15 Stories

Botswana Prez: Poaching Furor 'Nothing but Hysteria'

Pushes back at critics after reports of an elephant 'poaching frenzy'

(Newser) - Botswana's President Mokgweetsi Masisi says criticism of his government's anti-poaching policy is "nothing but hysteria," following reports of a "poaching frenzy" in a country with Africa's biggest elephant population. The remark came after some conservationists expressed concern that Botswana's wildlife department had been... More »

Elephants Massacred After Anti-Poaching Unit Disarmed

Evidence of 'poaching frenzy' uncovered

(Newser) - A conservation group has made a horrifying find in Botswana, a country once thought to have been a bright spot amid the relentless slaughter of Africa's elephants. While conducting an aerial census of the country's elephants, they discovered the carcasses of 87 of the animals near a wildlife... More »

World's 5 Most Unequal Countries on Same Continent

Effects of South Africa's apartheid still felt

(Newser) - Inequality was embedded in South African culture through its apartheid system. Nearly a quarter century after its end, the country still has a long way to go. "Inequality is high, persistent, and has increased since 1994" in South Africa, which is the most unequal country in the world when... More »

Second-Largest Diamond in History Is Found

Only a gem among the British Crown Jewels is bigger

(Newser) - Canadian mining outfit Lucara Diamond has just uncovered the world's second-largest diamond—and the biggest one found in more than a century. Found in the south lobe of the Karowe mine in central Botswana, the Type IIa stone is 1,111 carats and just slightly smaller than a tennis... More »

Botswana Prez in 'Freak Accident' —With Cheetah

Ian Khama needed 2 stitches after animal claws him

(Newser) - Peaceful, prosperous, and lightly populated Botswana rarely makes international news—until its president gets clawed in the face by a cheetah. Officials in the African nation say Ian Khama needed two stitches to his nose after the "overexcited" animal kept at an army barracks jumped up and clawed him... More »

Google: No, We Didn't Kill a Donkey

Google on defensive after Street View image circulates

(Newser) - No, Google is not a donkey killer. The Internet giant went on the defensive after a Google Street View image that looked as if the Street View car had run over a donkey in Botswana began making the rounds on Twitter. But appearances can be deceiving: Google released additional images... More »

Michelle Obama, Girls Visit Nelson Mandela

Daughters, mother join her on South African trip

(Newser) - Arriving in South Africa today, Michelle Obama met Nelson Mandela for the first time and said her husband was unhappy he couldn’t join them. “Michelle Obama certainly convinced the dignitaries she is excited to be here, and said her husband is 'pouty' that he isn't,”... More »

Botswana's President: No Short, Fat Wife for Me

Ian Khama searching for first lady

(Newser) - Botswana's most eligible bachelor is looking for a wife, but he's not interested in any short or overweight ones—like the country's minister for local government. "I don't want one like this one," President Ian Khama said at a political party meeting. "She may fail to pass... More »

British Princes Become Snake Charmers

Harry gets the head; William, the end that's 'having a pee'

(Newser) - Prince William and Prince Harry made a friend at a nature reserve in Botswana today: an 8-foot African rock python. Invited to pose with the fearsome but nonvenomous reptile, the royals appeared hesitant at first, but Harry was soon threatening William with the snake's head, the Daily Mail reports. The... More »

HBO's Unlikely New Series Offers No Sex, Violence

Network looks to PG series to rekindle viewers' interest

(Newser) - HBO's newest series one has nothing to do with single New Yorkers or mobsters in New Jersey. The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency, based on the novels by Alexander McCall Smith, is more like a younger, Botswanan version of Miss Marple—in a good way. R&B singer Jill Scott... More »

De Beers to Halt Work at Diamond Mines

Firm last suspended production during the Great Depression

(Newser) - De Beers has temporarily shut down its diamond mines in Botswana due to low demand for the precious stones, the Telegraph reports. The firm’s Botswana mines account for half of De Beers’ output, and about a fifth of diamond production worldwide. De Beers was not able to sell a... More »

Namibia's Ivory Sale Raises Poaching Fears

Legal auction could lead to more poaching

(Newser) - Namibia kicked off two weeks of ivory auctions yesterday, marking the first time in almost a decade that the elephant tusks have sold legally, reports the Times of London. Seven tons brought $1.18 million from Chinese and Japanese buyers, and 108 tons—the equivalent of 10,000 elephants—will... More »

African Union Pushes Unity Government in Zimbabwe

Move a rare shot at Mugabe by leaders

(Newser) - The African Union adopted a resolution today calling for President Robert Mugabe to begin negotiations with the Zimbabwean opposition on forming a unity government, Reuters reports. The action marks the first time the AU has censured Mugabe, who once enjoyed a strong reputation as Zimbabwe’s liberator, for his undemocratic... More »

Africa Braces for Zimbabwe Refugees

With Mugabe looking ready to hold on to power at all costs, exodus is expected

(Newser) - Zimbabwe's neighbors are preparing for a flood of refugees after next week's election, the London Times reports. About 3 million have already fled Robert Mugabe's regime to South Africa, Zambia, and Botswana. As it becomes increasingly clear that Mugabe will not give up power even if he loses the election,... More »

Gates Charity Creates New African Woes

AIDS dollars distort fragile health systems, undermining basic care

(Newser) - The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has given $8.5 billion to global health causes and is slowly defeating AIDS in Africa, but it’s creating unexpected new problems for the continent, the LA Times reports. By pouring money into the treatment of AIDS, TB and malaria, it has lured... More »

15 Stories