed when trouble spread just a day after a rally against xenophobia in Durban.
Immigrants have complained about a lack of protection from the authorities and some have started arming themselves to fight back.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Tanzanian authorities deport Ethiopian suspected of human trafficking

An Ethiopian suspected of involvement in human trafficking crimes had been arrested in Dar es Salaam, the Tanzanian commercial capital and deported to Ethiopia Thursday through the joint efforts of the Tanzanian police and Interpol.
The suspect, named as, Dejene Flate, was apprehended while trying to traffic 64 Ethiopians from Dar es Salaam to South Africa, with one of the victims was found dead.

The suspect was alleged to have previously trafficked thousands of his fellow citizens to South Africa via Kenya and Tanzania and to some countries in the Middle East. Going with the nickname Teddy, the suspect had hidden his identity and was at large for many years.

Periodic waves of meningitis epidemics occur across sub-Saharan Africa, wreaking havoc in the region

Studies indicate that epidemic meningitis has been present in Africa for about 100 years. The disease is most prevalent in the sub-Saharan meningitis belt, an area that stretches from Senegal and the Gambia in the West to Ethiopia in the East and has an at-risk population of about 430 million. Epidemics occur in the dry season (December to June), and an epidemic wave can last two to three years, dying out during the intervening rainy seasons.

Size of epidemics

The size of these epidemics can be enormous and place an immediate and great burden on the health systems of meningitis belt countries. In major African epidemics, the attack rate ranges from 100 to 800 per 100,000 population, but individual communities have reported rates as high as 1/100. 
Over one million cases of meningitis have been reported in Africa since 1988. In 1996–1997, the largest epidemic wave ever recorded in history swept across Africa, causing over 250,000 cases and 25,000 deaths. The true disease burden is likely to be higher than statistics suggest because routine reporting systems break down during epidemics. In addition, many people die before reaching a health center and thus remain unrecorded in official statistics.

Judge weighs lawsuit filed by deaf inmate at Arlington jail over lack of interpreters

Abreham Zemedagegehu
ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Deaf inmates should be given regular access to sign language interpreters when needed, lawyers argued Thursday in a lawsuit over one inmate's six-week stay at a county jail.

Ethiopian immigrant Abreham Zemedagegehu sued the Arlington County sheriff and Virginia state officials in federal court, saying that he was routinely denied access to an American Sign Language interpreter during a stay at the county jail last year.

For several days, Zemedagegehu said, he didn't even know why he was arrested. He said jail officials conducted medical procedures on him without explaining them. He missed meals because he never heard the call for chow time.

When he needed to make phone calls, he said deputies gave him a TTY machine instead of a videophone. He said the TTY was useless, both because the technology has become obsolete and is no longer used in the deaf community and because it requires a command of written English that he lacks.
In arguments Thursday, lawyer Jonathan Goodrich said Zemedagegehu's six-week stay left him frightened, isolated, and subject to "an avalanche of constitutional violations" and violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Great Manchester Run Great Manchester Run: Olympic hero Haile Gebrselassie to do 10km course TWICE

The legendary Ethiopian long distance runner intends to challenge for a sixth victory in Europe’s biggest 10k road race on Sunday May 10 - and then set off again
Olympic hero Haile Gebrselassie, the greatest distance runner of all-time, will be on a double mission when he returns to take part in the Morrisons Great Manchester Run on Sunday 10 May.

The peerless Ethiopian, who has broken a staggering 27 world records and claimed two Olympic 10,000m titles, intends to challenge for a sixth victory in Europe’s biggest 10k road race and then set off and run the course for a SECOND time to savour the unique atmosphere among the hordes in the 40,000 strong field.

“Manchester is one of my favourite cities in the world to race in,” said Gebrselassie.

“The atmosphere, the people and the organisation are all fantastic.

U.S. Wrong to Endorse Ethiopia's Elections

In response to today’s comments by Under Secretary for Political Affairs, Wendy Sherman, in which she referred to Ethiopia as a democracy and the country’s upcoming elections free, fair, and credible, Freedom House issued the following statement:
“Under Secretary Sherman’s comments today were woefully ignorant and counter-productive,” said Daniel Calingaert, executive vice president of Freedom House. “Ethiopia remains one of the most undemocratic countries in Africa. By calling these elections credible, Sherman has tacitly endorsed the Ethiopian government’s complete disregard for the democratic rights of its citizens. This will only bolster the government’s confidence to continue its crackdown on dissenting voices.”

Protecting Ethiopia's gluten-free 'superfood'

The world often gets excited about so-called superfoods - the vegetables and fruit deemed to be highly nourishing
Ethiopian teff is one such example. It is the world's smallest grain and is used to make injera bread, a staple in the East African region.
But the Ethiopian government is keen to keep prices of teff low for locals, while at the same time maximising the grain's potential as an export to the affluent tables of the middle classes in the US and Europe.

Ethiopia’s Economic Miracle Is Running Out of Steam

Why it’s time for East Africa’s big success story to change the way it does business.
Just over 30 years ago, Ethiopia’s famine regularly made the news. Gruesome accounts of up to a million deaths stemming from drought and civil war captured the attention of aid agencies, sympathetic governments, and humanitarian groups around the world. Contrast that with the past decade, when Ethiopia averaged an economic growth rate of slightly better than 10 percent. The about-face has been so dramatic that some seasoned observers have gone so far as to call Ethiopia’s progress an economic miracle, dubbing the country an “African lion” whose success recalls that of Asia’s economic tigers.

Encouraged by its accomplishments, the governing Ethiopian Peoples’ Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) continues to focus on a high-growth strategy aimed at making Ethiopia a middle-income country by 2025. To the casual observer, this goal appears increasingly within reach. Ethiopia is not just growing, but has already met or is coming close to meeting some of its important Millennium Development Goals, including universal primary education and reductions in infant mortality. The country’s poverty rate fell from 44 percent in 2000 to 30 percent in 2011. Unemployment rates, though still high, have been coming down. And the number of Ethiopian millionaires has increased faster than in any other African country.

Thursday, April 16, 2015


Honourable Speaker,

Honourable Deputy Speaker,

Honourable Deputy President,

Honourable Members,

Fellow South Africans,

During the past week we have witnessed shocking and unacceptable incidents of violence directed at foreign nationals in some parts of KwaZulu-Natal, which has now spread to some parts of Gauteng. Similar incidents had taken place in Soweto in January.

No amount of frustration or anger can ever justify the attacks on foreign nationals and the looting of their shops.

We condemn the violence in the strongest possible terms. The attacks violate all the values that South Africa embodies, especially the respect for human life, human rights, human dignity and Ubuntu.

Our country stands firmly against all intolerances such as racism, xenophobia, homophobia and sexism.

We extend our condolences to the families of all who have lost their lives and wish the injured a speedy recovery.

Xenophobic Violence Sweeping South Africa


UPDATE 2-Fresh anti-immigrant clashes in S.Africa as Zuma condemns violence

* Zuma says violence "violates" South African values

* Anti-immigrant violence spreading in South Africa

* Violence seen rooted in joblessness, poverty (Adds Durban march, disturbances, fresh Zuma comments)

By Dinky Mkhize

JOHANNESBURG, April 16 (Reuters) - South African police fired rubber bullets and tear gas on Thursday to disperse a crowd of anti-immigrant protesters in an eastern suburb of Johannesburg, the country's biggest commercial city, a Reuters witness said.

Around 200 protesters, shouting that they wanted immigrants to leave, had pelted passing vehicles and the police with rocks, triggering the show of force.

At least four people have been killed in a wave of anti-immigrant violence that started two weeks ago in Durban, a key port on South Africa's Indian Ocean coast.

The violence flared up days after Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini said in remarks reported by local media that foreigners should leave South Africa, although he has since said his comments were misinterpreted.

Vogue Paris's new Ethiopian cover star Liya Kebede, 39, becomes first black woman to front the magazine in FIVE YEARS

Supermodel Liya Kebede has become the first black woman to grace the cover of Vogue in five years
  •     Liya Kebede, who was born in Ethiopia, graces the May issue
  •     She also appeared on Vogue Paris' May 2002 cover
  •     Last black model before Mrs Kebede was Rose Cordero in March 2010 
Supermodel Liya Kebede has become the first black woman to grace the cover of Vogue in five years.

The 39-year-old Ethiopian-born stunner fronts Vogue Paris's upcoming May issue, before Mrs Kebede, the last black woman to cover Vogue Paris was model Rose Cordero in March 2010.

In January of this year, British Vogue ended a 12-year run of failing to use a single woman of colour on its cover when it gave Jourdan Dunn the prized accolade.

Mrs Kebede, who posed for Vogue in a colourful geometric ensemble amid a crimson backdrop, was discovered in Ethiopia as a teen, and moved to Paris and then New York, where she carved out a successful modelling career.

Is Ethiopia's building boom masking poverty?

Whenever we set up our camera and flapped open our sun reflectors in Ethiopia's capital, Addis Ababa, passers-by became curious and eager to help.
But getting them to talk on camera was another matter as in general residents of the city are reticent and keep their views to themselves.
We were filming in Addis Ababa for a programme charting the changes in the country, yet it was only on the flight back to South Africa that I met an Ethiopian willing to be candid.
I found myself seated next to an inquisitive elderly Ethiopian woman, who was chatty despite the early morning departure.
However, she was not so open as to be willing for me to mention her name here.
She wore a green twin-set, leggings and woollen socks with her loafers. After the rigorous security checks, she took the socks off, saying she only wears them to keep her feet clean at the end of the security protocols.
She reminded me a bit of my mother, both caring and bossy all in one person.
During the flight, she cut me a portion of her fruit and insisted that I eat every morsel; her stern gaze suggested that I had no choice.
The EPRDF under the late Prime Minister Meles Zenawi won a massive majority in 2010

'Foregone conclusion'

We talked about a lot of things, including my impressions of Nigeria, especially following the ground-breaking presidential election there when the incumbent lost.
She was proud of the manner in which Nigerians had used their vote to make a strong statement about their government.

Libya migrants: Hundreds feared drowned in Mediterranean

About 400 migrants are feared drowned after their boat capsized off Libya, survivors have told Save the Children.
The Italian coast guard rescued 144 people from the boat on Monday and launched an air and sea search operation in hopes of saving others.
Hundreds more migrants rescued from boats in the Mediterranean are due to arrive in Sicily during the day.
More than 8,000 migrants have been picked up since Friday, and more boats are heading for the Italian coast.
Italy's interior ministry has instructed officials throughout the country to be prepared to house the new arrivals, many of whom are children.

'Migration season'

UN officials say well over 500 people have died since the start of the year, 30 times more than in the same period last year.
Survivors say that the latest tragedy happened after the boat, carrying about 550 migrants in total, overturned a day after leaving Libya.

Kenya: Ethiopians stage hunger strike in protest at their imprisonment

Sixty-five Ethiopians serving prison sentence in Kenya for being in the country illegally have staged a hunger strike, after complaining that their imprisonment was unfair, local media report here on Tuesday.

The Ethiopians who were last month jailed for three months have alleged unfair imprisonment by the government of Kenya.

In March, a court in Isiolo, northern Kenya ruled that the Ethiopians were arrested when they were found at the Archers Post road block in Samburu County illegally.

Ethiopia says China's POLY-GCL to start gas drilling by July

ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) - Ethiopia expects Chinese firm POLY-GCL Petroleum Group Holdings Ltd to begin drilling for natural gas in development blocks in the southeast by June or July, the mines minister said.

Foreign firms have acquired licences to explore in more than 40 blocks throughout Ethiopia in the past four years, mostly in the southeast region near Somalia.

The Mines Ministry says the Calub and Hilala fields in the southeast Ogaden Basin have deposits of 4.7 trillion cu feet of gas and 13.6 million barrels of associated liquids. The deposits were discovered in the 1970s but have not yet been exploited.

Mines Minister Tolesa Shagi told Reuters that POLY-GCL Petroleum was carrying out seismic tests in both sites, where it has laid some infrastructure such as a 35-km (20-mile) road.

Genzebe Dibaba named sportswoman of the year at Laureus World Sports Awards

World indoor champion Genzebe Dibaba was named sportswoman of the year at the Laureus World Sports Awards in Shanghai on Wednesday (15).
The middle-distance runner became the first sportsperson from Ethiopia to win an award in any category at the prestigious event, which began in 2000.
Dibaba was rewarded for her 2014 season in which she set world indoor records for 1500m and 3000m as well as a world indoor best for two miles.
Outdoors, she went on to record world-leading times over 5000m and 2000m before ending her season with 3000m victory at the IAAF Continental Cup in Marrakech.
On a night in which Renaud Lavillenie, Valerie Adams and Jo Pavey were nominated for other awards, Dibaba was the only winner from the sport of athletics.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Bodies of Ethiopians killed to be sent home as anti-migrant attacks spread in South African port city

Tensions remained high on Tuesday, with local media reporting that about 2,000 armed migrants were engaged in a tense stand-off with police in Durban

ATTACKS against foreigners continued in the South African port city of Durban Tuesday as the Ethiopian community prepared to repatriate the bodies of three of its nationals killed over the last two weeks.

Ephraim Meskele, a leader of the Ethiopian community in Durban, said it was holding a prayer service Tuesday for the three victims, including a man killed when his shop was petrol-bombed on Friday.
About 50 people have been arrested over the violence, in which at least four people have been killed. The police have not confirmed the nationalities of the victims.
The attacks on immigrant-owned shops and homes in Durban’s impoverished townships come three months after a similar spate of attacks on foreign-owned shops in Soweto, near Johannesburg.
Over 1,000 foreigners in Durban have fled their homes and are now living in makeshift camps, under police guard.

Malawi: 28 Ethiopians get one month jail sentence over illegal entry

Malawi-Dowa First Grade Magistrate has given a one month jail sentence to 28 Ethiopians for illegal entry into the country. First Grade Magistrate Imran Phiri said Tuesday that the immigrants will be deported to their country of origin after serving a jail term in the country.

“At the end of their sentence, they should be send back to their country because our laws do not allow people from other nations to enter without proper documents,” he said.

40 Ethiopians arrested in Nairobi for being in Kenya illegally Read

Nairobi, Kenya: More than 40 Ethiopians were Tuesday night arrested from two separate houses in Kiamaiko and Eastleigh area, Nairobi for being in the country illegally. Police said the men did not have travel documents and they were headed for South Africa when they were nabbed. Twenty four of them were arrested in Eastleigh and 16 in Kiamaiko. Starehe OCPD Bernard Nyakwaka said the aliens told police they had been brought there by an agent and were to be picked to continue with their journey to South Africa. “They had arrived in groups before being booked into the houses. They lived in an unfavourable environment and we are looking for the agent as we prepare charges for the aliens,” said Nyakwaka. Police say the men cannot communicate in English or Swahili.

Chef wants to put Ethiopian cuisine on global map with cooking show

Yohanis Hailemariam
While working as a chef in top hotels in the US and Europe, Yohanis Hailemariam was subjected to surprising comments related to the 1980s famine in Ethiopia. Some people even suggested that hunger had inspired his career.
Hailemariam returned to Ethiopia and started Antica Restaurants & Farm 11 years ago with the hopes of using his culinary skills to change perceptions about Ethiopia.
“It’s not really that those comments touched me, because I never really experienced hunger in my childhood. I have always seen food everywhere, tasty food actually. I realised the only way you can actually change an image is within – the people themselves saying we have more to offer than just what the media is talking about.”
His passion for cooking was inspired by his mother. “She loved cooking and was always cooking. She even cooked for her wedding before changing into her gown,” says Hailemariam.
Based in Addis Ababa, Antica targets Ethiopia’s high-income consumers and expatriates in the city. The restaurant serves a mix of African, Italian and Ethiopian cuisine. Some popular dishes include teff-based pizzas and pastas.
Teff is a small, round grain that grows in the highlands of Ethiopia – rich in calcium, iron and protein – that is grinded to make flour.
“I want to really create dishes inspired from the Ethiopian and African culture into a more modern [taste],” he says.

Ethiopian Airlines makes emergency landing in Mumbai airport

An Ethiopian Airlines Kenton-Addis Ababa flight had to make two emergency landings at Mumbai’s International Terminal on Tuesday.
On Tuesday eagerly morning, Ethiopian Airlines' flight ET 607 was en route to Addis Ababa from Canton/Guangzhou in China when it had to make an emergency landing in Mumbai to refuel at around 4.15 am.
The flight took off at 7.30 am as soon as the refueling was completed, but after around hour-and-half the same aircraft had to return and make a second emergency landing in Mumbai at around 8.50am . This time the cause of the emergency landing was some engine trouble.
This flight, which had 283 passengers and 14 crewmembers on board, had to de-boarded them all. Indian customs officials then conducted a complete immigration clearance process before transferring the passengers to a hotel since the aircraft was still under repair.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

I was crying inside the container while I was burning: Ethiopian Xenophobia victim

Ethiopian national Alex Marcus recovering at Prince Mshiyeni Hospital on 11 April 2015 after his Spaza shop was burnt in uMlazi township.

Ethiopian Tescma Marcus had been in South Africa for only four months. He came here to join his older brother run a spaza shop in Umlazi township, Durban.

On Friday night the 22-year-old became the latest victim of a spate of xenophobic attacks that has engulfed Durban.
Marcus died at Prince Mshiyeni Memorial Hospital in Umlazi at 8pm on Friday night with third-degree burns.
His brother Alex, 24, was also burnt when a mob locked them inside the container in which they had set up their shop and torched it.
His brother sustained burn wounds on his head, left arm and both legs.
Speaking from his hospital bed yesterday - unaware that his brother had died - Alex recounted how they were trapped inside the burning container for an hour.
It was only after Point Sindane, 67, the owner of the property on which their shop stood, in Umlazi's W section, managed to open the door with a crowbar that they were able to get out. Sindane used a hosepipe to extinguish the flames eating away at their bodies.
"My body is still burning," said Alex yesterday. "I was crying inside the container while I was burning. We were locked inside for almost an hour."

He said his brother had joined him only four months ago to help him run the spaza shop. Their goods, worth more than R20000, were burned to ashes inside the container.

Monday, April 13, 2015

London miner KEFI signs gold, silver mine deal in Ethiopia

(Reuters) - London-listed miner KEFI Minerals (KEFI.L) signed a deal with the Ethiopian government on Monday to mine for gold and silver in the west of the Horn of Africa country.

KEFI took over exploration rights for the Tulu Kapi project in the Oromia region from Australia's Nyota Minerals Ltd (NYO.AX).

Under the 20-year agreement, KEFI plans to mine for both gold and silver over an area of 7 square kilometres. The company said it aimed to produce 28.6 tonnes of gold over 11 years.

"Production will be in 2017, and 2016 will be the year of construction," KEFI Chairman Harry Anagnostaras-Adams said at the signing ceremony in the Ethiopian capital.

Child kills Ethiopian man to avenge assault on brother

Manama: A Saudi elementary school student has shot dead an Ethiopian man reportedly while trying to protect his older brother.

The death report triggered a heated debate on social networks and netizens were sharply divided over how the authorities should act with the child, believed to be less than 12 years old.

Details in the killing case indicate that three Ethiopians have assaulted the killer’s brother, a student in the intermediate school in the Aseer area, in the southwest of Saudi Arabia.

The brother asked his siblings to assist him in confronting the assailants, and the elementary schoolboy brought a gun and fired at one of the men, killing him, local news site Sabq reported on Sunday.

The victim was transported to a local hospital and the child was referred by the police to a social home in Aseer.

A spokesperson for the police in Aseer confirmed the tragedy.

Ethiopian maid found hanged in Jbeil

File - Ethiopian domestic workers walk dogs in Beirut's Ashrafieh district, Lebanon, Friday, March 4, 2011. (The Daily Star/Mohammad Azakir)
BEIRUT: An 23-year-old Ethiopian maid was found hanged in an apparent suicide Monday at her employer’s house in Jbeil, the National News Agency reported.

Dizzy Jerma Bifkado was found hanged at the apartment located in the Jbeil suburb of Blat Monday, NNA added.

Accompanied by forensic experts, detectives arrived to the appartment to investigate the incident.

The body was moved to Sayyidat al-Maounat University Hospital in Byblos.

The incident came three days after another Ethiopian domestic worker had jumped from her employer’s house on the fourth floor in Bsalim, north of Beirut. She survived the fall but was severely injured.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Ethiopia's Lemma wins Vienna City Marathon after solo run

Sisay Lemma of Ethiopia crosses the finish line to win the Vienna city marathon, in Vienna Austria, on Sunday, April 12, 2015. (AP Photo /Ronald Zak)
VIENNA (AP) — Sisay Lemma of Ethiopia dominated the Vienna City Marathon Sunday, running on his own for the last 15 kilometers after other pre-race favorites struggled with the wind and injuries.

Lemma surged ahead of the leading group after the final pacemaker had left the race and finished in 2 hours, 7 minutes, 31 seconds, missing out by 25 seconds on his personal best he set in Doha in January.

"I had to go and run alone because they were not running for me," Lemma said about the pacesetters, who weren't fast enough to help reach a target time of 2:06:35.

Despite fierce head winds on the final section, Lemma clocked the third-fastest time in the 32-year history of the event and comfortably beat second-placed Duncan Koech of Kenya by 4:43. Siraj Gena of Ethiopia was another 34 seconds back in third.

Ethiopian dies after xenophobia violence in KZN

Johannesburg - One of the two Ethiopian brothers who were burned by a rampaging mob in xenophobic violence in Durban has died, a community leader said on Sunday.

The two men were in their shop in Umlazi, south of Durban, when it was petrol-bombed on Friday night.

"The hospital has informed us that our brother [meaning a fellow Ethiopian] died. They said he died shortly after arriving in hospital," said Ephraim Meskele, leader of the Ethiopian community in Durban.

Meskele said the other brother had severe burns and was "fighting for his life" in hospital.

"This is like a war zone. It's like we are in Syria. I have never seen such cruelty," Meskele told AFP.

Over a thousand mostly African foreign nationals have fled their homes in townships around Durban since xenophobic attacks and looting erupted two weeks ago.

Ethiopian Abera Kuma wins Rotterdam Marathon

ROTTERDAM, Netherlands (AP) Ethiopian Abera Kuma won the Rotterdam Marathon on Sunday, pulling away from the favorites as the pace slowed in the second half of the race after a fast start.
Kuma said wind made the conditions tough toward the end of the race as he finished alone in 2 hours, 6 minutes, 46 seconds.
Mark Kiptoo of Kenya came second in 2:07.20 and his Kenyan teammate Bernard Koech was third in 2:08.02.
Asami Kato of Japan won the women's race in a new personal record of 2:26.30.

Ethiopia's Meseret Mengistu win Paris Marathon 2015

Kenyan and Ethiopian runners were the stars of the 39th Paris Marathon, which took place in the French capital on Sunday.

Kenyan runners dominated the men’s section of this year’s Paris marathon as Mark Korir and fellow countryman Luka Kanda finished 1-2 in the prestigious event on Sunday.

Seboka Tola of Ethiopia was third, while yet another Kenyan, Mike Kigen, finished in fourth place.

The 30-year old Korir, who had finished second in last month's Paris Half Marathon, clocked a time of 2hr 05min 46sec.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

The 22 most dependable airlines in the world

6. Ethiopian Airlines

Fleet size: 76
Number of destinations: 101+
On-time percentage: 71%
Average age of fleet: 7 years
Africa's largest and most profitable airline has been in rapid expansion mode to capture the hot Africa-Asia market.
Ethiopia is building a massive airport to house the airline's home base. The country is looking to shed its image of famine and poverty, and showcase its booming economy.
Read the Report here 

Two Ethiopians burnt in South AFrica, KwaZulu-Natal police advise foreigners to not go home

Camps have been set up in Chatsworth where families can stay until the situation is calmed.

OHANNESBURG – KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) police have advised foreign nationals residing around hotspots where xenophobic attacks have been reported not to go back to their homes.
In the latest attack, two Ethiopian nationals are currently being treated for burn wounds after being petrol bombed last night in Umlazi.
The police's Thulani Zwane said, “Two foreign nationals were sleeping in a container which is also a tuck shop when someone threw a petrol bomb in their container.”
Camps have been set up in Chatsworth where families can stay until the matter has been resolved.
Violence began soon after King Goodwill Zwelithini was last month quoted as saying that foreigners must leave South Africa.
A total of 17 people have since been arrested for murders, assault, business robberies and public violence.

LISTEN: Phone call with Eritrean and Ethiopian migrants in trouble south of Malta as 1,500 head north

Adds Ansa report that 350 migrants have been saved - others still out at sea)
A group of some 620 migrants who left from Libya early in the morning issued  an SOS after the engine on their vessel started misfiring.
The group is just one of a number detected south of Malta. The AFM estimated that some 1,500 migrants could be at sea heading North.
Ansa last night reported that 350 migrants were rescued about 30 miles from the Libyan coast. They were taken on board a merchant vessel.


Times of Malta managed to contact the migrants on a satellite phone number provided by a source. An Eritrean migrant on the other end of the line said there were many women, two children and at least one pregnant woman on board.
“Many people are vomiting, we have no water, we have no food… and the engine, sometimes it is stopping,” the migrant said.
He said the boat was carrying mainly Eritreans and Somalis. They are believed to have left from Sabratha, 66 kilometres west of the capital Tripoli, earlier this morning.
Italian rescue authorities picked up the SOS call from the boat and are coordinating the rescue.
The Armed Forces of Malta meanwhile said it is assisting the operations with an offshore patrol vessel which is on Frontex patrol.
The vessel is currently proceeding towards the rescue area.
The AFM said it is estimated that around 1,500 migrants departed on "several" boats from Libya.
Individual 1: Hello...
TOM: Hello... is there someone who speaks English?
Individual 1: Hello, hello... OK, OK
Individual 2: Hello
TOM: Hello, hi, do you speak English?
Individual 2: Ya... I speak English ya.
TOM: I am told that you are on a boat right now and you are trying to reach Europe.
Individual 2: Aah, but I don’t know ... [inaudible]