VOA

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Africa has become the world's most rapidly urbanizing continent. In sub-Saharan Africa, the urban population has doubled since the mid-1990s, and reached 400 million people in 2016. According to experts, 40 percent of the region's total population resides in cities, compared to 31 percent in 2000.

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Campaigning has ended for Malawi’s tightly contested May 21 elections for president, lawmakers, and local leaders. As political parties ready for Tuesday’s polls, Malawi’s Vice President Saulos Chilima, who is challenging President Peter Mutharika, has again raised allegations of possible vote-rigging, while local media report Chilima is involved in an investigation of a suspicious plane.

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Former South African president Jacob Zuma is in court Monday, fighting to have corruption charges against him dismissed.  The charges, stemming from a 1990s arms deal, were dropped a decade ago, shortly before Zuma became president.

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Sudan's ruling military council said it had restarted talks late on Sunday with an alliance of protest and opposition groups that is pushing for a civilian-led transition to democracy. The Transitional Military Council (TMC) had suspended the talks late on Wednesday after two outbreaks of violence around protest sites in the capital Khartoum.

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Sudanese citizens are criticizing the American representative to their country for dining with one of Sudan's most notorious warlords. U.S. representative to Sudan, Charge D'Affaires Steven Koutsis, attended an Iftar meal to break the daily Ramadan fast on Saturday with Mohamed Hamdan Dagolo, whose troops are accused of committing atrocities in Darfur and other areas, including as recently as this week.

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A U.N. watchdog group is demanding an end to the widespread practice of torture and other cruel punishments in the Democratic Republic of Congo.  The DRC is one of six countries examined by the U.N.

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A delegation from the Kenyan military is sharing experience on how the Cameroon military engineering corps has taken over road construction projects in Boko Haram terrorism prone areas to use the example and develop areas of its territory threatened by Al-Shabab which they say is still a threat.

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A delegation from the Kenyan military is sharing experience on how the Cameroon military engineering corps has taken over road construction projects in Boko Haram terrorism prone areas to use the example and develop areas of its territory threatened by Al-Shabab which they say is still a threat.

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Malawians go to the polls Tuesday in local, parliamentary and presidential elections. Seven candidates are running for president, but the real battle is among incumbent President Peter Mutharika, Vice President Saulos Klaus Chilima and main opposition leader Lazarus Chakwera.

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The deputy leader of Sudan’s military council voiced his enthusiasm for democratic elections in front of an audience of tribal leaders and senior diplomats Saturday, while seeking to deflect blame for violence in Khartoum this week.

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This report originated in VOA’s Central Africa Service. KIGALI, RWANDA — Safi Mukundwa knows what it means to be young, fearful and desperate. Mukundwa was just 8 years old when she hid among bloodied bodies, emerging as the only one in her family to survive the 1994 genocide that swept through Rwanda, including her Western Province hometown of Kibuye.

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Maltese police Saturday said they were questioning two soldiers over a drive-by shooting in April in which an African migrant was killed. Ivorian national Lassana Cisse was killed April 6 when he was shot from a car as he walked down a street in Hal Far, close to an army barracks and a migrants’ center.

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Malawians go to the polls on May 21 for local, parliamentary and presidential elections. Seven candidates are running for president, but the real battle is between incumbent President Peter Mutharika, Vice President Saulos Klaus Chilima and main opposition leader Lazarus Chakwera.

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The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies warns the Ebola epidemic in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo could spread to urban areas and across international borders because of heightened insecurity and a serious shortage of money.

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While Islamic State fighters in Syria and Iraq have largely been forced underground, the terror group's other fighters along with its media operatives appear intent on surging, combining an increase in attacks with ramped-up output on social media.

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The breakaway state of Somaliland is preparing to celebrate 28 years since it declared independence from Somalia. No country recognizes Somaliland as a sovereign nation, but in the capital, preparations for the celebration are under way.

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Uganda is marking International AIDS Candlelight Memorial Day with activities to remember the estimated 2 million Ugandans who have died of the disease. While the government and development partners have increased campaigns for HIV awareness, however, the stigma and discrimination attached to the disease keep many Ugandans fearful from learning of or talking about their HIV status, says those who carry the virus.

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Australia's prime minister said on Friday that two Rwandan refugees who resettled in Australia after 15 years in U.S. detention are no longer suspects in the massacre of eight tourists in Uganda 20 years ago.

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A South Korean and three Filipinos have been freed following months of captivity in Libya, Seoul and Abu Dhabi said Friday. The release of the hostages was mediated by the United Arab Emirates, which worked with the self-styled Libyan National Army led by commander Khalifa Hifter.

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The Afrobytes and Viva Tech conferences in Paris this week have provided an opportunity to look at the progress that high-tech startups have made in Africa, where fundraising is booming. According to Partech Africa, a venture capital firm, 146 startups in 19 African countries raised $1.16 billion for African digital entrepreneurs in 2018.

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The foreign minister of Burkina Faso called Thursday on the international community to consider creating a counterterrorism coalition, like the ones for Iraq and Afghanistan, to better combat terrorism in Africa's Sahel region.

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English-speaking Cameroonians, who say they are fed up with an ongoing separatist war, are taking matters into their own hands by arresting and handing over suspected separatist fighters to the military. Some residents also have created militias in their towns and villages as they voice frustration over the war that has killed close to 2,000 people.

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More than once in recent years, Kenyan officials have called for the closure of Dadaab refugee camp in eastern Kenya, home to more than 200,000 refugees and asylum seekers, many of whom fled Somalia during or since the 1991 civil war.

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Arguments, shouting matches, and physical tussles broke out late Wednesday among Sudanese protesters over the positioning of barricades surrounding a sit-in in the capital Khartoum, where thousands of demonstrators have camped since April 6.

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Facebook has announced it removed 265 Facebook and Instagram accounts, pages, groups, and events from its service Thursday because of what it called "coordinated inauthentic behavior." In a statement, the company said the objectionable activity originated in Israel and focused on events in Nigeria, Senegal, Togo, Angola, Niger, and Tunisia, along with some activity in Latin America and Southeast Asia.

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