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NAIROBI, Dec 4 (Reuters) - More than half of Tigrayan forces have withdrawn from the frontlines, the forces' top commander said, a month after a ceasefire agreement aimed at ending the two-year conflict in Ethiopia's northern Tigray region.
"We have accomplished 65% disengagement of our army," Tadesse Wereda, commander-in-chief of the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) said in a video posted on the forces' official Facebook page late on Saturday.
War erupted in Ethiopia's northern Tigray region in November 2020, pitting the Tigrayan forces against federal troops and their allies that included fighters from the Amhara region that borders Tigray and Eritrean soldiers.
Tadesse said TPLF was still maintaining fighters in some locations "where there is a presence of anti-peace forces".
"Our forces are still on the ground in those places due to the problems they (anti-peace forces) are creating for our people.
Dec 3 (Reuters) - A ship with Ukrainian wheat destined for Ethiopia arrived in port on Saturday, the first vessel to sail as part of a push to send food to countries most vulnerable to famine and drought, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said.
Last Saturday, Ukraine and allied nations launched an initiative to export $150 million worth of grain to Ethiopia, Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia, Congo, Kenya, and Yemen.
"We ship food.
We ship hope," Zelenskiy said in a tweet accompanying a short clip of a vessel carrying 25,000 tonnes of wheat for Ethiopia that he said had arrived in the port of Doraleh, in neighboring Djibouti.
Zelenskiy said on Friday that by early next year, a total of around 60 ships would have delivered cargoes.
REUTERS/Tiksa NegeriBENGALARU, Dec 2 (Reuters) - The World Health Organization said on Friday it still does not have the unfettered access to Ethiopia's northern Tigray region stipulated in a truce signed a month ago.
Troops from Eritrea, to the north, and forces from the neighbouring Ethiopian region of Amhara, to the south, fought alongside Ethiopia's military in Tigray but were not party to the ceasefire.
"That peace process has not yet resulted in the kinds of full access, unfettered access and in the massive scale of medical and health assistance that the people of Tigray need," WHO's emergencies director Mike Ryan said.
Ethiopia's Minister of Health Lia Tadesse, State Minister Redwan Hussien, and government spokesperson Legesse Tulu did not respond to requests for comment.
WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus in October accused Ethiopia's government of using the denial of food and healthcare as weapons of war in Tigray.
The appeal represents a 25% increase on 2022 and is more than five times the amount sought a decade ago.
"Humanitarian needs are shockingly high, as this year's extreme events are spilling into 2023," said U.N.
Emergency Relief Coordinator Martin Griffiths, citing the war in Ukraine and drought in the Horn of Africa.
But donor funding is already under strain with the multiple crises, forcing aid workers to make tough decisions on priorities.
Unlike in other parts of the U.N. where fees depend on countries' economic size, humanitarian funding is voluntary and relies overwhelmingly on Western donations.
WASHINGTON, Nov 30 (Reuters) - A senior U.S. lawmaker wants details from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) about the safety of the cockpit alerting system for the Boeing 737 MAX -- an issue at the heart of a dispute over two new variants of the best selling airplane.
Senate Commerce Committee Chair Maria Cantwell on Tuesday circulated a draft proposal that would extend the 737 MAX 7 and MAX 10 certification deadline and require retrofitting existing planes with safety enhancements, Reuters reported.
After Dec. 27, all planes must have modern cockpit alerting systems to be certified by the FAA, which could put the two new MAX planes future in jeopardy.
Cantwell's letter asked "to the extent FAA has identified safety deficiencies with 737 MAX’s flight crew alerting system, please describe FAA’s plans to immediately address these safety concerns."
Boeing declined to comment but has said it is safer to have one common cockpit alerting system for all versions of the 737.
NEW YORK, Nov 30 (Reuters) - The United Nations will ask for 25% more money to fund humanitarian aid operations globally in 2023, U.N. aid chief Martin Griffiths told a Reuters NEXT event on Wednesday.
He also said that he understands that a famine will not yet be declared in Somalia, but he warned: "We can assume that in Somalia and soon in Ethiopia, where the numbers will be much worse ... people are dying already of hunger and starvation."
Reporting by Michelle NicholsOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
WASHINGTON, Nov 29 (Reuters) - A key U.S. lawmaker is proposing an extension of a certification deadline for two new versions of Boeing's (BA.N) 737 MAX and requiring retrofitting existing planes, according to a document reviewed by Reuters.
Boeing is seeking an extension from Congress of a December deadline imposing a new safety standard for modern cockpit alerts for the 737 MAX 7 and 737 MAX 10 variants after two fatal 737 MAX crashes killed 346 people in Indonesia and Ethiopia and led to the plane's 20-month grounding.
Boeing would be required to bear the costs of the mandatory safety enhancements retrofit for MAX planes currently in service, according to the proposal.
Faulty data from a single sensor that erroneously triggered a software function called MCAS to repeatedly activate played critical roles in the fatal 737 MAX crashes.
Earlier this month, acting FAA Administrator Billy Nolen said he does not expect the agency will certify the 737 MAX 7 before the December deadline.
"If you don't do anything, you cannot do a mistake," Walde said of the current licensing paralysis caused by the bureaucratic anxiety.
Germany is the second-largest exporter of drugs to Vietnam after France, according to 2020 data.
SUPPLY SHOCKSThe negative economic consequences of the crackdown come on top of other challenges that Vietnam and other countries in Asia face, namely a weakening local currency, global supply constraints and declining world demand.
"The crackdown won't be able to root out the widespread corruption if implemented without complete transparency and rule of law," said Hop.
Reporting by Francesco Guarascio @fraguarascio; Additional reporting by Khanh Vu; Editing by Sam HolmesOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
"We will not allow unethical individuals to ruin Kenya's reputation through doping," Kenya's minister for sports, Ababu Namwamba, said on Twitter on Friday.
This week Kenya's government wrote to World Athletics to try and ward off a potential ban.
A spokesperson for World Athletics confirmed to Reuters receipt of the letter.
Fifty-five Kenyan athletes are currently banned and eight provisionally suspended, according to the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU), an independent body formed by World Athletics to combat doping in the sport.
Kenya is a 'Category A' country under World Athletics' Anti-Doping Rules, which means its athletes must undergo at least three no-notice, out-of-competition urine and blood tests ahead of major events.
However, the power mix varies greatly by country depending on locally available power sources, legacy power production infrastructure, and proximity to energy exporters.
Electricity generation by source in key African economiesThis wide variance in power mix is clear when comparing the electricity source profiles of Africa's two largest electricity producers, South Africa and Egypt.
In contrast, Egypt uses natural gas for 77% of its electricity, and uses no coal in electricity generation at all.
The two countries' electricity systems have starkly divergent emissions footprints as a result of their different primary fuels.
Across Northern Africa, natural gas is making rapid inroads into energy systems, primarily from the abundant local supplies in Algeria and Egypt.
Nov 21 (Reuters) - A U.S. appeals court on Monday threw out class-action lawsuits accusing Boeing Co and Southwest Airlines Co (LUV.N) of covering up a fatal flaw in the design of the Boeing 737 MAX 8 plane, and ordered that the litigation be dismissed.
Boeing and Southwest did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The 737 MAX was grounded worldwide after 346 people died in the October 2018 crash of Lion Air Flight 610 in Indonesia and March 2019 crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 in Ethiopia.
Passengers accused Southwest, Boeing's launch customer for the MAX 8, of pressuring Boeing into deceiving Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) officials during the testing and certification process, ostensibly to lower pilot training costs.
In January 2021, Boeing agreed to pay $2.5 billion to resolve a U.S. Department of Justice criminal probe into the 737 MAX crashes.
DOHA, Nov 20 (Reuters) - Taking selfies from the stands and sitting on the grassy pitch, thousands of migrant workers gathered in a Doha stadium to watch the opening match of the first World Cup in the Middle East.
It sat adjacent to several worker camps where many of Qatar's hundreds of thousands of low-income labourers live.
"We are here to enjoy our sweat now," said Ronald Ssenyondo, a 25-year old Ugandan who was rooting for Qatar on Sunday.
The wealthy gas-producing country is home to 2.9 million people, the vast majority of whom are foreign workers ranging from low-income construction workers to high-powered executives.
But on Sunday, he was grateful to be with fellow workers watching on a screen - even though Qatar's loss was a disappointment.
[1/2] Family members hold photographs of Boeing 737 MAX crash victims lost in two deadly 737 MAX crashes that killed 346 people as they wait for Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg to testify before a Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee hearing on “aviation safety” and the grounded 737 MAX on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., October 29, 2019.
REUTERS/Sarah Silbiger/File PhotoWASHINGTON, Nov 18 (Reuters) - Relatives of passengers killed in two Boeing 737 MAX crashes pressed U.S. Justice Department lawyers on Friday to unwind a 2021 deal that allowed the U.S. planemaker to escape criminal prosecution.
U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor in Texas ruled last month that people killed in two Boeing 737 MAX crashes are legally considered "crime victims" and said he would decide what remedy should be imposed.
Both Boeing and the Justice Department oppose reopening the deferred prosecution agreement that included $500 million in victim compensation, a $243.6 million fine and $1.7 billion in compensation to airlines.
The Justice Department said on Friday after the meeting it takes its obligations to victims seriously.
Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed's government and Tigrayan forces signed a ceasefire on Nov. 2 to end two years of fighting that have killed thousands, shattered infrastructure and uprooted millions from their homes.
The ICRC described the delivery into the regional capital Mekelle as the first international aid into Tigray since a previous ceasefire broke in August.
We have discussed, agreed and signed," Abiy told Ethiopia's national parliament in his first comments on the ceasefire since it came into force.
Abiy said on Tuesday that a territorial dispute between forces in Tigray and the neighbouring Amhara region should be resolved legally and through discussion.
Authorities in Amhara last week welcomed the ceasefire agreement but made no mention of the disputed territory.
The deal will be put into effect "immediately", mediator Olusegun Obasanjo told a news conference before the signing.
Both sides said they were committed to the declaration, stressing it was the only way to restore peace and stability.
One of TPLF's representatives, General Tadesse Werede, said the declaration on implementation had given them hope that the suffering of the people in Tigray would end.
The two sides agreed to a permanent cessation of hostilities in an unexpected diplomatic breakthrough in South Africa on Nov. 2.
Reporting by Ayenat Mersie, Writing by Duncan Miriri and Elias Biryabarema; Editing by Clelia OzielOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
WASHINGTON, Nov 10 (Reuters) - Switzerland-based Glencore, China and Chad's other creditors have reached an agreement in principle on restructuring the African country's nearly $3 billion in external debt, a source close to the negotiations said on Thursday.
Glencore (GLEN.L), a major private creditor, agreed late in October or early November to join the other creditors, the source said.
Chad owes one third of its external debt to commercial creditors, and almost all of that to Glencore in oil-for-cash deals dating back to 2013 and 2014.
The agreement now reached marks progress and reflects growing trust among creditors, including China, as they negotiate on debt issues, the source said.
Chad's creditor committee is co-chaired by France and Saudi Arabia.
The truce has raised hopes humanitarian aid can start moving back into a region where hundreds of thousands face famine.
Representatives of Ethiopia's military and government and forces from Tigray are in the Kenyan capital Nairobi to discuss how to begin implementing the ceasefire, with the talks set to last three or four days.
Getachew Reda, spokesman for the Tigray authorities, said the talks were to figure out implementation of the agreement.
In a statement on Monday, the AU said it expected the outcomes of the talks to "include modalities for silencing the guns, humanitarian access and the restoration of services in the Tigray region".
The ceasefire agreement says Ethiopia's army will safeguard the country against "foreign incursion" but analysts are worried about whether Eritrea - the TPLF's sworn enemy - will listen.
[1/2] Athletics – 2022 TCS New York City Marathon - New York, United States - November 6, 2022 Kenya's Evans Chebet in action during the elite men's race REUTERS/Jeenah MoonNEW YORK, Nov 6 (Reuters) - Kenyans Evans Chebet and Sharon Lokedi survived brutal heat and humidity to win the New York City Marathons on Sunday after Brazilian Daniel Do Nascimento collapsed during the race.
His win completes a Kenyan sweep of the six men's world marathon majors in 2022.
"I'm out of words, I'm really excited," said Lokedi, the eighth competitor to win the New York race in a marathon debut.
The year's final marathon major was back at full capacity for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic, with some 50,000 competitors hitting the streets and thousands of people congregating along the course to cheer.
American Susannah Scaroni produced the fastest-ever time through the five boroughs on the women's side, winning her second wheelchair major in 1:42:43.
The United Nations climate talks in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh starting on Sunday will put the global media spotlight on Egypt in a way the country last saw during its 2011 "Arab Spring" uprising.
Authorities want to show "that Egypt is not an irrelevant country, that Egypt has the prowess, the diplomatic clout and the power, the security presence to be a pivotal figure", she said.
In other moves aimed at improving Egypt's international image, Sisi has launched a limited political dialogue that is due to start soon after the climate summit.
In an updated submission to the United Nations this year, Egypt said it faced a $246 billion funding shortfall to meet its 2030 climate targets.
It is hoping to sign a flurry of deals including for green hydrogen power and solar and wind projects timed to coincide with COP27.
CNN —Kenya’s Sharon Lokedi was a surprise winner of the women’s New York City Marathon on Sunday, while Evans Chebet won the men’s race to complete a Kenyan double.
There were challenging conditions for Sunday’s race as temperatures in New York City hovered around 23 degrees Celsius (73 degrees Farenheit).
Brazilian Daniel Do Nascimento led the field for much of the men’s race, but he collapsed to the floor and received medical attention in the final stages, handing Chebet the lead.
It’s expected that 50,000 runners competed in this year’s NYC Marathon – the first full-capacity race since the Covid-19 pandemic.
In the men’s race of the wheelchair division, Switzerland’s Marcel Hug claimed the fifth NYC Marathon title of his career in the men’s race.
CNN —Hundreds of elephants, wildebeests, and zebras have died across Kenya amid the nation’s longest drought in decades.
“The Kenya Wildlife Service Rangers, Community Scouts, and Research Teams counted the deaths of 205 elephants, 512 wildebeests, 381 common zebras, 51 buffalos, 49 Grevy’s zebras, and 12 giraffes in the past nine months,” a report released Friday by the country’s Ministry of Tourism said.
An elephant keeper rests next to a month-old calf at Reteti Elephant Sanctuary in Samburu, Kenya on October 12, 2022.
Yasuyoshi Chiba/AFP/Getty Images“The drought has caused mortality of wildlife, mostly herbivore species,” Malonza said.
According to the ministry, Kenya had just 36,000 elephants left last year.
"I'm very happy - because this will put a hold on the suffering," said a Tigrayan man in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa who declined to be named out of fear of repercussions at his place of work.
All sides fighting in the Tigray war committed violations that may amount to war crimes, according to a joint investigation by the United Nations and Ethiopia's state-appointed human rights commission.
We haven't even gotten any voice messages from him," the Tigrayan man in Addis Ababa told Reuters.
Human Rights Watch, citing witnesses, said 23 civilians were killed by Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) fighters in Kobo at that time.
Just, literally everything," said Andom Gebreyesus, who ran a tour company in Tigray before the war.
CNN —When Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2019, he was lauded as a regional peacemaker.
A year later, he launched a conflict that spiraled into a brutal civil war, spawning one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world.
In November 2020, Abiy ordered a military offensive in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region and promised that the clash would be resolved quickly.
Yasuyoshi Chiba/AFP/Getty ImagesThe Tigray conflict has its roots in tensions that go back generations in Ethiopia.
For months at the start of the conflict, Abiy denied that civilians were being harmed or that soldiers from Eritrea had joined the fight.
Creditors and investors are closely monitoring how China, the world's largest bilateral lender, is managing debt negotiations around the world.
The policy bank has extended to Zambia more than half of Chinese loans while a $982 million loan was made jointly with the Industrial Commercial Bank of China (ICBC).
Including commercial lending, Zambia government data showed it owed more than a third of its $17.27 billion external debt to Chinese lenders by end-2021.
Reuters GraphicsThe bank also leads China's team in Ethiopia's bilateral debt talks, its state finance minister told Reuters last month.
In 2018, EximBank agreed to extend repayment on a loan worth at least $2.5 billion for a railway between Addis Ababa and Djibouti by 20 years.
CNN —It’s almost a year since marathon runner Gotytom Gebreslase last spoke to her parents over the phone, a detachment she feels most strongly during races.
“My wish is to meet them soon – that would make me happy.”Gebreslase breaks the tape at the World Athletics Championships.
Some reassurance over her parents’ safety arrived following Gebreslase’s victory at the world championships in July, when she came across a TV report featuring an interview with her mother.
“The result I got in the world championships built my confidence,” she says.
“When I started running, [my parents] didn’t discourage me, they were encouraging me – especially my mom,” says Gebreslase.