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Kenya shuts money transfer firms

Kenya's government has ordered the closure of 13 money transfer firms to prevent militant Islamists from using them to finance attacks, the interior minister has told the BBC. The bank accounts of 86 individuals and "entities" had also been frozen, Joseph Nkaissery added. Those targeted are believed to include a Somali-linked bus company and hotel.

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Somali President: Kenya Should Not Build Wall

Somalia's president is urging Kenya to avoid drastic measures as it tries to stop cross-border attacks by al-Shabab. President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud spoke exclusively to VOA Somali on Sunday, three days after al-Shabab gunmen massacred scores of students at Kenya's Garissa University College. Mohamud objected to calls by some Kenyan politicians to deport all Somali refugees or to build a wall along the Kenyan-Somali border.He rejected accusations the refugees, who mostly live in the Dadaab refugee camps, are responsible for insecurity in Kenya.

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Militants Attack Church and Police in Egypt, One Policeman Dead

Islamist militants hit Egypt's two largest cities Sunday with a bombing in Cairo and an attack on a church in Alexandria, killing a police officer and wounding seven other people, security sources said. In a separate incident, the leader of a militant group that has targeted police and soldiers around the capital was killed in a firefight with security forces early Sunday, the Interior Ministry said.A bomb explosion on a bridge leading to the upscale Cairo district of Zamalek, which hosts many embassies, killed a police officer, the Interior Ministry said. Two other officers and a civilian were injured. The force of the bomb, which the sources said was planted in or near a car, left a shallow crater and pools of blood on the May 15 Bridge.In Alexandria, militants in a microbus shot at the Church of the Angel Rafael, wounding a police officer and three civilians, before fleeing, security sources said.

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Egypt: Sinai peninsula attack kills 17

Militants have reportedly killed 17 people in the north of Egypt's Sinai peninsula, near the Israel-Gaza border. Security sources say 15 soldiers and two civilians died when gunmen attacked checkpoints around the town of Sheikh Zuweid on Thursday. Egyptian forces have been fighting a faction affiliated to the Islamic State group, known as Sinai Province.

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Egyptian President Welcomed By Power Cut In Ethiopia

The blackouts drew smiles from observers, since they underscored the East African country’s desperate need for electricity from the Grand Renaissance Dam project on its border with Sudan. This has long been a source of tensions as neighbours like Egypt fear for their water supply. “Ethiopia will never ask the consent of any country to undertake development projects,” Ethiopian Minister of Water, Energy and Irrigation Alemayehu Tegenu said in a recent assertion of his country’s independence.But with hopes riding on a trilateral state agreement on the issue signed last week, Tegenu added a pledge that Ethiopia will go about its work “in a way that does not cause any significant harm to any country.”

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Barack Obama to visit Kenya for first time as president

Barack Obama is scheduled to make his first trip as president to Kenya – the country of his father’s birth – in July, the White House announced on Monday. Obama planned to hold bilateral meetings and to attend a global entrepreneurship summit, the announcement said. It will be Obama’s fourth trip to Kenya. He visited as a US senator in 2006 and made a trip with his then fiancee Michelle in 1992.Obama’s father, Barack Hussein Obama Sr, was born in western Kenya in 1936 and died there in a car accident in 1982.

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Sudan rebels attack garrison, kill dozens

Khartoum - Sudanese rebels said they captured a garrison in conflict-hit South Kordofan and killed 54 troops on Saturday, with the army denying the claim. Khartoum has been battling the Sudan People's Liberation Army-North (SPLA-N) in the southern Blue Nile and South Kordofan states since 2011. The SPLA-N "attacked and liberated Habila town garrison" in the north of South Kordofan on Saturday, with retreating government troops leaving 54 dead behind them, SPLA-N spokesperson Arnu Lodi said in a statement. But Sudanese military spokesperson Colonel Al-Sawarmy Khaled Saad said the army had "repulsed a sabotage attempt" in Habila.Troops "forced the rebels out and are in complete control of the site”, Saad said.

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