- The media in Niger has been punished for covering the activities of a rebel group in the northern part of the country, the Accra-based Media Foundation for West Africa, confirmed.
A bi-weekly privately-owned newspaper in the second city Agadez, 1000 km from the capital Niamey, 'Air Info' was suspended by the Supreme Council of Communication for giving coverage to the northern rebels.
Under the Nigerien media law, the government provides annual subsidy to the existing media. But the council said 'Air Info' would not be a beneficiary of the subsidy.
The paper's troubles with the state began when it published an article and photographs of the fighters of the Movement des Nigériens pour la Justice, an armed movement that had been fighting in the northern region since March 2007.
Disturbed by the paper's coverage to the rebel movement, the communication council issued a notice, warning 'Air Info' against "praising the armed rebellion".
The body also dispatched warnings to three weeklies - 'L'evenement', 'Libération' and 'Opinion' on 2 July. Editors of these papers have been accused of turning their publications into propaganda tools of the rebel movement.
The northern rebels said they would continue to fight until the government takes them seriously and engage them in dialogues or peace talks. Nigerien government described the body as bandits bent on making life difficult for innocent civilians.
After failing to defeat the rebels, the Nigerien government blew the whistle, accusing foreign forces of backing the northern rebels.
afrol News - It is called "financial inclusion", and it is a key government policy in Rwanda. The goal is that, by 2020, 90 percent of the population is to have and actively use bank accounts. And in only four years, financial inclusion has doubled in Rwanda.
afrol News - The UN's humanitarian agencies now warn about a devastating famine in Sudan and especially in South Sudan, where the situation is said to be "imploding". Relief officials are appealing to donors to urgently fund life-saving activities in the two countries.
afrol News - Fear is spreading all over West Africa after the health ministry in Guinea confirmed the first Ebola outbreak in this part of Africa. According to official numbers, at least 86 are infected and 59 are dead as a result of this very contagious disease.
afrol News - It is already a crime being homosexual in Ethiopia, but parliament is now making sure the anti-gay laws will be applied in practical life. No pardoning of gays will be allowed in future, but activist fear this only is a signal of further repression being prepared.
afrol News / Africa Renewal - Ethiopia's ambitious plan to build a US$ 4.2 billion dam in the Benishangul-Gumuz region, 40 km from its border with Sudan, is expected to provide 6,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for its population plus some excess it can sell to neighbouring countries.