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image copyrightAFP

image captionKyrgyzstan is under a state of emergency after violent clashes

Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov has resigned after days of protests following a disputed election that plunged the country into turmoil.

“I do not want to go down in Kyrgyzstan’s history as a president who shed blood and shot at his own citizens,” he said in a statement.

Kyrgyzstan has been in crisis since parliamentary elections on 4 October.

Subsequent protests forced electoral officials to annul the results, and also toppled the government.

Mr Jeenbekov becomes the third president of the Central Asian state, which gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, to be ousted by a popular uprising since 2005.

As he left office he called for peace, warning that Kyrgyzstan was close to conflict.

“The military and security forces will be obliged to use their weapons to protect the state residence. Blood will be inevitably shed. I urge both sides not to fall for provocations,” he said.

He also called on newly-appointed Prime Minister Sadyr Japarov and other opposition politicians to “take their supporters away” from the capital so that peace could return to Bishkek.

The unrest began after demonstrators took to the streets of the capital and stormed government buildings, demanding a new vote and the resignation of Mr Jeenbekov, who is pro-Russia.

media captionDemonstrators storm a government complex in Bishkek

They said the election results had been rigged – claims which international monitors said were “credible” and a cause for “serious concern” – as rival groups clashed for power, with several politicians making bids to become prime minister.

More than 1,200 people have been injured and one person has been killed in street clashes since protests erupted.


image captionPresident Sooronbay Jeenbekov (right) quit a day after approving Sadyr Japarov (left) as PM

On Wednesday Mr Jeenbekov gave his approval to the new PM’s appointment after parliament voted for him a second time.

Mr Japarov is a nationalist politician who had been serving a prison sentence until he was freed by supporters last week.

The new prime minister insisted on his rival departing office, and his supporters defied a state of emergency to march on the president’s residence on Thursday, supported by the military.

Kyrgyzstan’s speaker of parliament takes over as interim head of state, but Mr Japarov’s supporters want him to resign too, leaving the PM as the country’s main leader, the BBC’s Alm

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2nd French mayor threatened with BEHEADING in the wake of teacher’s brutal murder by ‘Islamic terrorist’





A second French mayor has apparently been threatened with “beheading” just days after the gruesome murder of a schoolteacher over cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed. The ominous threat was sprayed on the walls of a school in Lyon.

“The mayor of the 8th, we’ll behead your head [sic],” the graffiti read, referring to the eighth district of Lyon and its elected official, Olivier Berzane. Unambiguous threats were also made to cut off the heads of teachers and students.

Mayor Berzane said he has already filed a criminal complaint over the offensive messages, vowing to pursue those who wrote them, as “no one takes these threats lightly.”

“It is out of the question to let such an act go unpunished. It is necessary to find the perpetrators,” Berzane told local media.

These words are disconcertingly stupid and unspeakable. It’s pure hatred. Is it an isolated act of someone not knowing what to do with their evening, or a serious threat? Anyway, it’s a case of extreme violence.

While the threats might have been, as Berzane suggested, an “isolated act,” they came only a day after the mayor of Bron, near Lyon, received a similar warning. The graffiti in that case also threatened the town’s elected official with beheading. Mayor Jérémie Bréaud denounced the “violent writing,” and France’s Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin directed the police to “take legal action and provide protection.”

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This series of threats against local politicians comes a week after Samuel Paty, a schoolteacher in the Parisian suburb

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Ethiopia denounces Trump for INCITING WAR by saying Egypt will ‘BLOW UP’ disputed Blue Nile dam project





US President Donald Trump’s comment that Egypt will “blow up” a disputed dam that Ethiopia is building on the Blue Nile has sparked an outcry in Addis Ababa, where the government is calling the statement an “incitement to war.”

Ethiopian Foreign Minister Gedu Andargachew summoned US Ambassador Michael Raynor for clarification on Saturday, a day after Trump spoke in the Oval Office about Ethiopia’s $4.6 billion hydroelectric dam project.

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The project has created a “very dangerous situation,” said Trump, because one of the country’s downstream neighbors, Egypt, which relies on the Nile and its tributaries for most of its irrigation and drinking water, “is not going to be able to live that way.”

The president’s comments came during a ceremony marking a peace deal between Israel and with Sudan, which is also downstream. “They’ll end up blowing up the dam,” Trump said of Egypt. “And I said it and I say it loud and clear – they’ll blow up the dam. And they have to do something.”

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said his country won’t cave in to “belligerent threats.” He added that Ethiopia is committed to talks led by the African Union on resolving disputes over the allocation of the Nile’s waters, and he has seen “significant progress” in negotiations. Known as the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), the project is billed by Addis Ababa as a way to bring millions of Ethiopians out of poverty.

Given such high stakes, Trump was wading into a fraught situation. “The incitement of war between Ethiopia and Egypt from a sitting US president neither reflects the longstanding partnership and strategic alliance between Ethiopia and the United States, nor is acceptable in international law governing interstate relations,” Andargachew said on Saturday.

The Trump administration, which previously tried unsuccessfully to broker an agreement to resolve the GERD dispute, last month announced it was suspending some of its financial aid to Ethiopia after the North African nation started filling the dam’s reservoir.

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Egyptian officials have accused Trump of showing favoritism to Egypt and its president, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. “Sorry to say, but the man doesn’t have a clue on what he is talking about,” former Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn said on Saturday. “Ethiopia and Ethiopians will never be threatened by such an

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Afghan bombing: Kabul education centre attack kills at least 18






image copyrightReuters

image captionThe education centre attacked on Saturday usually hosts hundreds of students

At least 18 people have been killed and 57 wounded in a suicide bomb attack outside an education centre in the Afghan capital, Kabul, officials say.

The explosion at the private facility, which offers courses for students in higher education, occurred late in the afternoon, the interior ministry said.

The building in the predominantly Shia Muslim Dasht-e-Barchi area usually hosts hundreds of students.

Many have been taken to hospital. There are fears the death toll may rise.

It is not clear who was behind the attack. The Taliban have denied responsibility.

“A suicide bomber wanted to enter the education centre,” interior ministry spokesman Tareq Arain said in a statement, AFP news agency reports.

The spokesman added that the attacker was identified by security guards “after which he detonated his explosives in an alley”.

image copyrightReuters

image captionA man who reportedly lost his brother in the attack (R) is comforted at a hospital in the Afghan capital Kabul

One local resident, Ali Reza, told AFP that those killed and injured were students waiting to enter the facility. “I was standing about 100m from the centre when a big blast knocked me down,” he said.

Afghanistan has seen a rise in violence in recent weeks – with most of the attacks carried out by the Taliban. The violence threatens to imperil peace talks between government forces and the Taliban in the Qatari capital, Doha.

The Shia community in Afghanistan has previously been targeted by Sunni Muslim extremists such as the Islamic State group, which views the Shia practice of Islam as heretical.

Saturday’s attack is not the first to target an education centre in the capital.


Forty-eight people – many of them teenagers – were killed in August 2018 when a suicide bomber walked into a tuition facility in Kabul and detonated a device while teaching was under way. The Islamic State group said it was behind that attack.

In May, 24 women, children and babies were killed when unidentified gunmen entered a maternity ward at a hospital in Kabul and opened fire.

Earlier this week, 11 children and their prayer leader died an air s

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