The intensified civil war in South Sudan has forced several countries to begin evacuating their citizens from the country. Germany, the UK, Italy, Japan, India and Uganda have already started the process with worries that the already high death toll will increase. Commercial flights in and out of South Sudan have been cancelled so military and chartered planes are carrying out evacuations.
The White House announced that the US will send an armed force of 47 to protect the US embassy in Juba, and that another troops would be stationed in the neighbouring state of Djibouti, on stand-by in case the unrest becomes worse.
A two-day ceasefire between South Sudan President Salva Kiir’s forces and vice-President Riek Machar’s forces is holding in the capital, Juba.
Pastor accused of trying to overthrow Mugabe freed
A pastor has been freed by a Zimbabwean court after a magistrate ruled that charges against him breached the constitution. Pastor Evan Mawarire was arrested on Tuesday for organising a countrywide strike in protest against the government and the country’s deteriorating social and economic conditions. He was originally charged with inciting violence, but hours before he was due to appear in court the charges were changed to attempting to overthrow a constitutionally elected government.
“It’s my finding that the National Prosecuting Authority cannot charge the accused for the first time in court without charges being read to him,” magistrate Vakayi Chikwekwe said when he ruled the last-minute change of charges were unconstitutional.
Bangladesh cafe siege hostages missing
Police in Bangladesh say they have no information about the whereabouts of two hostages freed after the recent Dhaka cafe siege. Amnesty International raised concerns about Tahmid Khan and Hasnat Karim after their families had reported they had not returned home from detention by security forces.
A police officer said the pair had been regarded as suspects and were therefore interrogated, but said they were both released and are no longer in custody. Relatives of both men insisted there is no connection between the two men and the Islamic State, which claim responsibility for the attack. – Compiled from web sources by Samantha Besgrove, Ariana Norton and Zabrina Potestas
Screengrab from NTVUganda’s Youtube account.