25 dead after extremists attack army camps in central Mali
BAMAKO, Mali (AP) — Al-Qaida-linked groups attacked two army bases in central Mali, killing at least 25 people and leaving 60 missing, Mali's government said Tuesday.
Niger seeks to step up oil production with pipeline to coast
NIAMEY, Niger (AP) — Niger has started construction on an oil pipeline that will link it to the coast through West African neighbor Benin, a project that Niger's president said will bolster the...
West African leaders meet on extremism in the region
OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso (AP) — The heads of state from 15 countries in the West African economic bloc known as ECOWAS met Saturday to discuss the fight against Islamic extremism and the impact...
500 refugees trapped in Libya to be evacuated to Rwanda
PARIS (AP) — Rwanda agreed Tuesday to take in 500 refugees and asylum-seekers trapped in Libya under an agreement signed with the United Nations and African Union.
Report: West, Central Africa violence closes 9,000 schools
DAKAR, Senegal (AP) — Fourteen-year-old Hussaini said he first heard screaming. Then people fired guns, shooting at and killing at least one of his teachers in his northern Burkina Faso...
UN agency: Rival tribes clash in southern Libya; 90 killed
CAIRO (AP) — A U.N. humanitarian agency says at least 90 people have died this month in southern Libya amid fighting between rival tribes.
The fighting pits the Arab Alzway tribe against the...
Soldier killed in Niger ambush receives posthumous medal
MIAMI (AP) — The family of a U.S. soldier killed during a 2017 ambush in the African nation of Niger has received his Silver Star Medal in South Florida.
ZURICH (AP) — FIFA says its ethics judges have banned a soccer official from Botswana for life for taking bribes linked to convicted match-fixer Wilson Perumal.
African leaders to launch continent-wide free trade zone
JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Several African heads of state gathered in Niger's capital Sunday to launch a continentwide free trade area that represents an estimated market of $3.4 trillion.
CAIRO (AP) — The United Nations refugee agency says it has evacuated 131 African refugees from Libya to its emergency transit center in neighboring Niger.
US military vehicle hits roadside bomb in Niger
NIAMEY, Niger (AP) — U.S. military officials say an American vehicle has struck a roadside bomb in the troubled West African country.
There were no fatalities, though U.S. Africa Command...
Pentagon ends reviews of Niger ambush that killed 4 soldiers
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Pentagon has concluded its reviews of a 2017 ambush that left four U.S. soldiers dead in the African nation of Niger and said it found the discipline it meted out to be...
Child advocacy group: Kids in 173 countries better off now
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — A children's advocacy group says youngsters in all but three of the 176 countries it evaluated have a better chance of growing up healthy, educated and protected from harmful...
Burkina Faso minister warns terrorists gain ground in Sahel
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The foreign minister of Burkina Faso warned Thursday that terrorist activity in Africa's volatile Sahel region is gaining ground and there is "a very real risk" of...
Islamic State group claims deadly ambush on Niger soldiers
NIAMEY, Niger (AP) — Jihadists linked to the Islamic State group on Thursday claimed responsibility for ambushing a military convoy in the West African nation of Niger, killing 28 soldiers in an...
Report: Human traffickers in Africa shifting business models
ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — A new report has indicated human traffickers in East and North Africa are shifting their business models in response to efforts to contain migration.
NIAMEY, Niger (AP) — Authorities in the West African nation of Niger say at least 55 people are dead after a tanker truck filled with fuel exploded near the country's main airport.
NIAMEY, Niger (AP) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel has arrived in Niger for the final stop of her three-nation West Africa tour.
Earlier on Thursday Merkel met with some of the 850 German...
ROME (AP) — A group of 146 asylum-seekers have arrived in Italy as part of a U.N.-backed humanitarian evacuation from Libya.
The U.N. refugee agency says it's the fifth such evacuation since...
BERLIN (AP) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel is heading to West Africa this week, visiting Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger to express Germany's commitment to stability and developmental cooperation...
Pentagon appoints officer to do new review of Niger attack
WASHINGTON (AP) — Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan has appointed a four-star officer to take another look at the military's investigation into the 2017 attack in Niger that killed four...
Security Council heads to 2 African hotspots for extremists
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The Security Council is heading to Mali and Burkina Faso for a first-hand look at the challenges their governments are facing in the hotspots for extremist attacks in...
FIFA bans former referee for life for bribery, match-fixing
GENEVA (AP) — One of soccer's most infamous match-fixing cases was settled Thursday when a referee notorious for corrupt calls was banned for life.
The corrupt games in Ibrahim Chaibou's career were key to revealing how easily international friendlies could be manipulated for betting scams, forced FIFA to change the rules for appointing referees, and helped expose the influence of convicted fixer Wilson Perumal.
Burkina Faso: Body of Canadian found days after abduction
OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso (AP) — A Canadian national has been found dead a day after reports of his kidnapping by suspected jihadists in Burkina Faso's volatile north near the Niger border, the West African nation's security ministry said Thursday.
The ministry said Kirk Woodman's body was found 100 kilometers (62 miles) from the site where he worked for Progress Mineral Mining Company.
Woodman's son, Matt Woodman, emailed The Associated Press confirming his father's death.
Burkina Faso says Canadian abducted by suspected extremists
OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso (AP) — A Canadian national has been kidnapped by suspected extremists in Burkina Faso near its border with Niger, the West African nation's security ministry said Wednesday.
The Canadian man, identified as Kirk Woodman, was abducted overnight during a raid on a mining site in Tiabongou, about 20 kilometers (12 miles) from Mansila in Yagha province, said ministry spokesman Jean Paul Badoum. Woodman worked for the Progress Mineral Mining Company.
Niger says days of raids kill 280 Boko Haram extremists
MAIDUGURI, Nigeria (AP) — Niger's defense ministry says several days of raids have killed more than 280 Boko Haram extremists near the border with Nigeria.
The statement says the land and air raids began on Dec. 28, with more than 200 extremists killed in airstrikes.
Nigeria in November held an urgent meeting with neighbors about what it called an extremist resurgence fueled by the new use of drones.
American Kennel Club adds a breed: the speedy, sleek Azawakh
NEW YORK (AP) — A fleet-footed hound that hails from West Africa is the latest dog in the American Kennel Club's pack of recognized breeds.
The club announced Wednesday that the Azawakh (AHZ'-ah-wahk) became the 193rd breed in its roster. That means Azawakhs can now compete in many dog shows, though they're not eligible for the prominent Westminster Kennel Club show until 2020.
18 girls kidnapped by Boko Haram in Niger, official says
NIAMEY, Niger (AP) — A regional deputy official in Niger says that 18 girls have been kidnapped from two different villages by suspected Boko Haram militants.
Lamido Harouna Moumouni said 24 attackers abducted 15 girls in the village of Blaharde early Saturday and three other girls in the village of Bague. This is not far from where suspected extremists killed at least seven people at a French drilling company's site Wednesday, and near Nigeria's border.
Suspected Boko Haram extremists kill 7 in Niger’s southeast
NIAMEY, Niger (AP) — Niger's defense minister says suspected Boko Haram extremists have killed seven people and injured seven others at a French drilling company's site in the southeast near the border with Nigeria.
Kalla Moutari says the attack occurred Wednesday at the Foraco water well site in Toumour, a village some 30 kilometers (18 miles) from the border in the Diffa region.
He says the seven killed were Nigerien workers with the Foraco group.
US cutting counterterror forces in Africa
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Pentagon is reducing its counterterrorism forces in Africa and studying whether to make similar moves elsewhere in the world as part of a broad effort to shift American military focus toward what it calls threats from Russia and China.
The Latest: Italy’s anti-migrant minister greets refugees
BRUSSELS (AP) — The Latest on migrants in Europe (all times local):
Italy's hard-line interior minister has welcomed 51 refugees and asylum-seekers who arrived in Italy after being detained in Libya and then airlifted out by the U.N. refugee agency.
Algeria denies forced expulsions of migrants to desert
ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) — Algeria has categorically denied the most recent claims that it forcibly expels West African migrants to its border with Niger, leaving them stranded in the desert.
A statement Wednesday night by Algeria's foreign ministry said the country would continue expelling migrants living there illegally, adhering to international conventions and "with respect to (migrants') dignity."
French airstrike targets extremists in Burkina Faso
OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso (AP) — At least eight members of Burkina Faso's security forces are dead after a pair of attacks in the turbulent east, the country's security minister said Thursday, while France's military said it carried out an airstrike against extremists fleeing one of the scenes.
The West African nation is the latest in the region to wrestle with the growing threat from extremist groups that in recent months have found refuge in the forested east near the border with Niger.
Niger says cholera epidemic has killed at least 68 people
NIAMEY, Niger (AP) — Niger's public health ministry says at least 68 people have died in a cholera epidemic that began in July.
The ministry this week said it has registered more than 3,690 cases of the disease, which is caused by contaminated food or water and can kill within hours if untreated.
The epidemic has spread in the central Maradi region and has also affected the northern Tahoua, eastern Zinder and southwestern Dosso regions.
Mattis vows no cut in military support for France in Mali
PARIS (AP) — U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Tuesday that the U.S. will not reduce its support for the French-led military operations against insurgents in Mali.
"We have no intention of cutting back one bit on that support," said Mattis.
Speaking alongside Mattis at a press conference in Paris, French Defense Minister Florence Parly said the Pentagon chief reassured her that any changes in U.S. operations or forces in Africa would not affect support provided to France.
Armed men kill 12 civilians in Mali near Niger border
BAMAKO, Mali (AP) — A Tuareg leader says armed men on motorcycles have attacked a nomadic community near Mali's border with Niger, killing at least 12 civilians.
Moussa Ag Acharatoumane, secretary-general for the Tuareg self-defense group, said Wednesday the attack targeted men in the Iboghilitane community about 45 kilometers (28 miles) west of Menaka.
The violence risks setting off a new cycle of intercommunal clashes in the Menaka region where 100 civilians have already been killed this year.
Burkina Faso cracks down on motorbike-riding extremists
OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso (AP) — Growing attacks by motorbike-riding extremists who flee into the forest have led Burkina Faso's government to ban the use of motorbikes and bike carts from sunset to sunrise in its troubled east.
The West African nation also announced this week it will monitor cars and trucks in the area near the border with Niger, which is fast becoming a hideout for extremist groups linked to al-Qaida and the Islamic State organization.
Niger says Italian priest kidnapped near Burkina Faso border
NIAMEY, Niger (AP) — An Italian priest has been kidnapped in a part of Niger where a number of extremist groups are active, the West African nation said Tuesday.
Government spokesman Zakaria Abdourahmane said authorities had not been aware the priest was in the country's southwest near the Burkina Faso border. He said investigations have begun to find the attackers and free the priest.
Britain, Nigeria sign defense pact to counter Boko Haram
LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) — Britain and Nigeria signed a security and defense agreement during a one-day visit by Prime Minister Theresa May on Wednesday as Africa's most populous country struggles to defeat Boko Haram extremists and others linked to the Islamic State organization.
In heart of West Africa, Burkina Faso faces rising extremism
OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso (AP) — The extremists approached the shepherd and made their intentions clear: They were seizing only the cattle owned by the deputy mayor of Burkina Faso's rural commune of Deou and leaving the others alone.
And they had a message, deputy mayor Moustapha Sawadogo said: "All officials should leave the Sahel or face death."
US military in Africa says changes made to protect troops
DAKAR, Senegal (AP) — The U.S. military in Africa has taken steps to increase the security of troops on the ground, adding armed drones and armored vehicles and taking a harder look at when American forces go out with local troops, the head of the U.S. Africa Command says.
US military in Africa says changes made to protect troops
DAKAR, Senegal (AP) — The U.S. military in Africa has taken steps to increase the security of troops on the ground, adding armed drones and armored vehicles and taking a harder look at when American forces go out with local troops, the head of the U.S. Africa Command said Monday.
US confirms drones in Niger have striking capabilities
DAKAR, Senegal (AP) — The United States started arming drones in the West African nation of Niger earlier this year, according to the U.S. Africa Command.
OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso (AP) — Burkina Faso's army says its counterterror forces have captured some 60 extremists along the border with Mali and Niger during operations conducted since July 8.
The military said Thursday its forces also dismantled several extremist bases and seized explosives.
The border with Mali and Niger is home to jihadists who kidnap and kill officials, sometimes in connection with other Islamic extremist groups in West Africa's vast Sahel region.
Deadly Algerian migrant expulsions resume in desert, UN says
PARIS (AP) — Algeria's government has resumed expelling migrants into the Sahara Desert to die, leaving 391 people to wander through some of the world's most hostile terrain in the middle of summer, a U.N. migration official said Saturday.
Algeria stops forcing migrants into Sahara after outrage
PARIS (AP) — Algeria's deadly expulsions of migrants into the Sahara Desert have nearly ground to a halt after widespread condemnation and the abrupt firing of two top security officials.
3 killed in attack on West African counterterror force’s HQ
BAMAKO, Mali (AP) — A car packed with explosives detonated at the headquarters of a new, five-nation West African counterterror force in Mali, setting off a gun battle that killed two soldiers, a civilian and two attackers, officials told The Associated Press on Friday.
The attack highlighted the brazenness of the extremist threat in a part of the world that made headlines in October with the killing of four U.S. service members in an ambush in neighboring Niger.
BRUSSELS (AP) — European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini is urging EU member countries to put more money into an Africa trust fund as the bloc looks to set up migrant screening centers outside Europe.
Mogherini said Monday that the fund "has proven to be useful, it has brought results and this is why we are asking for more money from member states."