Kampala, Jun 24 (Xinhua/UNB) -- Six street children were killed and two others seriously injured as a result of a school perimeter wall collapse on Monday here, a police spokesperson said.
Patrick Onyango, Kampala Metropolitan police spokesperson, told Xinhua that the perimeter wall of Lohana High School collapsed following heavy rains and buried the street children who were sleeping at about 1:30 a.m. local time (2230 GMT Sunday).
"Our fire brigade and rescue team is still on the ground to clear the debris and see whether there are still kids trapped," he added.
The police spokesperson said the two injured were immediately taken to Mulago Hospital for urgent medical care.
Some five people, including four children were killed last month in a residential fence wall collapse following heavy rains in Seguku village, Makindye division, about 10 km southeast of Kampala.
Mogadishu, June 22 (Xinhua/UNB) -- Somali and UN agencies on Saturday started a week-long immunization campaign, using oral cholera vaccines in high-risk districts to prevent recurring cholera outbreaks in the country.
The June 22-28 campaign, which is being carried out along with UNICEF and other global partners, seeks to vaccinate more than 650,000 people aged one year and above to eliminate the risk of the disease among vulnerable populations.
Fauziya Abikar Nur, Somalia's health minister, said cholera remains one of the major public health threats.
"We now have the means and solutions to end cholera from Somalia. We continue to work with WHO and our other partners to save lives and prevent cholera on a long-term sustainable basis," Nur said in a joint statement issued in Mogadishu, referring to the World Health Organization (WHO).
According to the WHO, Somalia has reported 1,041 suspected cases of cholera since the current outbreak in January, including one related death, in 25 districts of the states located in the basins of the Jubba and Shabelle rivers.
In 2017, Somalia faced one of the largest outbreaks in its history, with 78,784 cases, including 1,159 deaths, the WHO said.
In 2018, Somalia saw a reduction in reported cases of cholera and related deaths, largely due to improved disease surveillance and case management, with the reported number of cases standing at 6,448, including 45 deaths.
Mamunur Rahman Malik, WHO representative for Somalia, said the UN agency remains committed to keeping the country free from future cholera outbreaks.
"No one should die of cholera in the 21st century, especially when we have an affordable and easily administrable cure," Malik said. "It remains our collective responsibility to save lives and end cholera from Somalia."
During the two rounds of the campaign, 112 vaccinators will go from house to house in the six districts where they aim to vaccinate around 150 people a day.
The WHO said a total of 217 community mobilizers have been deployed to conduct house-to-house visits and inform communities about campaign dates and benefits of vaccination prior to the actual start of the campaign.
Cairo, Jun 20 (AP/UNB) — A Libyan commander whose forces are fighting to take the country's capital of Tripoli from militias allied with a U.N.-backed government based there has dismissed an initiative by its prime minister for negotiations to end the crisis.
Khalifa Hifter also vowed to press his campaign and rid Tripoli of what he says are "terrorist militias."
Hifter spoke on Wednesday to a local news website, almarsad.co. He says "military operations will not stop" until Tripoli is taken.
In April, Hifter's self-styled Liberation National Army that's based in eastern Libya, launched the offensive. The campaign, criticized by the U.N. and aid agencies, has killed hundreds and displaced thousands of civilians.
It has also raised fears of another bout of violence after the 2011 uprising that toppled and killed longtime dictator Moammar Gadhafi.
Cairo, Jun 18 (AP/UNB) — Egypt's first democratically elected president, Islamist leader Mohammed Morsi who was ousted by the military in 2013 after a year in office, collapsed in court while on trial Monday and died, state TV and his family said.
The 67-year-old Morsi had just addressed the court, speaking from the glass cage he is kept in during sessions and warning that he had "many secrets" he could reveal, a judicial official said. A few minutes afterward, he collapsed in the cage, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to the press.
In his final comments, he continued to insist he was Egypt's legitimate president, demanding a special tribunal, one of his defense lawyers, Kamel Madour told the Associated Press. State TV said Morsi died before he could be taken to the hospital.
Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood accused the government of "assassinating" him through years of poor prison conditions. In a statement, the group demanded an international investigation into Morsi's death and called on Egyptians to protest outside Egypt's embassy across the world.
Morsi, who was known to have diabetes, had been imprisoned since his 2013 ouster, often in solitary confinement and barred from visitors — his family was allowed to visit only three times during that time.
Egypt's chief prosecutor said Morsi's body would be examined to determine the cause of his death. State TV, citing an unnamed medical source, said he died after suffering a heart attack.
It was a dramatic end for a figure who was central in the twists and turns taken by Egypt since its "revolution" — from the pro-democracy uprising that in 2011 ousted the country's longtime authoritarian leader, Hosni Mubarak, through controversial Islamist rule and now back to a tight grip under the domination of military men.
The Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt's most powerful Islamist group, won the elections held after Mubarak's fall, considered the first free votes the country had seen. First, they gained a majority in parliament, then Morsi squeaked to victory in presidential elections held in 2012, becoming the first civilian to hold the office.
Critics accused the Brotherhood of using violence against opponents and seeking to monopolize power and Islamize the state. Massive protests grew against their rule, until the military — led by then-Defense Minister, Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi — ousted Morsi in July 2013, dissolved parliament and eventually banned the Brotherhood as a "terrorist group."
El-Sissi was elected president and re-elected in 2018 in votes human rights groups sharply criticized as undemocratic. He has waged a ferocious crackdown that crushed the Brotherhood but also almost all other dissent, arresting tens of thousands, banning protests and silencing most criticism in the media.
Since his ouster, Morsi and other Brotherhood leaders have been put on multiple and lengthy trials. Morsi was sentenced to 20 years in prison on charges of ordering Brotherhood members to break up a protest against him, resulting in deaths. Multiple cases are still pending. Monday's session was part of a retrial, held next to Cairo's Tora Prison, on charges of espionage with the Palestinian Hamas militant group.
Morsi was held in a special wing in Tora nicknamed Scorpion Prison. Rights groups say its conditions fall far below Egyptian and international standards.
In contrast, Mubarak was allowed to stay in a military hospital during trials on various charges related to killing the protesters in 2011 uprising — of which he was eventually cleared.
Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director with the Human Rights Watch, said in a tweet that Morsi's death was "terrible but entirely predictable" given the government "failure to allow him adequate medical care, much less family visits."
Mohammed Sudan, leading member of the Muslim Brotherhood in London, said Morsi was banned from receiving medicine or visits and there was little information about his health condition.
"This is premeditated murder. This is slow death," he said.
Freedom and Justice, the Brotherhood's political arm, said in a statement on its Facebook page that prison conditions led to Morsi's death in what amounted to "assassination."
The judicial official said Morsi had asked to speak to the court during Monday's session. The judge permitted it, and Morsi gave a speech saying he had "many secrets" that, if he told them, he would be released, but he added that he wasn't telling them because it would harm Egypt's national security.
Madour, the defense lawyer, said Morsi spoke for around five minutes, "very calm and organized," before collapsing inside the cage.
A spokesman for the Interior Ministry did not answer calls seeking comment.
Morsi, an engineer who studied at the University of Southern California, was an unlikely figure to be thrust into Egypt's central stage. He was never considered a major thinker in the Brotherhood and instead rose through its ranks as an efficient, if lackluster, loyalist. The group only put him forward as its presidential candidate in 2012 after a more prominent and powerful figure, Khairat al-Shater, was declared ineligible to run.
The election victories were the crowning point for the Brotherhood, which had been banned under Mubarak but even underground had been the most organized opposition force. Initially, Morsi made gestures toward the secular pro-democracy activists who led the 2011 Arab Spring uprising. But over the course of the year, opponents accused his Brotherhood of hijacking the revolution and trying to entrench Islamist rule.
Major protests erupted, particularly over the process of writing a new constitution in which critics said the Brotherhood was allowing Islamists to write a charter largely on their terms. Brotherhood supporters cracked down violently on some protests.
As protests grew, the military stepped in. Critics called the move a coup, but el-Sissi's supporters call it a popularly backed move.
The subsequent crackdown has all but completely dismantled the Brotherhood, with hundreds killed and thousands imprisoned, with most other active figures fleeing abroad. At the same time, secular pro-democracy activists were also crushed.
Throughout his trials, Morsi insisted he remained Egypt's legitimate president. In early court sessions he gave angry speeches until judges ordered him kept in a glass cage during sessions where they could turn off his audio.
In audio leaked from a 2017 session of one of his trials, Morsi complained that he was "completely isolated" from the court, unable to see or hear his defense team, his eyes pained by lighting inside the cage.
"I don't know where I am," he is heard saying in the audio. "It's steel behind steel and glass behind glass. The reflection of my image makes me dizzy."
Dhaka, June 17 (UNB) - Egypt's former president Mohammed Morsi, who was ousted by the army in 2013, has died after fainting in a courtroom, state TV says.
Morsi, a former top figure in the now-banned Islamist movement Muslim Brotherhood, was at a session over accusations of espionage. He was 67, reports BBC.
He was overthrown following mass protests a year after he took office as the country's first democratically elected leader.
He had remained in custody since then.