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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

  1. Yaya Toure joins Chinese club Qingdao Huanghai

    Stanley Kwenda

    BBC Africa

    Yaya Toure
    Image caption: Toure training with his new team

    Former Ivory Coast midfiler Yaya Toure has joined China's Qingdao Huanghai Football Club.

    He made the announcement on his official website, saying it was an "exciting" challenge.

    "Since the start of my football career, I have always loved challenges and now I have decided to take this new challenge and make history once again with Qingdao Huanghai Football Club.

    "This is a very exciting young club with a lot of potential and we share the same philosophy - that is to play beautiful football. It will be my great honour to grow and succeed with this club," Toure said.

    Qingdao Huanghai plays in the Chinese League Division One.

    "I believe my experiences in football will offer something new to this growing club and together we can make great history. I can't wait to let my football do the magic once again, let's enjoy football together," Toure said.

    The 36-year-old former Manchester City and Barcelona player joins the Chinese club after a largely unsuccessful second stint with Greek side Olympiakos.

    He has been without a club since December.

    The Ivorian has previously vowed to continue playing football for as long as his legs can carry him.

  2. Libya air strike 'could be war crime'

    BBC World Service

    The United Nations' envoy to Libya has said that an air strike that killed more than 40 people in a detention centre near the capital Tripoli could constitute a war crime.

    Ghassan Salamé condemned the attack, which also wounded more 130, as hideous and cowardly.

    The victims were mainly African migrants.

    The European Union has called for a UN investigation into who carried out the assault.

    The internationally recognised government in Libya has blamed the air strike on forces loyal to the warlord General Khalifa Haftar, who launched an offensive on Tripoli three months ago.

  3. Prayer-seeking thieves steal from SA church

    Pumza Fihlani

    BBC News, Johannesburg

    Police in South Africa are looking for four suspects who allegedly robbed a church after demanding to be prayed for.

    The four men entered the church in Port Elizabeth looking for the local pastor to pray for them for a pending court appearance.

    When they realised he was not there they then stole a mobile phone, laptops and an undisclosed amount of money.

    Police spokesperson Alwin Labans told the BBC that the suspects were armed with knives.

    “They found a 26-year-old man in the prayer room and demanded prayers from the pastor. They then pulled their knives and robbed him. They have yet to be identified but we are investigating the matter,” he said.

    The men then took the church member to the kitchen while they plundered the church in their search of whatever valuables they could find.

    Police say the robbery is being investigated.

  4. Zimbabwe sued for foreign currency ban

    Shingai Nyoka

    BBC Africa, Harare

    A Zimbabwean lawyer has filed a court challenge to the government's decision to ban the use of international currencies in the country.

    Godfrey Mupanga says the government's monetary policy is unreasonable, illegal and unconstitutional.

    He argues that the finance minister does not have the power to amend the law.

    Last week authorities reintroduced the Zimbabwe dollar, 10 years after an economic crisis forced it to switch to using foreign currency.

    Mr Mupanga also suggests that the economy is not strong enough to support the reintroduction of the Zimbabwe dollar.

    Zimbabwe is facing its worst crisis since 2008. Authorities say a sole local currency will improve the economy by encouraging local production of goods.

    Read more: Why Zimbabwe has banned foreign currencies

    Man with currency notes stuck on his head
    Image caption: The Zimbabwean dollar was scrapped after hyper-inflation made the notes almost worthless
  5. Aide to Kenya's deputy president arrested

    Police in Kenya have arrested an aide to Deputy President William Ruto in an ongoing investigation over an alleged plot to assassinate the politician, local media report.

    Dennis Itumbi was arrested in the central business district in the capital, Nairobi.

    He works from Mr Ruto's office, Daily Nation news site reports.

    Mr Itumbi has been linked to a letter alleging a plot to kill Mr Ruto which local media, quoting investigators, say was fake.

    The allegations led to three government ministers being summoned by the police for questioning.

    View more on twitter
  6. Police investigating Nigerian senator's sex toy shop fight

    The Nigeria police has said it is investigating an alleged assault after CCTV footage emerged of a senator hitting an assistant at a sex toy shop in the capital, Abuja.

    Senator Elisha Abbo can be seen hitting a woman in a video that has been widely shared on social media. He confirmed to the BBC that it was him in the footage, but explained that he had been attacked earlier.

    A small group of protesters calling for the senator's prosecution marched to police headquarters in Abuja on Wednesday morning.

    Police spokesperson Frank Mba told them that the police chief "has already ordered a comprehensive investigation [of] the incident".

    View more on twitter

    He added that police had made contact with the victim and "that every component of the incident will be looked at" including the video.

    The senate has set up a committee to investigate the incident.

    View more on twitter

    Former vice-president Atiku Abubakar has also commented.

    View more on twitter
  7. UN finds ‘grave human rights abuses' in Burundi

    Cyuzuzo Samba

    BBC Great Lakes, Nairobi

    President Pierre Nkurunziza
    Image caption: President Pierre Nkurunziza's government calls the report a "document of lies"

    Burundi's government and its agents are perpetrating "grave" human rights abuses, a UN commission has found.

    The head of the Commission of Inquiry on Burundi, Doudou Diène, said investigators had found cases of sexual violence, extrajudicial killings and arrests, disappearances and torture.

    Rénovat Tabu - the representative of Burundi at the UN in Geneva - called the commission’s report a "document of lies".

    Investigators said the targets of abuse are members of the opposition, and their families, and those who refuse to join the governing CNDD-FDD party or its youth wing Imbonerakure.

    It also found that Burundians have been forced to contribute to a fund to help preparations for the 2020 presidential elections.

    Public servants' salaries were being deducted for that cause against their will, the report said.

    Burundi was plunged into a crisis in 2015 when President Pierre Nkurunziza's announced that he would run for a third term. Opponents said the move was unconstitutional, but the country's top court disagreed.

    Mr Nkurunziza, who came to power in 2005, went on to win the 2015 election.

    Since then, rights groups and opposition parties have complained of repression and the muzzling of the free press.

    Read: Why Burundi president has renamed its airport and other landmarks

  8. Survivor of Libya bombing appeals for help

    Emergency workers recover bodies after an airstrike killed nearly 40 at Tajoura Detention Center, east of Tripoli on early
    Image caption: Emergency workers recover bodies after an air strike killed nearly 40 at Tajoura Detention Centre, east of Tripoli

    A Nigerian migrant who survived an air strike on Tuesday night at a detention centre on the outskirts in Libya's capital, Tripoli, has said that he and other survivors are stranded and don't know where to go, news agency Reuters reports.

    At least 40 migrants were killed and some 80 people were injured at the centre.

    The UN-backed Government of National Accord, led by Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj, accused the self-styled Libyan National Army of carrying out an air strike on the centre.

    Most of the dead are believed to be Africans, who were attempting to reach Europe on clandestine sea crossings from Libya.

    Othman Musa, appealed for him and other the migrants to be moved to a safer location:

    Quote Message: Some people were wounded and they die on the road - on their way running. And some people they are still under the block, so we don't know what to say. All what we know is we want the UN to help people out of this place because this place is dangerous.
    Quote Message: There' s some people that are stranded here, they don't know what to do they don't where to go. Like me. I don't know what to do, I don't know where to go."
  9. A story of lesbian love in Nairobi

    Caine Prize shortlist: Sew My Mouth by Cherrie Kandie

    Cherrie Kandie
    Image caption: Cherrie Kandie's story is about the silencing of lesbian love

    Cherrie Kandie is one of five authors up for this year’s Caine Prize for African Writing - the winner will be announced next Monday.

    The Kenyan writer has been nominated for her story Sew My Mouth, which is about the challenges a lesbian couple face living in Kenya’s capital Nairobi.

    Homosexuality is a divisive issue in Kenya where gay sex is outlawed.

    This is an extract from her short story:

    Quote Message: My lover can only love me behind drawn curtains. The bed must not creak or the neighbours will hear us. On Friday evening, when her parents come to visit, my lover cannot love me because they want her to marry a man.
    Quote Message: We all sit at the small brown rectangular dining table beneath the high serving-hatch that opens to the kitchen. My lover and I sit on one side, her parents on the other. She sits facing her father, who is tall and meaty. He laughs like a big drum. He eats like a big drum too; his inside is large, empty and hollow. He is shoving big ugali mounds into his mouth. I think that her mother must know, because mothers see the air that mixes between lovers. Her mother must know because she is studying me like a specimen. She narrows her eyes, tightening her brow at the same time. Crow’s feet choke the mole next to her left eye. Her face is lined around the eyes, but is otherwise as smooth and deep brown as a loquat seed...
    Quote Message: I know that my lover’s mother likes avocado, so I bought 10 of them, each for 40 bob. But my lover’s mother does not touch them, and neither does she touch the plate of food that I served her. When I first met her she was pleasant, jubilant even, because I had found her daughter a place to stay near the university. Over and over again, she had said, 'God bless you.'
    Quote Message: After seven years, however, her genuine and earnest god-bless-yous had disintegrated into a liquid and guarded hostility, which now seeped through her narrowed eyes as she studied me."

    You can click here to read the whole story, or listen to it here.

    This week all five of the shortlisted authors are being featured on BBC Africa Live - and BBC Focus on Africa radio will have full coverage of the Caine Prize ceremony and winner, who will win £10,000 ($12,600).

  10. More than 130 arrested after Ethiopian Israeli protests

    The police in Israel now say that 136 people were arrested after Tuesday night's protests involving Ethiopian Israelis.

    In a tweet, the police spokesman said that 111 officers were injured during the clashes.

    View more on twitter

    Protesters had blocked some of the country's main highways.

    The demonstrations followed the burial of a teenager of Ethiopian descent who had been shot dead on Sunday by an off-duty policeman.

    Demonstrators were complaining of marginalisation and victimisation.

  11. Kenya MP released on bail over alleged xenophobic remarks

    Kenyan MP Charles Njagua Kanyi has been released on bail after he was charged with incitement to violence following alleged xenophobic remarks.

    Last week, a video of Mr Kanyi appearing to threaten foreign business people was widely shared.

    "When you look at our market, Tanzanians and Ugandans have taken our business, enough is enough, if we will give them 24 hours and they will not leave, we will beat them and we are not scared of anyone," he can be seen saying as people around him cheer in agreement.

    The MP from the ruling Jubilee Party, who is also a singer by the stage name Jaguar, then repeats the phrase "enough is enough" as people applaud.

    He has since said on Twitter that his comments had been misinterpreted and "all foreigners are welcome to our country":

    He was arrested outside parliament a week ago and had been held in police custody since then.

    Grad form video of MP speaking
    Image caption: The video of Charles Njagua Kanyi was widely shared on social media
  12. Suicide bomber blows himself up in Tunisia capital

    Security forces take security measures after a terrorist blew himself in Al-intilaka neighbourhood, west of the Tunisian capital
    Image caption: Security forces take security measures after a terrorist blew himself in Al-intilaka neighbourhood, west of the Tunisian capital

    An explosion rocked Tunisia's capital, Tunis, on Tuesday night after a wanted man being pursued by police blew himself up.

    The authorities say no-one else was hurt in the blast.

    The man reported to be in his 20s had been on a counter-terrorism wanted list.

    Last week there were two suicide bomb attacks in Tunis, targeting police and security forces. At least one officer was killed and several people were injured.

    A witness in the Al-intilaka neighbourhood, west of Tunis, said Tuesday night's incident startled residents who were watching the national team play Mauritania in the African Cup of Nations.

    Quote Message: We were at a cafe watching the Tunisian match when we heard a large explosion, but I want to say that despite what happened, our people are strong and terrorism has no place here. I hope this is a crisis that will go away and what is important is that we continue about our lives and it`s only a matter of time and all of this will end."
  13. AU calls for investigation into 'horrific' Libya attack

    Video content

    Video caption: Shock and distress after attack on migrant centre in Libya

    Moussa Faki Mahamat, the African Union Commission's chairperson, has called for "an independent investigation" into an air strike on a Libya detention centre that killed to 40 migrants, according to government officials.

    In a statement, the chairperson described that attack as a "horrific crime" and wants those responsible to be brought to account.

    Mr Mahamat called for an immediate ceasefire, and for all parties to ensure the protection and safety of all civilians, especially the migrants trapped in detention centres.

    Some 120 migrants were inside a hangar at the Tajoura Detention Centre which took a direct hit on Tuesday evening, emergency services spokesman Osama Ali told AFP news agency.

    Overall, Tajoura is believed to house some 600 migrants.

  14. Uganda hit by Africa Cup of Nations cash dispute

    Uganda players celebrating

    Uganda's players boycotted Africa Cup of Nations training on Tuesday because of a pay dispute, according to the country's Football Association (Fufa).

    It is the latest such dispute to break out at the tournament, following issues with Zimbabwe, Nigeria and Cameroon.

    The Cranes finished second in their group and are preparing to face Senegal in the last 16 on Friday.

    Fufa say the players are trying to "renegotiate" the terms of a deal signed between the two parties.

    They say the arrangement was agreed pre-tournament and detailed the payments that had already been made to the team.

    Read more on this story.

  15. Nigeria pledges to join Africa's free trade agreement

    Nigeria says it will sign the pan-African trade deal, known as the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement, at an African Union extraordinary summit in Niger on Sunday.

    President Muhammadu Buhari said on Twitter that he agreed to the deal "after extensive domestic consultations".

    View more on twitter

    AfCFTA is aimed at removing barriers to trade, like tariffs and import quotas, allowing the free flow of goods and services between its members.

    Forty-four AU members signed up in March last year, but Nigeria, one of the largest economies on the continent, was holding out.

    At the time the government said there were concerns that Nigeria could become a dumping ground for goods not manufactured in Africa.

    Now President Buhari says that the position of the country is "very simple", adding that "we support free trade as long as it is fair and conducted on an equitable basis".

    Ambassador Albert Muchanga, the AU's trade commissioner, welcomed Nigeria's move on Twitter:

    View more on twitter

    The deal also needs to be formally ratified in each country and so far 25 countries have done so, meaning that the deal can come into legal force.

  16. Kenya 'stowaway could be airport employee'

    The Kenyan authorities say there is a high possibility that the man who is believed to have died after apparently stowing away on a Kenya Airways flight was an airport employee.

    The man, who has not been identified, is believed to have fallen from the landing gear of a flight from Nairobi into Heathrow Airport. His body was found in a London garden.

    Gilbert Kibe, the director general of the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority, has told the BBC that the suspected stowaway probably had legal access to the airport, giving him an opportunity to get into the undercarriage of the plane.

    Mr Kibe told the BBC that Kenya's Department of Criminal Intelligence, along with the US's FBI, are investigating what happened.

    Kenya flight 'stowaway' body found in Clapham garden - BBC News

    Image of back garden
    Image caption: The force of the body falling from a commercial aeroplane dented paving slabs in a garden in Clapham
  17. 'I hitch-hiked 6,000km to watch Afcon'

    South African Botha Msila must be pleased that his beloved Bafana Bafana just squeezed into the last 16 at the Africa Cup of Nations.

    He set out from Cape Town, South Africa, to hitch-hike all the way to Cairo, Egypt.

    He notched up 6,000km before his trip was almost derailed at the Kenya-Ethiopia border.

    He finally made it to Egypt but is yet to plan how he will get back to South Africa.

    Video content

    Video caption: Afcon 2019: South Africa fan in hitch-hike adventure to Egypt
  18. Afcon: Holders Cameroon and Benin advance

    Cameroon and Benin players
    Image caption: Cameroon and Benin both go through to last 16

    The 16 teams for the second round knock-out phase of the Africa Cup of Nations are now known, after Tuesday's completion of group games.

    Defending champions Cameroon and Benin played out a goalless draw, allowing both sides to progress. The result means Cameroon finished second in Group F to set up a tasty meeting with Nigeria.

    Benin went through as one of the four best third-placed teams and will come up against Morocco.

    Ghana reached the last 16 and knocked out Guinea-Bissau with a 2-0 win in Suez. Guinea-Bissau, who could have gone through with a victory, hit the woodwork three times.

    Mali advanced as Group E winners after beating Angola 1-0 in Ismailia. Amadou Haidara scored the game's only goal, finding the net with a fierce drive from outside the area. Mohamed Magassouba's side will face Group D runners-up Ivory Coast on Monday.

    Tunisia reached the last 16 despite drawing 0-0 with Mauritania in Suez. The result means Tunisia finish as Group E runners-up and will face Ghana for a place in the last eight.

    Round of 16 fixtures start on Friday:

    • Morocco v Benin - play Friday
    • Uganda v Senegal - play Friday
    • Nigeria v Cameroon - play Saturday
    • Egypt v South Africa - play Saturday
    • Madagascar v DR Congo - play Sunday
    • Algeria v Guinea - play Sunday
    • Mali v Ivory Coast - play Monday
    • Ghana v Tunisia - play Monday

    Keep up with all the Afcon news on our African football website.

  19. Kenya police accused of extra-judicial killings

    Kenya police have shot dead 21 people they alleged were criminals since August last year, campaign group Human Rights Watch (HRW) says following interviews with family members and witnesses.

    “Police are arresting unarmed people and then gunning them down, and neither the police service nor its watchdog agency is doing much to stop it," HRW's Otsieno Namwaya said.

    Earlier this year, the BBC reported on a suspected death squad operating inside Kenya's police force. It was allegedly using Facebook to target and kill young men they believed to be gang members.

    HRW said it found that in three days in April, seven men who police say were involved in crime, were shot dead in the Mathare area of the capital, Nairobi.

    Police spokesman Charles Owino told HRW that the police oversight body should investigate the allegations

    “Any officer who breaches the law must face the consequences as an individual,” he is quoted by HRW as saying.

  20. Nigerian senator explains sex toy shop fight

    Senator Elisha Abbo
    Image caption: At 41, Elisha Abbo is one of Nigeria's youngest ever senators

    Elisha Abbo, 41, a Nigerian senator caught on CCTV hiting an assistant in a sex-toy shop has told the BBC he was retaliating after being attacked.

    On Tuesday PremiumTimes newspaper released a video on its website that showed the senator in a shop in the company of his security entourage, hitting a woman repeatedly.

    The video, filmed in a shop in the capital, Abuja, has sparked a huge conversation on social media as people share the footage.

    The senator hasn’t denied he’s the one seen hitting the woman in the video, but told BBC Pidgin the film had been “doctored”.

    The senator from Adamawa state said the shop assistants had earlier assaulted his sister, which the video did not show.

    He added that the CCTV recording was made some time ago.

    “It happened long before I came into office and it’s just being released now to actually achieve a political aim,” he said.

    “Secondly, I want to also say categorically that they cut off a clip where they [hit] my sister in the shop before I was called upon…to go upstairs where I saw my sister lying unconscious in the shop,” he added.

    He also said that he was hit.

    View more on youtube

    Mr Abbo said the incident happened on 11 March 2019, but Premium Times who first carried the story, said witnesses told them it happened on 11 May.

    Senator Abbo who’s a member of Nigeria’s main opposition People’s Democratic Party, is one of the newly elected national lawmakers.

    Some activists are planning a protest to the police headquarters in Abuja, calling for his arrest.

    Frank Mba who’s the police spokesman, told the BBC Pidgin that it’s an assault case and that the woman attacked ought to report to a police station.