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Analysis: Evacuation dilemma in the Central African Republic
28 February 2014 (IRIN ), Zannah Bassar, a Muslim woman living in the Central African Republic (CAR) capital, Bangui, has a simple message for the international community - she wants to be evacuated.
Niger's "remarkable" progress in reducing child deaths
27 February 2014 (IRIN ), Niger has made remarkable progress in cutting under-five mortality over the past decade, and it looks set to meet the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) on reducing child mortality rates by two-thirds by 2015. But high maternal mortality, skyrocketing population growth and low government capacity are still impeding progress, say partners and health practitioners.
Hopes for reconciliation - the view from Timbuktu
27 February 2014 (IRIN ), Residents of Timbuktu, Mali’s cultural capital, are hopeful the city can draw on its long history of tolerance to heal social relations frayed by a 10-month Islamist occupation, which Arab and Tuareg communities are still being accused of abetting.
Poverty amid mining riches in Katanga
27 February 2014 (IRIN ), Katanga, a province the size of Spain, holds many of DRC’s reserves of copper, cobalt and other valuable minerals. Scores of trucks thunder daily along its few paved roads laden with metals bound for export and shipping through Durban and other distant ports. However, few of the many millions of dollars in taxes paid by mining companies to DRC authorities are invested in Katanga’s economic or social development, leaving swathes of the population mired in poverty.
Worries over looming Ivoirian polls
26 February 2014 (IRIN ), As Côte d’Ivoire inches closer to its first elections since the violently disputed polls of 2010, efforts to deliver justice, promote reconciliation and disarm fighters are being criticized for failing to shield the country from renewed instability.
Fear persists among South Sudan’s displaced*
25 February 2014 (IRIN ), The 101 civilians holed up in two large tents and a washroom block in a UN base in the South Sudan city of Rumbek may form one of the smallest such groups now protected by peacekeepers, but their conditions and fears are typical of the 75,000 people now living in such bases across the country.
All weather is local - getting the forecasting right for farmers
25 February 2014 (IRIN ), With the lean season reaching its peak, many villages in Zimbabwe have already exhausted their staple grain reserves. The most recent Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee (ZimVAC) report projects that at least two million people, out of a population of 13 million, will be without sufficient food until the end of March. But had they had access to high-quality rain forecasts for their areas, communities could have better prepared for the period between harvests, experts say.
Greater efforts needed to curb sexual violence in Mogadishu
25 February 2014 (IRIN ), ia. A Mogadishu-based NGO working to protect women and children, Save Somali Women and Children (SSWC), has recorded more than 2,000 survivors of sexual violence in Mogadishu since it was set up in July 2012.
Call for shake-up in Africa nutrition research
24 February 2014 (IRIN ), Rwanda has achieved remarkable success in reducing child hunger, and nutrition experts believe there may be lessons here for other countries in Africa.
Pastoralist aspirations versus policy in the Horn of Africa
24 February 2014 (IRIN ), Since the Horn of Africa drought of 2011 aid agencies have been working to understand the changes taking place in the drylands, hoping to better anticipate people’s needs. Recent research shows these changes go beyond climate and environment to encompass social and economic factors. The findings have important policy implications.

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