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Somali lawmaker shot dead, second in 24 hours

Somalia's Al-Qaeda linked Shebab said they had assassinated a lawmaker on Tuesday, the second such killing in 24 hours and the latest in a series of attacks in the war-ravaged capital of Mogadishu. Abdiaziz Isak was shot "several times and he died instantly," police officer Mohamed Dalane said, close to where the politician was killed in the city's Madina district. On Monday, a member of parliament was killed and another wounded in a car bombing also claimed by the Islamists, who have threatened to assassinate all lawmakers in the internationally-backed government.

Football: Zambia's Mr Football dead at 78

Zambia's much-loved football commentator Dennis Liwewe -- one of African sport's best recognised voices -- has died aged 78, a family spokesman said on Tuesday. "He passed away this morning at Levy Mwanawasa hospital. He was 78 years old and has had liver problems," Ponga Liwewe, his eldest son, told AFP. Liwewe's high-pitched tone, breathless cadence and reservoir of footballing knowledge made him a distinctive and celebrated commentator, but he was also regarded as an elder statesman of the game in Zambia and in the region.

Uganda captures LRA rebel officer, frees 10 hostages

Ugandan troops have captured a fugitive Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) rebel officer and freed 10 hostages, the army said Tuesday, after battles with the elusive jungle insurgents. Charles Okello was captured in the southeast of the Central African Republic, army spokesman Paddy Ankunda told AFP, describing him as a field commander of the "notorious" LRA. "Most importantly we released 10 people, seven children and three women, who had been held hostage for six months," he told AFP.

Hit by 'hard times', Mugabe accepts $4,000 a month

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has said he gets by on a modest salary of $4,000 a month because of the "hard times" facing the country, state media reported Tuesday. Zimbabwe is still recovering from years of economic collapse attributed mainly to government policies under Mugabe, who has run the country since independence in 1980.

Islamists kill second Somali lawmaker, threaten more attacks

By Abdi Sheikh and Feisal Omar MOGADISHU (Reuters) - Islamist rebels shot dead a Somali lawmaker on Tuesday, a day after blowing up one of his colleagues in his car, and vowed to keep killing politicians and wreck efforts to secure the country. Al Qaeda-linked group al Shabaab told Reuters the latest killing was meant to send a message to Western-backed President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, who on Tuesday was due to wrap up a three-day conference on improving security in the capital.

Distrust as Sudan's South Kordofan peace talks resume

Sudan's government and rebel teams met in Ethiopia Tuesday to restart the latest round of slow moving talks aimed at brokering peace in war-torn South Kordofan and Blue Nile, delegates said. Talks, which broke off last month without result, reopened Tuesday with rebels saying they were doubtful of any swift progress. "We are in consultations," rebel delegation chief Yassir Arman told AFP, who along with other leaders was sentenced to death in absentia last month.

South Sudan rebels blamed for massacres push offensive

South Sudan's army said Tuesday it was battling rebels in three key states, as insurgents blamed for massacring hundreds of civilians in attacks last week continued an offensive targeting oil fields. The rebels seized the town of Bentiu last week, unleashing two days of ethnic slaughter as they hunted down civilians sheltering in mosques, churches and a hospital, according to the UN.

South Sudan rebels blamed for massacres push offensive

South Sudan's army said on Tuesday it was battling rebels in three key states, as insurgents blamed for massacring hundreds of civilians in attacks last week continued an offensive targeting oil fields. The rebels seized the town of Bentiu last week, unleashing two days of ethnic slaughter as they hunted down civilians sheltering in mosques, churches and a hospital, according to the UN. Bentiu is the capital of the key oil-producing state of Unity. Government forces say they have been forced to pull out of another major settlement nearby amid furious rebel attacks.

UN evacuates 100 Muslims from C. Africa capital

The United Nations has evacuated almost 100 Muslims from the capital of the crisis-torn Central African Republic to "save their lives", according to officials. Supported by staff from the UN's refugee agency, 93 Muslims were transported east from Bangui to the town of Bambari, according to El Hadj Abacar ben Ousmane, senior official in the town some 300 kilometres (185 miles) from the capital. Sectarian violence in the former French colony has killed thousands in the last year.

Mauritania sets June 21 date for presidential election

By Laurent Prieur NOUAKCHOTT (Reuters) - Mauritania will hold presidential elections on June 21, according to the presidency, despite a lack of agreement on the reform of election rules that some opposition leaders argue will likely ensure the return to power of President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz.
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