Sunday, 31 May 2020

Burkina Faso gunmen 'kill dozens' at cattle market in Kompienga


A picture taken on 29 October 2018 shows a policeman patrolling in the centre of Ouahigouya, eastern Burkina Faso.Image copyrightAFP
Image captionThe security forces are struggling to end violence in Burkina Faso
Some 30 people have been killed in eastern Burkina Faso in a gun attack on a cattle market, reports say.
Gunmen on motorbikes fired into the crowded market in Kompienga town around lunchtime on Saturday, eyewitnesses and residents said. 
It is unclear who was behind the attack, but Burkina Faso has seen a recent sharp rise in jihadist violence and inter-communal clashes. 
The violence has forced hundreds of thousands to flee their homes.
Local media earlier reported 20 killed, while quoting sources as saying the death toll could be considerably higher. AFP news agency quoted local residents as saying 30 died. 
On Friday at least 15 people were killed when suspected Islamist militants attacked a convoy of traders in the north, near the border with Mali. 
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The government blamed the attack on "terrorists", a phrase usually used to describe al-Qaeda and Islamic State-linked jihadists Burkina Faso has been battling in recent years. 
Despite occasional government claims of success against the Islamist militants, the insecurity in the north and east of Burkina Faso has dramatically escalated. 
Jihadists have often targeted schools, forcing about 300,000 children out of education

Eastchurch cliff fall: House hanging over edge after second collapse


Eastchurch cliff fallImage copyrightRLH MEDIA
Image captionA home was left partially suspended over the cliff edge
A cliff fall that led to 20 homes being evacuated has worsened overnight with a large section of ground giving way. 
A house in Surf Crescent, Eastchurch, Kent, is partially suspended over the edge, while a car and garage fell down the cliff face on Sunday morning. 
"They are just waiting for the house to fall," said neighbour Malcolm Newell, who has been told it is not safe to return to his home two doors away. 
House hangs over cliffImage copyrightKFRS
Image captionThe second cliff fall left the home at "increased risk of collapse," the fire service said
EastchurchImage copyrightRLH MEDIA
Image captionA car and garage have slipped down the cliff face
A swimming pool in the property's back garden is also at risk, Mr Newell said, adding: "If that goes it could take a lot more with it."
Kent Fire and Rescue Service said it was called at 07:00 BST to the landfall involving a "significant section of the cliff", leaving the house "structurally unsafe and at increased risk of collapse". 
It said a "small number" of households had "self-evacuated" and were being looked after by Swale Borough Council at a community centre.
All but two of the households evacuated on Friday were told they could return to their homes on Saturday morning. 
Car fallImage copyrightKFRS
Image captionA "significant section of the cliff" collapsed on Sunday, Kent Fire and Rescue Service said
It is unclear how many are affected by the second cliff fall, but Mr Newell estimated eight households have been told they can not return. 
"I'm out. I can't go back," he said. "Apparently there are more cracks appearing along the front."
Mr Newell, a parish councillor in Eastchurch, said he first warned authorities in 2015 that action was needed to prevent further erosion.
"This should have been dealt with a long time ago," he said. "It's not right to have people's home, their livelihoods, falling into the sea."
Drone footageImage copyrightRLH MEDIA
Image captionA section of road collapsed leading to 20 homes being evacuated on Saturday
EastchurchImage copyrightRLH MEDIA
Image captionA larger landfall overnight took a car and a garage over the cliff edge on Sunday morning
In a statement, Swale Borough Council said it was opposed to the Environment Agency's existing shoreline management plan, which includes "no active intervention to defend this area".
However, the Environment Agency said: "The shoreline management plan, which indicates which areas justify continued protection or not, was written in full consultation with Swale Borough Council and other partners. 
"These are always difficult decisions, and the plan sets out no further intervention for this area, however we continue to work closely with Swale Borough Council."
The agency described the area as "mainly rural though includes a small number of houses and caravan parks at risk from ongoing significant erosion".
In 2015 the agency said it had considered a coastal defence scheme, but the number of properties in the area did not justify the cost.

George Floyd death: Lawyer calls it 'premeditated murder'


Protesters in Lafayette Square near the White House in Washington DC, 31 May 20Image copyrightAFP
Image captionProtesters kneel to pray in Lafayette Square near the White House in Washington DC
A lawyer for the family of George Floyd, whose death sparked unrest across the US, has accused a police officer of "premeditated murder".
Minneapolis policeman Derek Chauvin has been charged with third-degree murder, but lawyer Benjamin Crump told CBS news it was a case of first-degree murder.
"We think that he had intent... almost nine minutes he kept his knee in a man's neck that was begging and pleading for breath," he said.
Several US cities have imposed curfews.
The Floyd case has reignited US anger over police killings of black Americans. It follows the high-profile cases of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Eric Garner in New York and others that have driven the Black Lives Matter movement.
Media captionProtesters took to the streets of many cities to voice their anger following the death of George Floyd
"The fact that officer Chauvin kept his knee on his neck for almost three minutes after he was unconscious. We don't understand how that was not first degree murder. We don't understand how all these officers haven't been arrested," lawyer Crump said.
Three other officers present at the time have also since been sacked.
For many the outrage over George Floyd's death also reflects years of frustration over socio-economic inequality and segregation, not least in Minneapolis itself.
Derek Chauvin, 44, is due to appear in court in Minneapolis on MondayImage copyrightREUTERS
Image captionDerek Chauvin is due to appear in court in Minneapolis on Monday
In video footage, Mr Chauvin, 44, can be seen kneeling on Mr Floyd's neck for several minutes on Monday. Mr Floyd, 46, repeatedly says that he is unable to breathe. 
There have been five nights of arson and looting in Minneapolis and the adjacent city of St Paul. Minnesota's Governor Tim Walz said on Saturday he was deploying the full Minnesota National Guard for the first time since World War Two.
Governor Walz said racism in his state had created the conditions for Mr Floyd's death.
Media captionMinneapolis voices: ‘As a black American I am terrified’
The National Guard - the US reserve military force for domestic emergencies - said on Sunday that 5,000 of its personnel had been activated in 15 states and Washington DC. It added that "state and local law enforcement agencies remain responsible for security".
In the CBS interview, lawyer Benjamin Crump also said "we now have the audio from the police bodycam and we hear where one officer says 'he doesn't have a pulse, maybe we should turn him on his side', but yet officer Chauvin says 'no, we're going to keep him in this position'. That's intent.
"Also, the fact that officer Chauvin kept his knee on his neck for almost three minutes after he was unconscious."
Minnesota National Guard outside State Capitol building in St Paul, 31 May 20Image copyrightGETTY IMAGES
Image captionThe Minnesota National Guard surrounded the State Capitol building in St Paul on Sunday
The lawyer also said Mr Chauvin and Mr Floyd already knew each other before Mr Floyd's death in custody.
He said the Floyd family was "notified by the owner of a club that Derek Chauvin was an off-duty police officer where George Floyd was a security guard, and so they had to overlap".

What's the latest on the protests?

Huge demonstrations have taken place in at least 30 cities across the US. They were largely peaceful on Saturday, but violence flared later in the day.
Besides Minneapolis and Los Angeles, the cities under night curfew include Atlanta, Chicago, Denver, Louisville, Richmond, San Francisco and Seattle. 
One of the cities worst affected by unrest is Los Angeles. California Governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency in the city and activated the National Guard.
The entire city is under curfew. Numerous shops have been looted, including on the famous retail avenues, Melrose and Fairfax, while overhead footage showed fires burning. Earlier police fired rubber bullets and hit protesters with batons. Hundreds of arrests have been made. 
In New York City, police arrested about 350 people overnight and dozens of police suffered light injuries.
In Salt Lake City, a man aimed a bow and arrow at protesters and was attacked by the crowd, Reuters reported. 
President Donald Trump's national security adviser told CNN "I don't think there's systemic racism" in the police.
Robert O'Brien said "there are some racist police, I think they're the minority, I think they're the few bad apples and we need to root them out".
Media captionThousands marched from Trafalgar Square to the US embassy in South London
On Saturday evening, President Trump said Mr Floyd's death had "filled Americans with horror, anger and grief".
He also denounced the actions of "looters and anarchists", accusing them of dishonouring the memory of Mr Floyd. What was needed, he said, was "healing not hatred, justice not chaos". "I will not allow angry mobs to dominate - won't happen," he added.
Thousands took part in an anti-racism protest march in central London on Sunday, defying social distancing rules imposed because of coronavirus. They gathered in Trafalgar Square, then the crowd moved on to the US embassy.

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