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  • South Africa's ruling party suffers biggest election setback since apartheid

    South Africa's ruling party suffers biggest election setback since apartheid

    The party of Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s governing African National Congress, faced its biggest election blow since the end of apartheid Saturday, as many voters in municipal elections either didn’t vote, or favored two black-led opposition parties. The ANC’s support remains substantial, at...

  • The world’s newest nation is on the brink of a new civil war

    The world’s newest nation is on the brink of a new civil war

    The swamp, with its swaying reeds, pale purple water lilies and turbid waters, is full of bones. Here is the spot where one family, fleeing an outbreak of fighting on the Upper Nile, ferried their children in a makeshift plastic canoe, only to find that it had leaked and the babies had silently...

  • If the Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram has a new leader, where is Abubakar Shekau?

    If the Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram has a new leader, where is Abubakar Shekau?

    The Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram says it has a new leader, leaving a question: What has happened to Abubakar Shekau, the terrorist leader who earned global notoriety in 2014 when he laughed and threatened to sell more than 200 Nigerian schoolgirls as slaves? Shekau was last heard of in March,...

  • U.S. launches airstrike campaign against Islamic State in Libya

    U.S. launches airstrike campaign against Islamic State in Libya

    U.S. attack jets and drones launched airstrikes inside Libya on Monday against multiple Islamic State targets, marking a further expansion of President Obama's war against the militant group. The warplanes targeted Islamic State transport vehicles and tanks that had been menacing Libyan forces...

  • Child brides sold for cows: The price of being a girl in South Sudan

    Child brides sold for cows: The price of being a girl in South Sudan

    When the girl was 16, her uncle told her he was taking her to the family village. Excited about the trip, she packed the few things she had. She thought the plan was to meet relatives and see the birthplace of her father, who died when she was 10. She didn’t understand yet that in South Sudan,...

  • To understand life in rural South Sudan, talk to this man about his cattle

    To understand life in rural South Sudan, talk to this man about his cattle

    The possessions in Luko Loku’s thatched home convey his simple life. A bedside stool with a sliver of mirror. An old door hinge. A machete lying on the bed frame, as if sleeping. His clothes dangle from a wire, his motorcycle leans against one wall. There’s a hammer, a scattering of plastic cups,...

  • Hunter calls. Bird responds. And together they find honey.

    Hunter calls. Bird responds. And together they find honey.

    The honey-hunter lets out a long trill, followed by a sharp grunt. Brrr-hm! On cue, a small bird flies to the hunter and responds with its own chattering noise. The greater honeyguide flits from tree to tree, searching for a beehive. Over thousands of years, honeyguides, named for their unusual...

  • Some of the people who are supposed to be saving rhinos are helping them die out

    Some of the people who are supposed to be saving rhinos are helping them die out

    They are supposed to save the rhino — police in Mozambique, South African soldiers, park rangers and government officials. But the people who could help stop the species’ extinction are often making things worse, according to a report Wednesday that laid out a series of damning failures of governance...

  • South Sudan appears to be sliding back into war

    South Sudan appears to be sliding back into war

    Heavy fighting erupted Monday between government and opposition forces in South Sudan’s capital, Juba, as last-ditch international pressure by the United Nations failed to stem a slide back into war. South Sudanese military helicopter gunships flew over the capital, tanks were deployed and heavy...

  • From Olympics to prison, the marathon of covering Oscar Pistorius' fall from grace

    From Olympics to prison, the marathon of covering Oscar Pistorius' fall from grace

    Ten years ago, a young man turned up at a Pretoria athletic field and trotted around the track a few times with casual ease. This must be the man I was waiting for. His name was Oscar Pistorius, and he was running on carbon fiber blades. I had an appointment for an interview about his efforts to...

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