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Africa in July 2023

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July 3, 2023

  1. Egyptian-Iranian Normalization Talks Won’t Need to Rely on Iraq in Future (Elaph). In Tehran, on Sunday, Egyptian-Iranian understandings were announced to restore severed diplomatic relations between them and the dispensation of Iraqi mediation in this field. The Iranian Air Travel and Tourism Services Syndicate said that the first batch of Iranian tourists would head to Egypt within the next 45 days, and the first direct flight between Tehran and Cairo will be launched soon…after the opening of the Iranian consulate in Cairo, Iraq will not be used as a mediating country because it increases time and cost.
  2. Tunisia Will Put Thousands of Former Jihadis on Trial (Al Sharq Al Awsat). Security reports revealed the arrests of “former Salafists again” after being tried and released by the courts specialized in hearing cases of terrorism and thousands of young people returning from hotbeds of tension in Libya, Syria, and Iraq…Those who had previously traveled to hotbeds of tension in Syria, Iraq, and Libya when Western capitals and several regional capitals encouraged them to (jihad) and (support the revolutions to overthrow the rule of Muammar Gaddafi in Libya and Bashar al-Assad in Syria and to fight foreign forces) in the Levant and Iraq.
  3. Syrian Regime Seeks to Win Over Morocco by Withdrawing Its Recognition of The Polisario Front (Syria).Moroccan media sources said that the Syrian regime is in the process of withdrawing its recognition of the Polisario Front, with the aim of winning over the Kingdom of Morocco and restoring diplomatic relations with it. On Sunday, the local “Fez News” website said that this decision will affect the course of relations between the two sides.

July 4, 2023

  1. Sudan’s Battles Continue as Army Calls on Civilians to Volunteer in its Ranks (Al Hadath). The battles continued in Sudan on Monday as the center of the capital, Khartoum, and the northern region of Bahri, came under artillery shelling from Omdurman, according to eyewitnesses. At the same time, the army renewed its call for civilians to volunteer in its ranks to fight the Rapid Support Forces…the Sudanese Armed Forces appealed to “the youth, and everyone who can, to share with the armed forces the honor of defending the entity and dignity of the Sudanese nation.”
  2. Libya Hands Over to Egypt 25 Children Who Tried to Immigrate to Italy (Al Arabiya). The information revealed that these children and their families paid sums of money ranging from 100 to 130 thousand pounds to Libyan and Egyptian elements in exchange for their travel to work in Italy and that they arrived in Libya 3 months ago in preparation for traveling to the Italian coasts via a boat belonging to illegal immigration gangs…Libyan authorities decided to deport the children to Egypt.

 

July 5, 2023

  1. Tribal Leaders Sided with the Rapid Support Forces, and the Army Opened its Camps to Recruit Citizens (Al Rakoba News). In a development that portends an escalation of the conflict in Sudan, several tribal leaders in the Darfur region, in the west of the country, announced their support for “Quick Support,” calling on their members of the army to align themselves with the forces led by Muhammad Hamdan Dagalo “Hemedti” in When the head of the Sovereign Council, Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, called on the youth, and everyone who can bear arms, to join the army. 
  2. Egypt to Invest $1.8 Bln in 35 New Natural Gas Wells By 2025 (Ahram Online). Egypt plans to dig 35 new exploratory natural gas wells in the Mediterranean and the Nile Delta by 2025 with $1.8 billion in investments, said Egyptian Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Tarek El-Molla. According to the plan, 21 wells will be completed during the fiscal year 2023/2024 and 14 in 2024/2025. El-Molla’s comments came during an interview with Emirates News Agency (WAM) on Tuesday, on the sidelines of his participation in the 8th OPEC International Seminar.
  3. Weak Exports Exacerbate the Egyptian Trade Balance Deficit in April (Sky News). Data from the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics showed an increase in the value of the trade balance deficit in Egypt during April by 23.8 percent. The increase in the trade deficit in Egypt came after the decrease in exports last April by 44.9 percent, to reach $3.03 billion, compared to $5.5 billion in the same month of 2022.

 

July 6, 2023

  1. In a Sign of Reconciliation, Egyptian President Sisi Will Visit Ankara on July 27 (Alkhaleej). Turkish media reported that Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi will visit Turkiye on July 27. It is worth noting that Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi and his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, recently agreed to raise diplomatic relations and exchange ambassadors.
  2. Norwegian Company Will Invest $5B in Egyptian Wind Farm (Cnn Business Arabic). The Egyptian Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy and the Norwegian company Scatec signed an agreement on Wednesday to provide a plot of land to construct a wind power plant project in Upper Egypt at an investment cost of $5 billion. According to the agreement, the wind power plant to be established in West Sohag will produce 5 gigawatts of electricity annually, according to a statement issued by the Egyptian Cabinet. Egypt aims to raise the contribution of renewable energy to 42 percent of the country’s energy mix by 2030.
  3. Tunisia: Security Forces Expel 400 Migrants to Libya Borders after Death of Tunisian During Clashes (The New Arab). Since 3 June, over 400 sub-Saharan migrants and asylum seekers were reportedly forcibly expelled to the Libyan border amid an escalation of anti-immigrant sentiment in the North African state after the death of a Tunisian man during clashes with a group of migrants in Sfax. On Monday, Tunisian security forces deported the first group of twenty migrants, including a pregnant woman and a child, to the Ben Gardane Area, a militarized Tunisia-Libya border zone.
  4. After a Hot Night, Cautious Calm in Sfax; Tunisian President Holds Criminal Networks Responsible for Immigration (Al Jazeera). After a hot night of protests in several neighborhoods in the state of Sfax, condemning the killing of a Tunisian at the hands of immigrants from sub-Saharan Africa, a cautious calm prevails throughout the city, south of the capital, Tunis. This comes while warnings are continuing of the escalation of confrontations and the frequency of threats between the two parties in a way that would fuel the pace of violence and exacerbate the current crisis.
  5.  Sudanese Army Says Rapid Support Forces are Planning to Transfer the War to the North and East (Al Jazeera). Al-Jazeera correspondent in Sudan reported hearing heavy gunfire around the neighborhoods of Rumaila, Al-Hilla Al-Jadida, Al-Lamab, and the industrial area west of Khartoum, coinciding with the flight of warplanes over the capital’s sky. The Sudanese army spokesman, Nabil Abdullah, told Al-Jazeera that the military operations are proceeding according to the prepared plan and that they have achieved great success in Omdurman. For its part, the Rapid Support Forces published pictures that it said were the wreckage of a Sudanese army MiG plane that was shot down by its forces during the battles in Khartoum North. In a similar context, the Al-Jazeera Net correspondent quoted Sudanese security sources, describing them as “al-Rafi’a,” that the Rapid Support Forces are planning to expand the scope of the war to the north and east of the country during the next stage after they retreated in Khartoum.
  6. Sudanese Banking System is Paralyzed, Government is Unable to Provide Services, and Poverty is Knocking on the Door (Al Sharq Al Awsat). There are widespread calls for the owners of grocery stores in the neighborhoods to allow their customers to borrow at the expense of their salaries that they have not received for three months, that is, since the outbreak of war in the country, while social media has been crowded with calls for workers in need, because their salaries have not been paid, and they find themselves unable to survive. In their homes, because of the fighting or leaving them where they have safety and perhaps food, the banking system is still faltering, preventing even those who can access their balances to manage their lives.

 

July 7, 2023

  1. Foreign Ministers of Iran and Sudan Meet for First Time in Seven Years (Al Arabiya). The Iranian news agency “IRNA” reported on Thursday that Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian met with Sudanese Foreign Minister Ali Sadiq Ali for the first time since diplomatic relations between the two countries were severed seven years ago. “In this meeting, the talks aimed at resolving misunderstandings between the two countries and strengthening political and economic relations between Tehran and Khartoum,” the agency said about the meeting held in the Azeri capital, Baku.
  2. Haftar Threatens Military Action if Oil Wealth is Not Redistributed by End of August (Libya Akhbar). On Monday, the commander of the “General Command” forces, Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, announced a deadline, no later than the end of next August, for the equitable distribution of oil wealth in Libya, according to the French Press Agency. Oil revenues, Libya’s main source of income, are managed by the National Oil Corporation and the Central Bank of Libya from the capital, Tripoli, where Abdul Hamid Dabaiba’s government is based.

 

July 10, 2023

  1. Sudan…Opportunities for a Peaceful Solution are Narrowing Amid Widespread Popular Rejection of the War (Sky News). Coinciding with reports about the Sudanese army’s rejection of an African formula that stipulates a direct meeting between the army commander Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan and the Rapid Support Forces, Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, during the next few days, Analysts warned of running out of opportunities for a peaceful solution in the country.
  2. UN Secretary General Warns Sudan is on the Brink of an “All-Out Civil War” (Mustaqila). The United Nations has warned of Sudan reaching the brink of an all-out civil war that could destabilize the entire region. The UN warning came after an airstrike on Omdurman, a suburb west of Greater Khartoum, which resulted in at least 22 deaths and dozens of injuries. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said, “Continuous clashes between armed forces have pushed Sudan to the brink of an all-out civil war that could destabilize the entire region,” his deputy spokesman Farhan Haq said.
  3. Egypt to Host Summit of Sudan’s Immediate Neighbors on Thursday (Sputnik Arabic). The Egyptian presidency announced Sunday that “Egypt will host the summit of Sudan’s neighboring countries next Thursday to discuss ways to end the current conflict and its negative repercussions on neighboring countries..Egypt’s hosting of the summit of Sudan’s neighboring countries comes within the framework of President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi’s keenness to formulate a common vision for the countries of Sudan’s immediate neighborhood, to take steps to solve the crisis and spare the blood of the Sudanese people, spare them the negative effects they are exposed to, and preserve the Sudanese state and its capabilities.”
  4. Detention, Deportation, and Refusal to Grant Citizenship:  Türkiye Supports its Rapprochement with Egypt by Striking the Brotherhood (Al Hadath). Days after officially announcing the restoration of relations between Egypt and Turkiye and raising their diplomatic ties to the level of ambassadors, Turkiye imposed new restrictions on the activities of the Brotherhood and its members residing in Turkish territory.

 

July 11, 2023

  1. Core Inflation in Egypt jumped to 41%, Highest in History (Sna Business). Data from the Central Bank of Egypt showed on Monday that core inflation (excluding energy and food) rose to 41 percent annually in June from 40.3 percent in May. The consumer price index in Egyptian cities rose last June to a record high of 35.7 percent in June from 32.7 percent in May, surpassing the previous record level set in July 2017 when it reached 32.952 percent.
  2. Sudanese Government Refuses to Participate in African Peace Talks if Chaired by Kenya (An Nahar). On Monday, the Sudanese government refused to participate in African peace talks to resolve the conflict unless the Quartet is chaired by a party other than Kenya, which it accuses of a “lack of neutrality.” Since April 15, Sudan has witnessed battles between the army, led by Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, and the Rapid Support Forces, led by Muhammad Hamdan Dagalo, known as “Hemedti.”

 

July 12, 2023

  1. Egyptian Prime Minister Says Government Will Sell Assets Worth $1.9 Billion (Al Khaleej). On Tuesday, Egyptian Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly announced that “Egypt has concluded contracts to sell government assets to private companies at a value of $1.9 billion.” During a press conference, he indicated that “his country expects to increase annual inflows of hard currency to $70 billion annually by 2026.”
  2. Libyan Court Issues Long Prison Sentences for 37 Human Traffickers (Al Hadath). A Libyan court in the east of the country has issued strict sentences, including life imprisonment, against 37 persons accused of human trafficking, who caused the death of 11 migrants, according to what the Public Prosecutor’s Office announced on Monday. The Office of the Attorney General said in a press briefing, “The Court of Appeal of Al-Bayda has convicted defendants involved in a criminal gang that caused the death of 11 immigrants on board a rickety boat.”

 

July 13, 2023

  1. Russia and GCC Statement Rejected Interference in Libya’s Internal Affairs, Supported Elections, and Called for Exit of Mercenaries from the Country (Lana.Gov.Ly). The sixth ministerial meeting of strategic dialogue between Russia and the Gulf Cooperation Council was concluded in the Russian capital, Moscow, by stressing the importance of preserving the interests of the Libyan people, achieving security, stability, and development in Libya, ensuring its sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity, and stopping interference in Libya’s internal affairs.

 

July 14, 2023

  1. “Neighbourhood Summit” Launches a Mechanism to Prevent the Disintegration of Sudan (Al Sharq Al Awsat). The “Sudan’s Neighboring Countries Summit,” which was held in Cairo at the invitation of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, agreed to “form a ministerial mechanism on the Sudanese crisis at the level of the foreign ministers of neighboring countries, whose first meeting will be in Chad.” Its mission is to develop an executive action plan to stop the fighting and reach a comprehensive solution to the crisis, through direct communication with the various Sudanese parties in complementarity with the existing mechanisms, including IGAD and the African Union.
  2. Tunisia, Egypt Negotiate Launch of Direct Marine Line (Egypt Independent). Tunisia and Egypt are holding advanced discussions on transport sector cooperation. Tunisian Minister of Transport Rabie Majidi revealed and referred to negotiations to launch a direct marine line between the two countries. Majidi explained that the two countries discussed establishing logistical areas for transporting and processing goods, which is expected to culminate in the signing of agreements. Discussions are also being held related to the civil aviation sector, specifically about coordination between air carriers to restore air traffic between the two countries to its previous pace, Majidi added.
  3. Egypt and Ethiopia Pledge to Complete Renaissance Dam Agreement Within Four Months (Al Arabiya). The two sides agreed to start urgent negotiations to finalize the agreement between Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan to fill the Renaissance Dam and the rules for its operation and to make all necessary efforts to finish it within 4 months.

July 17, 2023

 

  1. Greece Calls for the Resumption of Operation Sophia to Stem the Flow of Illegal Immigration Through Libya (Libya Akhbar). Greek Minister of Immigration, Dimitris Kyridis, called on the European Union to resume Operation Sophia, which aims to stop the flow of illegal immigrants before they leave the Libyan coast. The Greek government is facing accusations of negligence following the sinking of a wooden fishing boat after it set off from Libya towards Italy, resulting in the loss of at least 500 migrants.
  2. The United Nations: “Untold” Suffering in Sudan and Fears that the Conflict Will Turn Into a “Brutal” War (Al-Jazeera). The United Nations High Commissioner for Humanitarian Affairs, Martin Griffiths, has called for redoubling efforts to ensure that the conflict in Sudan does not degenerate into an “endless, brutal” civil war. Griffiths said in a statement on the 3-month anniversary of the outbreak of the fighting that the people of Sudan, over this period so far, have suffered untold suffering amid acts of violence tearing their country apart.

July 18, 2023

  1. EU Aims to Extend Accord on Illegal Immigration to Egypt and Morocco (Sky News Business). Building on the recent agreement with Tunisia, the European Union is actively pursuing strategic partnership arrangements with Egypt and Morocco, with a particular focus on addressing the pressing issue of irregular migration. The EU’s aim is to forge alliances that mirror the successful cooperation achieved with Tunisia, aimed at combating the challenges posed by illegal immigration. 
  2.  Al-Azhar Observatory Warns of ISIS Sleeper Cells’ Menace in the Region (Daily News Egypt). The Al-Azhar Observatory issued a statement cautioning about the lingering dangers posed by ISIS sleeper cells in the region. Despite suffering losses of historical leaders, ISIS retains the capacity to mount attacks against both civilians and military personnel. The organization’s desperate bid to showcase its resilience and unity heightens concerns, as it seeks to divert attention from internal crises.

 

July 19, 2023

  1. Egypt, Türkiye Discuss Strengthening Cooperation in Military Industries (Daily News). Mohamed Salah El-Din Mostafa, the Minister of State for Military Production, engaged in discussions on Monday with Salih Mutlu ŞEN, the Turkish ambassador in Cairo, to explore avenues for bolstering cooperation between the two nations in the realm of military industries. In a show of inclusivity, Egypt invited Turkiye to participate in its most significant military event scheduled for December.
  2. Libyan Authorities Increase Operations Against Illegal Immigration   (Libya Akhbar). Security patrols of the Sabratha Security Directorate seized several illegal immigrants while they were trying to board a rubber boat. Immediately, legal measures were taken and coordinated with the control room of the Anti-Illegal Immigration Agency regarding their transfer to one of the shelters in the capital, Tripoli, under strict security.

 

July 20, 2023

  1. Algeria Seeks to Join the BRICS Group & Signs 13 Trade Agreements with China (Al Hadath). The joint statement stated that China welcomes Algeria’s desire to join the BRICS group and supports its efforts to achieve this goal. Xi said the two sides will cooperate in aerospace, infrastructure, petrochemicals, and renewable energy.  
  2.  The Moroccan Navy Rescued 845 Ilegal Immigrants Heading to Spain (Al Hadath). According to a military source, the Moroccan navy conducted rescue operations at sea over eight days, saving 845 migrants…The operations were carried out in response to the growing perilous attempts made by desperate migrants to reach the Spanish Canary. In other news, the Tunisian coast guards announced recovering thirteen bodies of illegal immigrants off their coast heading to Italy.  
  3.  After Meeting with the European Human Rights Representative, Egypt Issues Two Presidential Pardons (English Ahram). Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi issued a presidential decree pardoning a group of activists against whom court rulings have been issued, including the researcher Patrick Zaki and the famous lawyer Mohamed El-Baqer

 

July 21, 2023

  1. Egypt Secures $100 Million Loan Facility for Grain Purchases, Assures 5.2 Months of Strategic Wheat Reserves (Al Arabiya). Egypt’s Minister of Supply, Ali Al-Moselhi, announces signing a $100 million loan facility agreement to finance grain purchases. Al-Moselhi assures that Egypt’s strategic wheat reserves are sufficient for 5.2 months and highlights the supply of 3.8 million tons of local wheat since the harvest season’s commencement. Additionally, Egypt celebrates successful grants of two international gold mining contracts at the Egypt Mining Forum.
  2. Saudi Arabia Extends $400 Million Easy Loan to Tunisia Amidst Looming Debt Crisis and Goods Shortage (Sky News Arabic Economics). Saudi Arabia offers Tunisia a soft loan worth $400 million and provides $100 million in grants to address the country’s impending debt crisis and shortage of essential goods. The move aims to assist Tunisia in overcoming its faltering financial situation.
  3. Terrifying Explosions Rock Khartoum and El Obeid Amidst Ongoing Sudanese Army and Rapid Support Forces Clashes (Al Hadath). Khartoum and El-Obeid, a strategic city located 350 km south of Sudan’s capital, experience missile and artillery bombardment amidst continued clashes between the Sudanese army and the Rapid Support Forces. The conflict forces 100,000 people to flee from Sudan to Chad. The army accuses the RSF of bombing a residential neighborhood in the capital using a drone, killing 14 civilians and injuring 15 others.
  4. China Commits $36 Billion Investment Across Various Sectors in Algeria (New Arab). China pledges a substantial investment of $36 billion in Algeria, spanning sectors such as manufacturing, new technology, knowledge economy, transport, and agriculture. Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune praises the mutually beneficial projects and agreements concluded with China during a meeting in Shenzhen province with representatives of the Algerian community in China.

 

July 25, 2023

  1. The Libyan Red Crescent Calls for the Rescue of 400 Migrants at the Border with Tunisia (Al-Sharq Al-Awsat). The Libyan Red Crescent Society called for the speedy rescue of 400 migrants who belong to several African countries and are stuck on the border with Tunisia after the latter deported them from its lands and its Libyan counterpart refused their entry into the country. An official in the Red Crescent appealed to “the necessity of providing relief to migrants stranded at the border.” At the same time, the association said, on Monday, that it continues to provide emergency humanitarian aid to migrants on the Libyan-Tunisian border, “including women with critical health conditions, infants and men who need immediate assistance.”
  2.  100 Days Since the Two Generals’ War in Sudan: A Disturbing Toll of One Child Killed or Injured Every Hour (Al Hadath). One thousand eight hundred people in a new death toll, of whom at least one hundred eighty were buried randomly without identification. See the Video with English subtitles. 

 

July 26, 2023

  1. Terrifying Scenes from Fires in Algeria and Tunisia (Al Jazeera). The Algerian Ministry of Interior announced that 34 people were killed and 26 others injured in a series of fires in the eastern and northern regions of the country, coinciding with a severe heat wave sweeping the region. A video clip documented the fires spreading in populated areas in the Al-Qul area in the state of Skikda, and attempts to evacuate the residents stranded in the area.
  2.  Libyan Parliament Adopts Road Map for Formation of a New Government (Hiba Press). The Libyan Parliament decided on the road map issued by the “6 + 6” committee of the Parliament and the High Council of State. Parliament voted by an absolute majority to approve the road map with some amendments and observations proposed by the deputies. Parliament Speaker Aguila Saleh announced a 20-day nomination period for candidates to head the new government…Saleh stressed that candidates to lead the new government must obtain the recommendation of 15 deputies and ten members of the Supreme Council of State.
  3.  UN Says Situation in Sudan is Catastrophic (Al Arabiya). After 100 days of conflict, the United Nations revealed that the situation in Sudan had turned into a complete disaster. In a statement today, Nkweta Salami, Humanitarian Coordinator in Sudan, said, “Yesterday marked the 100th day since the outbreak of war in Sudan, a crisis that has turned into a complete disaster, noting that the increasing violations affect civilians and increase their suffering.

 

July 27, 2023

  1. An Internal European Investigation Into The Role of “Frontex” in The Tragedy of The Drowning of Hundreds of Migrants Leaving Libya (Al Wasat). The Secretary of the European Ombudsman, Emily O’Reilly, begins an investigation within the European Union regarding the role played by the European Union Border Control Agency (Frontex) in the tragedy of the drowning of hundreds of migrants in Greece, who were on a fishing boat that departed from Libya, last June. 
  2.  Sisi Meets Putin on the Sidelines of the Russian-African Summit (Al Mustaqila). President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi is heading to Russia to participate in the activities of the second edition of the Russian-African summit, which is scheduled to be held in St. Petersburg from the 26th to the 29th of July.

July 28, 2023

  1. Libyan Developments in the Region Continue to Escalate (Libya Akhbar). The recent arrival of a delegation from the Italian Ministry of Interior in Tripoli for a joint security meeting signals growing international engagement in addressing the security challenges in the country. On another front, Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, the Commander-in-Chief of the Libyan Arab Armed Forces, has made significant moves by establishing a new administration under his leadership. The creation of the Department of Information and Mobilization, based in Benghazi, indicates Haftar’s efforts to consolidate control and streamline communication within his ranks. Moreover, the recent meeting between Libyan Foreign Minister Najla al-Mangoush and Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan is significant in addressing various issues between Libya and Turkiye. 
  2. Egypt Explores Military Source Diversification with Russia (Pressbe). According to Muhammad al-Ghubari, the former director of the National Defense College and advisor at the Nasser Military Academy in Egypt, there is a notable shift in Egypt’s military procurement strategy. In exclusive statements to RT, he revealed that Egypt is no longer acquiring helicopters from the United States of America, as it did in the past. Instead, the focus has shifted to relying on the maintenance of Apache helicopters, which is carried out in the United States. This change signals Egypt’s efforts to diversify its military sources and explore new avenues of cooperation with other countries, including Russia.

 

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