Warzone News December 9, 2015

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Warzone News Week of December 9, 2015

In Afghanistan, Taliban suicide bombers killed at least 2 in an attack on the Kandahar airport in Afghanistan’s second largest city.

In Burundi, observers warn that dialogue is a long way off and fear there may be a new escalation of violence, perhaps even into a civil war. The opposition coalition is calling for UN and other international involvement in the proposed crisis talks.

In Cameroon, officials report that although around 900 hostages were released by Boko Haram last week, unfortunately none of them are the missing schoolgirls kidnapped by the group last year.

In the Central African Republic, eight civilians were killed at a camp for displaced people just days after the Pope’s visit.  Former President Bozize has been barred from running in the upcoming elections set for the end of December.

In the Democratic Republic of Congo, the recent flood has killed an estimated 20 people in Kinshasa and damaged the area’s water treatment facilities. A UN report accuses security forces of summary executions and death threats ahead of elections. Thousands escaping the fighting in South Sudan are forced to flee to the DRC.

In Iraq, Amnesty International reports that decades of reckless arms trading has fueled Islamic State atrocities.

In Israel and Palestine, the Israeli military is facing backlash from human rights groups over the destruction of houses last month.

In Libya, international actors are urging Libya’s warring factions to sign a UN-sponsored peace accord soon.  Many have signed, but hardliners are standing their ground despite pleas from the UN saying that remaining disputes can be resolved after the deal is signed.

In Myanmar, the country’s first stock exchange is launching on Wednesday and the U.S. has temporarily lifted trade restrictions. After a meeting between majority leader Aung San Suu Kyi and former military leader Than Shwe it appears that the military’s acceptance of the election results are genuine.

In Niger, government officials say that Boko Haram is waging a “scorched-earth” campaign in the region.

In Nigeria, Boko Haram gunmen have torched almost an entire village near the northeast Nigerian town of Chibok, where over 200 schoolgirls were kidnapped last year. Despite continued attacks, many Nigerians still believe President Buhari can take down Boko Haram.

In Somalia, an American member of al-Shabab has been arrested and has admitted to his involvement in the attack on Garissa University in Kenya earlier this year.

In South Sudan, violence is forcing thousands to flee to neighboring countries, including the DRC.  The horrific attacks and deteriorating conditions are prompting local communities to form armed groups.

In Syria, various opposition groups attempt to find unity against Syrian President Assad ahead of planned peace talks. Countries involved in the Syrian peace process are set to meet in New York on December 18th.

In Yemen, a ceasefire and peace talks are set to begin December 15th. In other news, Islamic State claims responsibility for a bombing that killed the governor of Aden, Yemen’s major port city.

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